What makes a VC “entrepreneur-friendly” or “founder-friendly”?

As Tim correctly points out VC’s orientation as “founder friendly” or “entrepreneur friendly” ultimately depends on experience and perspective. To be appropriately labeled as favorable to founders or entrepreneurs they must understand their perspective and hopefully have some real life experience to inform that perspective.

I came across a useful article recently that speaks directly to this question from the founder’s perspective. The article written by Ben Marcus, CEO of Air Map does an excellent job using his experience in fundraising for his company to answer your question:

Founders and investors get married when an investment is made. Would you want your spouse to leave you alone? Only when you’re about to get divorced. Bad relationship. Great investors know what sort of interactions their founders like, they know when to spend time together, they know when to give space, but they certainly don’t leave their companies alone.

In sum I would propose that a founder/entrepreneur friendly VC is engage not only as an investor but also a partner in your success. Firstly, your success obviously benefits the VC’s position, but it is also not simply a matter of writing the check and walking away with the expectation that you will make it happen. A founder/entrepreneur oriented VC would understand that the VC’s role is not simply financial support but also a way to provide a way to vett decisions and a resource for networking and decisionmaking. Of course, they will not do the heavy lifting, but should be viewed as valuable resource and an objective third party through which run ideas through.

When you’re ready to close your fundraising round, feel free to check out LawTrades. We’re a marketplace that connects startups to highly vetted corporate finance attorneys on-demand.

Good luck!