Are You Working in a Performance Based Culture?

Or in a culture that rewards based on popularity or some other subjective measures?

I’ve had several vastly different experiences in organizations that preached “we are building a Performance Based Culture (PBC)” and generally I don’t think there’s any confusion or lack of understanding about what it is.  The problem, and where I’ve seen it break down, is a poor execution by 1) not putting in place the key ingredients to enable employees to truly understand how their actions will be measured and rewarded and 2) inconsistent and subjective evaluations by leadership.  This last point is the cultural kiss of death for having employees believe that true performance will be rewarded.  Just because you are told you work in a PBC by a C-level executive doesn’t mean you do.  So for startups, why is an explicit transition and focus on building a real PBC important?

Most successful startups go through a few phases of growth that inevitably leads to varying degrees of erosion of the talent level as the team grows, particularly if the team grows quickly and can’t hire staff fast enough.  At the early stages, the right way to hire is to be ruthless about hiring only the best – test everyone extensively in specific skills, intellect, skills flexibility and cultural fit.  Individual performance metrics are less important as everyone is hunkered down to build the product and achieve product/market fit.  And, everyone on the team in the early days has to be a star, their work is too important and is seen and experienced daily by everyone else.  An explicit focus on PBC is not necessary, it simply already exists.  However, over time the organization passes through two important phases that require changes in leadership both of the business and of people.

  1. Rapid scale in employees.  For hyper-growth companies at roughly 20-25 employees (and urgently going to 50 or more), it becomes impossible for the “entire team” to interview every candidate and hiring velocity becomes a gating factor to progress.  Thus compromises tend to be made, B & C level talent sneaks in and because the company is growing so fast, its requires a heroic effort to instill a culture of “firing fast” for mediocre performance.  The result, you end up with some “hangers-on” employees that are not horrible at what they do, but they certainly are not leaders and innovators that will propel the company forward.
  2. Different skills required to scale the business – particularly on the leadership team.  In the best run organizations, this is the time that a more disciplined approach to managing the business takes hold – putting processes in place, tracking and reporting on metrics that drive success, and explicitly preaching and building a Performance Based Culture (PBC) for evaluating and rewarding employees.
So what’s the big deal, seems easy enough right?  I think much of it IS easy – determining organizational goals, defining the desired behaviors, creating individual goals – takes work but not an overwhelming challenge.  The hard part is constantly communicating and coaching employees, supporting their achievement of individual goals, eliminating fear and making reward, hiring and firing decisions that are absolutely consistent with the preaching and the promise, decisions must be objective.  Leadership can’t on the one hand preach rewards and advancement based on objective performance and then exhibit subjective, special treatment or “inner circle” mentality based on a popularity contest.  Everyone will see it, eyes will roll and faith in any sort of real PBC will be lost.
Bottom line, if you are a leader in a startup that is growing rapidly and in need of a more explicit focus on performance management, here’s an oversimplified formula that’s worked for me:
  1. Be clear about what drives success for the business, then create a handful of metrics, measure them, share them, post them – make sure everyone has clarity if we do x, then we achieve y.
  2. With success metrics clear, ensure everyone has actionable individual goals that tie directly to the organizational metrics.  This can be tricky for non-executives.  Every individual goal should roll up into the organizational metrics, directly or indirectly (Some goals should reinforce desired behaviors, not just quantified metrics).
  3. Provide frequent feedback, encourage dialogue and make course corrections.  This should be an ongoing topic of discussion every week as part of a broader check in with direct reports, especially in the early days of implementation.
  4. Be timely.  Don’t let half the quarter expire before individual goals are in place.  It shows a lack of commitment.  How can evaluations be objective if goals are undefined for half the period?
  5. And most important, lead by example, evaluate your staff objectively.  No inner circles, no boys/girls club, no rewarding big talkers, no overly subjective evaluations.  Even with the best intentions this can go awry simply because you may not have a full view of your employee’s performance if they work closely with others.  Important to actively seek out performance feedback from those with the best understanding of performance.  Put in the effort to get it right, you may be fooled by a lack of information on someone’s performance, but everyone else in the organization won’t be.

Are You Pulling the Wool Over The Eyes of Your Employees?

