Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their very own.
On this ongoing collection, we’re sharing recommendation, suggestions and insights from actual entrepreneurs who’re on the market doing enterprise battle every day. (Solutions have been edited and condensed for readability.)
Sean Brown, founder and CEO of GO VC
Who’re you and what’s your enterprise?
I’m Sean Brown, founder and CEO of GO VC, a enterprise capital and early-stage funding firm. After I began the enterprise, our earliest investments had been in tech startups. We funded advertising, software program, and different online-based firms as a result of that’s the world that I got here from. However as we’ve grown and new alternatives have appeared, our scope has expanded organically and we’re working with organizations in many alternative niches and verticals.
What impressed you to create discovered GO VC?
I’ve been beginning companies and investing in different individuals’s concepts for nicely over a decade now, and GO VC was a pure step to take as my private community grew and numerous ventures began to realize traction.
I’ve a background in digital advertising, and my “aha second” was in all probability after I realized that the strategies and techniques we used to assist shoppers at my company had been much more potent in the event you utilized them inside a broader progress and funding framework.
That’s been an actual differentiator for GO VC — we don’t simply make investments capital, we make investments the information that we’ve amassed from our personal companies to assist startups succeed.
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What has been your greatest problem throughout the pandemic and the way did you pivot to beat it?
I feel the most important problem of the pandemic, particularly early on, was the uncertainty and worry that everybody was residing with. Most of us, after we go to mattress at evening, we expect we all know what the world goes to appear like within the morning. However when the pandemic started, that feeling of safety was shaken, and it hasn’t totally returned but in a number of methods.
On the enterprise facet, I didn’t must pivot an excessive amount of as a result of we had been already comfy with distant work. Half of my workforce was already becoming a member of our weekly conferences through Zoom, for instance, so switching to remote-only wasn’t an enormous leap. And personally, working remotely gave me extra time with my spouse and two children, which was a profit and a blessing that made any work-related worries fade rapidly.
What recommendation would you give entrepreneurs on the lookout for funding?
Once we’re contemplating new investments, those that stand out are when there’s a degree of ardour and private synergy behind the concepts. The marketing strategy and fundamentals must be proper, clearly, however we get essentially the most excited when somebody is available in and we all know that we wish to work with them, not simply make investments as a result of the numbers are good.
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To translate that into recommendation, I’d say that entrepreneurs ought to incorporate the “why” behind the enterprise thought each time and wherever attainable. If we’re going to offer the capital and information you could assist transfer your group ahead, we wish to know that you’ve got a compelling purpose to be on this enterprise so that you’ll stick it out when adversity strikes.
What does the phrase “entrepreneur” imply to you?
It’s sort of humorous — I do know lots of people who’ve created companies and invested in startups, however none of them have the phrase “Entrepreneur” on their workplace door or enterprise card. They’re CEOs, or founders, or consultants, or the entire above.
I feel being an entrepreneur is extra of a mindset than a job title. It means that you’ve got the liberty and assets to leverage alternatives that others aren’t conscious of. It means you’re prepared and capable of pursue concepts and gaps within the market that others don’t see or wouldn’t take into account. And it means you’re prepared to take dangers when these concepts, and the eagerness behind them, resonate with you.
What’s one thing many aspiring enterprise house owners suppose they want that they actually do not?
Quite a lot of enterprise house owners wish to maintain a detailed eye on day-to-day operations and duties, particularly those that begin small. However that strategy actually doesn’t scale.
In the event you convey somebody in to handle operations, or accounting, or advertising, you need to have the boldness in your personal selections to provide them the liberty to do the job you’ve employed them to do.
In my expertise, the appropriate individuals will reward your confidence in them and assist your enterprise develop in methods you won’t have anticipated — and also you’ll have a greater relationship together with your groups too.
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Is there a specific quote or saying that you just use as private motivation?
There are two sayings that I at all times circle again to, each for myself and different enterprise house owners that I meet with.
The primary is to “Belief the timing,” which comes up extra typically than you’d suppose. After I encounter a enterprise or funding alternative, there’s no assure that that very same supply will nonetheless be on the desk in every week or a month. I’d fairly get the ball rolling now than must backtrack and rebuild that momentum later.
The second saying, which is sort of the flip-side of the primary, is “You possibly can’t be afraid to fail early.” No startup or funding is ever a positive factor, particularly on the earth we’re residing in at present. This isn’t a brand new thought for many entrepreneurs, nevertheless it’s an absolute should in the event you’re going to maneuver ahead as a enterprise or a model.