158. Post-Funding Mistakes: Under Reporting

VC Minute
There are three post-funding mistakes Matt regularly sees from founders. The first is under-reporting.

VC Minute – quick advice to help startup founders fundraise better

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Rich Maloy

This is Rich Maloy with SpringTime Ventures, bringing you the VC Minute, quick advice to help startup founders fundraise better.

This week’s guest has done a tremendous amount of work to share his wisdom with the rest of the startup world. He’s going to give a great introduction in just a second, but I do want to call out his podcast, The Daily Bolster. I’m a huge fan of this podcast. I’ve already learned so much just from season one and season two of the daily bolster is already out. So go check it out. And Matt, take it away.

Matt Blumberg

I’m Matt Blumberg. I’ve been a multi time founder in the tech space with BC backed companies over the last 25 years. I’m a Co-Founder and CEO of Bolster. Bolster is a marketplace for on demand executive talent.

We are a two sided B2B online marketplace, and we help startups and scale ups hire senior executives, whether those people are for full time roles fractional or project roles or advisory roles like mentor or coach or a board member.

I’m the author of a blog called startupceo.com where I talk about lessons learned as a founder and startup CEO. The blog led to a series of books that I’ve written as well. One is called Startup CEO, which is kind of an instruction manual for the first time founder. Another, which I wrote with my whole team is called Startup CXO, which is kind of an instruction manual for an entire executive team role by role.

And the third one that I wrote in partnership with two venture capitalists, Brad Feld and Mahendra Ramasangani is called Startup Boards which is as it sounds. And I also host a podcast called The Daily Bolster, which is five days a week, five minutes, sometimes they go a little bit longer on the weekend, but a five minute podcast, interviewing a different CEO or VC every day, asking them one thing they want to talk about.

There are a number of things once a financing is done that CEOs need to do and the CEOs need to not do or do better.

The first couple of things I’ll talk about are around money and reporting, which is kind of the obvious place to go, particularly when you’ve done your first financing or your first institutional financing. There are a few things I’ve seen CEOs get wrong that are not very hard, if you’re paying attention to them, to get right.

One of those CEOs get wrong on the other side about financing is under reporting.

So if you’ve never had an institutional investor before you probably look, at hopefully you look at financials every month and you’re paying attention to that a little bit. But once you have somebody else’s money, you have to be a lot more detailed in the reporting and quite frankly, a lot more accountable.

And the easiest thing to do here is to ask your new investors what kind of reporting that they expect to see and on what frequency and if they have any samples for you from other companies, if you’re not accustomed to doing that.

Let’s say you ask your investors, what kind of reporting they’re interested in seeing and on what frequency and can they give you samples. And you get different things back from different investors. What do you do?

The answer isn’t necessarily that you give each one exactly what he or she wants, because you can drive yourself crazy coming up with one custom report after another custom report after another custom report. Remember, you are the CEO. Your job when you’re dealing with your investors or your board is to get inputs in and then make good decisions. And this is just another example of that.

So if 3 different investors tell you that they want to see 3 different things. You take it into account, you tell them all that you’ve got different inputs from them. You come up with the thing that you think satisfies most of their needs, but most of all satisfies your needs for running the business and come back to them and say, here’s what it’s going to be.

About Bolster
Bolster is the new way to find the right executives. We supercharge startup growth by matching CEOs with transformational leaders—without the hassle of traditional talent sourcing. Built by entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs, the Bolster marketplace is packed with diverse, highly qualified talent ready for executive, advisory, or board roles. Our no-nonsense, no-frills approach makes it easier than ever for startups to find the right leaders and for leaders to find the perfect next opportunity. Start your search at bolster.com.

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