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时间:2015-07-30 10:50     来源:未知     本站编辑作者:admin

 

How do you build a billion-dollar business? It’s not a linear process.

怎样打造一家10亿美元级企业呢?这是一个非线性过程。

And over the years, I have learned what it takes to build a $1 billion company. These are some of the biggest lessons I learned, at each stage of growth:

这些年来,我认识到了打造10亿美元级企业要付出哪些代价。以下是我在各个成长阶段学到的一些最重要的东西。

 

Prove the idea: $0 to $1 million

验证思路:从零到100万美元

With the right idea, you can generally raise $1 million with a seed round.

有了正确的思路,种子轮融资一般能让你获得100万美元资金。

You don’t have to bet the whole company on an A round.

你不必把公司的所有希望都寄托在A轮投资上。

So we built a prototype and spoke with over 50 potential customers.

因此,我们先做出原型系统,随后与50多位潜在客户进行了交流。

Through Salesforce.com, we put screen shots on a website, invited people to participate in a beta, showed a demo to everyone interested, and asked what they thought.

通过Salesforce.com,我们把屏幕截图放到了网上,邀请人们参与beta测试,并向所有感兴趣的人做了演示,然后询问他们有何想法。

We had 200 customers lined up when we launched.

我们正式启动时,已经有200名客户等在那里了。

 

Prove the product: $1 million to $3 million

验证产品:从100万到300万美元

What product do your customers really need?

客户到底需要什么样的产品?

You may have to cull your ideas and decide what to build first and what can be pushed out to later years.

你可能得过滤一下自己的想法,然后决定首先做什么,哪些东西可以放到以后几年再做。

Or you may have to do the opposite.

或者,你也可能必须反其道而行之。

You’re still learning at this stage, but you have to complete the process now. You won’t have time to dramatically re-engineer your product during the next stage because you’ll be looking to scale. You’ll also need a coherent product roadmap in place.

在这个阶段你仍然处于学习状态,但你必须走完这个过程。在下一阶段,你将无暇对自己的产品进行重大调整,因为你将着眼于规模化。同时,你还得制定出连贯的产品路线图。

 

Prove the market: $3 million to $10 million

验证市场:从300万到1000万美元

This stage is very exciting.

这个阶段非常激动人心。

You’re hiring salespeople, spending money on marketing, and focusing on execution.

你将招聘销售人员,把资金用于营销,把注意力集中在执行方面。

Defining your market is now essential. Is it truly a billion dollar market? $500 million? $100 million?

现在的核心任务是定义自己的市场。它的规模真的能达到10亿美元吗?还是有5亿?或者1亿美元?

For your seed or A round, it was all about hopes and dreams. Now investors will demand to know how big this market really is, and you’ll need the story and statistics to prove it.

在种子轮或A轮融资阶段,你有的只是希望和梦想。现在投资者会要求你告诉他们市场到底有多大,你需要做的是用故事和数据来证明这一点。

 

Prove the business model: $10 million to $30 million

验证业务模式:从1000万到3000万美元

Now it’s time to focus on your business model.现在,你要把注意力转向业务模式。

What is your customer acquisition cost? Your churn rate? How much does your R&D really cost? What is your customer lifetime value?Your gross margins? Do you have a positive net dollar retention? Are the trends getting better?

客户获取成本有多高?你的客户流失率是多少?研发到底花了多少钱?客户的终身价值是多少?你的毛利润率有多高?按合约价值计算,你的客户留存率高于零吗?这些指标都在向好的方向发展吗?

I’m not suggesting you completely ignore business model metrics during earlier stages, but the cost of a sub-optimal business model at $10 million is small.

这并不是说你在早期阶段可以完全忽视业务模式指标,但在1000万美元级别,次优业务模式的成本很低。

But now you need to make the tough choices so you don’t find yourself at a $30 million run rate with a money-losing business.

而现在,你得做出艰难抉择,以免自己的公司在达到3000万美元的规模后陷入亏损。

Do you have the right sales model?If not, swap out the sales team.

你的销售模式合理吗?如果不合理,就更换销售团队。

Are you chasing unprofitable customers? If so, make them profitable or stop doing it.

你在追逐不能带来利润的客户吗?如果是这样,就让他们变得有利可图,或者停止这样做。

Do your price points allow for strong gross margins? If not, figure out how to increase revenues per customer.

你的定价水平能带来很高的毛利润率吗?如果不能,就想办法提高单个客户的收入贡献。

Keep in mind that at this stage “chasing anything that moves” is one of the top reasons companies stall.

记住,在这个阶段,“四面出击”是公司陷入停滞的首要原因之一。

 

Prove the vision: $30 million to $100 million

验证眼光:从3000万到1亿美元

If you’re going to take public money or larger investments, your new investors need to know you’re a safe bet and will be around for the long haul.

如果打算吸收公众资金或规模更大的投资,新投资者就得确认你是安全的投资对象,而且能长期经营下去。

They aren’t venture investors that expect some of their bets to fail. They want minimal risk. They want the right management team and board.

他们不是那些早就知道部分投资会打水漂的风险投资人。他们希望尽量降低风险。

They want predictable execution and positive cash flow, or at least a clear path to achieving it.

他们想要的是合适的管理团队和董事会,可预期的执行和正现金流,至少是实现正现金流的明确路径。

They also need to see that the market size is real and that you’re a leader with the right set of products, people, and partners to create a sustainable competitive advantage.

他们还需要看到市场规模没有水分,而你作为负责人能拿出一套合适的产品、人员以及合作伙伴,从而获得可持续的竞争优势。

 

Prove the industry: $100 million to $300 million

验证行业:从1亿到3亿美元

At this point, your company has scale. Smaller companies are starting to surround you, like planets circling a sun. They like your customer base and marketing. They like how many salespeople you have and hope to use those salespeople to increase their reach.

在这个节点,你的公司已经完成规模化。小公司开始围拢过来,就像行星围着太阳运转。他们看上了你的客户群体和营销,看上了你的大批销售人员,并且希望通过这些销售人员来扩展他们的业务范围。

Now is the time to build an ecosystem. It won’t happen overnight, but by the time you reach $300 million, you need to be able to explain how, as the center of an expanding industry, you will continue to grow with it. By creating a ‘platform’ with a burgeoning ecosystem, you are actually demonstrating how you will become a billion dollar business.

现在就可以建立生态系统了。它无法一蹴而就,但做到3亿美元时,你就必须能说得出,作为成长型行业的核心成员,你的公司将如何继续同行业一道发展。建立平台,并让它拥有生机勃勃的生态系统,这实际上就相当于向人们展示你的企业将如何达到10亿美元级别。

 

Prove the company: $300 million to $1 billion

验证企业:从3亿到10亿美元

You have everything in place to reach a billion. Now it comes down to execution.

对于成为10亿美元级企业,你已经万事俱备。现在要关注的是执行。

Never get complacent. Never lose sight of how the industry and competitors are evolving, especially start-ups with new and potentially disruptive ideas.

绝不要自满,绝不要无视行业以及竞争对手的发展情况,特别是那些可能拥有颠覆性新思路的初创企业。

Just recognize that each stage is different and what you are trying to prove is different.

关键在于意识到整个每个阶段都各不相同,你要验证的东西也不一样。

Embrace change. Embrace the switchback. For only when you round the turns can you begin to understand John D. Rockefeller’s phrase, “Don’t be afraid to give up the good to go for the great.”

对变化敞开怀抱。对转向欣然接受。只有经历了这一切,你才能理解约翰·D·洛克菲勒的那句话——“别怕为了最好的东西而放弃好的东西”。


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