EP5: What Makes an Effective Board Member

Having served on the Board of some of the most prominent Fortune 100 companies, Mr. Parsons sheds some light on what makes a good Board member.

When Mr. Parsons would recruit for boards, he looked for someone “available to reason.” Meaning someone who listens and evaluates a proposition and has a thoughtful course of action in response to the issue at hand.

 

 

Mr. Parsons also points out:

  1. Board members have to be collaborative as a concerted effort outperforms individual efforts when advising a company.
  2. The board is a CEOs only natural predator if you don’t have some kind of accommodation with them

Stay tuned for EP6.

 

 

EP5: What Makes an Effective Board Member

EP4: Four Things

There are four main pitfalls entrepreneurs need to be wary of when launching a new venture. Here Brad highlights the four major pitfalls:

  1. Bad critical hire in the beginning
  2. Bad early investor
  3. Bad anchor client
  4. Running out of capital

 

 

For Mr. Parsons, effective cash flow management is priority number one and hiring a bad early employee can stunt growth or completely jeopardize the company. He also reminds us of the importance of understanding the market you play in.

EP5 set to release next week.

EP4: Four Things

EP3: How Scout is Different

In today’s post, Richard Parsons outlines the key difference in Scout Venture’s approach to investing that sets Scout aside from its competitors: the ability to proactively coach companies through the ups and downs of the startup journey.

As Dick mentions, early-stage venture investors have to bring something extra to the table and Scout does just that with the ability to not only focus on entrepreneurs with drive / “moxie,” but also provide management guidance.

Stay tuned for EP4 next week.

EP3: How Scout is Different

EP2: Building Over Time

In today’s post, we catch a glimpse of Richard Parson’s approach to building a company over time and taking the long-term perspective to build correctly.

Overview / Summary:

It takes time. Through an anecdote on the creation and utility of flat log rollers popularized in London, Dick emphasizes the importance of taking a long-term approach to building.

Stay tuned for next week’s post!

EP2: Building Over Time

EP1: Two Rules of Leadership

As a new series, every week, we will be releasing a video in which Brad Harrison, Scout Ventures – Managing Partner, interviews a long time mentor and industry expert, Richard Parsons.

Dick Parsons is a senior advisor of Providence Equity and former chairman of Citigroup. He is also the former chairman and CEO of Time Warner. Before joining Time Warner in 1995, Mr. Parsons was chairman and CEO of Dime Bancorp. Mr. Parsons has held various positions in state and federal government, serving as counsel to Nelson Rockefeller and as a senior White House aide under President Gerald Ford. Richard is currently a director of Estée Lauder Companies and Lazard, and is chairman of the Apollo Theatre Foundation. Most recently, Mr. Parsons served as the interim CEO of the Los Angeles Clippers basketball team.

Here is the first video in which Dick Parsons talks about Leadership.

Here’s a recap if you didn’t watch the video:

  1. When put in a position of command, take charge.
  2. Do what is right.

Simple and to the point.

Stay tuned for next week’s video.

EP1: Two Rules of Leadership

Welcoming a New Partner

I’ve been heads down since the New Year with no blogging while I focused on taking Scout Ventures to the next level.

And I’m proud to announce that Wes Blackwell was joined us as a Partner.

Wes is a graduate of the Naval Academy and UVA Darden.  He is will be based in DC and focus on hard to access founders coming out of the government, intel communities (NSA, CIA) and research labs (DARPA, Sandia, Oakridge, etc) working on transformational technologies in AI, Cybersecurity, and Communications.

The team and I couldn’t be more excited to have Wes onboard.

Go Army, Beat Navy!

Welcoming a New Partner