Sep 14, 2018

Srikanth Iyer

Execution and Importance of Uncommon Service

Podcast Summary

Podcast Summary

We continue the #InsightsPodcastSeries and in this episode, we focus on the importance of Execution and how to get it right in the early stage of a startup. To talk about this important topic, we have Srikanth Iyer a successful serial entrepreneur who has built large companies across multiple industries. Initially in Education with Edurite (sold to Tutorvista/Pearson) and currently founder and CEO of fixed furniture eCommerce startup HomeLane.

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Srikanth Iyer — HomeLane and Anand Daniel — Accel

On the first part of the podcast, we discuss the importance of execution and specifically the following topics:

  • What is execution and why is it important?
  • Early days — how to get things started, how to figure out must-haves vs nice-to-haves and focusing on must-haves
  • Speed vs. getting things right — what is more important?
  • Customer delight — to get to Product-market fit — how to go about it?
  • Role of product/tech — how important in early stage vs once you are focusing on scale
  • Launching with a Minimal Viable Product (MVP) and then continue refining the product/tech
  • Why scaling prematurely can hurt your startup?

We also discuss a book that has really inspired Srikanth to deliver outstanding service to his customers. The book is “Uncommon Service” and highly recommended for founders — particularly startups that involve services. Here are some of the key takeaways from the book and we discuss a couple of them in the podcast in the context of Srikanth’s experience.

Uncommon Service — key tenets:

  • Tenet #1: You CANNOT be good at everything — to be great at something its ok to be bad at something else — how do you decide on what to be good at as CEO?
  • Tenet #2: Someone has to pay for it — what does that mean?
  • Tenet #3: It’s not your Employee’s fault — but they are the ones executing?
  • Tenet #4: You must Manage your customers — how do you do that?
  • Tenet #5: Now multiply it all by Culture — talk to us about the importance of this one?

In the next few podcasts, we will dive deeper into the importance of execution and how to get that right as a startup founder. If there is any feedback on this podcast or questions for the next set of episodes, please do share as a comment below or tweet us at @Accel_India

Accel shares such interesting entrepreneurial stories, with informative nuggets to run and scale your startup. Follow the links below and subscribe to our #Accel #INSIGHTSPodcast Series using the following links: iTunes, Twitter@Accel_India, Google Music: (US & Canada Only)and the RSS feed

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Anand Daniel
Partner, Accel

Anand is one of the partners at Accel India. He has lead investments in companies like swiggy, bounce, blackbuck and more. Investing since 2006, Anand focuses on investments in consumer technology, online marketplaces, and healthcare technology at Accel.


Srikanth Iyer
Co-Founder & CEO, HomeLane

Srikanth is the founder of HomeLane. He is also a partner at Unitus Ventures.

Alex Lazarow
Author | VC, Cathay Innovation

Alex is an adjunct professor specializing in social impact investment and entrepreneurship at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey. He is a Kauffman Fellow, CFA Charterholder, and CFR Term Member. He earned an MBA from Harvard Business School and a B.Comm from the University of Manitoba.

Hari Menon
CO-founder & CEO, Bigbasket

Hari Menon is an alumnus of BITS Pilani. He was the CEO of Indiaskills, the vocational education JV of Manipal Group with City & Guilds, UK. He was also the Co-founder of Fabmall, one of the pioneers in India's ecommerce and retail space, and worked with Wipro as a Business Head in the Infotech business.

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