160. Better Diversity, Better Outcomes (Elizabeth Galbut)

The Full Ratchet Elizabeth Galbut

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Elizabeth Galbut of SoGal Ventures joins Nick to discuss Better Diversity, Better Outcomes. In this episode, we cover:

  • Her involvement in creating the first VC investment group at Johns Hopkins
  • What the focus is at SoGal and why that creates their edge
  • How she and her partner divide responsibilities
  • How the establishment has reacted to her and her firm
  • We talk about her experience as a design professor and how that impacts her approach
  • She gives an example of a design-centric investment
  • She discusses her thinking when evaluating an early stage business
  • We review their dealflow and sourcing strategy
  • and we wrap up w/ Elizabeth’s advice for a younger version of herself if she had the opportunity to give it


Guest Links:

Quick Takeaways:

  1. She likes to invest in arbitrage markets– Stanford talent at Baltimore prices.
  2. This generation of startups can access global markets much earlier than their counterparts of the past.
  3. Many established VCs would tell her that they don’t hire women and wouldn’t respect their opinions if they did.
  4. SoGal invests in how the next generation lives, works and stays healthy.
  5. Authentic community and connection will drive business value creation.
  6. The best founding teams have a shared north star.
  7. By investing in more diverse teams they will drive better returns.
  8. Reasons why VC doesn’t have better gender balance: ย Biases (unconscious and conscious), Resistance to Change, Network Effects.
  9. In the $71.4 Trillion Alternative Asset industry, 1.5% of AUM is managed by firms w/ more than 25% women on the management team.
  10. Empathy will become the valuable currency when computers surpass the knowledge worker
  11. Design-thinking is evident w/ founders in how well they’ve identified the problem and are building a solution to address it.
  12. Key things she looks for in founders include level of obsession, what has surprised them, what are the biggest challenges.
  13. In order to encourage more dealflow, their founders become venture partners and receive a portion of carry in exchange for referring deals.