Author Archives: sonala16z

Investors tend to value growth over everything else because a business can’t get big enough to break out if it isn’t growing. Of course, there are a number of key performance indicators for managing a business well and toward profitability — which we’ve written about here — but there are still stomach-churning moments where growth trajectory was interrupted.

Sometimes it happens gradually, but in a surprising number of cases it happens suddenly: The business is growing one day, then it’s not growing the next. I’ve taken to calling these growth hiccups “Oh, shit!” moments for CEOs. So what do you do when the growth rocket judders? MORE


A few weeks ago, we shared some key startup metrics (16 of them, to be exact) that help investors gauge the health of a business when investing in it. As one reader shared: “Drive with them, don’t just ‘report’ them”. So here are 16 more metrics — from TAM, ARPU, and sell-through rates to network effects, scale, NPS, cohort analysis, and more — that we think are important to add to the list. MORE


We have the privilege of meeting with thousands of entrepreneurs every year, and in the course of those discussions are presented with all kinds of numbers, measures, and metrics that illustrate the promise and health of a particular company. Sometimes, however, the metrics may not be the best gauge of what’s actually happening in the business, or people may use different definitions of the same metric in a way that makes it hard to understand the health of the business.

So, while some of this may be obvious to many of you who live and breathe these metrics all day long, we compiled a list of the most common or confusing metrics. Where appropriate, we tried to add some notes on why investors focus on those metrics. Ultimately, though, good metrics aren’t about raising money from VCs — they’re about running the business in a way where you know how and why certain things are working (or not), and can address or adjust accordingly. MORE