What VCs Can Learn From Olive Garden

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Easily some of the smartest people I’ve been privileged to meet in my career are venture capitalists within the Sand Hill Road ecosystem.  Moreover, venture capital is absolutely critical to the U.S. economy.

That said, the VC industry needs to evolve when it comes to the governance of their portfolio companies — full stop. Some leading VCs have appointed seasoned HR executives to assist in this regard.  While that’s a good start, corporate governance is not just about human resources.  Far from it.

Business Insider published some further thoughts of mine on this subject this afternoon. Skeptics inside and outside of the VC world might say this industry seems to be doing just fine in the absence of any such changes.  That might be true, but I have never met an LP or fund manager who didn’t want to make more money.

I hope this is additive to an increasingly more constructive dialogue on the subject, inasmuch as a corporate governance “tune-up” in the VC continuum would likely benefit all Americans.

As always, I look forward to everyone’s thoughts.

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ADAM J. EPSTEIN

A globally recognized small-cap expert, Mr. Epstein has advised, governed, and invested in hundreds of small-cap companies. His capital markets and corporate governance acumen are products of a singular perspective – a former corporate attorney, operating executive, institutional investor, and, now, board advisor. As Bloomberg Businessweek commented regarding Mr. Epstein’s category-defining corporate governance book, “attention, directors of small-cap companies. Help is on the way.” 

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