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FT Letter: In a capitalist world, truth trumps gratitude

25 January 2019

From Kjartan Rist, Concentric

When meeting venture capitalists, whether or not you send a thank-you note is not the primary issue (“Silicon Valley has a problem saying thank you”, January 20). What is important, however, is authenticity. VC investing is all about relationships, built through honesty, communication and chemistry between those involved. VCs and founders need to have confidence that they can work together for many years, with the inevitable ups and downs along the way. For the relationship to work, egos and game-playing need to go out of the window.

Call me old fashioned, but if both parties have benefited from a good meeting, then a thank-you note would be entirely natural and it’s only good manners to thank someone for taking time out of their day. On the other hand, if it wasn’t a great meeting and there was no chemistry, a thank-you note would be disingenuous and unlikely to help matters. It’s all about acting like humans towards humans. Putting up a front to avoid looking “weak” or “desperate” is only going to harm your chances — not help them.

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