Almost 10 years on,
I remember every minute
That's Founder Life pic.twitter.com/rHEOkCNfFd
— Jason ✨BeKind✨ Lemkin ⚫️ (@jasonlk) July 9, 2021
A lot of early posts at SaaStr were about my learnings co-founding Adobe Sign / EchoSign. That was a while ago though and I try to keep some of those learnings now to a minimum, and incorporate more of the learnings from the 25+ investments I’ve made, and 5 unicorns. Still, 10 years on, and Adobe Sign is doing hundreds of millions in ARR and is the fastest-growing product at Adobe, so that’s something. So many of those lessons hold. And in fact, give me a decade-long perspective on a SaaS product.
But while some of those lessons are from a generation ago in SaaS, the thing is, I remember every minute of it.
- I remember every deal.
- Every great logo.
- Every single person I hired.
- Everyone that went the extra yard.
- Every customer visit.
- Every team retreat.
- Every terrible mistake (you forget the rest, but remember the terrible ones).
- Every 10x feature.
- Everyone that truly went the extra yard to help us (THANK YOU! Even today, THANK YOU!)
- Everyone that let us down.
I remember every minute of it, 10 years on. Or at least it seems like it.
My point is just this. Remember — These Are the Best of Times. You probably don’t see it, not totally. You might even think the grass is greener as a VC, or a COO, or Something Else. Deep down you might think that.
Being a founder makes you alive. Fewer things are harder, at least up until $10m-$20m ARR or so. Nothing will be more consuming. It will change you. A lot.
But you’ll remember every minute.
You will be alive.