The arrival of a new year (and the beginning of a new one) brings a flurry of cognitive churning. As individuals, we 1/ reflect on the year passed, 2/ ritualistically write and read predictions for the next year, and 3/ make resolutions and set goals that are intended to inspire us to greatness during the next twelve months.
I’ve come to see this all as distinctly human but also quite strange. 1/ We can’t do anything about what happened in the past, and many of our “reflections” end up being revisionist history. 2/ The predictions we make – at least the most interesting of them – are almost invariably wrong, but we make them anyway as a way to either “exert control” on our world or to show others how smart we…
Earlier this week, I participated in a panel discussion organized by Holland & Hart, a Denver-based law firm that has a strong practice area working with entrepreneurial growth-stage businesses. The topic of the panel was “After the Honeymoon”, focusing on investor/entrepreneur relationship dynamics in the critical period following the closing of an investment or acquisition transaction. Also on the panel with me were Matt Hicks of Excellere Partners and Flint Seaton, CFO of Accellos, an Accel-KKR backed business.
Well, it’s that time of year; the end of the year that is. Time for holiday cheer, budgets and for a rare few, strategic planning. I say for a few because I’m frequently surprised at how little I hear from the VC community and VC-backed CEOs about strategic planning. When I do hear about planning, it is usually an entrepreneur or VC trying to explain to me why it is not necessary. The rationalizations go something like this:
Planning is for big companies.
Our space moves too fast to plan; if we define a strategy we’ll just have to change it in a couple of months.
We’re small, nimble and well-coordinated so we don’t need to plan.