According to Mr. Parsons, the most important thing when building a business is partnering with the right folks – those that are complementary to you and are your “kind of folks.” If they are not your kind of folks or you don’t feed off each other, then work becomes a drag.
He then highlights the importance of focusing on setting the right “culture tone” – i.e. remind your team of the culture you are building and don’t just take charge, do what is right.
Mr. Parsons reminds us that a concerted effort far outweighs individual ones and that it is important to surround yourself with a great team of those that think with reason.
That’s it for our newest series, “An Interview with Richard Parsons”!
Thanks for following along and enjoy the rest of the content to come!
In today’s video, Mr. Parsons reminds us of the importance of perspective when evaluating success.
To oversimplify things, for an investor, this means high performance and the great returns for your LPs. However, as an entrepreneur or on a personal level, this means introspection and building a company that focuses on the right values for the entire organization.
Stay tuned for EP8!
As an investor in Scout, Mr. Parsons highlights three main attributes of successful early-stage investors:
- Teamwork – motivate and inspire people
- Patience – to let it play out in real time
EP7 on its way!
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:
- Board members have to be collaborative as a concerted effort outperforms individual efforts when advising a company.
- The board is a CEOs only natural predator if you don’t have some kind of accommodation with them
Stay tuned for EP6.
There are four main pitfalls entrepreneurs need to be wary of when launching a new venture. Here Brad highlights the four major pitfalls:
- Bad critical hire in the beginning
- Bad early investor
- Bad anchor client
- 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.
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.
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!
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:
- When put in a position of command, take charge.
- Do what is right.
Simple and to the point.
Stay tuned for next week’s video.
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!
I wanted to start off by wishing you a happy and healthy New Year!
I have great hopes and aspirations for 2018 after a transformational and sometimes difficult 2017.
In order to achieve my goals, I am focused on following some basic guidelines to help me perform at my best.
They are as follows:
Keep a journal of food consumption, exercise, breathing, and meditation to create self-accountability
Focus on maintaining a daily practice of breathing, meditation, and yoga
Eat healthily – focus on eliminating sugar, gluten, and foods that cause inflammation (ie nightshades)
Continue to live an alcohol-free lifestyle
Eat vegan two days a week
Intermittent fasting two days a week
Make sleep a priority and focus on going to bed before 1030 pm
Take an Epsom salt bath nightly
Execute the Scout 2018 business plan