Back a couple of posts ago, I apologized about using the term “lifestyle business" while being a VC. Mark Jeftovic, the founder of EasyDNS, headed for the keyboard:
“I had to respond to Rick Segal's dig at "lifestyle businesses" in EYODF Part 8 - How to Hold Down 10 Jobs Simultaneously. Even though he's no longer a VC, he seems to still hold the standard VC dogma which despises that dreaded L-word.
God forbid somebody builds a business and gets to a point where it requires very little work and just spins off cash. To VC's that's a travesty. They have a pejorative term for it, "the lifestyle business".
Uhh, I thought I said that, the pejorative term thing. What I said:
“First, I’m sorry. Very sorry. I’m very sorry for ever (E-V-E-R!) calling your business a “nice lifestyle business.” The only thing I can think of that would be a worse insult? Throw a shoe at you. Seriously. If an investor uses the term lifestyle business, YOU throw a shoe.”
The words Lifestyle Business don’t work when a VC says them in my opinion. When VCs say those words, they are saying you aren’t good enough, etc, for a VC investment and the collateral damage of using these words to say no is that ‘nice lifestyle business’ comes off as an insult. And it shouldn’t.
As I said to Mark on his blog, 99% of the VCs who use that term are not being kind. If it doesn’t move the needle or VC can’t get some pre-defined, banker like driven percentage, the code words for get lost have become: Lifestyle Business.
I checked on the definition of pejorative, Mark, and it appears that I’m right in saying sorry for using the term the way that VCs typically use it when I was a VC. At the time, I was trying to be nice and now, upon reflection, I’m sure it didn’t come off that way. Not sure how that tracks VC dogma.
As to a lifestyle business; let me be crystal clear. I have no problem with em and a personal goal of keyboards on the beach. I want to be successful enough that my lifestyle business is me, an internet connection, and a warm sandy beach. I’ve got a ways to go but, for absolutely sure, I want a lifestyle business, Mark.
Finally, if you have a business that is generating revenue enough to provide you with the cash you want/need to live the life you want, Congrats, Mazel Tov, Well Done, Rock On. You are successful and you should be extremely proud of what you have done. Saying that as a guy currently working from 6a until 3a the next morning is a compliment vs. a VC trying to find an excuse to say no.
The point of working hard, doing 10 jobs, etc, is to get to that lifestyle business.
Anybody want a slightly used copy of “How to buy Real Estate with no money down?”