By Courtney Connley
Listen and follow "The New Rules of Business" wherever you get your podcasts: Apple | Spotify | Google Podcasts | Simplecast
Your fun fact of the day: Only one out of every 1.6 million companies are estimated to become unicorns today — the rare title that’s given to highly successful startups with billion-dollar valuations. For women entrepreneurs, reaching this milestone is even more challenging, with just 15% of the 1,000 unicorn companies worldwide being led by women.
On the latest episode of Chief’s podcast, “The New Rules of Business,” Co-Founders Carolyn Childers and Lindsay Kaplan talk to Laela Sturdy, General Partner at CapitalG, who specializes in growth-stage investing.
Before cutting a check, “I look for a couple of things. The first is I love backing mission-driven founders,” says Sturdy, who invested in Duolingo, Stripe, and, most recently, Chief. “All of the great founders that I've worked with are just evangelists about what they are building and believe so strongly that this product and company has to exist and that it's going to change the world in these incredibly powerful ways.”
Sturdy, who is part of the roughly 12% of women who are decision-makers in venture capital today, says that building relationships isn’t just key for entrepreneurs looking to raise funding but also for women who are looking to enter the highly homogenous VC field. She advises anyone who is looking to be on the opposite side of the capital table to start investing as early as possible. “Even if you have a very small amount of money of you own, you could invest as an angel or you can get to know people starting companies and figure out how you could help them in some way… and ask them in exchange to see their pitch deck and understand how they're pitching and beginning to talk with investors.”
To learn more about the key steps to growing a billion-dollar business and the pitfalls to avoid along the way, listen to the latest episode of “The New Rules of Business.” And be sure to leave a review and follow wherever you get your podcasts. New episodes drop every Tuesday.