I know many of our readers would like to one day start their own company or become venture capitalists, so I had to ask Mac for some advice. Here's what he had to say:
Inside: What advice would you give a founder?
MC: I always go back to the idea of distribution over design. Never forget that as a founder, you need to be in-tune with your customers and figure out your customer acquisition. Customer acquisition is what gets you paid, either with funding or revenue. Sometimes I think founders get too caught up in trying to make the greatest, most innovative product, and yes there's something to that. But you also need to make sure people want to use and will pay for that product.
My favorite example is the original iPod. It's the item that was broken and sent to GeekSquad more often than any other product in Best Buy's history. At the height of the iPod, Best Buy had a wall of other mp3 players, and more than half of them were better quality products than the iPod. The iPod is the only one that won because [Apple] figured out the marketing and the customer acquisition strategy, and everybody else couldn't.
Inside: What advice would you give an aspiring VC?
MC: This industry is built on networks. Spend the time building your network now, getting to meet and know other VCs. VC Twitter and VC Clubhouse is a thing. If you start to follow a bunch of VCs on Twitter and go into Clubhouse rooms, send them a DM and Tweet at them. There's a certain portion that will respond and take that meeting. That'll get the firewheel going.
Also start figuring out how you can help companies. Start meeting with startups and helping them. Start trying to create an impact for companies so when the time comes, and you go to an interview, you can tell stories about entrepreneurs that you've helped support along the way and how you were able to find and source amazing companies.