Fair warning, this will be a bit of a rant.  There was a story that emerged late last week about how Skype had provisions in their employee stock option agreements that basically rendered stock options worthless for employees.  It spawned a lot of discussion in the media and among bloggers over the weekend, but there were two articles I ran across that gave competing views into the situation:  An employee-centric view and a company “why they did it” view.  Take a moment to get educated.

I’m not going to get mired into the detail of specific employee incidents discussed in these articles.  Rather, I’m focusing on the philosophy of implementing an egregious stock option agreement that provides little to no compensation and ownership value to employees.  And more specifically, doing so when the tech industry norms are vastly different.

In a nutshell, here’s the situation.  Skype’s employee option agreement has a very unusual clause that enables the company to buy back an employee’s options if the employee leaves the company voluntarily or involuntarily.  The buying back of unvested shares upon termination is a standard option agreement clause for most tech companies.  What makes this clause unusual, and reprehensible in my view, is that it just doesn’t cover unvested options, but also vested options.  And here’s the evil kicker – the company has the right to buy back vested shares at the original grant price, not the fair market value that employees presumably contributed to achieving.

There are two problems with this type of agreement that I cannot be convinced are fair and equitable components of tech industry compensation:  1) The company has a right to buy back vested shares upon termination and 2) the Company can buy back vested shares at the original grant price.  This second point is the one that I believe essentially tells employees “Here’s an option grant but if you don’t stay with the company until it sells, regardless of how much value you create, we can terminate the grant.  Oh, and we can fire you before the company sells to ensure the grant is worthless.”

Now, there have been several arguments, although sparse compared to the criticism, in defense of Skype’s treatment of options in their agreement:

  1. Employees should read any agreement before they sign it.  This is a load of crap.  Employees other than the most senior leadership have ZERO ability to negotiate terms in a “standard” company agreement and thus the vast majority of employees have likely never had a lawyer review employment related agreements (confidentiality, non-solicitation, etc.).   The fundamental issue here is not whether an employee should negotiate a better agreement, but rather philosophically how does the company want to incentivize and reward employees, particularly when the industry standard is so different creating a misleading view of how a standard option agreement behaves.  In a world where there is such a deviation from the norm, the company has an obligation to ensure employees fully understand how deviating agreements work.
  2. Skype’s investors are Private Equity and not Venture Capital.  Huh?  What does this have to do with the fundamental notion that employees, not investors, are the primary asset that creates value in ANY company, regardless of who the investors are.  Early stage, later stage, turnaround, it doesn’t matter.  This point does not negate the company’s responsibility to provide clarity to employees about how compensation-related agreements work.
  3. If an employee voluntarily leaves, then they don’t deserve to keep any options.  Again, this is just not the right thing to do.  By way of example, let’s say I joined my company and was granted 40,000 shares vesting over a 4 year period and at a grant or strike price of $0.10, representing the Fair Market Value of the shares at that time.  After two years, the company has made progress and raises capital at a per share price of $0.50.  So, there’s been $.40 of value created during my time at the company.  Now I decide to leave.  Since I worked for two years, I will have vested in 20,000 shares and presumably I’ve contributed in creating that value – if I haven’t, then the company should have fired me a long time ago.  But they didn’t.  The value of my 20,000 vested shares is now $8,000 (20,000 x $0.40 per share).  Under the Skype option plan, the company essentially has the right to terminate all options, so I leave with no stock, despite the fact that I’ve vested in half my position.  Poof, no options!  My belief, and the belief of most companies, is that the employee should have the right to purchase vested options at the original grant price upon leaving the company.  So I pay the company $2,000 and they issue me a stock certificate for 20,000 shares that I take with me.   Again, this is a philosophical debate – I believe in making all employees owners and rewarding people for contributing to increasing corporate value.  Just because someone decides to leave for personal, professional, health or any other reason doesn’t mean they don’t deserve to capture the value increase.

What’s the bottom line?  As a leader in your organization, what value do you place on people, transparency and sharing value creation with those most responsible for creating that value?  Companies have a responsibility for transparency and integrity towards employees.  Create and enforce whatever agreements you like, but be overtly educational about it, particularly in instances where your policies deviate substantially from standard industry practice.  This is where Skype failed in my view.

