Jonathan Boutelle and Rashmi Sinha, founders of the presentation-sharing site SlideShare, describe the entrepreneurial process as a series of pivots. Boutelle explains it’s not just a jump, but an evolving growth of stages that leads to an idea that can start a business. From there, Sinha says that focused execution keeps the vision moving forward. By continually measuring the activity, they both believe that entrepreneurs can better recognize the growth stages of their company.
The lessons on doing a startup can be learned from Jon and Rashmi. They launched the company in 2006 and formally incorporated in 2007.
Key to success: have a simple idea, articulate it clearly, make product easy to use and understand, and stay lean cost wise. This is what Slideshare did: keep costs low and get profitable fast, focus on the target audience (in this case their users) value. Once you’re profitable stay focused on improving the product.
On the funding side they took angel investment l but they avoided venture capital until they were clearly established and profitable. Jon points out that they tapped experts around silicon valley for equity not cash. They shared the upside to get premium services and keep cash burn low.