Startup School 08, Greg McAdoo, Sequoia Capital

2008 May 24
by Ismail Dhorat

Greg McAdoo discusses evaluating startup companies for investment at Sequoia Capital and how to create a great company.

Key Takeaways & Notes

Elements of a sustainable company

  • Clarity of purpose
  • Spectacular market
  • Alleviate customer pain
  • Team DNA
  • Incredible Product focus
  • Real operating margins
  • Frugality
  • Inferno with a single match

Common Mistakes

  • Cluttered Markets
  • Too much money
  • Too early or too late
  • Not addressing a true pain
  • A feature and not a product
  • A product and not a business
  • No business model

How to build a great company

  • Compelling offering:
  • Focus on people with their hair on fire
  • The message matters
  • You should be able to sum your business up in one short simple sentence
  • Market Insight:
  • What is the total addressable market?
  • What is the service addressable m market?
  • What is the share of the market?
  • Understand the dynamics of the market
  • Unfair Advantage:
  • Build up unfair advantage over time
  • Use speed and stealth
  • Iterate rapidly
  • Get your product our there quickly
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