The buzz in our biz is that you have made enormous strides over the years in the areas that count – client service, product usability, and bringing the promises of the salesforce and the realities of customerhood into an acceptable equlibirium. Vinay continues to be a major thought leader in fundraising, and an inspiring colleague. You’ve turned some of the hardest-to-please folks I know in the space into some of your most passionate supporters. That’s all good. Really good.
But here’s what’s gonna happen the day after the IPO. Your new “customer base” will be Wall Street. The shareholders won’t give a tinker’s damn about customer service. Your most senior people will be preoccupied with Sarbanes-Oxley and other bizarre and twisty bureaucratic nightmares that come with being public.
I get it, you need to do what you need to do. Your operations are built on borrowed money, and the lenders need to be paid back. All well and good. But please, please – take stock now of what it is that makes you the best choice in the space right now, and do everything you can to make sure that your true north continues to be offering an excellent product and great service to the thousands of organizations you serve who spend every waking minute trying to change the world.
Very well said. Be sure to read the entire letter.