A few months ago, I wrote about the ridiculous increase in velocity that we are seeing in the venture capital market in my post, Velocity and Venture Capital: 11. Now that summer is upon us, I want to reflect on the value of slowing down.

Summer has always been a time to take a breath and slow down. Now that the United States is entering into a post-pandemic phase, we have yet another reason to take things a bit slower and stop obsessing over efficiency and speed. One of my more popular tweets in the last year was:

The Market Size in that Mirror Is Much, Much Larger Than We Thought

When I was at Open Market in the 1990s, our CEO gave out the recently published book, Crossing the Chasm, to the executive team and told us to read it to gain insight into why we had hit a speed bump in our scaling. We had gone from 0 to $60m in revenue in four years, went public at a billion-dollar market cap, and then stalled. We found ourselves stuck in what author Geoffrey Moore called “The Chasm” where there is a difficult transition from visionary, early adopter customers who are willing to put up with an incomplete product and…

“How’s work going?”

As we emerge from the pandemic, it’s the common casual question that many of us receive when we reconnect with our friends. I find I am struggling to answer it concisely. In my over twenty-five years in the startup and venture capital (VC) industry, I have never seen anything like this moment that we are in. To answer this friendly inquiry in as clear and open a manner as possible, the only word that comes to mind is velocity.

As everyone who took high school physics knows, velocity is the rate of change of an object’s position…

A year ago, in the wake of the pandemic, finding a growth-stage startup for graduating students hungry to dive into the startup community was about as hard as could be imagined. This year, thanks to arguably the greatest tech and innovation boom in history, graduating students have an abundance of opportunities to productively start their careers.

Each spring, I provide a comprehensive list of exciting, growing, hiring startups that are worthy of consideration as places to start or continue a career in StartUpLand. I try to be as objective as possible in creating the list, leveraging insider knowledge and input…

The market has had a strong run, far outpacing GDP growth

To Answer This Question, Start With the Public Markets

Like many VCs, we are preparing our 2020 year-end results and letter to our investors (limited partners, or LPs). As has been the case for many VCs, our results have been good; in the wake of the pandemic and all the carnage that is happening in other parts of the economy, embarrassingly good. If history is a guide, the question I expect to hear most from my investors (limited partners or LPs) is: these results look great today, but are startups over-valued? Can this bull market for tech, in general, and tech startups, in particular, continue? …

2020 Saw An Unprecedented Surge in Wealth…Incongruously

Inspired by Bill Gates, who calls the practice his annual “Think Week”, I try to read a few intellectually stimulating books during the final two weeks of each calendar year. This year, my book choices ranged from racial inequality (Caste: The Origins of Our Discontent), history (China and Japan: Facing History by my Uncle Ezra Vogel, a scholar and mensch who suddenly passed away a few weeks ago at 90), autobiography (Obama: A Promised Land), and fiction (Philip Roth’s Nobel Prize-winning American Pastoral). …

The Classic Pink cover that I remember from when I was a teenager

Over the last few weeks, I was inspired to re-read Zen and The Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, a book I read in my late teens and remember enjoying.

At the time, I embraced its emphasis on Quality (hard to define, easy to discern) as an organizing mantra for living a purposeful life. The book was published in the 1970s at a time when many young people were waking up from the hangover of the 1960s and feeling aimless and unfocused. What was the meaning of life and how should a good life be lived? Author Robert Pirsig does a brilliant…

Finding a good place to launch your career has never been more challenging

It’s been a disruptive few months for many parts of the population, to say the least, including new graduates from our colleges and universities entering the job market. Students hungry to jump into the startup community (aka StartUpLand) are more challenged than ever to sort out which company is the right one to successfully launch their career.

Each spring, I provide a comprehensive list of exciting, growing, hiring startups at the growth stage that represent strong candidates to start or continue a career in StartUpLand. This year was the hardest one ever due to the pandemic and tremendous economic uncertainty…

Like many of our colleagues, we endeavor to provide good counsel to our portfolio companies. To that end, we shared this email with our 100+ startup founders and CEOs earlier this week. Due to their feedback, we are publishing it publicly here.

Flybridge CEOs/Founders,

We are living in an unprecedented moment in history and, like many of you, our thoughts are swirling around how we can both protect what we hold dear on a personal level (our families, the health of our loved ones, our assets) and be helpful and useful in some way to you, our valued community. Having…

I have written about the cultural dysfunction in the venture capital industry before and, six years later, there have been some encouraging steps in the right direction. That said, we as an industry have a long way to go still. A few years ago, we decided to focus more intentionally on diversity and inclusion in our investment practice. Like many, we are appalled by the lack of capital and support for underrepresented founders and are eager to contribute as best we can to address this critical issue.

Over the last few years, we have co-founded and supported three major initiatives…

Jeff Bussgang

Former entrepreneur turned VC @Flybridge, teach @HBS, author of Entering StartUpLand and Mastering the VC Game

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