Ten Lessons from Brent Beshore

Zach Ullman
Jul 27, 2017 · 16 min read

1. His favorite advice

We judge ourselves by our intentions and by others by their actions. — Stephen Covey

2. A few favorite mental models

Anytime you see a system you want to ask what incentives are at play. — Brent Beshore

The truth is that making money almost always requires having money, but some business models are more capital efficient than others. I’ve watched a bootstrapped company go from zero to almost 2000 employees and hundreds of millions of dollars of revenue. That was fun. I’ve also witnessed successful companies that could only exist with huge, on-going fundraising. Neither model is correct. It’s all about opportunity costs, or what you’re giving up, and capital intensity, or how much cash the company requires to scale. — Brent Beshore

3. The adventur.es opportunity set

4. Think about the customer.

Invest in companies whose products or services are so relied upon that if they didn’t exist it would cause their customers a lot of pain. — Ian Cassell

And have very few substitutes — Brent Beshore

Often the lesson from consumer surplus is value creation benefits customers the most. — Brent Beshore

5. A simple graph is powerful.

He cites this image often.

6. Focus on what’s boring.

7. Study the past more. Forecast the future less.

When I think I’ve discovered something new I remember Goethe, ‘Ignorant men raise questions that wise men answered thousands of years ago’ — Brent Beshore

While history doesn’t necessarily repeat itself, it sets a much firmer foundation for understanding future potential. — Brent Beshore

8. What’s risk?

You never want to lose all your chips and start again from go. — Brent Beshore

9. The bladder problem of cash

10. Checklists

The first filter is, do we see something sustainable beyond management? How sustainable is it? — Brent Beshore

We don’t compete well in auctions. — Brent Beshore

In conclusion

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Zach Ullman

Written by

Investing @LeadEdgeCapital. I’m on Twitter @ullmanz

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