How often should entrepreneurs meet with venture capitalists? Is it important to build a healthy relationship with a VC so they'll know more about you and your follow-through, or should you only schedule an appointment when you have an idea to pitch?
These questions are asked and addressed in a Wall Street Journal blog post up this week, and the answers are somewhat nebulous, though encouraging.
The debate was sparked initially by a blog post penned by Allen Morgan of Mayfield Fund, which insisted that being "too casual" and letting down your guard as an entrepreneur will only yield "a lousy pitch." But Foundry Group's Brad Feld -- a VC -- disagreed, writing in his blog:
[M]any of the companies we invest in are ones that we’ve had a relationship with for a long time. We also find ourselves extremely bored by formal pitches as our first or early interaction. If an entrepreneur shows up, says “hi, I have a hot deal with a bunch of folks bidding on it, do you want to see my formal pitch” we often say “no thanks, we aren’t the right guys for you."
The takeaway seems ultimately to be to have your ideas in tip-top shape no matter what, and not rely on VCs to be part of the brainstorming process. But since there seems to be no clear-cut answer to this, you're probably better off just going with your gut. But at least you can have a more informed gut now, right?
Read the full post over at the Wall Street Journal.