Great founders have to learn to communicate the hard things

It’s not just about running focused stand-ups and killing pitch comps. If you want to be a great founder you also need to learn how to maintain regular and open communication with suppliers and creditors – your landlord, your designer, your contractors or your accountant.

It’s invaluable for managing your cashflow position when cash is tight and making sure everybody is giving 110% to help you, not just 75% because they don’t love you anymore.

Just reply to follow-up emails, return calls, and if things get tight, give people a heads-up as soon as you can in advance.

They all have bills to pay and employees to employee and their own cashflow issues to manage.

You’ll find people and suppliers will go out of their way to help you when it really matters, if you do the right thing for them day-to-day.

(Inspired by an email from great friend and behind-the-scenes startup-enabler Tony Burrett who I work with at BlueChilli).

I’m Alan Jones, an EiR for startup accelerators, GP at M8 Ventures. Previously investor, founder, and early Yahoo PM. Opinions mine (but should also be yours).

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