The Imprecision of Pitching to Angel Investors

Every time I participate in a VT KnowledgeWorks event such as yesterday's Pitch Day - an opportunity for member companies to practice pitching to a panel of angel investors - I find my understanding of my own company and of business principles in general deepening.

Having shoveled a lot of snow this winter, however, I would like to say the deepening comes from a  lot of digging into data, business models, and my own aspirations.

I was among eight companies to pitch yesterday and even though each of us followed the general prescribed format for pitching, during the feedback session, from each of us the panel wanted something else and different.

To this version of a post I wrote for Handshake 2.0 this morning that includes lists of what I am currently finding precise and imprecise, to the imprecise list, I would like to add "pitching to angel investors."

I would also like to acknowledge the insight I have gained as a businesswoman and entrepreneur from Jeff Proco.  Two years ago, he inspired this post, Just Paint.

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Precision and imprecision have been on my mind recently:  the 10 m x 10 m GIS-enabled precision of Rural System’s land and natural resource management system, the imprecision of converting leads to sales, the precision of the anatomy of a 140-character Twitter tweet as described by VT KnowledgeWorks member company founder Z. Kelly Queijo, the imprecision of generating traffic to a web site.

When I doubt the possibility of pairing precision with human effort, all I have to do is look up from my computer and around at the walls of our home.  Jeff Proco painted them with brush and roller, without tape measures, without blue painter’s tape, without error.  Even the corners.

In the beauty that resulted from Proco's precision lies reassuring possibility.

Complex interior house painting vision implemented by Jeff Proco of Pro Painting 

Precision home interior painting by Jeff Proco of Pro Painting 
Jeff Proco heads Pro Painting Company based in Riner, Virginia.  He can be reached at 540-382-6434.

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VT KnowledgeWorks, a regional business acceleration center that helps companies bring ideas to market, will present the Second Annual Entrepreneurship Summit on April 7-8, 2010 at the Inn at Virginia Tech and Skelton Conference Center in Blacksburg, Virginia. This two-day comprehensive workshop is for prospective company founders, entrepreneurs launching or re-vamping a business, growing companies seeking expansion capital, and individuals interested in investing in early-stage companies.

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VT KnowledgeWorks sponsors include Attaain, Inc., BB&T, Handshake 2.0, Harris Office Furniture, Hodges, Jones & Mabry, P.C., Hutchison Law Group, Latimer, Mayberry & Matthews IP Law, LeClairRyan, Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) and The Becher Agency (TBA).

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