2014 Goals

"Better learn balance. Balance is key. Balance good, karate good. Everything good. Balance bad, better pack up, go home. Understand?" - Mr. Miyagi (1984)

Happy New Year All! I'd written a Note for myself with my 2014 Goals on my phone a few days ago and saw @schlaf do the same but post to his blog and was inspired by his decision to put it out there, the accountability he was looking for not only to himself but to others, and for his effort at transparency and openness. Loved it so I'm taking a page from his book and doing the same. Any suggestions/discussion are welcome in the comments below.


  • Supporting my companies: I'm going to make 2014 about showing my companies what I mean when I say I will work for them (biz dev, legal advice, strategy, financing strategy). I've tried to be helpful to a few of the companies that asked for help but I want to make sure they all know that I'm ready, willing and able to assist at a very granular operational level on these issues as a former lawyer, entrepreneur, biz dev and strategy guy.
  • Grow Red Sea Ventures Team by 100%: time for me to hire an associate. Suggested candidates are welcome!
  • Reduce meeting volume: I've been doing an average of 7 meetings per day for the last 7 months (roughly 1,000 meetings in half a year). Its been amazing to meet so many great people since going full time on Red Sea Ventures but it has unfortunately come at the cost of so many other things that I want to spend time doing with the firm including more support for our companies.
  • Mentors/Advisors: I've never had a real mentor but I've been very lucky to have incredibly successful, wise, and brilliant friends advise me along the way. At the end of the day though even though they are much smarter than me, they are my peers and their years limit their ability to advise the same way a mentor could. So this year, I'm hoping to find and develop a great working relationship with a mentor that I admire.
  • Red Sea Ventures Community: I'm going to host a event for the people that are in the Red Sea Ventures family. Companies, friends, advisors, service partners, etc... .
  • Blogging: I'm going to write one blog post per month and try to be as transparent as possible about what is going on with me and Red Sea Ventures as I try to build this early stage fund.
  • Producing: As a VC there isn't all that much I get to produce so I'm going to make it a point to produce one piece of research this year focused and detailed with the intention of delivering something of value to the tech community in NYC.


  • Play Guitar Again: I picked up guitar about 8 years ago and recently abandoned it. I forgot how much I enjoyed playing/practicing.
  • Reading: I love tech and venture but its all I read these days (blogs and books). So I'm going to make it a goal to read 2 biographies and 4 fiction novels this year.
  • Monthly Activity: I want to do one fun activity per month. Go to a concert, show, other.
  • Finance Class: I want to take a finance class at NYU Continuing Ed and refresh on some concepts
  • Photography Class: I want to take a photography course at ICP. They have intense 2 day weekend classes which I'd love to do to refresh on some photography techniques and get some more inspiration.


  • Seeds of Peace Summit: Many of you know that I've been volunteering for Seeds of Peace for over 9 years now and have been on the Board of Trustees for the last 2 years. This year, I'm making it my mission to make sure that we launch our first Summit for the 5,000 graduates of the program and the thousands of emerging change makers in regions of conflict to come together, learn from each other and learn from established world leaders who have already made change happen in their lives and industries.
  • Do More Talks: I'm going to do more to share the experience I had in building up the Young Leadership Committee of Seeds of Peace. I was honored by Save A Child's Heart when they asked me to present to their volunteer summit on how to build and manage volunteer Young Leadership Groups and really got a kick out of that experience so I hope to do more of it (thanks MJ!).

PS. Yes thats me doing the kick of the crane. Always loved that movie.

Comment Stream

2 years ago

Almost half way through the year @scottdbirnbaum how are you doing against these?

2 years ago