Episode 02


Navigating the ‘Haziness’ of Early Stage Startups

Shekhar Kirani currently a partner at Accel, shares his secret to juggling different startup contexts and some of the many lessons he has learned over the years. He demystifies the haziness in startups and speaks about the traits he looks for in early-stage companies.

Shekhar Kirani Partner at Accel

Episode 02

Shekhar Kirani - Navigating the 'Haziness' of Early Stage Startups

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Vikram’s very special guest on the podcast today is someone he has worked for many years and currently a partner at Accel, Shekhar Kirani. With over 25 years of experience in business and tech leadership roles across several startups and large companies in the US, Shekhar specializes in investing in early-stage software and mobile startups that help enterprises. During his extensive career, he has led investments in ANSR, BrowserStack, CareStack, Cogoport, FalconX, Freshworks, and Zenoti, and he also played a crucial role in the seed stage funding of Chargebee.

Shekhar begins by sharing his secret to juggling different startup contexts, the roles he played before becoming an investor, and some of the many lessons he has learned over the years, including the importance of onboarding, understanding the customer first, and the traits he looks for in early-stage companies. He also provides some advice regarding dealing with early-stage ‘haziness’ and a glimpse into his prediction framework, thoughts around social consciousness from startups and technologies, and the product for which he sees the greatest need these days. Gifted with intellect, experience, and eloquence, Shekhar Kirani’s insights are supremely valuable and will both educate and inspire listeners here today.



The Finer Details of This Episode:

  • Shekhar’s secret to juggling different startup contexts
  • The roles he held before becoming an investor
  • His example of the importance of onboarding
  • Thinking about and understanding customers first
  • The traits Shekhar looks for in early-stage companies
  • His advice in dealing with early-stage ‘haziness.’
  • Shekhar’s prediction framework
  • His thoughts around social consciousness from startups and technologies
  • The product Shekhar sees the most need for these days