Home Venture Capital Cybersecurity Entrepreneur, Founder, Innovator and Investor William Lin Releases New Book, Offering...

Cybersecurity Entrepreneur, Founder, Innovator and Investor William Lin Releases New Book, Offering a Decision Framework for Entrepreneurship


“I am thrilled to issue my first book and help those interested in getting involved in the space and learning more,” said Will Lin

Today, cybersecurity entrepreneur, founder, innovator and investor William Lin released his new book “The VC Field Guide.” This invaluable resource demystifies how venture capitalists view the startup world and make investment decisions, serving as an essential guide for anyone seeking to invest in, join, found or acquire a startup. With a comprehensive approach, Lin provides a framework called the Venture Capital Investment Framework (VCIF).

In addition to detailing the art and science of entrepreneurship, working startups and discussing the inner workings of venture capital, Will uses his education background from Berkeley, banking experience and mentors he has met along the way to answer frequently asked questions after a decade of venture capital experience including:

  • The team:
  • Skill must haves, individual or company, the CEO, team dynamics
  • The problem:
  • Applying common sense, bias, problem solving
  • Timing:
  • The environment, disruption, the rise and fall of companies
  • Where:
  • What does TAM mean, calculating TAM, how do VCs apply it
  • Solution:
  • Solving one problem, building solutions, building a sustainable business
  • How:
  • The sales organization, customer alignment, the technology organization

“I am thrilled to issue my first book and help those interested in getting involved in the space and learning more,” said Will Lin. “When I first started my career I was frustrated with the lack of venture capital resources there was, and it led me to string items together and learn from people around me who later became my mentors. I wanted to give practical advice to those eager to learn more and follow down this exciting path,” he continued.

Come meet Will and receive a signed copy of his book at the Cyberhaven booth during the Expo Pub Crawl, Wednesday, April 26 between 4:30pm-6:00pm at booth #0766 during the RSA conference. In addition, his book will be available at the RSA bookstore during the conference.

For more information on Will’s new book, in a digital and hard-copy format, visit.


I hear this question from LPs, entrepreneurs and MBAs all the time, “How do you decide on the valuation of a startup when there is no historical data to go by?” The Venture Capital Investment Framework (VCIF), anchored on six areas of questioning, is flexible enough to adjust to any industry vertical and provides a solid foundation to anyone thinking about startups.

-Claudia Zeisberger, professor of entrepreneurship at INSEND, founder Global Private Equity Initiative and author of Mastering Private Equity

One of the most important skills in venture capital is asking the right questions. It took me a long time to learn the questions that matter and to ask them in a sophisticated way. The VCIF is a great foundation for any VC to start defining and refining the questions they need to ask to become a successful investor.

-Jai Das, president, partner, co-founder at Sapphire Ventures

I unconsciously used the VCIF when I led the early round in Zoom and others. The Zoom team (who) built a product that worked flawlessly (what) on mobile devices (when and why) and significantly expanded the TAM (where and how.) This framework also applies to other aspects of the startup ecosystem, whether you are starting a company or acquiring one.

-Nagraj Kashyap, managing partner at Softbank Investment Advisors and founder of M12, Microsoft’s Venture Fund

Understanding how fund partners select portfolio companies can provide critical insights into their ability to generate strong returns. By providing a structured and systematic approach to evaluating startups, William Lin’s VCIF is an invaluable tool for allocators when performing fund manager due diligence. Therefore, it is a must read for any LP looking to invest in venture capital funds.

-Ziad Sarkis, alternative investments research director and lecturer at the Wharton School, advisor to allocations and alternative investments funds

“Venture Capital investors (VCs) aggregate a number of data points as they deploy capital in high-risk startups: Management teams, market problems, market timing and more. In this book, VC William Lin has simplified the investor’s diligence process by sharing his succinct and crisp framework, thereby simplifying a complex and opaque part of the VC business”

-Mahendra Ramsinghani, author of The Business of Venture Capital, founder at Secure Octane Investments

About William Lin:

William Lin has spent his career close to creation and creators, as an entrepreneur, founder, innovator and investor. Over a decade as a venture capitalist, Will started as an entry level investor and eventually became managing director and member of the founding team at Forgepoint Capital, a $1 billion AUM venture capital firm with roots in cybersecurity. He co-founded and is chairman of the Security Tinkerers, a nonprofit organization that gathers information for security professionals seeking opportunities in the security community. He is now pursuing the next stage of his career as a founder of a cybersecurity startup. Will graduated from UC Berkeley and lives in the Bay Area with his life partner, dog and cats.

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