Medha Agarwal

Best learning as a founder?
When I started Roomidex, I learned firsthand that being a founder is one of the hardest jobs in the world. And it can be really lonely. The most important thing you can do is to find people you trust and can call on for anything big or small—and I like to be that for my founders. I have a ton of respect for all founders, especially those with enough endurance and foresight for the entire marathon, with all of its ups and downs.

What is your favorite part about working with portfolio companies/entrepreneurs?
It’s such an honor to be a small part of their journey. Given our point of view developed working across the portfolio, I love helping founders—who need to be so focused on what they’re doing day to day—pull up and evaluate their high-level strategy. It’s fun to pull up and talk context.

What’s one piece of advice you tell your portfolio companies when it comes to hiring?
I got this advice as a founder, and still carry it with me: Hiring is your number one priority. You can never be too busy to hire people because those new hires will take on the priorities you are busy with today. And you should hire before it’s an acute need because it takes time to find the A+ people. If you wait until it feels like you need someone today, it’s too late and it will lead to bottlenecks.

How did your family shape your views on work?
I grew up in an immigrant family where I saw the importance of working hard and succeeding despite the odds. My parents are well respected but extremely humble, and it has shaped who I am today.

If you were to write a book, what would it be about?
I find how people interact and why really fascinating. I’ve never come across a personality test (I’m an ESTJ) or social psychology theory I didn’t find interesting! If I were to write a book, it would be about the how and why behind social interactions and groupnorms and what we can learn from them.

Favorite quote or saying?

“Never let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game.”
— Babe Ruth

What’s one thing people might not know about you?
I rowed lightweight crew at Harvard. I found playing sports—and rowing in particular—to be one of the most formative experiences of my life. It actually is part of what drew me to Redpoint specifically, because we really operate as a team. As a founder usually when you take money from a firm, you’re often taking money from one person. At Redpoint, all work together as a team so our founders can and are encouraged to leverage all of Redpoint, our different areas of expertise, and networks. I think it builds the best relationships and drives the best outcomes.

Favorite thing about San Francisco?
Sitting in a park or on a roof with friends on a sunny day.

Meditation or yoga?
Spinning or exercise at the gym. I go every morning; old habits die hard!

People are often surprised to hear that….
I made up my own middle name growing up. It wasn’t intentional; I thought it was actually my middle name. It was a funny moment years later when I my mom saw it written on all of my standardized tests and couldn’t figure out why!

If you could play a sport/ take a road trip with anyone, who would it be?
My grandfather whom I never met. People who knew him have always told me that he was the kindest, most interesting man, but he passed away just before I was born.

What job would you be doing if you were not a VC?
In another life I would be in real estate – on the development side because I would love to have a hand in creating structures and environments that shape people’s everyday lives.