Normal People Easy To Get Along With

Chicago Bulls. Michael Jordan 1997Image via Wikipedia
Fred Wilson: Difficult Is Good: He then said, "sometimes we make money with brilliant people who are easy to get along with, most often we make money with brilliant people who are hard to get along with, but we rarely make money with normal people who are easy to get along with."
I am so not a VC. I am on the other side. Fred Wilson's best MBA Monday post - according to me - is one where he got an entrepreneur - Charlie - to relate his story.

This quote from Dan Valentine makes total sense to me. And I understand it 100%.

The best entrepreneurs tackle the biggest problems. Those problems are, by definition, badass. Others have not touched them because they are big and bad. But we operate in paradigms. You already know what a McDonald's burger looks like. That is a paradigm. That gives you peace of mind. You know.

But the best entrepreneurs break paradigms. They throw rocks into the pond and unsettle the water. They cause splashes to happen. That is what they do. You can't complain. A soldier fights. An entrepreneur breaks paradigms.

The best VCs are visionary people. If they did not see possibilities, they would go do something else for a living. You can't go anywhere in the VC business unless you have a little bit of an oracle quality to you.

But seeing is one thing. Doing it is another. Michael Jordan had a coach. But I doubt that coach could throw a ball far and wide.
Michael Jordan on the golf course in 2007.Image via WikipediaThe best coaches can spot the best players, they can even train them to make them the best they can be. But those coaches don't belong on the court. And they know.

VCs are like that. They can not do it themselves. But they need to get it done. Otherwise the money does not grow. And that is a good kind of tension.

I am looking for a VC who will put 10 million dollars into my startup for zero equity. And there are all sorts of investors who want 100% of my company for 100K. That tension is not a bad thing as long as it is handled creatively.

The word "difficult" is like the phrase "painful to watch."

VCs, by definition, can not see what the entrepreneur sees. The VCs have to look at many, many market segments. But the entrepreneur is focused on that one narrow trajectory. And so the entrepreneur rightfully is suspicious of the VC. Why do you want to have a say about a reality you don't even see?

There is a big difference between vision and action. The best entrepreneurs are also great visionaries, so it is not like they feel like the vision department belongs to the VCs of the world.

All they want is your money, a little bit of money. And they are on their way.
Picture of Michael Jordan at a basketball game.Image via Wikipedia
That tension is not a bad thing. It is the tension between vision and action. It is the tension of creativity.

The best VCs exercise restraint. The best entrepreneurs want to know what the oracle might be seeing at any given moment in time.

All it took for me was to have to deal with one lousy small ass unprofessional investor a few years ago to realize money is the small part of what a VC brings to the table. The best VCs bring themselves.

The "difficulty" you are feeling is the paradigm being broken. The glass is being shattered. Because it has no business being there in the first place.

You Have To Be A Little Wild
Validation From Fred Wilson: Froth
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