Small teams, big impact.
Founder DJ, drop that beat.
Mike Maples’ chat with Patrick O'Shaughnessy is easily my most listened-to podcast and the first piece of content I recommend to any founder I chat with.
Mike describes early-stage startups as “jazz bands”. They are a group of talented individuals, without a playbook. They don’t follow sheet music, because there is no sheet music to follow: they are creating something completely novel. Take the other side of the coin: large companies hire project and program managers and implement countless processes en route to becoming what Mike describes as “marching bands”. These bands follow strict musical sheets and hope to sound the same every time.
I thought about this earlier this week while chatting with an investor about hiring and then again after reading Anu Atluru’s take: The Rise of the Silicon Valley Small Business. As venture fundraising tightens, it’s increasingly more difficult for founders to hire new accompaniments.
Leaning into Mike’s analogy, while today’s startups may be more inclined to stay small and nimble, the good news is that the instruments we’re playing are fundamentally changing. I think that’s the most exciting part of this generative AI boom: we’re all becoming DJs working on mixing boards that can play an infinite number of sounds. We can generate copy and creative content faster, build targeting lists, spin up landing pages, and maybe even Auto-GPT our GTM. Instagram was acquired for $1B with only thirteen employees - tomorrow’s unicorns could be even smaller.
Anywho, here’s a link to Fred Again’s Tiny Desk performance to bring the point home. Enjoy.
Raman at Rhetoric
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