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3 minute read / Dec 4, 2023 /

Top 10 Posts of 2023

These are the top 10 posts by engagement for 2023 at

Reflecting on them, they cover the doldrums of the first half of the year, the euphoria of AI reinvigorating the second half, & the valuation environment. The next five posts all mentioned major exits : Klaviyo, Loom, & the many take-privates in 2023.

I’m grateful to everyone who read, commented, debated, & shared these posts & others.

  1. Launching Theory! We launched the firm this year & announced our first fund. I’m grateful to the many people who helped us achieve this milestone.
  2. The Typical Startup Saw a 24% Increase in Sales Cycle in 2023. The first two quarters of this year were rough for startups. Lengthening sales cycles created pipeline shocks & instability in sales forecasting.
  3. How Markets Value SaaS in 2023. The public market shifted from valuing absolute growth, to valuing profitability, to valuing efficient growth - all in less than 12 months.
  4. Why Every Startup Needs an AI Strategy. ChatGPT & AI upended the ecosystem. Much like mobile technology became a de facto part of every startup, AI is now no longer a category but the core or a component of every product.
  5. Every Customer is a Design Partner - Leading Your Sales Motion with Sales Engineering. I argued that the best sales processes are sales engineering sales. Founder sales start the company this way & great sales teams continue this practice.
  6. The 4 Questions Startups Should Ask Themselves about Building with Generative AI. In this presentation at Saastr, we broke down the major questions for startups building with AI : the layer, the moat, the market, & the depth of AI to use.
  7. The Paradox of AI and Data Roles: How Automation Will Increase Demand for Data Professionals. As data becomes critical to developing products, the need for data professionals only grows, even if AI automates rote data analysis & retrieval.
  8. The Implications of Increased Regulatory Scrutiny for Startup Acquisitions. The anti-trust pressure from the US & European governments eliminates about 70-75% of the purchasing power for M&A in Startupland.
  9. Which Increases Productivity More : The Advent of Personal Computer or a Large-Language Model?. The PC increased GDP in the US by an immeasurably small amount. On the other hand, AI has the potential to boost US productivity enormously, boosting GDP growth by 50% or more.
  10. Which AI Model Should You Pick for Your Startup?. The early days of the constellation of models thesis which is starting to appear in buyers’ architectures. Most AI products will be built with a series of models: one large general purpose, several smaller models, & a router in front to optimize cost & performance.
  11. Operating in the Dark. A rallying cry during the dark days of 2023, throughout all the layoffs, unpredictability, & dysfunctional fundraising market.

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