Don’t Hate Me Cause I’m a Business Guy

I recently read a fantastic post by Jacob Quist entitled “Why Engineers Distrust Business People” that provided a unique perspective on what I never fully understood, but was always aware, to be a common tension between deeply technical folks and those of us who are far more competent in non-technical arenas such as business operations, business development, sales or marketing.  In Jacob’s post, he believes the foundation of this distrust is due to the fact that historically engineers have been directed at the highest levels of the organization by business people and it only takes a few bad experiences to perpetuate a stereotype.  This is certainly a 2-way street, there are plenty of bad engineers and technical leadership out there, but typically its the business side of the house that directs the organization.  At least historically.  Jacob is right, its all about providing mutual value which leads to mutual respect.  Now with so many new startups founded by engineers, there’s a burst of independence from these bad experiences, creating a challenge for even the most effective, accomplished business entrepreneurs to find “co-founder” opportunities unless they bring the idea or concept to the table.

As a “business guy” who’s worked closely with engineers in startups for over 10 years, I’ve consciously made efforts to complement, not contribute to (read: get in the way of), the technical aspects of the business while treating the technical/engineering function equally if not more important than anything that drives the success of the organization.  Most recently I’ve tried to take it one step further, a step that I rarely see other business folks embrace – ensuring technology leadership has an equal seat at the table at the highest levels of strategy and product development and enabling the technical staff, the engineers, to contribute to product development in the form of a “safe challenge” dialogue with the product team.  This view has evolved over time for me as I’ve been exposed to increasing levels of strategic talent in the technical individuals I’ve worked with.  Experienced engineers often have incredible design and product sensibilities because they are the closest to the end product.  While they may not create the original design or spec, they are problem solvers in implementation, constantly iterating to find the best solutions.  And they usually understand a product’s complexity better than anyone, which HAS to be considered in any strategic product discussion.

So to all of you startup engineers out there, especially those who are founders and assuming you need a business partner (and you do, subject of a future post!), what should you look for in your “business partner”?

  • Demonstrable success in starting, building and scaling a startup.  These are 3 distinct phases of a company’s early growth that require different skills and perspective, and you need someone that has success in all three.
  • Philosophically aligned on the role of technology.  Ask the tough questions about the qualities of a great CTO, the role of the engineers and how strategic decisions are made for the organization.
  • The business co-founder does not have to be the CEO.  This is a great ego-check moment.  There should at least be a dialogue and healthy debate, never a default assumption.  And discussing how roles will evolve as the company grows is equally important.
  • Find an overall athlete (COO or Head of Ops)  instead of a functional expert.  This is probably the most controversial point that many will disagree with.  Many founders want to solve their most immediate need (more sales, marketing to acquire customers) and thus seek to find deep experience in a single skill as the first or second key leader.  I would contend that in a startup, there are a dozen areas that need leadership now to properly set the company up for success and that if every other attribute on this list is met, the “right” business partner can fill any immediate functional need sufficiently in the interim.  Another important point – acquiring and building out a talented, cohesive and high performing leadership team is difficult and a skill that should be historically demonstrated by your partner.
  • Ability to immediately contribute.  Leadership recruiting, product strategy, fund raising, sales, business development, marketing – the seasoned business lead can successfully step into most of these roles initially as the other functional leaders are recruited.
  • Test for worst case scenario.  When all hell breaks loose and it looks like the business is going to crater, how will your partner deal with it?   Do you share common philosophies on hiring, spending, tough decision processes?  This is difficult to predict, but you have to talk about worst case, because in a startup, worst case is most likely case!

What other qualities should you look for in your “business” partner?

Why Most Startups Need a “Business Guy”

I read an intriguing blog post titled “What the Hell Does a “Business Guy” Do? by serial entrepreneur Rob Walling.  The basic premise of his post is that the only compelling reason a “technical founder” should bring on a “business founder” (BF) as a partner is if that BF has “successful marketing experience”.  While I agree that marketing, specifically customer acquisition, is probably the most important and difficult problem to solve in a startup’s early days, I believe there are other important aspects of both building a team and a foundation for scaling the business that technical founders (in my experience) don’t always possess.

Of course I’m biased, because I represent the BF that Rob discusses.  Having been on the ground floor of 3 startups as the lead business and operations person, there are a few consistent areas of value that I’ve seen critical to early stage success, in addition to the marketing/customer acquisition skills Rob mentioned.

