Friday 30 December 2022

Business Lessons from TVF Pitchers

[SPOILER ALERT]: Contains possible spoilers for TVF Pitchers Season 2.

TVF Pitchers Season 2 has become one of the highest-rated shows with a rating of 9.1 on IMDB. It is one of the best shows to watch to learn the realities of how difficult it is to run a startup.

Here are some of the learnings from the show:

1. Sales is difficult. Learn it as soon as possible because as a founder, most of your time would be spent just convincing people. Sales is not just about convincing the customer to purchase your product. Sales is also about convincing investors, convincing team members, and convincing advisors.

2. Cofounder issues are tough. Best to have a cofounding team that is committed for at least 3 - 4 years. Best if 5 years.

3. Don't celebrate too early. Verbal commitments do not mean anything. Termsheet does not mean anything. Best to celebrate only when the formal closure is done.

4. Keep an eye on your bank balance. Many entrepreneurs chase top-of-the-funnel metrics like DAUs, MAUs, Impressions, etc. The best metric is the bank balance. Keep an eye on it and work towards growing it. Cash in business is like Oxygen.

5. Don't chase valuations too much. Yes, valuations are important, but then cash in the bank is more important. You cannot negotiate valuation when you have just 15 days of money left in the bank.

6. Don't betray people who have been by your side during your difficult times. Prachi could have dumped Pragati AI when things got tough for them. But she still supported them. Of course, she couldn't get them the funding because no investor would invest in such a situation. But she provided all the support she could, including referring a great candidate for the CTO position.

7. Hiring the right people is important. Right people can make or break your game. There were some team members who agreed to stay with Pragati AI even when Mandal formally announced that they have just 15 days of runway left. You want such supporters in your team. Needless to say, they got the benefit when Pragati AI got the contract from KC Desai.

8. Great Customer Experience is important. Else you will lose the customer. Alpha 1 had $40M in funding, but they still lost KC Desai to a small player purely because they could not provide the right experience to them.

Overall the show was great and it has very well showcased the reality of how difficult it is to take a startup off the ground than what the media portrays by publishing the shiny millions of dollars of funding articles. Every entrepreneur has to take extremely difficult decisions every single day to keep the ship afloat.

I have shared a lot of my learnings about Business and Entrepreneurship on my YouTube Channel. Please check it here:

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