Money Now or Later

One of the challenges in a startup is deciding when to trade off short term revenues (money!) to focus on the long term plan. This might sound like a strange concept — why would I want to say no to money? Let’s look at a few examples where this can happen:

  • A key beta customer really wants to pay for consulting work, but you know, based on previous experience, that this will take too much energy away from the product
  • Traffic is growing nicely on your site, and the urge is to put up advertising, but you know it’ll detract from the user experience
  • Users are using your service for free, and several have offered to pay, but time is better spent improving the product and not implementing a payment system

Of course, this can be a good problem to have. My recommendation is to think hard and be wary of making short term decisions that can hinder growth or don’t have economies of scale.

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