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Build Repeatability into Your Business by Becoming Metrics Driven w/Amos Schwartzfarb from Techstars Ep#112

By Anthony Taylor - July 28, 2021

Amos Schwartzfarb has been building businesses since the 90's. Now, he's the Managing Director at Techstars, investing in early stage businesses and helping them find repeatability. He also sits on several boards, and is the best-selling co-author of LEVERS: The Framework For Building Repeatability into Your Business.

On this episode of the Strategy & Leadership Podcast, Amos connects with our Managing Partner Anthony Taylor to discuss the difference between being metrics aware and metrics driven, his Levers framework, how it helps businesses build repeatability into their business, and much more.

 

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Here's a breakdown of the conversation:

  • Being metrics aware vs. metrics driven

Amos explains how most CEOs, founders, and managers are metrics aware, and don't understand the difference between being metrics aware and metrics driven. Metrics aware means looking backwards to determine how we got to where we are now. Metrics driven means looking at where we are now, and determining what specific activities will lead to the which results.

He adds that there is no clear crystal ball, but the future becomes easier to see once you become truly metrics driven. 

  • Considerations to make when becoming metrics driven

It starts early. Amos discusses how in the best case, leaders become metrics driven before they launch. It requires lots of research, and questioning what you know to be true.

It also starts from the top. Regardless of how big your vision is, no matter what your product is, your business is a business equation. There's a bunch of data and math that goes into figuring out how the pieces fit together, and how to create something repeatable that can grow.

Ultimately, the key metrics and considerations to look at will be different for every business. But you'll need to unwrap the core elements of your business and put them back together with info you have.

  • The Levers framework for becoming metrics driven

Amos uses his Levers framework to help the companies he works with at Techstars Austin become metrics driven. The framework is a set of processes that are easy to understand and do, that allow leaders to work on their business and ultimately build repeatability into their business.

The 5 elements of the Levers framework are:

    1.  Customer (and data to prove that you're right).
    2.  Business model (and data to prove that you're right).
    3.  What am I supposed to do next, and why? And what does that allow me to do after?
    4.  Measuring and KPIs. Understand what you're measuring, why, and what it unlocks.
    5.  Building your plan and financial model.
  • Leadership traits needed to bring a business to the next level

When trying to determine which businesses will be able to make it to the next level, Amos prefers to focus on the CEO. One of the most important things he considers is if they have staying power. Will they be able to continuously evolve and grow? Because in his experience, whatever they're doing today is likely not what they'll be doing in 5 years.

He also looks for CEOs that understand what it means to be metrics driven. They don't have to be good at it yet, but they have to at least believe that it's important.

Finally, he considers whether they can attract great talent and build a strong leadership team (or not).

  • Connect with Amos & learn more about his work

Connect with him on LinkedIn, and check out the book he co-authored called LEVERS: The Framework For Building Repeatability into Your Business.

Amos and his co-author Trevor Boehm also work with later stage businesses via their coaching business. Connect with him on LinkedIn to learn more.

 

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