I spent two year running On Deck’s angel investing program. ODA provided education to top operator-angels from companies like Stripe, Carta and Facebook/Meta. Many of our fellows went on to launch funds and start alumni syndicates.
What This Is:
Over the years I have come across a ton of great educational resources for angel investors. I thought it would be fun to package these up in the form a short course. Once you sign up, each week I’ll send you a resource along with some light commentary describing the key takeaways and insights from what I shared.
★★★★★ 5 stars from 175 participants
The async course above is really just a series of resources and light commentary to help build your angel investing instincts. If you’re looking to go deeper, I highly recommend joining an angel live cohort program, or network.
Ramping up as an angel is lonely: the best ‘cheat code’ is simply to surround yourself with supportive and motivated peers to hold you accountable and expand your access. I also highly suggest thinking through what I call the “3 P’s” of angel investing:
- Portfolio Construction
These three categories (and sub topics) are helpful to identify areas of strength (where to really lean in) and weaknesses (gaps in knowledge, or experience) in your approach:
Process - Process is the more obvious stuff, your angel building blocks. How do you find and source opportunities? What’s your approach to evaluating companies? How do you build conviction and make investment decisions? What experiences, models and frameworks do you draw from?
Portfolio Construction - Portfolio construction is more macro. How do set yourself up for the best chance at on-going outperformance? Do you invest via AngelList, or go direct? How do you think about building a basket of investments -- and what is the optimal diversification? How do you know if you’re any good? Lastly, when you have the opportunity, should you double-down on winners, or optimize for net new investments?
Platform - Platform is less understood, but is crucial for angels who are looking to build a track record, or professionalize. Your platform is often what will help you win allocation into the top opportunities. First, elite angels are both well known (have an audience) and known well (have some specific value-add). What are the best tactics for building a brand? How do you build a brand if platforms like Twitter and Tik Tok don’t come naturally? What does it mean to truly be a value-add investor and support founders? Do angels really engage regularly with founders post-investment? And how do I keep everything organized? Do I track investments and opportunities in Airtable? Do I use Sydecar, or AngelList for my SPVs?
→ Once you are actively making investments and being intentional with the 3 P’s, you can turn your focus to building a track record and applying leverage.