ICYMI: The What, Why, and How of Building a Billion Dollar Business

ICYMI: The What, Why, and How of Building a Billion Dollar Business

Last week, I got to dive deep on a favorite topic at Women + Tech in the Atlanta Tech Village —> building BIG companies!

We talked about:

  • What “big” means
  • Why it matters
  • How you actually do it
  • And —**BONUS** — the 2 secrets that make all the difference

Here’s the FULL SLIDE DECK with a bulleted summary below.

The only thing missing are my awesome jokes (LOLZ) and the great audience questions.

You have to be in-person for those! 😂

GO BIG: The What, Why, and How of Building a Billion Dollar Business

The Ah-Ha → Think Bigger!

  • Where are all the women (in VC and large startups)??
  • Many social, external things holding women back
  • Within our control? More women thinking big!
  • Look in the mirror → I need to think bigger too.
  • BHAG set: 10 female-founded unicorns in the Southeast in the next 10 years

The What → Unicorns

  • $1B valuation
  • $100M ARR
  • ~10 years to build
  • 500-1000 employees
  • 10% employee option pool
  • 10% - 75% owned by the founder (depending on funding rounds)

The Why → Huge Impact

  • $100M to employees
  • $100M - $750M to you (founder)
  • Help thousands/millions of customers
  • Make the world better
  • Be an example, open doors for others
  • Generational wealth, philanthropy, investor

The SECRET → Bigger Is Not Harder

  • It’s hard to build a small company too. (Ask any entrepreneur!)
  • Building a big company is not 10-1000x harder.
  • But the impact is 10-1000x bigger.

P.S. Women do tons of hard stuff all the time!

The HOW → Big Market, Start Small

1. Pick a BIG market

BIG Market Examples: aging in place (and more here), robotics, creator economy, healthy fast food, carbon tracking

2. Start SMALL

3. Start a Tech Company…Without Tech

Spoiler Alert: You can learn tech or find a co-founder! Many tech founders and CEOs are not engineers.

THE HOW → 10 Tips To Raise Money

  1. WATCH: The real reason female entrepreneurs get less funding (Dana Kanze)
  2. Talk about The Money
  3. Show **real** customer traction (not pipeline or hypotheticals)
  4. Know your metrics & industry metrics
  5. Go to Pitch Practice → pitchpractice.co
  6. Prep for Q&A
  7. Pitch your worst first
  8. Lines not dots
  9. Who has $$ that cares about this problem?
  10. HAVE YOUR CUSTOMERS PAY YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

THE HOW → Unicorn Founder Traits

THE (other) SECRET → Everyone Has Doubts

They seem wildly confident but even the most successful founders have doubts.

  • “I got lucky.”
  • “I don’t know what I’m doing.”
  • “We’re making it up as we go.”
  • “I hate public speaking.”

They do it anyway.

So can you!

What other advice do you have for building big???

If you attended, what was your favorite takeaway? Any that I didn’t mention in the recap?