CEO transitions in life of venture-backed startup

Most startups suffer high staff turnover, and their CXO’s are no exception.  In the short but exciting lifespan of a venture backed startup, it is not unusual to see two or more CEOs and other CXOs rotate through the company to navigate it through the rough waters of going from idea to beta to market, and so on. 

See the following link for a recent whitepaper that honestly discusses this point: http://www.pwcmoneytree.com/exhibits/RitesOfPassageArticle.pdf

While experienced, or “repeat”, CEOs are less prone to find themselves in this position, most early stage executives may find that the investors want to make a change or bring in a more specialized industry player with execution success.  Founder teams that plan to seek investment capital are wise to plan for such a potential change and position themselves in the company where they could have a long-tenured position. Discussing this issue upfront with their investors and negotiating appropriate employment agreements is always a good idea to give both sides the comfort and incentive necessary for promoting the overall success of the business and gaining the investors’ trust.

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