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Get the Yes, and Get Out

I had a great conversation last week with a managing director of a local venture capital firm, and he brought up a few points that struck me. I’ll share them over the next few posts. The first point he shared was a story about “getting yes, and getting out”.

In one particular meeting where with a local large company, the venture firm had the main objective of getting a key executive to agree to meet one of the firm’s portfolio companies.

The meeting was scheduled for an hour, except about 20 minutes in, the large company’s exec agreed to meet with the portfolio company. Almost immediately, the lead investor of the VC firm got up to leave. The partners reached their objective. Anything after the objective could have actually hurt the meeting or turned that definitive YES to a maybe or worse.

In most cases, this makes perfect sense. I find that I can be wordy and after reaching some initial objective enthusiasm can turn into lethargy or dilute the achievement. For the VCs, the goal was to spark a conversation, and let the portfolio company take it from there. Of course, the VCs have enough experience to gauge whether or not they have to stay longer or not.

Get the yes, and move on. Don’t complicate matters.

What would be a situation where getting the yes simply isn’t enough? How could being “too objective” be a negative?

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