Esports Funding Guide – DNA – define your management team
Why do you need to define your management team? Investors, brands and partners invest in great teams, want to work with powerful and talented people, and most of all want to be a part of your company’s success. Therefore, it is extremely important that you sit down with your management team and describe who you are, what you have done, why you are unique, and what you will accomplish together.
Brands and partners receive many proposals. You need to stand out and build trust so that when potential partners look at your esports organization, they will see that an investment in you makes sense. Too many esports startups focus on results. As an organization, you also need to communicate your personal values, skills and experiences. Define yourself and your management team by writing 7-10 lines about who you are, your education, your former successes, your skills, your likes and hobbies. For each managing partner, you will also need to list this information and explain why together, you form great management team. Why do you work well together? Why and how are you unique? Why should anyone invest in you and your team, instead of in the hundreds of other esports organizations?
Competencies in the management team
In a board or steering group in an esports organization, there are different people with different competencies, qualifications, experiences and education.
It makes sense that the tasks that are intended to achieve the goals are handled by people with competencies that fit it. Put another way, the person or persons who work with partnerships must like it, and be good at it.
One person can handle the dialogue with the municipality and local government. Applying for local grants and funds. One person can contact national and international grants and funds. One can work with fundraising from private companies and private funds and grants.
The work of searching for municipalities and foundations is typically about managing their project, their finances, their story (who they are, what they want and why they want to make a difference, etc.), and then applying for an amount to go to X purpose.
Working with partners can be a little more demanding, as you must meet often, present, negotiate, make agreements, cooperate on plans, and on the whole, execute.
It can easily be a special business group that works to contact foundations, municipalities and partners in order to effectively launch negotiations when a new effort and a new goal requires a new partner or economy.
Partnerships come in many sizes and formats. My experience is that the most important thing is that as an esports organization you have made it clear what you want to achieve with the partnership and why. Can you explain why you have just approached this partner and what you want to achieve? Can relevant partners can see themselves in the idea, and can you explain what’s in it for the partner? If so, you are close to success.
Partners also have different goals, just like the sports clubs and organizations. Some want to support the local organization with time, money, equipment or services. Some want publicity and exposure/visibility. Some want activities, content, articles, videos and events. Some want positive press or CSR and some want something completely different.
Therefore, it is crucial that you as an organization find out what your partner wants. Ask the question: “Let’s go forward 12 months and you are, as a partner, really happy about the partnership with our organization. Tell me what has happened. What have we done in the past 12 months that have made you happy?”
The answer to this will tell you what your potential partner is looking for and what goals the partner has. It is not useful, for example, to offer a logo on a website and a player’s shirt, unless it is interesting for the partner. Always be open-minded and curious about what goals the partner isn’t interested in and see if you can meet each other halfway.
My experience is that many partners want to enter esports and that the partners want to make a difference. Partners may not like to – passively – send thousands of euros to an organization where you do not know what the money is going to, but are interested in meaningful partnerships. Ones where you can see that the money and the commitment are making a difference for exactly the target audience and the organization you work with.
Your job now, is to define your management team