Blog—Will the entrepreneur be coachable?

I have been challenged more than once in working with young entrepreneurs, whenever I use the word ‘coachable’ and they always ask me to explain what that means. I used to tell them, every investor has a different feeling about the word coachable, and I believe it is based on their individual experience, with entrepreneurs.

When I ask other investors like myself, I often get the same response, but the one thing that does turn many investors off is the entrepreneur being arrogant. Confidence is very different from arrogance, and I think in a 24-minute presentation and question session, arrogance is easy to pick out when it’s there.

After I kept thinking about it, I made a list of things that I’ve been looking for in trying to determine in the initial relationship, to go on.

Here are my thoughts with questions:

  • Will they communicate well?
  • Will utilize their staff and Board properly?
  • Do they have the energy needed for the task at hand?
  • Will they hire people that are better than those in place, when needed?
  • Will they set up the proper controls and delegate as they grow?
  • We’ll they have a good reporting system and follow-up program?
  • Are they willing to take risks?
  • Will they set up attainable goals?
  • Will they have a mindset for the proper priorities

Of course, a lot of this refers to communications so the investor needs to get a feel for this. At the same time, are they good listeners and will they be open minder to coaches and mentors.