Blog

  • When and How to Make Your First Product Hire

    I get one question from founders all the time: When is it time to make my first product hire? Normally a startup founder is a visionary who is deeply involved in the product experience. She is the person closest to the problem the startup is trying to solve and intimately familiar with what needs to be built. But eventually, that’s too much for one person to manage alone. I joined Airbnb as the first product manager (PM) when the company was 35 employees. The eighth engineer joined the same…

  • Biz Dev Can Make (or Break) Your Startup: 10 Rules for Getting It Right

    In more than 10 years as a VC, I’ve seen just about everything when it comes to strategic partnerships. But experience is often the best teacher, and the advice I give my portfolio companies on biz dev initiatives usually comes straight from my time spent in the trenches, running OEM and strategic alliances for Diane Greene at VMware. The expertise I gained during the company’s early years has helped to shape many of my portfolio companies’ strategies, and I have strong opinions about how best…