I would define these areas of value in the context of what I believe a BF profile must look like.  In my opinion, a credible BF needs to have demonstrated operational success in a startup environment, from early product development through financing, rapid growth and scale, including:

  • has been through multiple early product fails and iterations
  • has a high tolerance for ambiguity, chaos and daily priority changes
  • can contribute immediately in at least one critical business functional role at the outset – Marketing or Biz Dev ideally
  • has navigated a financing from external investors
  • has built a cohesive, uber-talented team that are the best at what they do AND that share similar culture sensibilities and work ethic (this is hard to do)
  • has successfully acquired and scaled customers, partners and revenue
  • has established metrics for tracking business success and a way to reliably measure and adjust
  • has battle scars, fail stories and an ability to articulate why the same fails won’t happen again.

So, this BF is not just a strategist or marketer, but a true partner to the entrepreneur who has a unique ability to take the entrepreneur’s vision and build a real business out of it.  The importance of this experience should not be underestimated.  True visionary entrepreneurs typically have an “anything’s possible” belief system and won’t be deterred.  Balancing that perspective with someone who can implement and tolerate that kind of ambiguity and chaos is paramount.

If the technical co-founder has experience in all these areas, then yes, I agree with Rob that partnering with a non-technical founder may just represent unnecessary equity dilution, but I’d venture there are lot’s of new businesses being created right now by super-developers without these important experiences under their belts.

Some might argue that all of these skills don’t have to be wrapped up in one person and that they don’t have to all be present at the earliest stages of a company’s development.  It ultimately comes down to the skills and experiences of the original founder, but having a BF partner who has been through the “business building” process successfully can ensure the correct sequencing of process, people and technology and let the entrepreneur focus on high value creation – strategy, product and funding.

What do you think?

Foundational Events in a Company’s Life

In the life of an organization, it’s easy to reflect back at certain foundational events that either resulted in a new level of organizational development and success, or just the opposite in the case of failure.  But they are “foundational” because their occurrence contributed so significantly in either a positive or negative direction.  While there are numerous important wins or losses that are memorable and significant along the way, especially in a startup, these foundational events are set apart based on their epic significance.

At TrueCar, there have been at least 2 such events over the past 3 years.  The closing of our first Venture round of financing in 2008 and merging with our sister company Zag in 2010 to create TrueCar, Inc.  Well, we just had another one announced Monday that I believe could lead to a tipping point for TrueCar – A partnership with and equity investment from Guthy-Renker, the leading international infomercial producer.  The most notable of their product partnerships is Proactiv, the acne treatment system that has grossed over $800M.  This partnership with GR involves a large equity investment from them that will help fund a massive brand development and advertising campaign for TrueCar.  It speaks to the potential for success that the experts in this process are confident enough to invest capital and put their own skin in the game.

Why is this so significant for us and why now?

First, why now?  The past several years we (Zag & TrueCar) have been quietly and gradually building our product and brand and have been gaining share of automotive retail with little to no marketing spend.  We’ve instead grown through large partnerships with companies like USAA, AAA, Consumer Reports, American Express and others as well as a robust PR machine that has helped build a foundation for the TrueCar brand, both in the automotive industry and with consumers.  But PR and distribution partners will carry you so far, to really scale the brand you must have widespread, household awareness which can be incredibly expensive.  However, in order to spend marketing dollars to acquire customers, there has to be a positive ROI on that investment, meaning for every dollar spent on marketing, more than one dollar must be generated in profit.  That’s a tough equation to make work unless the product engine is converting customers at high rates.  This is an oversimplification, but suffice to say that we now have the engine in place that enables a positive ROI on paid customer acquisition.  So, the time is right.

Second, why is this significant?  A partnership, including investment, with a leading brand-proliferation company like Guthy-Renker enables a mass introduction of TrueCar to consumers that would be almost impossible to achieve otherwise.  It has the potential to make TrueCar a household name among consumers.  It enables us, now that the “product engine” is built, to immediately and rapidly build the TrueCar brand nationally as the new and only way to purchase your next vehicle.  If our conversions (website visitor who purchases through our program) stand up, this will not only be a large cash outflow to pay for the marketing, but also a hugely profitable partnership due to the revenue generated from paying customers who see and respond to the advertising programs.  It’s also significant because this widespread, infomercial approach has never been done before in automotive retail, and we believe auto is ready for this type of innovation.  That could lead to an important first-mover advantage.

Only time will tell whether this will be an epic foundational WIN or LOSS.  But it will certainly be foundational.

