Growth & Gravity.

Gravity shapes the human experience more than any natural force.

Nature relies on gravity — rivers, canyons, trees, birds, snakes, rain.

Same with human inventions — Boeing 777s, toasters, elevators, water towers, basketball hoops, gurneys, fireworks.

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They all presuppose gravity.

Without gravity they’d be useless.

They wouldn’t make sense.

Similarly, startups don’t make sense without hyper-growth.

Hyper-growth is the DEFINITION of a startup.

Paul Graham’s famous 2012 essay on the topic is aptly named: “Startup = Growth”. It’s one of my favorites. If you haven’t read it, add it to your list.

This is all rooted in VC business models. Power laws, value of cashflows, and the dynamics of portfolio returns. It requires startups to push for 5 years of 2-3x growth or die trying.

It so essential to a startup’s existence, it’s like gravity.

It impacts everything.

As a startup product leader, everything must be filtered through this lens.

Did you introduce agile?
Did you delight stakeholders?
Did you create a customer-obsessed culture?
Did you incorporate the 9-tenants of PLG?
Did you build empowered product teams?
Did you build continuous discover habits?
Did you build outcome-oriented roadmaps?
Did you uncover Jobs-to-be-Done and their trigger moments?
Did you build a UX so slick Jony Ive is jealous?


Just make sure “product wins” translate into “growth wins”.

Growth is success, everything else is some version of failure.

That’s the essence of startup product leadership.

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