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Leaning in for Growth. What Happens After Product-Market Fit?

Yield hosted a panel discussion with veteran executive founders who share their real-life stories of navigating companies to growth after finding product-market fit
Gary Schwake
Yield Managing Partner, Gary Schwake sat down with veteran founders, Andy Horowitz, Former Co-CEO of Black Mountain Systems (now Allvue Systems, a Vista Equity company) and Chris Halligan, COO of Payzer, to discuss what happens after product-market fit. When transitioning into a period of aggressive growth, there can be so many levers to pull that the additional unknowns can be paralyzing. From finding the right advisors to making hires with winning mindsets, Horowitz and Halligan bring clarity to every entrepreneurs burning questions. You can view the video of the full panel discussion below, but we’ve also highlighted a few key points from the discussion for those on the move.
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Key Considerations for the Journey Beyond Product-Market Fit

Find the Right Advisors

If you want to learn how to gauge the right people that are allowed to have a say in your startup, jump to 20:29. Chris Halligan makes an excellent comparison between Lebron James and Michael Phelps that will help you determine who is giving you the best advice.

Raising Capital

Is there such a thing as too much money? Not when it comes to raising capital. Starting at 50:26 and continuing past 51:44, Andy Horowitz and Chris Halligan advise on how much capital you’ll need. (Hint: It’s more than you think.)

The Customer Journey

Around 40:53, Andy Horowitz breaks down a key factor in the customer and sales journey: churn. By being the problem solver for your client and continually playing that role, you’ll become a trusted source with a loyal customer base.

You’ll likely hear us reference a changing customer journey and we have good reason. Beginning at 46:32, Andy Horowitz highlights how the rise of technology has led to an increase in a desire for self-service in customers and how you can tackle that with the right education through your website and resources.  

We can’t say it better than Chris Halligan. Hear this and why he believes the best cost for a lead is no money and minimal resources at 54:25.

“You can't buy your way to winning because if you could all of the winners would be the ones with the most money in the first place.”  

Hiring & Retaining Talent

When hiring for any role, it’s important to keep in mind that no one is going to care about your product or business more than you. Hear Chris Halligan at 26:45 discuss the importance of hiring great people with ownership mentality who you can motivate and train to care almost as much.

So how do you find the right sales people? Like Chris Halligan found, character can tell you more about the candidate than a resume can. At 58:39, Chris breaks down the types of questions he asks in interviews to make sure he’s hiring “good humans”. “Because if they make up answers in the interview, guess what they're going to do with the customer? They're going to make stuff up.”

Good humans and ownership mentality will help a company retain talent for the long haul. Back tracking to 29:53, Andy Horowtize discusses that his company went through a sale, the entire team had equity that they cashed out and not a single person left. Why? Because he prioritized on building a culture and team that loved what they did.

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