Busting the Myths about Startup Success with BlackLine


Therese Tucker – CEO / BlackLine



This session will break through the dogma behind what it takes to build a successful tech company. With stories based on the founding of BlackLine — to the company’s successful IPO – you’ll learn the most common myths behind success and why they may be holding you back.



BlackLine is an American enterprise software company that develops cloud-based accounting software that helps businesses manage their quarterly financial reports. It is valued at USA$1.7B


Therese grew up on a farm with parents that didn’t go to college. She did computer science degree


16 years since it started

Up to 2014 was bootstrapped

Sold majority in 2014

Finding the right partner is key to business success

October 2016 did IPO



There’s a playbook for success

Companies have a unique DNA so copying someone else might just kill you


there’s more than one way to the top



Being a founder makes you a rock star

You need confidence and a little arrogance but biggest mistakes come from people that start to believe their own hype and lose focus on their own company

Committed to doing whatever it takes to make it work

The glamour of a founder might come much much later

Pivot from arrogance to humility – gives you focus and clarity on the business


Don’t be that guy. Humility plays.

Don’t be married to your idea… it may not work and you may need to pivot to another idea



You’re founding the next Amazon.

Most startups fail


Write your own story



You need funding to be successful


Focus on getting customers



Hire the best to ensure success


Good, cheap or not crazy. Pick two.

You need talent development. People want the opportunity to do well and grow



Everything you hear about women in tech


Women are an asset undervalued in the market


A company is like a kid, you can’t leave it for 2 seconds otherwise it will go off the tacks

Advice to entrepreneurs… Don’t do it

The journey ahead will be the best and the worst, you’re going to laugh and cry over time, you going to learn and learn and learn.