Some investors feel that startup representatives have finished some courses about “how to negotiate with investors”. It might cause a red light to come in the mind of investors. You can fail at many things, but there is one thing, the most important element of pitchdeck – the team description. In this case you simply cannot fail. Below you can find some tips on how to describe your team in the best possible way.

First of all, you should know who will analyse your team.

If you are pitching in front of a general audience without prior information about them and have a short time to present your team. It is often tempting to skip or shorten the description of your team. BIG MISTAKE! If you made your audience interested in your idea, they will certainly want to know your team. 

So, before you present your idea, check who will listen to your pitch. Are there investors? Corporate representatives? Who are you going to impress? Main differences are shown below:


General audience


Corporate representatives

Want to know who is behind an idea Want to know who will be running the product and a company Wants to ensure that the team is capable to cooperate in a long run
Focus on team in general Focus on founders Focuses on technical team
Experience is not that important Experience in similar industries is important Traction is important
Doesn’t care about advisors Advisory board is a great advantage, if it is useful Advisors are welcome

Regardless of the type of recipient It should be at least one slide including founders, advisors and/or other key team members.
Four things should be posted on this slide:

  • Name of each member – it is always polite to introduce yourself! But remember not to name each member verbally – yes, the audience can read what is on your slides! 
  • Quick background: it can be previous experience, education or key skills. But please do not write too much, so that the audience will not be even able to read small text on that slide. 
  • Role in the project/company – what are your responsibilities, one-three words are enough
  • Photo is welcome! But please, do not look like a criminal on that photo! Have a professional photo. 


Many startups underestimate the role of the photo in the pitchdeck. Common mistake is using old outdated or “less professional” photos that look like they were taken straight from a criminal record. Don’t do that! It is important to share the actual image of your team.


Alphonse Gabriel Capone – CEO and co-founder

Effective team leader and talented motivator, experienced in alcohol industry and extortion

If your team works together feel free to share group photos. It shows that you are a close cooperating startup ready to react fast.

Does your team know each other for a long time? Are you friends since university or even from teenage years? It may be a good idea to put a photo from that time! It not only shows that your team knows each other well but also has firm bonds.

At the end few don’ts:

  • Don’t ignore team description in you pitchdeck!
  • Don’t forget about your audience, what is important to them
  • Don’t put too many texts right next to the name – it is not a CV!
  • Don’t forget to smile in the photo

Finally, practice is a master and do not forget about asking your team about that slide! They can always give you useful hints!


Author: Wojciech Leonowicz

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