Brad Feld: Don't make me say 'No' twice

Bambi Francisco Roizen · October 8, 2008 · Short URL:

When maybe means no, and no means absolutely not!

What's worse than getting rejected? It's being rejected by the same investor, over and over and over again. So, don't make them have to say no more than once. "Most entrepreneurs, when they hear that [rejection], they try to press on... and keep coming back for more," said Brad Feld, an early stage investor and co-founder of Foundry Group and Mobius Venture Capital. Indeed, entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley should already know that "maybe" means "no." So, a "no" definitely means "absolutely not." 

Now, Brad's a nice guy. So, feel free to ask him for a reason why he's rejected your plan. But don't go on beyond that. For the most part, there's no real in-depth reason beyond lack of chemistry and lack of interest in the particular industry you're pursuing. "The first is - Is the thing you're working on fundamentally interesting to us," he said. "If so, the next thing I want to know is can we work together?"

OK. This quick interview isn't just about how to get Brad Feld to listen to your idea. This interview is also about Brad's failures and mistakes. "I've had my share of smoking craters," he said. 

I won't list out those setbacks. You'll have to watch his video to find out.




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Bambi Francisco Roizen

Founder and CEO of Vator, a media and research firm for entrepreneurs and investors; Managing Director of Vator Health Fund; Co-Founder of Invent Health; Author and award-winning journalist.

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