I recently had occasion to revive this Gary Vaynerchuk classic quote:
Make Money: Don’t Raise Money
As business mantras go, this one is pretty powerful.
In this case Gary Vee has two main points in mind: the importance of sales capabilities, and the sustainability of the VC culture (which he questions).
There is a more personal point to be made here, though. Personal to your business, that is. The more you weigh on the “making money” side, the more sustainable and proven your own business is.
Make your craft, make your money
What you make, you own.
Raising money has its purpose, and it is important to recognize when that is the best option.
Because it is not the default option. Your priority should always be on making your own money, through your business. The more you are making your own money, the more you are proving your business model, and the more you are in control of your own success.
The more you are making your own money, the more you are proving your business model, and the more you are in control of your own success.
Make your growth
Both options are about growth: as a simple rule, you should never be raising external money to get your business out of a financial black hole. (Though this happens, of course, the simple fact of raising funds will not fix your problems).
And a bit of self-awareness will go a long way. What is your business capable of achieving? If you are not hitting your expected targets, then what can you change to do so?
Remember: your business is never about just one thing. Work on all the parts that you can control, and manage your own business success.