Who’s The Right Person To Be CEO?

By Brett Fox | November 29, 2022

“I’d like you to be the CEO of the company,” “Ray” said to me. We were meeting for the first time outside of a Starbucks in Los Altos. Ray had spent the previous thirty minutes explaining what his company was going to do. In fact, there wasn’t even a company at this point. There was…

How Much Money Should You Raise?

By Brett Fox | November 28, 2022

“We should be raising a $6 million round, not $12 million,” “Randy”, my co-founder, said to me. In fact, Randy was so pissed at the terms of our funding that he was threatening to quit. “Let’s meet, so I can walk you through why we are better off with the larger amount of funding,” I…

Can You Succeed Hiring B & C Level Talent?

By Brett Fox | November 22, 2022

“The talent level here is really high,” I said to the engineering candidate I was interviewing. “So, if you want to work with the best of the best, you should join us.” I was the last person to interview Melind, the closer, so to speak. Jeroen, my co-founder and VP Engineering told me that he…

The Five Advantages You Have As An Older Entrepreneur

By Brett Fox | November 21, 2022

“Nothing seems to phase you,” “Raul”, one of my investors said to me during our 1:1 meeting in his office. He’d been an investor in our company for one year. Raul was pretty crusty, so I considered what he said to be a compliment. More importantly, Raul was right. I’d been building towards running a…

Who You Should Never Add As A Co-Founder?

By Brett Fox | November 15, 2022

“I just bought a unit in new The Millennium building, up in the City,” my co-founder, “Ken”, said to me. “You should check it out!” “Really,” I said. “I thought you were going to buy a house on the peninsula, closer to where our future office will be?” “Nope,” Ken said, laughing. “The Millennium was…

How You Shouldn’t Write A Pitch Deck

By Brett Fox | November 14, 2022

There’s a huge difference between the question of “How long did it take you build your pitch deck?” and the question of “How long did it take you to build a successful pitch deck?” Our original pitch deck took, I don’t know, maybe 16 hours to complete. I just took a look at it for…

When Should You Start Paying Yourself?

By Brett Fox | November 8, 2022

There is a friend of mine, Mark, who started a company about four years ago. Mark raised angel funding to start his company. The company has grown at a nice clip, and the company has a real chance at long term success. At the same time, Mark and his partner have taken a salary of…

What Makes A Great CTO Great?

By Brett Fox | November 7, 2022

One of my biggest mistakes ever was adding “John” as my co-founder and VP Engineering/CTO. Now, I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking that John wasn’t that great of an engineer, and he failed as our CTO because his engineering skills weren’t that good. John’s engineering skills were as good as I thought they’d be,…

What’s The Behavior You Can’t Have As A Founder?

By Brett Fox | November 1, 2022

“I don’t know if I can do this anymore,” “Serge”, the CEO of a struggling startup, said to me. “I think I’m going to give up.” “What?” I responded. Serge’s capitulation said didn’t register on me. It was foreign to my way of thinking. Worse yet, Serge’s company wasn’t doomed to fail. There was a…

How Do You Recruit The Very Best?

By Brett Fox | October 31, 2022

I was pumped beyond belief when I got the opportunity to become an Entrepreneur in Residence (EIR) at a San Francisco based venture capital firm. I thought their backing me eliminated the concerns I had about raising money. However, I was still really worried because I knew I still had the bigger hurdle of building…