You get one chance at a first impression. And that simply means, think about if you were on the other side and you were seeing hundreds of opportunities. And one came to you well-prepared and one came to you poorly prepared which one would you invest with?

You don’t want to rush the process. The most important thing an investor looks for is a big idea. They want a big problem. They want you to be passionate about that problem. They want you to understand the situation intimately. And they want to know that you’ve gone out in the marketplace, presented a problem and found those who have an interest in a solution to that problem. I’m willing to consider a young company to solve that, at a price that would be reasonable for the both of you.

You need to become who you want to be before you are. That means when you sit down with your team and put your dream together that you take on the responsibility of delivering that dream. You don’t talk about it as a future event. You act as if you’re running that organization today. In order to support that you need to have an overview. You need to have an executive summary. You need to have a pitch deck. Your team has to be in place. And you have to have reasonable financials. Reasonable and realistic.

And these are important because that will show that you understand and are passionate about something that you can address, you can solve and you can bring that solution to market.

And don’t pitch too early. That’s the critical thing. Abe Lincoln said if I had six hours to cut down a tree, I would take five hours to sharpen the ax. Remember to be well-prepared before you step out. And then when you step out make sure you take on the position that this is your business, you need growth and you know exactly how you’re going to use it.

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