Whose Pitching Who?

In regular interaction with managers of all shapes and sizes you learn a few things about context. Managers often want to put their story into their own context, but it is the context of the listener that matters most. Pitching well is a skill and one that takes significant time, effort and introspection. Before entering a pitch scenario, all managers (even those who’ve pitched thousands of times) will benefit from the following top 10 reminders regularly heralded from screeners:

 

  1. “We screen hundreds of managers in this space. We know what we are looking for.”
  2. “You’re not ‘unique’ in the ways you think you are.”
  3. “If this is your ‘edge’,  provide specific examples of that ‘edge’ in practice.  If you can’t, its not really an edge at all.
  4. “It’s 2019, everyone does ‘deep’ research and has embedded ‘risk management’.”
  5. “Tell me where you fit into my portfolio.  Understand what we invest in and what our priorities are today and clarify where you fit, who you compliment, when is the best time to allocate.”
  6. “Don’t downplay the competition; they are better than you think.”
  7. “Everyone talks about their ‘team’; what specifically does your team do better.”
  8. “Don’t read from the book; give me lively, interesting examples that aren’t always a ‘win’.”
  9. “Be humble; this is a tough business and we all know it.  Answer questions honestly.”
  10. “Be mindful of the time your are given.  Make sure we walk away with a clear and complete sense of what the firm offers.”