By: Jesse Jones
Our world is in an interesting place right now, to say the least. The circumstances surrounding all of us, plus the inability to physically visit with people, is making communication even more important than it’s ever been. This is an add-on to a previous article entitled “How (and Why) to Keep Your Investors Updated”, so feel free to go back and read that article on the Fourscore Blog page if you need a refresher.
Below, I’ve listed the top 5 things to consider when providing investor updates. In reality, these principles can easily be applied to almost any relationship that is important to you.
- Ok, this one is not entirely fair because if you haven’t already been doing it, you would have to go back in time. BUT, communicating with investors in times like these is so much easier if you have been communicating all along. It will not get easier later, so if you’ve been good about providing regular updates, good for you! If you have not, yet, then make it a point now to start and stay in a regular rhythm.
- Be realistic about the good news. Not that you should stifle good news, actually you should celebrate it! Just do it in a reasonable and balanced manner. Be particularly sensitive right now if you are in a business that is booming, because there are a lot of folks on the other end of the spectrum. Deliver the good news, the wins, in a way that allows you to get the point across while still delivering (or even over-delivering) in the time between this update and the next one.
- Get ahead of the bad news. Under no circumstances do you want your investors to learn from anyone but you about the loss of a key person, the swing and miss on a deal or the meeting with their contact that didn’t go well. So, get ahead of it. Once you have all the facts be sure to deliver less than stellar news directly to the people who need to hear it. As long as you have handled yourself in a professional manner, this will help you build trust with the individual you are communicating with.
- Schedule a video call. Right now we can’t physically meet with people, but I am a firm believer that in-person contact is irreplaceable. So a video chat is the next-best thing. A video chat could take different forms, maybe a one-on-one meeting would be best, or maybe a larger forum with a Q&A would make more sense for your company and investors.
- Err on the side of over-communicating. You do not want to be the company in your investor’s portfolio that is silent (ever, really, but especially now). Investors want to see your company succeed and are interested in helping you get there. Don’t turn your valuable investors into dumb money by failing to communicate your needs.
Headquartered in the Research Triangle region of North Carolina, Fourscore Business Law serves entrepreneurs and businesses in the Triangle, the Southeast and the Bay Area. We also represent venture capital funds and other investors who invest in companies located in New York, Silicon Valley and everywhere between. The idea of delivering maximum impact in a simple and succinct manner is what we’re calling the Fourscore Principle. And that is what Fourscore Business Law is based on. Our clients operate in a broad range of industries including tech, IoT, consumer products, B2B services and more. Questions? Shoot us an email or give us a call at (919) 307-5356. Your first call is on us.