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The impact of being a Product Manager and VC on before becoming a B2B SaaS Founder

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With

Alok Goel

Founder's Spotlight



Alok Goel, Founder and CEO of Drivetrain.ai shares how his roles as a product manager at Google and then a Venture Capitalist informed his journey as a B2B SaaS entrepreneur.


As a VC, Alok would meet 15 - 20 companies per week, which provides a unique opportunity to identify specific trends across a large number of companies using pattern recognition. One trend Alok identified, was what differentiated those companies that would consistently, quarter over quarter meet and exceed their stated financial goals from those that missed their financial goals? It was the pursuit to answer this question that lead to Alok's founding of Drivetrain.ai


The first question Alok answered was what were his experiences as a product manager at Google that informed his entrepreneurial journey. Google encouraged product managers to determine the best solution for a user without any constraints - which leads to the best solution for the audience. Then, think about how to deliver the solution with the constraints that do exist, both inside the company and in the market.


Next, Alok shared the importance for a company to identify the data they have internally to gain insights into future growth efficiency, they should first identify what insights they wished they had about their business and then identify what instrumentation is required to achieve those insights.


Alok shared the importance of never being too committed to one "way of thinking" that is not in alignment with the insights they are being provided from the market, from the internal metrics and data that is highlighting change is needed. In today's world, the external reality is changing so quickly, a company must change before the competitive market takes advantage of its resistance to change and evolution.


Understanding that the insights you gain today are not going to change your business today - it will take some time. This is why having a continuous process that surfaces insights that can be quickly converted into actions that can be measured on their impact over time - this is why it is so important to understand the leading indicators (signals) and lagging indicators that are inter-dependant and predictive of future outcomes!


If you are interested in how to develop a more predictive, holistic process that can capture the most important signals (leading indicators) that can be improved to ensure the ultimate lagging indicators such as Net Revenue Retention, CAC Payback Period and Revenue Growth rates are highly predictive and achieved consistently - this conversation with Alok Goel is a great listen!!!

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