Adora Cheung – How to Set KPIs and Goals

YC Partner Adora Cheung covers the importance of defining and tracking KPIs to understand how effectively your startup is reaching your goals.

Transcript and lecture slides here:

This lecture is part of YC’s Startup School, a free online program and global community of founders. Register and join the community at

00:00 What is a Key Performance Indicator (KPI)?
00:39 Why do KPIs matter?
1:33 What are the right KPIs to set?
1:46 Setting your primary metric
2:22 What are the characteristics of a good primary metric?
5:32 The two best primary metrics
6:50 When should you consider active users as a metric?
9:20 KPIs for bio and hardtech businesses
11:15 Secondary metrics
12:56 The best KPI for an unlaunched company
13:55 Setting metric-based goals
15:20 How fast should I grow?
17:15 What does success look like for you?
17:40 Guidelines for defining a goal
19:45 How to pick a goal
20:44 Tracking Progress
21:18 Leveraging your primary goal
22:27 Using the Startup School weekly update

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