Tuesday, September 7, 2010
Rude Entrepreneurs - Don't Be One!
I doubt the people I met with last week will read this, considering I never heard back from them, but I wish they would.
When people ask me to meet with them regarding their startup or some ideas they're working on, I'm generally more than happy to do so, for two important reasons. 1) I really like helping people and progressing ideas. And 2) when I was doing my own startup, it was a pain in the ass to get people to sit down with me. It was frustrating. So I'd like to do my part to help other entrepreneurs.
With that said, if someone does decide to meet with you, here is a simple lesson - extend some common courtesy. I don't mean to act like a parent here, but maybe you just weren't taught this growing up. My inclination, and yours should be too, is to at the very least send a thank you email. What's that take - a minute? I guess it was my mom who I can thank for my insistence on gratitude - but a thank you goes a helluva long way. Like if some dude cuts me off on the road, a hand wave can save me laying on the horn.
You should also operate like an entrepreneur. I was tipped off to something amiss when they selected a pricey lunch spot. They're doing a damn startup! Then one half of the duo was at least 10 minutes late - and she was the one who wasn't working. Don't be late! Again, not when you're taking time out of someone else's day. And third, when the bill came there was no movement to grab the bill. Even when I was doing my startup, I always paid for lunch or at least offered. It was the least I could do for an hour of this person's time. But it wasn't an hour this time. It was two. And they ordered dessert when I told them I wasn't having any. What the...?