Thinking outside the box. What is my creative release?

Peter Zotto

October 7, 2009

This topic came up internally some time ago and I have found myself searching for an answer for what seems to be an easy question…alas it’s not so easy. What’s my creative release? How do I express myself outside of what historically has defined the working person; what you do for work? Every time I meet someone, be it at a party, the gym, walking the dog, etc. one of the first questions asked is “what do you do?” and my answer, which is typical for most is “I work in venture capital doing XYZ…” But does that get to the root of the question? And how can I incorporate a creative release in my day to day work to find the next best investment for OpenView? Or what about the companies we invest in, what is their creative release? How are they using themselves in a way that is less mechanical and more abstract to differentiate their product(s) and drive business?

I’d like to think I’m creative, heck I try and use the right side of my brain as much as possible. Understanding moving forward that one can be creative whether or not they can master a Mozart or paint the next Sistine Chapel. We already covered that I speak to lots of entrepreneurs on a weekly basis who are passionate about their products, and I believe this is their creative release.

At work, when thinking about which companies and products fit with OpenView the most, I take a pretty straightforward approach. However, it has become increasingly obvious to me one must look not only forward at projected revenue, upcoming product launches and competitive landscapes. But also at the creative release of the entrepreneurs; are they able to inject their creative side into their company, management teams and products? Because looking for growth capital or private equity is an inherently creative process and both venture capital folks and entrepreneurs alike most be able to think outside the box and use their right side of the brain as much as the left. Otherwise raising capital for entrepreneurs or investing growth capital for VC firms is no different from one another, in other words having a creative release incorporated in one’s process gives them an advantageous value proposition. 

Peter Zotto


Peter Zotto is the GM at <a href="">Price Intelligently</a>. Previously he was an analyst at OpenView where he helped to identify qualified investment opportunities.