Food For Founders #52
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|Stephen Alred Jr.||Oct 18, 2019|
This section is meant to help you grow as a leader, manager, or entrepreneur.
I am a huge fan of taking from other people’s experiences and then building models based on common denominators. In that regard, this piece by Brett Fox is gold.
I still hate sending out pitch decks. In general, I don’t like seeking investment funding period. It’s exclusive. It aims to be transparent and meritocracy…but ends up being anything but.
Brett really taps into the psyche of a founder. We feel like we’ll only have one shot to make a good impression and stand out, so we want to impress with our knowledge and our concept…in reality, this is the wrong way to go about it.
Another thing he points out is people not being able to get to the core of their pitch immediately. If you are pitching a VC cold you need to make sure not only does your deck stand out, but that the important information is front and center.
The meat of your pitch needs to be front and center and the deck should make someone want to learn more. It should not make someone want to invest (because they won’t).
One thing that really changed for us was to be able to align our deck with our story. We knew if we did that really well then it would no longer be about what was in the deck, but whether we were a good fit for the investor period. This is a good place for a founder to be because it removes the aspect of “chance."
This section is designed to help you improve your skills as a strategist and tactician.
Learning from experts is something I always try to impose on founders. It takes a lot of humility to realize that you aren’t even the third smartest person in a lot of rooms (if you are - find a new room). Once you enter that space it’s actually very freeing because you treat every interaction as an opportunity to learn.
To me, learning is just another way of saying using other people’s failures to avoid making your own.
This SaaS Operating Model is exactly that. It’s experts in a field of investing and growing SaaS startups bringing their data and insights back and posting them for FREE.
All it takes is a few hours of pouring through the spreadsheet and dissecting this piece to glean some really powerful anecdotes.
This section was created to introduce ideas that may not related to starting a company, yet is important to your success as a founder.
Each year as a new year begins there is only one item on my resolutions list - get 1% better every day.
When I was in school I learned something that has helped shape my professional life and that lesson was that work and effort compounds. If you do something consistently for decades, you have no choice but to achieve your goals.
Even the great Herb Keller says that the reason people don’t succeed is that they are not able to deal with the monotony of success. This is a real thing. It’s the antithesis of the “shining” object syndrome that most entrepreneurs I know suffer from.
That’s why I wanted to include this article. Darius is someone that always falls into my reading list (half of the time I don’t know it’s him until I dig a little deeper - I know his writing from anywhere.
In this piece, he depicts a great mental model for analyzing situations that have a lot of external factors. The entire piece I was saying “good point” to myself and thought it would be a great reminder that you can only control 1) Desire 2) Attitude 3) Judgements 4) Determination.
Around The Startup Ecosystem
This section was built to update you on important events, opinions, or pieces happening in the world of startups.
If you aren’t in our ecosystems and planning working with our investor relations team, this entire newsletter is basically geared to helping you raise funding…this piece is no different.
With more and more founders investing in founders, and new investment models popping up (like my firm KnowCap), there has never been more of a seller’s market from the founder's perspective.
Raising funding is still really really hard, but a lot easier than it was just 7-8 years ago. With the continuing economic boom, more money going into venture, positive legislation like the JOBS act, and all-around increase of startup investing…it’s never been easier to raise venture capital to scale your company into something more.
It’s also never been harder to stand out of the crowd. If you’re looking for a place to turn to find out who’s investing and what kind of companies they are looking for.