Investor-Led Story Telling (Video)
If you’re starting a new venture or a founder looking for additional inspiration (or just wanting to know that you’re not alone in the pursuit of a evolving vision), watch this short series called GreyMatter. Each video is three to eight minutes long and talks to the experience of people using technology to seize global opportunities. These are founder’s stories.
GreyMatter is a knowledge-sharing product of Greylock Partners, a San Francisco-based venture capital firm. I’ve long since been a fan of Greylock largely because of the way they walk their talk and GreyMatter is a big part of their philosophy. Another element of Greylock’s approach is their Entrepreneur-In-Residence (EIR) program. The portfolio of leaders who have been recruited into their EIR includes LinkedIn’s Jeff Weiner, Pandora’s Sara Clemens and Mozilla’s Chris Beard. In a recent interview I was asked about my professional objectives as an entrepreneur beyond AirShr and I shared that one of my ambitions is to become an EIR at Greylock.
The point of sharing the Greylock example is that VC’s who go to great lengths to back great founders, more often than not, also deliver strategic value. In this context ‘strategic value’ means leveraging networks, being sounding boards for complex issues, helping founders tell their stories and developing a pipeline of exceptional leaders who can join forces with founders to turbo-charge venture growth. VC’s who have a track record in delivering this kind of value do exist but they are few and far between. So if you are a founder courting or being courted by a VC, understand how the exchange of value stacks up. Capital will always be available to compelling ventures led by high-calibre teams but it’s only half of the value equation.
Do you agree?