"You can't manage what you don't measure."

Peter Drucker

This is a sample of a Dashboard, filled with elements that have been seen out in the wild, and showing how useful it is to know and act about them. It is also stating what is going well, providing reassurance.

The data are collected in a collaborative review with the team and executives. The benchmark is the "North Star" concept with a collection of principles seen in an ideal state. The aspects checked can be found below the risk status of each section.

The interpretation of the data is to some extent subjective, but always based on the StartupPilot's experience and expertise. The purpose is not to pretend a false precision, but to indicate where issues are hidden and how critical they might be. 

Case Study - Startup "Hifly"


Current FTE


  • Development: 25
  • Support functions: 5
  • Operations: 5
  • Management: 5

Runrate p.a.

7 mCHF

funded until Q1/2020 with current staffing (but still recruiting)

Current revenue


# of clients required for operational break-even


# of revenue sources planned


3 different offerings, 2 can be bundled


Key findings
  • Product planning is detached from business case. Value of features delivered is not measured.
  • Technology: Team is in a steep learning curve with Kubernetes, productivity still low
  • Customers respond to a sideline of the product, leveraging it could boost growth

Risk Assessment

  • Core value proposition confirmed with pilot clients
  • Mid-term roadmap is largely based on unvalidated assumptions
  • 2 side projects with undefined revenue potential drag on resources

Recommended Actions:

  • Definition of structured product development process with qualified prioritization

Background - aspects checked and challenged include: Customer orientation, maturity of product development process, effectiveness of validation, clarity of solution, stability of features delivered, prioritization process, quality of roadmap

  • Maintainability is neglected, risk of rework when growth kicks in
  • Significant efforts put in sophistication of infrastructure, slowing down development of business functionality

Recommended Actions:

  • Review infrastructure concept
  • Refactorings to be planned as part of roadmap

Background - aspects checked and challenged include: Link of technology choices to business requirements, competence level of team, selection process for technology, talent market, sustainability and future outlook of tech stack

  • Cross-functional teams fairly productive
  • 2 roles in operations team with unclear responsibilities, causing friction

Recommended Actions:

  • Clarify value stream in operations

Background - aspects checked and challenged include: Org-chart vs. value chains, clarity of lead roles, availability of routine processes, process efficiency

  • 1 team at risk of leaving due to unresolved issues with product owner
  • Inconsistency: Expectation of "cool startup", but micro-management and mistrust expressed

Recommended Actions:

  • Coaching of management to improve team leadership

Background - aspects checked and challenged include: Intrinsic motivation, HR practices, clarity of vision, relevance of values, consistency claims vs reality

  • Well-rehearsed development process, teams delivering well.
  • Lack of ownership for projects around Security Architecture and Marketing Strategy. Run by experts in their silos.
  • Sales lacking behind expectations, reasons not sufficiently understood

Recommended Actions:

  • Structure management meeting to regularly cover all initiatives
  • Review sales and client situation

Background - aspects checked and challenged include: Maturity of management, management style, maturity of planning process, coordination and dependency management, effectiveness of feedback loops, net promoter score of mgmt team, risk management practices

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