You Can’t Get Great at Everything Before You’re Great at One Thing

An early-stage founder gave me his pitch recently. He’s just finishing the first version of his product and looking to raise investor capital. One of the things I noticed was that he listed multiple problems he’s trying to solve and multiple types of customers he’s solving problems for (consumers, small businesses, etc.). I wasn’t sure exactly what he’s solving, who he’s solving for, and what exactly his solution does. We talked, and he clarified the main problem, the target customer, and the solution, improving his pitch and my understanding.

Early-stage companies have limited resources. Given this constraint, they can’t be everything to everyone. It’s best to focus, get proficient in your area of focus, and then expand when you have more resources.

Investors, especially early-stage investors, are aware of resource constraints and are less likely to invest in founders who are solving multiple problems for multiple customer types.

For early-stage companies, focus is the name of the game. If you can’t get great at one thing, you likely won’t get great at several things.