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about this episode
About This Episode:
Intercom co-founder Des Traynor returns to the LAUNCH Incubator with another powerhouse talk. There are 3 ingredients to a company: people, product and profit. Today, Des focuses on people and product by extracting key principles from his experience at Intercom. He explains the importance of alignment and how it touches every aspect of running a company – from how a company behaves, to the hiring process, to how you speak to customers. Then, he shares 6 principles on building a product first company. Des wraps up his talk by answering questions from the class about lessons learned from Intercom’s early days, net negative churn, and ways to avoid the massive churn problem.
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00:53: Des opens his talk by sharing the news that Intercom crossed $50m in ARR
02:15: Des gives an introduction to the focus of his talk: “People & Product”
03:05: Keeping your company aligned
05:33: Misalignment is the norm for you, it’s what you get for free
06:11: Write down your core values
06:54: What makes a value?
08:56: Intercom core values: 1) Think big, start small 2. Our bar is higher 3) It’s all about impact
11:58: Difference between values vs truisms
13:09: Be careful what you ‘scale’. All behavior scales: good, bad, ugly.
15:34: Hire by values
18:13: Independence vs. interdependence
21:30: Product first company
23:25: Des shares 6 principles of building a product first company – #1: Your product’s impact must be core to your company’s success
26:30: #2: Your product must always be feasible, viable, and desirable – if you don’t have all 3, your product will not do well
29:16: #3: Must be ruthless when focusing on prod work
33:00: #4: Charge for the value you create; not every good product creates a good business
35:48: #5: Follow meaningful metrics
38:08: Product first companies need to worry about churn more than growth
39:11: #6: Be patient for growth
40:37: Q&A – What is the number one thing you would change about what you did in the growth of Intercom?
47:24: Churn – top chart vs. bottom chart?
51:00: What does net negative churn mean? What are ways to avoid this massive churn problem?