What happens if I focus on growth too soon?

A startup that prematurely targets a growth goal often ends up making a nebulous product that some users sort of like and papering over this with ‘growth hacking’.  That sort of works—at least, it will fool investors for awhile until they start digging into retention numbers—but eventually the music stops.

Sam Altman in Before Growth
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What happens if I focus on growth too soon?

What’s the best way to make sure my company is solving a real problem?

The key thing is enabling users to do things they do in real life much more easily— yes, you could have called a cab company, but it took a long time, the cab didn’t always come, you didn’t know when it was near, you had to have cash or get a nasty look from the cabbie, etc.

Sam Altman in Electrons and Atoms
What’s the best way to make sure my company is solving a real problem?

How can I find a technical co-founder?

When non-technical solo founders say “I’ll do whatever it takes to make this business successful” (which they almost always say), I say something like “Why not learn to hack?  Although it takes many, many years to become a great hacker, you can learn to be good enough to build your site or app in a few months.

Sam Altman in Non-technical founder? Learn to hack
How can I find a technical co-founder?