52. At the same time, be straightforward and honest, but with a humble tone. Give feedback with anecdotal evidence and explain why you are *actually* passing on the company, rather than giving a generic pass response. Read Ben Horowitz’s post repeatedly until you finally have the guts to be real with founders.
39. Just like how a potential investor is going to do a background check on you, you should do the same with him/her and the firm. Talk to 1–2 of each: 1) current investments 2) dead portfolio companies and maybe even 3) founders they passed on. It’s surprising how many people don’t talk about this, but it’s quite important to know whether this VC is actually useful, will help you through thick and thin, and will follow through on promises.