One of the great experiences we’ve had building PicketFencer is our time at the Founder Institute, which bills itself as “the world’s premier startup launch program for talented entrepreneurs.” Over the course of the program, I’ve had the privilege to work with an impressive array of start-up mentors, who have offered invaluable aid in getting PicketFencer off the ground.
We’ve definitely learned a ton, as the program helps participants walk through all the key steps of building a tech business, including customer development, product development, marketing, team-building, and fundraising. If I had to boil down all the lessons we’ve learned to just two, though, here’s the two I would pick:
- As a start-up, the only advantage you have over your competitors is speed. It’s imperative to move fast, learn quickly, and get products out in front of real customers immediately. Too much dawdling over getting things perfect is a killer.
- You need to understand, and then laser focus on, the key drivers of your business. What are the metrics of user behavior that will drive your success? If you don’t know, you are setting yourself up for failure.
The graduation ceremony for our FI cohort is happening this Wednesday, and I’m proud to say PicketFencer is one of 12 graduates (out of a cohort that started with almost 30 participants). We plan to continue to work with FI for the long haul and would recommend the program to others looking for help getting their companies off the ground