Josh Kopelman is a venture capitalist & Managing Partner at First Round Capital. Josh founded Half.com, which was acquired by eBay in 2000. In 2003 Josh helped to found TurnTide which was acquired by Symantec six months later. In 2001 Josh co-founded the Kopelman Foundation, a non-profit grant fund for social entrepreneurs. He also serves as a member of the advisory boards for Wharton Entrepreneurial Center & the Weiss Tech House at the University of Pennsylvania.
Test your narrative and test it with as many people as you can find. See what works and what doesn't work and constantly iterate and hone.
You want an angel investor that is experienced at dealing with the uncertainty that comes with startups.
We typically see that companies with more than one founder tend have a higher success rate, and I think that's often because the founder has a thought partner.
A good entrepreneur is a good heat-seeking missile. They constantly scan the horizon looking for new targets.
Often times entrepreneurs try to talk in buzz words and try to talk in jargon rather than just talking about a really simple problem.
As entrepreneurs sign contracts and enter into partnerships it's important they build them with flexibility built-in.
While a 40 page business plan is not required today, being thoughtful and deliberate is required of companies.
It's inspiring to see the quality of the ideas and the quality people out there that are looking to change the world in a lot of different ways.
The team that an entrepreneur surrounds themselves with a is a very important 'tell' on the entrepreneur.
The most successful internet based companies are the ones who have those type of network effects where more users bring more value.
You need to be able to weave a compelling vision and a compelling story in order to attract investors, employees, and also, your customers.
Any platform that connects entrepreneurs and investors in an intelligent way is a real value to the ecosystem.
Do something that that you're passionate about but that has the opportunity to change the world--to really disrupt markets in a meaningful way.
Sometimes when investors are passing it's not because of the idea, they might even be passing because of the entrepreneur.
I think it's okay for an entrepreneur not to know every answer. In fact, I get really concerned when an entrepreneur claims they have all the answers. I think you build credibility and you gain credibility when you intelligently and coherently say: 'This is what we know, and this is what we don't.
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