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Other founders, they’re just like me!
The top anxieties from your fellow founders...
Founder anxieties are real. REALLY real. Like burning with the heat of 10,000 suns type real.
Especially during fundraising.
Try juggling all the needs of running a team, building a product, finding customers… and then layer on a complex, time consuming process that has existential consequences if you fail.
That sort of stress will crumble the strongest of founders. Oh, and don’t forget (in case that stress wasn’t enough)…putting on a strong, confident face is a big part of convincing people to invest in you! So how do you manage??
Managing the stress
Aside from general stress management approaches like healthy eating, exercise, meditation, connecting with other founders in the struggle has been a common practice in the entrepreneurial community.
Founder communities provide incredible support around building a company. There’s so much expertise, advice, ideas, and network in those groups that can hugely impact the success of a company. The simplest part of these groups may be the most valuable.
It’s what I’ve called “struggle sharing” with groups in the past. Hearing about similar anxieties. Realizing you’re not the only one…
Those things can lift a weight off your shoulders and give you the confidence to believe you can overcome those challenges.
A quick taste
I’d highly recommend you find a founder group to join or maybe organize one for yourself. It doesn’t take more than messaging a few founders and scheduling a monthly zoom call. Maybe add them to a WhatsApp group.
Let me show you how much relief realizing others have the same anxieties can bring.
In our work building content, tools, and support for founders, we surveyed almost 300 founders asking them a wide range of questions. One of them was…
“What are you most anxious about when it comes to fundraising?”
Read below the aggregated data and a few select quotes from founders.
Storytelling / Pitching / Confidence- 81
Building a Network / Connecting with Investors- 73
Time Management / Process- 62
Current economic environment- 12
Losing control of company / Giving up too much equity- 11
Storytelling / Pitching / Confidence
Having to schedule at least 10+ meetings per week and going through them constantly being rejected, knowing it’s part of the process.
Being able to convey the story of my company in a compelling and confident way.
Just standing in front of investors & pitching the idea, I get petrified.
Building a Network / Connecting with Investors
Attracting smart money. People who would contribute to our company's development. Missionaries, not mercenaries.
How to get the right investors who are aligned in vision, integrity and strategic goals.
Running out of quality connections / warm intros.
Time Management / Process
This whole process comes unnaturally to me. The type of communication that enables building FOMO comes unnaturally to me and I'm often uneasy & confused how to respond in certain situations to create time pressure without saying something that may come off as BS.
Runway drying out before raising.
Stepping away from the day to day in order to focus on [fundraising] only.
Current economic environment
Navigating a tough market on top of being a woman founder.
VCs being on hold for new deals, especially for first time founders
Losing control of company / Giving up too much equity
Screwing my team over by giving too much away because we're too close to end of runway.
Not getting the best deal for the company. Wasting time on investors who are just curious and aren't really keen.
Making a bad deal, committing too much equity.
I hate asking for help.
As a pre-revenue company, It is so difficult to fundraise at this stage.
If you thought this was helpful or enjoyable in anyway, I’d love for you to:
Forward this newsletter with others who would enjoy it
Listen with a friend to Funded, my podcast that tells the rollercoaster stories of how founders raised millions (and subscribe🙏)
Ask me your fundraising questions so I can help you and cover them in a future issue
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