When you’re building a product it’s commonplace to optimize for faster development times. The same thinking applies to fundraising – it’s a process and you can affect how long it takes.
The early stages of the fundraising process typically include connecting with an investor, getting the materials to them for review, scheduling an introductory call or meeting and so on. If you want to collect your capital more rapidly, I recommend consolidating steps. One easy win is to send your executive summary in your first email to an investor; don’t make them ask for it. This simple step can save you as much as a week in each cycle.
Like any investor (or incubator), I’m busy. One of the ways I stay sane is by batch processing common activities. One of the activities I do in a group is review new investment opportunities; typically I do this once a week. Since reviewing business plans uses a different part of my brain than other operational activities by reviewing a bunch of plans at once I reduce the number of times I have to ramp up into investor mode. That implication of this is if your first email doesn’t have a plan and gets put in the queue for the next review I might not realize that I need to ask you for a plan for an entire week, slowing the process unnecessarily.
While every investor operates differently, one thing they have in common is that they’re focused on investing. As a result, you’re not going to bother them or be rude by sharing a plan up front. That’s what they want – enough information to make a decision about next steps.