Humility, in all situations.
I spent 8 years working for Sir Richard Branson, and during this time frame I developed a clear understanding of how a single brand and visionary was able to scale 8 companies in disparate industries and geographies to a billion dollars or more of enterprise value.
Specifically, Virgin’s fearless approach at entering markets is driven by its singular focus on creating a sustainable value proposition to the consumer, always enhanced by elegant technology, creative marketing strategies and the power of brand.
I learned that these frameworks apply to the world outside of Virgin and the lessons I learned working on Virgin Galactic, Virgin Orbit and Virgin Hotels served me well when I led our investments in Ring, Slack and Capsule. I have brought these same lessons with me to M13, and it’s exciting to find entrepreneurs who are attacking markets with the same perspective.
I love meeting founders and understanding their motivations. The odds are stacked against each and every one of them—yet they move forward with such enthusiasm and determination. I’m honored to be able to play a small part in their journey to build something impactful.
I’ve been lucky to experience some really high highs in my career, including witnessing the VSS Unity (the Virgin Galactic Spaceship) reach space for the first time—after 14 years of investment—and sitting on the board of Ring from Series B in July 2015 through its exit to Amazon in Q1 2018.
It’s easy to have a level of arrogance in VC—and you see it in abundance—but that’s not how you win in the long term. Reputation is all you have.
By acting with humility we can establish trust and authentic relationships with entrepreneurs and our limited partners. And at the end of the day, those are the only parties that matter.