While in Boulder for TechStars, one of my favorite mentors was Mark Solon. Previously a VC Partner, Mark is now full-time at TechStars and a huge asset to the TechStars community.
One of my favorite quotes this summer came from Mark and while it was focused on making a board of directors effective, it’s applicable elsewhere:
Board meetings should be about the windshield, not the rear-view mirror.
What this meant to me was the importance of not dwelling on the past. Entrepreneurs, investors and advisors often times get too caught up in what went wrong and why. Sure it’s important to learn from your experiences, but it’s more vital to quickly shift into positive, forward-looking mode.
I’ve heard many horror stories about board meetings that felt like a historical look back with slaps on the wrist for things done wrong by the business. When advising, directing or managing a start-up, I’d recommend spending more positive mental energy on what the business can do next, rather than it’s historical challenges.
This Feld video adds more flavor to the topic: