Investors; dream, research, bet.

Dave Winer in Solving problems sometimes requires work:

I sent my ten steps to first post list to a VC friend. But clearly after the first step (which was go to he ditched the list, and made it up himself, and never got to first post. Now that would be fine if VCs weren’t the gatekeepers, but they are. And that limits the products they fund to things that are understandable by fumbling around for a minute or so.

This isn’t true for all investors but sadly it is true for some. Many investors, especially early stage investors, are seeing products very early on in their development. And while they need to see these products through the eyes of the people or companies that will ultimately buy them they also need to focus on what the product could be in the weeks, months, and years ahead.

I think that is what makes technically inclined investors so much different than your average investor. They can see the potential in a product the moment they see it. For others it takes a bit longer. Seasoned investors, whether they’re technically inclined or not, have seen a lot of early products and can dream about what that product might be in 1, 2, and 5 years. They combine that dream with their opinions of the team building the product and they make a bet on or against that dream becoming a reality.

As Winer put it, VCs can be gatekeepers and they have a responsibility to put in a little work to see the potential in a product. We’ve recently begun the work of raising a round of capital for Barley. So far the investors we’ve dealt with have done a ton of due diligence on the product, our market, and our team. Regardless if they choose to bet on us or not it has been very refreshing to see them put in the work.