Questions

External stakeholders, such as investors, often put pressure on startups to perform, such as increase sales, while you want to refine your product, extend your portfolio or similar. You generally feel that your creativity and innovation drive and passion is threatened by these external stakeholders? Can you give me some tips and real-life examples or past experience on how to solve this dilemma of conflictual demands?

Hi.

This depends upon your options and state of business. If business sustainability is an issue, then increasing sales is critical. In which case this is good advise! I have advised a few scenarios where if sales did not increase with urgency the business would have gone belly up.

At the same time investors have to learn to preserve the soul of the business. Normally founders are very good at it and it is the reason the business succeeds. If business is meeting the goals then you should have this flexibility. If not, then you have to bring the stakeholders together, and present and agree on a shared plan and vision. Also a process to resolve conflicts. This is also your key role. Collectively, you both have to decide in the interest of the business.

A conflict-less situation in business is non-existent. And there is a range of resolutions from resetting the relationship to picking the battles you fight.

Let me know if we should talk. All the best. Bye.


Answered a year ago

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