What’s the best way to use your board well?

Fred Wilson (Co-Founder and Partner at Union Square Ventures)
MBA Mondays: Leveraging Your Partners To Grow And Develop Your Team – AVC

Selectively engage your investors in the recruiting process. Use them when they can help. Use them to close an important candidate. Use them to get a second or third opinion on a particularly important hire. Don’t give your investors control over your hiring decisions but engage them as trusted advisors.

What’s the best way to understand the difference between CFO and VP Finance?

Fred Wilson (Co-Founder and Partner at Union Square Ventures)
VP Finance vs CFO – AVC

A VP Finance is what you need when you want a leader who will keep the wheels on the bus, who will make sure there are financial controls in place, who will make sure the books, records, and reports are accurate and timely and well presented, and who will make sure you have the right amount of accountants and clerical staff on hand to manage the work of the finance organization. A VP Finance is largely about “what happened” and a little about “wh… (read more)

What’s the best way to understand the difference between CTO and VP of Engineering?

Fred Wilson (Co-Founder and Partner at Union Square Ventures)
VP Engineering Vs CTO – AVC

A VP Engineering is ideally a great manager and a great team builder. He or she will be an excellent recruiter, a great communicator, and a great issue resolver. The VP Eng’s job is to make everyone in the engineering organization successful and he or she needs to fix the issues that are getting in the way of success. A CTO is ideally the strongest technologist in the organization. He or she will be an architect, a thinker, a researcher, a teste… (read more)

What’s the best way to think about VP of Engineering vs CTO?

Fred Wilson (Co-Founder and Partner at Union Square Ventures)
The Management Team – While Building Usage – AVC

And many technical co-founders and lead engineers aren’t the kind of people who enjoy managing. They would rather be building the product than building the team. You have a few options at this point. You can help your lead engineer become a good manager. I strongly suggest that because everyone can and should become better at managing people. Even if your lead engineer doesn’t become your VP Engineering in the long run, this will have been a good… (read more)

What’s the best way to scale your organization?

Fred Wilson (Co-Founder and Partner at Union Square Ventures)
The Management Team – While Building Usage – AVC

Many of the hires that are made in the “building usage” stage are going to report directly to the founder/CEO. The additional product hires may report to you because it is likely that you are running product as well. The community team may report to you. And who is leading that team? The business development person, the marketing person, the admin/finance/HR/legal person, and probably all the sales people are likely reporting to you. Have you eve… (read more)

What’s the best way to retain employees?

Mark Suster (Managing Partner at Upfront Ventures)
Download • Snapchat

You need to take your employee base and categorize them as A’s, B’s and C’s. Any goodwill is already lost if they come to you and ask you for something. The golden rule of keeping employees happy is unexpected increases in compensation, role, or even just recognition.