Harvard Associate Professor Laura Huang studied hundreds of angel investors and venture capitalists, and their propensity to make gut decisions.  She discovered three very important things as she followed the outcomes of their decisions over several years.  Here’s the pattern she saw among the successful. 

  • Those whose decisions worked out well recognized that their gut feeling drew on all available objective and subjective information.  
  • Secondly, they respected the notion that their gut feel was not purely impulsive, reactive and emotional.  Instead, they knew their gut instinct had been cultivated and nuanced based on experience.
  • Finally, these decision makers continually cultivated their gut feel by paying attention to examples, models, prototypes, and patterns in their field, so they would be able to link that information to future decisions.  

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