The biggest plus, say these Web entrepreneurs -- each of whom hopes as much as the next company founder to strike it rich -- is knowing what they'll do differently if they return to venture capital. ``I used to sit and nod and think I could fake my way through another meeting with someone,'' said the founder of the online advertising startup. ``As an entrepreneur, I now see you can instantly recognize who doesn't get it, or care.''
Conrad, who has raised $4 million for Sphere and whose investors include Kevin Compton and Doug MacKenzie of Kleiner Perkins, said he'll be more sensitive.
``I think they're will be a place and time when I'll be a VC again, and I'll remember the clueless things I did before,'' including asking a struggling entrepreneur to meet him at his expensive hotel during a cross-country trip, rather than drive to the startup.
``You don't have to be in the trenches with them, but a lot of entrepreneurs resent VCs because they think they're disconnected from reality. Now, I see why.''
Arun Natarajan is the Founder of Venture Intelligence, the leading provider of information and networking services to the private equity and venture capital ecosystem in India. View free samples of Venture Intelligence newsletters and reports.