What were your “foundational” company events that defined success or failure?

It’s About the Journey

Ever since our cycling trip to France last year (600 miles and 60,000 feet of elevation gain in 9 days), I’ve missed the commitment, preparation and sense of personal accomplishment that training for a strenuous physical event brings.  To prepare for France, I trained for about 6 months, riding 4-5 days per week on a pretty strict schedule of mileage & elevation gain.  As other priorities have now taken over, I’ve not spent much time on my bike, maybe one decent ride per week since we returned from the Tour de France last July.  In fact my fitness in general has taken a back seat.

Recognizing this “training” void in my life for the past 8 months, Renee for my birthday offered to drive the support vehicle so I could ride 2 stages of the upcoming Amgen Tour of California.  This is an 8-stage, pro-cycling tour event that is gaining in popularity and now competes directly with the major European tours, taking place May 15-22 along the California coast.  Amateurs have the ability to ride stages in the morning before the riders begin.

I’ll be riding Stages 6 & 7 of the Tour, the first being a relatively easy time trial through the Santa Ynez wine country outside of Santa Barbara.  The second is the defining stage of the race – Claremont to Mt. Baldy, twice!  It will be a 75 mile stage with over 10,000 feet of elevation gain during the day.  If I had to do it tomorrow, I wouldn’t make it.  That’s what makes the training journey so important and rewarding – there’s no way the objective could be achieved tomorrow, but with a detailed plan, broken into manageable and achievable components, success is all but guaranteed.

So I have roughly 6 weeks to get my cycling legs and have laid out DAILY training objectives between now and May 20.  I know precisely what I have to do tomorrow to prepare, and the next day, such that on May 20 the objective will be achieved.

Many endurance athletes would agree that the training journey, the hours, the pain, the discipline are what makes the actual race or event special.  It’s an adrenaline payoff for a lot of hard work, but many would also agree that training itself is enjoyable, even addictive.  We don’t do the training solely for the event, we do the training because it is rewarding all by itself.  The event or goal is simply what helps us stay on track, an additional motivator.

Why not apply these principles to most things in our lives – professional and personal?  I can see lot’s of opportunities in my own life to be better about setting stretch or aspirational personal goals instead of living life day to day.  Or perhaps being more diligent about my career objectives 2, 3 or 5 years from now to ensure I’m on my DAILY path to get there.

What objectives have you been putting off defining?  Maybe, just maybe the journey to reach them will be as rewarding as reaching the objective itself.

What Kind of Leader Are You?

There are so many different kinds of leadership & leadership styles.  A broad categorization might include People leadership (management) and Subject Matter leadership (expertise).  Then there are various styles of leadership – inclusive, authoritarian, hands on/off, etc.

I would like to talk about People Leadership in this post, and specifically leadership in a startup or early stage organization where innovation, speed, energy and passionate engagement need to be the life blood of the organization.  My leadership style for direct reports is very much one of inclusion, collaboration, and support to enable people to perform at a high level.  But it all starts with the team composition and quality from both a skills and personality standpoint.  This will be an oversimplification, but I see the “process of people leadership” something like this:

