We have thus far discussed product vision, strategy, and business objectives. In truth, as an early stage startup, you can survive without any of these for a while. It's amazing how far you can get by focusing on meeting the needs of some early customers.
However, the need for this vision and business‐objective context becomes truly serious at scale.
Keeping a small number of teams and their engineers doing useful stuff is not very hard, but getting good results out of a medium—or, especially, large—organization can be truly challenging.
Realize also that by the time the company has scaled, the original co‐founders may have moved on, so there may very well be a void. Teams need this context. It is nearly impossible for them to make good decisions and do good work without it.
The main ways these issues show up is diminished morale, lack of innovation, and reduced velocity.