Plan for Three Years of Personal Runway

I guess it depends on the number of dependents and lifestyle to boot the fixed should more or less be well within the three-way mark. Otherwise, i’d probably do six.

David Cummings on Startups

For years I thought that entrepreneurs should plan for two years of personal runway to have sufficient time to iterate on an idea and get to break even. Looking back on it, I was wrong. After starting a few companies and investing in several more, I now believe entrepreneurs should plan for three years of financial runway.

Here are a few reasons why entrepreneurs should plan for three years:

  • Pardot took three years and Hannon Hill took four years to clear $1 million in revenue ($1 million is a great milestone for sustainability as well as the ability to pay a decent salary for the founders)
  • Almost all successful companies go through at least one pivot (see examples)
  • Finding product/market fit often takes 1-2 years and building a repeatable customer acquisition process often takes 1-2 years, making the prospects of solid revenue in less than three years unlikely…

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