Andrew Frame and Warren Packard of Ooma for STVP

Warren Packard, Managing Director of Draper Fisher Jurvetson, and Andrew Frame, CEO of Ooma, present 10 lessons for building a successful start-up. They highlight the importance of dislocating large markets, active recruiting, organizational design, board construction, alignment of vision, managing mis-hires, building for scalability, product development, intellectual capital, and mentorship in establishing a lasting enterprise that adds value in the marketplace.

What I learned:

  • Hire only excellent people.
  • Product management should be in the heart of a company. Find a market first before developing a product.
  • Creative tension between product management and engineering is good.
  • Foster a creative environment, but make clear demarcation lines for decision makers.
  • Maintain alignment and scale by using a playbook.
  • Shared vision is important in keeping the organization together going forward.
  • Setup the vision, strategic imperatives, strategic objectives, assign responsibility and accountability and tasks, to a point that a 5 year old can run the business.
4 Questions for finding Scalable Leaders:
  1. Did you have small company experience?
  2. Did you have a big company experience?
  3. Did you have a big success?
  4. Did you have a big failure?

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