You gotta ask for the money

I'm going to stick to the investment theme for this week's blog post. We had a great panel last week with some stellar Techstars alumni. A big thank you to Robi from Apptentive, Russell from Everymove, and Nick from LikeBright. The panel was only supposed to last an hour. It went on for nearly two hours. 

Questions from current Techstars Founders focussed mainly on fundraising. It seems to be the one thing that they can't "do more faster" of which is increasingly hard and frustrating as time goes on. Robi, Russel, and Nick offered great advice to the Founders on this front. 

"How many of you have made an ask?" Robi asked the founders. 

A few of the current TechStars founders raised their hands and some did not. 

"How do you expect to get investors if you can't ask for money?" Robi asked the Founders! The point seemed to sink in from here. You can have the best founders and the best idea in the world, but if you can't muster up the courage to ask an investor for money, you and your company may be dead in the water. I'm going to skip the dating metaphor here because asking for investment is harder than asking someone out on a date. There is more at risk for both parties beyond a bad evening, lacking chemistry. 

To sum it up, asking for investment is hard and a bit awkward. You will hear no more often than yes. You will have your ego deflated, you idea torn apart, and likely will feel discouraged at one point or another. But you will not have the chance to feel any of that or build an amazing company if you don't make that first ask. So, go out there and make the ask.