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My top 5 Takeaways from
#SaasBooMi 2020

My top 5 Takeaways from #SaasBooMi 2020

 
 
 

Sowmya Mahadevan

 
 
 
 

Jan 27, 2020

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Sowmya Mahadevan

 
 
 
 

Jan 27, 2020

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One of the biggest SaaS conferences in India – for founders by founders #SaasBooMi 2020 concluded last weekend and what an amazing learning experience it was! It was a power packed 2 days with valuable insights from several founders.

Here is my list of the top 5 takeaways for me personally from this conference

1. Commit to the peak – In his keynote speech, Godard Abel, Founder and CEO of G2 Crowd, talked about picking the right peak – the peak that you really care about and committing yourself to it, as long as you are passionate about solving the problem that you really care about. Peppered throughout the different sessions at #SaasBooMi were examples and stories from various founders about the challenges they faced, about things going wrong and pretty much the only thing that pulled them through was their own commitment to their vision and the passion to scale that peak.

2. There is no magic pill – As cliched as it might sound, there really is no magic pill. There is no one playbook that will help you build the perfect SaaS business. There is definitely no “one-size-fits-all” answers to any of the questions that might arise in a founder’s mind. The learning is experiential. However, the one thing that was common amongst all the speakers was their willingness to experiment and learn from it. As Krish from Chargebee put it, Hypothesise -> Experiment to test the hypothesis -> Evaluate the results, using metrics -> Course Correct and repeat. It was this underlying commitment to trying out new things and the willingness to change course if the outcome was not favourable that stood out as the single most common characteristic I could identify in all of the successful founders.

3. Be Founder Led – It might be tempting to bring in specialists to take care of certain areas of the business you might not feel comfortable with, for instance, sales or recruitment. At least in the initial stages, however, most of the successful companies have been founder-led. In Sales – As Rajan Anandan, Seqouia Capital said, the founder is the best sales person. In Customer Support – I noticed a lot of the founders dabbling in customer support, whenever they had time. Being close to the customer, has given them the right perspective, to really understand who their customer is, what their pain points are and how to solve for that. In recruitment – It has to be founder-led in recruiting the best talent for your company, because you are the best person who knows whats right for your company.

4. Customer Success is Key – At the end of the day, is your product helping customers? Is it adding value to their business? Are you making your customers successful in their jobs? These are key questions that you should be able to answer and articulate well. As Chandar Pattabhiraman put it, the stairway to GTM heaven looks like this Awareness -> Acquisition -> Adoption -> Advocacy.

5. Constraints are in your mind – One of the most powerful sessions of #SaasBooMi without a doubt was the straight from the heart speech from Girish Mathrubootham, Freshworks. Girish went on to build a help desk solution, even though there were more than 600 help desk solutions out there already, because, as he put it – “That’s all I knew. What else was I going to do ?”. From locating the company in Chennai, even as Bangalore was touted as the talent capital of India, to launching multiple products at once, even as he was warned to hunker down and focus on one thing at a time, Girish broke through the doubting walls. As he so powerfully conveyed, “Constraints are only what you have in your own mind”.

A brilliantly put together event with some amazing speakers, #SaasBooMi has grown from strength to strength each year. I am extremely thankful for the opportunity to be a part of it this year, in 2020.

 
 

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