Adora Cheung – How to Set KPIs and Goals

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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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