GenuineVC David Beisel's Perspective on Digital Change

June 27, 2012

One of the things that surprised me most about venture capital when I got into the business is how much VCs seem to like to meet for breakfast. VCs usually typically reserve dinners for portfolio companies’ CEOs and board members. And “doing lunch” doesn’t happen that often because VCs don’t like going out of the office mid-day much. But breakfast for venture capitalists is an open free-for-all for all sorts of networking meetings and conversations.

Along the way, I’ve noticed that there’s a pattern to what VCs order which shows what kind of VC he is. Like my previous post about what the founder’s email address says about your startup, I thought I’d turn the tables a bit with a light-hearted look at what a VC orders at breakfast says about him or her:

  • Full breakfast of eggs, bacon, hash browns, & toast – newly minted post-MBA Associate just getting into the business… (you can’t eat that big of a breakfast three or more days a week for long).
  • Bowl of oatmeal – standard VC breakfast for those who schedules a morning networking meal almost every day of the week; this guy just follows the herd and isn’t going to pay attention as he eats.
  • Bowl of oatmeal but he barely touches it – he eats a networking breakfast every day of the week, but the oatmeal is really just a prop as he’s really engaged with what the other person has to say.
  • Eggs Benedict – VC partner who just had a monster exit and is in the mood to celebrate.
  • Veggie omelet with egg beaters one yolk no onions double tomatoes – overly-detailed nit-picking VC who will pick apart an entrepreneur’s pitch and board deck without seeing the big picture; tough guy to deal with on the board.
  • “Breakfast” brought into the office – overscheduled VC who doesn’t even have time to meet in a diner; on dozen+ boards and doesn’t have time for his portfolio companies.
  • Yogurt fruit parfait – Venture guy who doesn’t care what others think about him; leads new off-the-beaten-path investments with conviction and without following the herd.
  • Nothing – uber-networker who is already on his second breakfast meeting of the day; is a huge help to his portfolio companies with recruiting and BD intros for his portfolio companies.
  • Just coffee – jittery VC who is on the fundraising trail struggling to close their next fund.
  • Triple order of bacon and nothing else – signals “I am the king of my firm and I don’t give a sh*t.”

What else am I missing?

  • http://www.davidblerner.com davidblerner

    I don’t think I could stomach too many of these…. But there’s another one: the guy who reaches out to you and then tells you to meet him midtown at some fancy joint because it’s downstairs from his hotel even if you live far away from there…. Not a good start!
    Don’t get me started on dinners with some of these self-impressed guys- the elaborate ordering of wine, the fussing over ordering the food, the nitpicking with the waiters….

  • http://thegongshow.tumblr.com andrewparker

    My buddy Eric wrote a similar post while at USV.  Small world! http://www.ericgfriedman.com/2009/12/22/the-business-breakfast/

    • http://genuinevc.com/ David Beisel

      Ha!  It’s funny because it’s true, I guess.  Thanks for the pointer, Andrew.

  • http://www.yoursuspect.com Ben Saren

    Lox. What does lox say? Something fishy is going on with this guy?

  • http://www.gordonbowman.com/ Gordon Bowman

    Protein smoothie – VC who cares about being in shape and just got finished with his morning workout. Too big of a networker to bother with chewing. 

  • http://www.thisisgoingtobebig.com ceonyc

    VCs go for lunch in NYC all the time… because we can walk to great places every day of the week and never go to the same place twice.

    Yet, we still wind up at Coffee Shop, where the food is meh and the service is crap.

    • http://genuinevc.com/ David Beisel

      True, Charlie.  In NYC I find myself at VC lunches all of the time… and at the Coffee Shop.

  • http://www.aaronklein.com/ Aaron Klein

    Cheerios. He only funds social gaming apps, so don’t waste your time. :)

  • Anonymous

    Pancakes. She had breakfast with the kids.

  • http://www.freddestin.com Fred Destin

    Paleo Diet VC, just turned 40, is into triathlon and wants to be in the best shape of his life, on a slow descent towards Waltham-esque golf club wielding ex powerhouse

  • http://twitter.com/ivanfarneti Ivan Farneti

    I really like eggs benedict … and now I feel a bit concious about it…. 

  • http://www.darrenherman.com dherman76

    So you never wrote what you like to order…

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