April 7, 2023

"CEOs shouldn't have meetings" - 5 million users, 20M ARR with no investors and empty calendar! - Amir Salihefendic, doist

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Unicorn Bakery - The Startup Founder Podcast

Amir Salihefendic completely bootstrapped doist and didn't bring in any investor money even at the market high of 2021 - but why not? In this episode you'll get a deep insight into bootstrapping mindset and the art of keeping a huge market success alive without outside help.

Todoist is probably the best known product of the group and has more than 5 million users.

Basically, I find it exciting that Amir has almost no meetings and doesn't just rush from appointment to appointment. Definitely exciting insights into the life of a CEO who does things differently.

What you learn:

Why does it sometimes make sense to fully rely on bootstrapping instead of bringing VCs on board?

Why is it important to keep an eye on revenue per employee and make it the most important KPI in the company?

How does Amir manage to get by without meetings?

How do I communicate within the team when I don't have meetings to do so?



(00:01:30) How did you get into starting up and why did you start Todoist?

(00:03:55) How important is it to be a power user of your product and when did a side hustle turn into a solid company?

(00:08:43) How do you manage growth and revenue when a majority of users could theoretically be free users forever?

(00:11:39) How did you have to adapt processes and structures of the company after you started targeting more B2B?

(00:15:29) You pay a lot of attention to revenue per employee - can you give us deeper insights into when and why that became an important KPI?

(00:20:16) Give us a crazy story from your career.

(00:22:23) What were the biggest challenges in bootstrapping?

(00:24:47) When did you feel you had achieved Product Market Fit?

(00:28:04) You probably could have raised millions in the 2021 market for faster growth, but decided against it. Why?

(00:32:33) How do you define a productive company?

(00:34:32) What is your daily and work schedule?

(00:39:31) What tips do you have for prioritizing meetings (when are meetings useful?)?

(00:42:08) What does the right ambition/incentive look like for you to build a business?

(00:47:39) Should IPO be the final goal for any company?

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/amix3k/

doist: https://doist.com/


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