Category

Venture Capital

CEO Reviews

Probably the most consistently overlooked “best practice” in venture backed companies is the CEO review. In my experience most companies provide little, if any, structured feedback at the CEO level. Perhaps the board or the members of the compensation committee might provide the CEO with limited (and mostly ad hoc) feedback at the beginning of…

What do you do for a living?

It’s not that I’m ashamed of being a venture capitalist, but I do find that when people I don’t know ask me what I do, rather than say “I’m a venture capitalist” I typically say “I work for a finance company”. Writing this, I suppose that probably makes me sound like I sell mortgages or…

The 20 worst venture deals of all time

InsideCRM has compiled a list of the 20 worst venture deals of all time. Not sure the methodology (I can think of a few that I might have added to the list . . .) but the deals mentioned are for the most part worthy of the designation. You can see the story here –…

You’re burning too much money

I don’t know much about your business but I’d guess that you’re burning too much cash. Ok – that’s an over generalization but it’s also probably true. Businesses – and particularly early stage businesses – have some kind of gravitational pull towards spending too much money. Some of this is just the nature of entrepreneurship…

The start-up office revisited

A little while back I wrote a post on how much I love start-up office space.  It’s messy, it’s small, it might not have a window and it might smell a little bit funny, but it’s the best office space you’ll ever have.  I received a bunch of emails, comments and pictures from people with…

Is title inflation an acceptable recruiting/retention technique?

I’ve had a few people ask me about this recently and it felt “blog worthy”. At issue is the question of whether it’s ok to use title as an incentive to either keep someone at a company or attract them there in the first place . . . is playing to someone’s ego an acceptable…

This is a unique approach

I was sent the following a few days ago: In order to give investors a sneak peak of what we’re up to, we’ve created a short video (4 mins): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E9fiEu_TBdU I appreciate the effort behind stuff like this (as well as the novel thinking).  While we’re on the topic, if there’s ever something you want…

VC Pitch “Rules”

I often get emailed requests to include content in my posts. While I can’t always oblige I do look for interesting content to repurpose or link to or build a large post around. Today I received the following links from Laura Fitton on a topic near and dear to my heart – giving effective venture…

Perspective

Ben linked to a great post on how trained artists vs. trained psychologists look at the same picture.  The lines on the pictures below denote eye movements of the study participants as they viewed each picture. Artists are specifically trained to discern perspective in composition.  They do this by looking not only at the focal…

The stupid things VCs say

Entrepreneur: “Yah, we’ve talked with Ryan about this” Me: “Oh. So Ryan already sat through this presentation” Entrepreneur: “Um, yah – something like that” Oops – that wasn’t what I really meant.