Must Read Advice from Katie Kiewel

Welcome back! Today we have the pleasure of learning more from Katie Kiewel, Principal at 1776 Ventures. Whether you have the next great idea, or have the money to support one, her insights are pointed at what you can do to support women entrepreneurs.

If you’re in the DC community.

“Support the organizations and the women paving the way. You can do this in a variety of ways such as making conscious purchasing decisions, making introductions, attending events, and generally promoting and creating visibility for startups, especially early on”

If you’re a founder.

“I wish more founders were thinking and asking about funding sources outside venture capital. There is a hype around being a venture-backed company and pursuing venture funding. If founders can grow a company through alternative funding that allows them to keep more equity and control over their company, they should! Since VC investing has expanded outside of software SaaS models, there are many interesting companies being built that will be solid $50M to $100M businesses, which doesn’t fit all VC investment strategies. Michael Dempsey has a great Medium post that I would recommend reading, Why your startup idea isn’t big enough for some VCs.

If you’re an investor.

“Rather than companies holding each other accountable, I see a future where investors and stakeholders keep companies accountable. Already we are seeing tech giants like Facebook report diversity statistics annually — it will be interesting to see if this trickles down to early and growth stage companies.”

If you’re corporate.

“I would like to see more corporations get involved. At 1776, we partner with corporations like Medstar, Marriott, and Accenture to launch corporate challenges. These challenges unlock tremendous value for startups to work directly with the corporations over a period of time and for larger organizations to find new ways to work with startups. Programs like this are important to bring value to both and create a test environment to further pilots and relationships”

If you’re a mentor/mentee.

“For me personally, the best mentor/mentee relationships have grown organically over time. Some elements to a good dynamic include trust, vulnerability, and frequent conversations. A few mistakes I think are made in mentorship relationships can be expecting too much from one specific mentor and expecting them to have all the answers.”

If you’re getting advice.

“The challenge is sifting through all the advice you receive when you go to make a decision. The question isn’t “What’s the best or worst advice,” it’s figuring out what is the best advice for you and how you use that information to take action on a problem or decision in front of you”.

I know that you are at least one of those things! Thanks to Katie for providing The Mentor Method with wonderful advice.

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