“How are we doing?”

It started with a simple question from one of our superstar founder CEOs.

Over the first several months of engaging with customers the company had made real strides, including signing their first contract. A lot was going well… at the same time, it was clear there was more to do before they were ready to scale.

The question was a catalyst to create a roadmap for an enterprise startup to assess what they had accomplished, and identify what remained to be done.

We started with the end goal of an early stage startup: to find product market fit and put in place the foundation to scale go to market.

Achieving this goal entailed a combination of things a team would DO — create, implement, build — and things that they had to LEARN — gain insight about and validate with data.

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Two caveats:

First, the relative importance and timing of any element will vary from company to company, model to model. For example, a freemium or velocity oriented model could have 10X the number of evaluations and customers at a given stage of maturity.

Second, there is no objective standard for many of these. Knowing you’ve “checked the box” comes through the judgment of your board, team, peers and advisors.

I’m interested in your feedback! What’s missing or different from your experience?

This article was written by Ted Stinson with contributions from Sunil Dhaliwal, Lenny Pruss, Kolton Andrus and Ankur Goyal.