8 Traits of a Successful Venture Capital Fundraiser
What makes a successful entrepreneur? An entrepreneur must wear many hats in the process of starting a new company, but one of the traits that sets an entrepreneur apart from others is the ability to successful raise money needed to get a company off the ground.
Start up capital is essential for new businesses to succeed. Unless an entrepreneur has substantial savings to use as start up capital, he or she will need to ask for money. Raising capital for business funding is not easy. It requires a bit of diplomacy, flattery, enthusiasm, vision, as well as a host of other qualities to convince people to part with their money and invest in a new business.
What traits do venture capital firms usually see in successful fundraisers? Here is a list of skills and traits you might need to be a successful venture capital fundraiser.
- Networking Ability – A successful VC fundraiser needs to have a large pool of potential investors in which to pitch his or her idea. A smart entrepreneur knows the law of averages and will not narrow a fundraising search to just a few possibilities.
- Targeting Ability – Not only does a successful start up capital fundraiser need a large set of contacts, he or she needs the ability to narrow down a list to the ones who the best candidates. Rather than a ‘scattershot’ fundraising approach, efforts are focused on VC firms who fund new companies similar to the size and scope of his or her new business.
- Enthusiastic Communication – Finding investors requires an ability to make a pitch to those investors that convinces them of the potential of the new business. An entrepreneur who has passion and enthusiasm in the way he or she communicates to investors will have a better chance of receiving funds.
- Preparedness – An entrepreneur who expects to receive VC funding never wings a presentation. Every detail of a presentation is practiced and honed until the message is exactly right.
- Tenacity – Rejection is rampant in the world of VC fundraising. A successful VC fundraiser accepts this as part of the job and begins again when he or she meets a dead end.
- Patience – No entrepreneur who needs money “now” will succeed. A successful VC fundraiser knows that there is a process to fundraising, including attracting the right venture capital firm, due diligence, and negotiation.
- Flexible but firm Negotiator – Negotiation requires the ability to be flexible, but also the creativity necessary for the give-and-take of the process. A good negotiator will also recognize a good deal and have the ability to walk away from an unfair deal.
- Realistic – Though enthusiasm is good, knowing the limitations and risks of the business, and being able to talk about them with venture capital firms, is also essential. A VC firm will easily see through a “smokescreen” of all positives and wants to know that the entrepreneur accepts and is aware of the risks as well.