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Startup Operations: The Lone Rangers of Tech

I-9. W-4. IRA. Budget. Policy. Reimbursement. Invoice. Payroll . . . These are not exactly the words that inspire entrepreneurs. Yet the Startup Genome Project reported that most companies fail because of premature scaling, or “focusing on one dimension of the business and advancing it out of sync with the rest of the operation."

While the majority of employees may be rightly focused on the core product, a good operations manager can see how all the pieces of the business fit together and make sure it's growing in a way that's sustainable. This can be especially hard if there's only one operations person in the company--that person may have to struggle to get the CEO's attention and fight the employees on following policies.

This session brings operational Lone Rangers together to discuss and advise on topics such as constant context-switching, creating company culture, finding good lawyers and accountants, setting priorities, training employees, and making financial decisions.


  1. How do you keep tabs on the overall efficiency of a company without instituting a deadening amount of bureaucracy?
  2. How do you get the best service from lawyers, accountants, and HR professionals?
  3. How do you pick the most important project to work on next? How do you set priorities and then stay organized enough to follow through? How do you avoid the pitfalls of constant context-switching?
  4. How do you create a training program that makes sense for your company? How do you continue to promote ongoing professional development?
  5. How do you create corporate culture? How do you maintain good relationships with colleagues whose daily priorities and goals may seem to conflict with yours?



Liz Jones-Dilworth, VP Operations, Jones-Dilworth Inc.

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