Top 10 tips for funding a startup, from female VCs

Fantastic insights were shared from the Women in Tech Investment Panel at General Assembly’s newly-renovated space in Santa Monica. Besides that I also got to experience a paradox of about hundred women and a dozen men in a room both simultaneously frustrate and inspire each other.

Here are my top 10 takeaways from the panel.

  1. Know your stuff – Whats your market? What is your team’s overall experience? Do you know whether you really have something worth paying for?
  2. VCs want to understand the EQ of a startup’s leaders. They think “Would I want to be married to your biz?”
  3. VCs are watching your team dynamics to see how you interact with your team. Do you know when to listen to them?
  4. Rapport is important but remember VCs are running a business too.
 Can they make money on their investment in you?
  5. Be honest about what you know during the pitch.
  6. Be specific on what you can do differently. Understand a strategy to overcome existing products’ market share.
  7. VCs look for patterns from their experience in this biz.
  8. The best way to get an opportunity to pitch is a warm intro. VCs would like fund someone they know. Get acquainted with my friend, ABBY N. Always Be Building Your Network.
  9. Be a venture scale company. There is a chance you may currently be too small and not ready for VC funding. Are you ready now to start working on a strategy to raise $10 mil? $40 mil?
  10. Consider joining incubators or accelerator community if you don’t have a product yet so that you can develop your product to the point where you actually need to seek out a VC.

I’m glad I went. I learned some useful information, and I owe a huge thanks to Charlie, who asked the question of the evening that led to this.

I frequent a few events like this a month to stay immersed in exciting entrepreneurial environments. If you want to know more about upcoming events let me know and I’ll share more here. The next event on Tues., 11/19, on Creating Customer Experience Online, in El Segundo, is now open for registration.

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About madeline

a digital media pro w/ lots to learn. just the way i like it. i read, learn, and do things to make my inner kid proud (via A Mad Vox podcast, coming soon). View all posts by madeline

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