November 1, 2011
Having been CEO might be good for a VC, but is not a requirement
Steve Blank makes the case that partners in venture capital firms should have been CEOs for at least a year before becoming partners. In general it seems like good advice for a partnership, but I'm not convinced. Planning to be CEO for only a year, with close backup from the partnership, seems like a bit of a built to flip approach. Given how the history of a startup plays out, a year is not a long time (except if you're YouTube). And it's worth noting that neither John Doerr nor Mike Moritz were CEOs before becoming two of the arguably most successful venture capitalists of the last 25 years.