Investors often give wise counsel: “slow down to speed up.” But what the heck does that mean? Growth is how you’re valued—it’s how you get to scale, and that scale is how you become a profitable viable company. Obstacles? Power through, because aren’t entrepreneurs built to run through roadblocks? Slow down to speed up… come again?
Slowing down is anathema to most growth-stage founders. However, sometimes you do need to slow down, and even cut back, to create time not only to survive but also to find a new, and often better, path. I had a great talk with Nick Mehta—long-time friend, Tidemark Fellow, and CEO of category-leading company Gainsight—about his experience with having to slow down to reaccelerate.
I love Nick because he is so open and honest; this conversation is classic Nick. We talk about:
- Knowing when you’ve hit a wall (in this case, TAM)
- Knowing when you’re reaching saturation vs. execution
- Real functional TAM vs. the slideware construct
- The importance of finding a new leg of group before core slows down
- Managing your product portfolio to get your core to profitability in order to fund new s-curves of growth
- How to get profitable and where to look for operating leverage
- Moving from venture capital investors to private equity
As an entrepreneur, you hit roadblocks, and one of your superpowers is finding crafty ways around and/or brute-force ways through. But sometimes that is not the right approach. After running into a roadblock many times, it might be time to pause, cut back, and get your economics in order to create time to build a strong fundamental business, and then reaccelerate growth.
I hope you enjoy this conversation with Nick Mehta about “slowing down to speed up” to create a strong fundamental business.