I help companies get to the next level by creating systems, standardizing operations, streamlining processes, and improving communications. In order to truly understand the management team's vision, I immerse myself in the company’s operations by actually doing the job of COO. First, I work to understand how things are done and why they’re done that way. Then, I look for ways to make improvements. I proceed incrementally to propose then execute changes that significantly reduce costs, eliminate waste, and maximize use of the company’s existing resources, with a goal of preparing the company for growth. Once that has been accomplished, and I have thoroughly trained and prepared my replacement for success, I move on to a new company, seeking a new challenge, but remain available for projects and consultation.


I have a wide and varied background, having founded, worked in, or consulted for companies in several verticals. I am particularly interested in companies that are on-line but also have a significant off-line component (think Uber, Amazon, or Postmates, as opposed to, say, Facebook or Twitter). I am particularly adept at working with brick and mortar companies that are interested in being "tech-enabled." Specific verticals include (but are not limited to):​

  • customer service

  • education

  • food production

  • light manufacturing

  • media / entertainment

  • restaurants

  • retail

  • tech


I grew up in Northern California, near Grass Valley and Nevada City. After majoring in philosophy, graduating summa cum laude, and being granted the Presidential Medal (highest honor) at Denison University, I moved to New York City, where I spent several years working in the newsroom of The New York Times. There, I developed a passion for intense, deadline-driven organizations that are fanatical about the quality of their products. After getting my MBA at the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth I helped launch a commercial real estate startup, co-founded a restaurant company, advised dozens of entrepreneurs through KillMyStartup.com, failed fast at two attempts to start up my own startup, and became an interim COO. I live just north of Berkeley. You can learn more about my professional background on LinkedIn.


I am based in San Francisco but am open to working practically anywhere in the world for the right opportunity. I have lived in multiple cities throughout the United States and have traveled extensively throughout Europe, Asia, and Latin America.


Select a photo to see examples of my work:

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  • LinkedIn - sethdilmore
  • Twitter - interim_COO