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Hi, I’m Brad Feld, a managing director at the Foundry Group who lives in Boulder, Colorado. I invest in software and Internet companies around the US, run marathons and read a lot.

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Know When You Are Clueless

Comments (2)

I get loads of questions throughout every day.  I try to be responsive to all of them – it’s just the way I am.  I have a saying which is “you can’t send me too much email” – for whatever reason I’ve figured out how to process it all quickly each day (zero inbox strategy.)

One of my capabilities is to know when I’m clueless.  Most VCs (and many entrepreneurs) have a hard time admitting they are clueless about something.  It’s a natural reaction of a smart, hard driving person who is constantly analyzing data and making decisions to have an opinion about everything, especially when asked politely by someone for advice.

I got an email from a friend with a set of specific questions in it this morning.  I read it, sat for a minute, and then read it again.  I thought for another few seconds and then sent the following note to him.

Ok – now you’ve entered into the “Brad is completely clueless zone.”  I don’t even have any opinion here – whatever I would say would be wrong.

Know when you are clueless.  It will save you – and your friends – a lot of time.

  • http://zerologic.com Michael Sitarzewski

    I would love to see more people practice this bit of wisdom in everyday life. It really is OK if you don’t know, and better to admit it.

  • Qian Wang

    So true. And for me an equally dangerous area is where I know a little bit about the subject, which is often no better than being completely clueless, yet it makes me think I might be entitled to an opinion. It’s definitely one of the hazards of being a problem solver.

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