Lessons Learned from Scaling No Wait from a Start-up to Selling to Yelp for $40 Million with Evan Addams

By July 25, 2018Podcast

In today’s episode you’ll hear our interview with Evan Addams, who was employee #2 at a start-up company called, No Wait, which scaled and got sold to Yelp for $40 million. No wait created an app that was a waitlisting system for restaurants and allows guests to add their name ahead of arrival in order to speed up the time it takes to be sat. Through the app guests can check the wait times, receive texts when their table is ready, and several other features. In the interview, you’ll hear Evan share the lessons he learned from being a start-up to scaling, to getting sold. He also gives a ton of practical advice that will help entrepreneurs scale their companies as well.

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Evan Addams, No Wait

Evan Addams, No Wait

For  transcription of this episode, go here!




  • There is no such thing as an overnight success
  • To scale, you will have to let go of your pride and ego as a leader.
  • Not all founders can scale.
  • What gets your here won’t necessarily get you there.
  • If you’re good at creating a product, it doesn’t mean you’d be good at raising money or selling the product.
  • Be able to seperate who you are from your daily performance.
  • Dont’ be defined on whether or not a paticular sale goes through
  • You don’t have to have the perfect product to sell it – Get into the field with your prospects and target market and learn from them.
  • Change your mentality from selling to fixing a problem. Come alongside an industry as an advocate.
  • At NoWait, every employee had to work at a restaurant.
  • “Great entrepreneurs create the world the way it ought to be.” -Sean Ammirati
  • Seperate your desire to be your own boss from being an entrepreneur. Make sure your fire is more about creating the world it ought to be.
  • If money doesn’t matter, then what will you do with your time? Why will you do what you do?
  • Sharing your business idea with others is a brilliant thing to do.
  • I think the greatest leaders are those who have constantly adapted


Evan, give us a brief overview of who you are and what you do.

  • You were employee #1 at No Wait, a company that eventually got sold to Yelp for $40 million. . .
    • What do you wish people knew about the journey it takes to build and scale a business to that level?
    • What did you learn through that experience?
    • What have been some of the biggest challenges you’ve had to overcome while growing No Wait from inception to where it is today?
  • What compromises/sacrifices have you had to make to grow the company to help get it to where it is today? Do you have any regrets? How do you intent to incorporate the lessons of those mistakes into your future?


  • What does it take to be successful in sales?
  • Where do you see most sales people missing it?
  • What daily habits and practices do you encourage people to have in order to be successful?
  • Where have you seen the greatest return on your investment of time when it comes to sales: Phone calls? Visits? Blogging? Social media? Referrals? Webinars? Weekly calls?


  • Can everyone be an entrepreneur?
  • What qualities do you look for in up and coming entrepreneurs?
  • Where do you see young leaders/entrepreneurs “missing it” most often?
  • If you could give young entrepreneurs/leaders  advice, what would it be?
  • Can you talk about the role and importance of a founder?
    • In your experience, can all founders scale their company? Is there something that separates the ones who can from the ones who can’t?
    • How should someone know when it’s time to hand over your company to someone else to scale it?
  • Can you talk about the importance of getting feedback for your Dream/Business?
  • What are some ways listeners can get feedback for their dreams?
  • How do you recommend people getting over negative feedback about their idea?
  • What advice do you have on networking and pitching your idea to people that are able to help you with your idea?

Growing Leaders

  • In your opinion, what is the best way to grow and develop leaders?
  • As a leader, what is the most valuable use of your time and resources when it comes to developing others?

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