  1. Ensure the individuals on your team are the most skilled at what they do.  I’m specifically talking about pure intellectual horsepower and subject matter expertise.  Every individual that works in my current organization goes through skills testing, both general intellect and functional specific.  There are homework assignments that are evaluated in a panel/presentation setting by a group of the prospective candidates peers and hiring manager.  This is an area I simply won’t compromise.  True story – I interviewed over 100 individuals for a critical VP Analytics/Statistician role I was trying to fill.  The skills test was nearly impossible, taking a consultant 3 months to solve.  Most candidates fell flat, some solved 10% of the problem.  My eventual hire solved the problem and recreated the statistical model, in its entirety, over a weekend.  Find the best no matter how long it takes.  The best team wins, always.
  2. Direct reports must have the right personality and cultural sensibilities to gel with your leadership style and culture you desire to create.  This is really important and I think often overlooked.  Team dynamics and how they operate as a team, not as individuals, will define the success of achieving organizational objectives.  I look for team members that share my philosophies on desired culture and management styles.  This does NOT mean, and this is important, finding “yes” people to agree with you all the time.  Quite the contrary, I explicitly encourage feedback and dissonance to create healthy debate.  The best idea should win, not the strongest personality or the person with the most authority in the room.
  3. Show up credible as a manager, leader and problem solver. I must inspire confidence in my team as a leader.  Have I provided a clear vision for where I am leading them (strategy)?  How do I treat people?  I often participate in even the most technical conversations outside of my experience, there is likely an angle to the problem that has not been considered.  My suggestion:  Inspire your team through your engagement in their work.
  4. Recognize what each individual needs – rewards, support, level of autonomy. Knowing this and responding to it on an individual level I have found will  maximize productivity, engagement and happiness.  I have also found that every individual can be widely different on these requirements.
  5. Become a master at conflict resolution and personality management.  All of us are different and respond differently to varying personalities.  It’s human nature.  I have also found that highly intelligent subject matter experts who are the best at what they do have a high degree of confidence that their way is the right way.  Getting different personalities to work together and facilitating the flow of information & communication in a way that creates a highly effective team environment is a lot of what I do on a daily basis.
  6. Encourage risk taking and let people fail. While I often hear this in organizations, I’ve rarely experienced a real commitment to it.  People may be given a second chance, but often the reputational damage discourages further risk taking.   A culture of innovation through a tolerance for mistakes and failures starts at the top of the organization, plain and simple.
  7. Make sure each individual knows clearly how success will be measured for the organization and for themselves.  This is an important point that I see too often misguided.  By setting rigid, documented objectives for individuals and tying compensation directly to these objectives can often result in undesired behavior, particularly in a startup or early stage organization where the continuous need for flexibility and adjustment for things as core as strategy and business model are paramount.  Don’t get me wrong, I see a need for written objectives and planning, but I also am explicit about how objectives can and will shift along the way and that there is no substitute for close and ongoing communication with direct reports.  I simply don’t get overly dogmatic on this point, especially since there is always a subjective nature to the review process.  A fully objective review process will undoubtedly lead to undesired behavior if there is even the slightest shift in objectives.
  8. When times get tough, real leadership begins.  I’ve been through some tough segments in organizations that I’ve run and you really learn about people when we go into “self-preservation” mode.  More than ever, I try to lead by example during tough times.  I over-communicate.  I really try to treat people with integrity and honesty through the challenging times and I’ve found by doing so it increases people’s tolerance for uncertainty, inspires confidence and increases loyalty.
  9. Don’t be a dick.  Seriously, this is a simple tenant but one I constantly review so as to not abuse the position of authority.  How are you perceived?  I have witnessed “dick” behavior destroy the culture of an organization almost overnight, morale sinks, motivation wanes, and at 6pm every night the place is a ghost town whereas before everyone was passionately working and collaborating long after the sun went down.

The Need for Rest

Renee and I just finished a weeklong vacation (honeymoon) in Cancun.  It was much needed for both of us and incredibly relaxing and just great for us to have time to connect given our hectic lives.  There was a time when I was terrible about taking time for myself and my family – going multiple years in between any real time off – and I’ll never do it again.

I know there will be those entrepreneurs and early stage veterans who will say that doing early stage work is all consuming and you have to do “whatever it takes” and there simply isn’t the ability to take time off from a startup.

I disagree.  I’ve lived on both sides of this fence and there’s one fundamental truth – there will always be more to do than you can get done.  And I’ve never taken a vacation when the timing was right, it never is.  And I’ve also never taken a vacation where my absence resulted in a catastrophic event for the business.  To the contrary, time off rejuvenates, enhances focus and most important, it’s an explicit pronouncement of your priorities, not just to yourself, but to your family.  I learned my lesson the hard way as a result of all those years without taking time to remind my family of my priorities.

And I’m not suggesting that in a startup you can disappear into the ether for 2 weeks at a time.  When I take vacation, I still check email once per day and respond to any urgent issues.  This frequency still allows me to relax and focus on vacation, not work, for the bulk of my day.  That is simply my personal balance and one that works just fine for Renee too.

I do realize there are exceptions and I also realize that startups require obsessive, compulsive, even paranoid behavior, but not enough of any of these to avoid putting vacation plans on the calendar in advance and not enough to repeatedly cancel vacation time.

So take some time off.  Disconnect if even just a little.  Connect with your family.  It will all be there when you get back.

There’s a great article detailing a well respected VC’s struggle with the same issue “Do More Faster”.

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