If a startup is at $1.5M ARR and is looking to hire an experienced COO how much equity should they give him/her?

0%.

I think $1.5m ARR is too early for an experienced COO in 95 cases out of 100 — unless it’s a total rocketship and you plan to be at $10m+ ARR within 12 months.

At $1.5m ARR you should still be the COO.  You should find, hire, and manage the VPs of Sales, Marketing, Customer Success, Product and Engineering and even Finance yourself.

At $8m, $10m, the operational side of the business may be so complex a COO makes sense.

Today, the main operational challenge you have an Initial Traction is hiring great function VPs.

Go find them.

And stop wasting time on an idea of a magical “COO” too early.

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Published on November 11, 2015

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