May 02nd 2022

Entrepreneurship - The Art of Successful Entrepreneurship.

MCI Live-Talk with Jeannette zu Fürstenberg, entrepreneur and founding member of La Famiglia VC (Venture Capital Fund).



La Famiglia - "the name says it all"

The basic idea behind the founding of La Famiglia six years ago was to create a platform for young entrepreneurs that allows for an easier access to the industry and to customers. In addition, there was the motivation of the European perspective not to fall behind USA and China, as well as to contribute to the future of the local industry. Ideas that Jeannette zu Fürstenberg today describes as "very naive", but which, combined with great enthusiasm, good positioning and the right timing, grew into a venture capital fund that has since created over 3,000 jobs: "If I had known then what I know now, I probably wouldn't have the courage to start. But I just went for it and something grew out of it that today can stand on its own."

In her eyes, La Famiglia's defines itself through the synergistic relationships, intimate exchanges and diversity within the team - characteristics that remind the co-founder of a big Italian family, which eventually inspired the business' name.

Entrepreneurship - "a creative process".

In addition to chance and luck, zu Fürstenberg also credits her keen interest in learning and her desire to shape things herself for her introduction to the entrepreneurial world. Ultimately, she sees the entrepreneur as a "creative destroyer" who looks at already existing fragments from the outside, rearranges them, and develops a formal language that ultimately represents the solution to a problem. In this context, zu Fürstenberg connects entrepreneurial innovation with the arts: "It's a creative process in which you invent a completely new reality that you materialize with all your will and doing, so that it becomes comprehensible to others."

According to zu Fürstenberg, the art of entrepreneurship is difficult to learn because it requires a general understanding of problems and a certain mindset, as well as an affinity for risk and courage. Additionally, the entrepreneur must acquire a form of resilience to the very pronounced fluctuations between success and failure, especially at the beginning, in order to conquer the long and rocky road to a successful company.

Setbacks and founding in times of crisis

Even though young people in the early stages of entrepreneurship face setbacks and are unsettled by ever-present global crises, zu Fürstenberg continues to promote courage: "There is never a right or wrong time. You just have to do it. There is a time for everything, and the best companies have often been created and flourished during crises."

In this regard, she stresses the importance of adaptability. In entrepreneurship, it is necessary to embrace the notion of the "unfinished" and to be aware of never having full control. After all, in fast-changing times, individual variables can change constantly and abruptly, making stepping out of the comfort zone a key factor.

Investment depends on the team

Not only as an entrepreneur, but also as an investor, is it essential to stay optimistic in difficult times: "Every great business has experienced a lot of sweat, tears and dedication. The important thing is to keep going and not let setbacks stop you." For this reason, it is all the more important for zu Fürstenberg to invest in a team that already functions, stands out and demonstrates perseverance. As a result, she closely examines the team first in her investment decisions, with timing and the business model playing similarly large roles. She was able to acquire her intuition and ability to recognize patterns - qualities she considers essential in the field of investment - from literature, among other things, and recommends Shakespeare, Bernhard and Rilke to future entrepreneurs.