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True

Team.

Great companies are built by diverse teams that are supported and empowered to be maximally creative.

True provides the right amount of financial capital and a heaping quantity of human capital to help bring your vision to life.

Human

Capital.

Great companies are built by diverse teams that are supported and empowered to be maximally creative.

True provides the right amount of financial capital and a heaping quantity of human capital to help bring your vision to life.

Core

Values:

01

Focus on people

Our culture enables open and honest interaction. We want founders to feel supported as humans first, and as business leaders second.

02

Maximize risk

We explicitly empower founders to take more risk by creating a safe space for personal expression, wild ideas, and truly novel innovations.

03

alignment

To “true” a wheel means to bring all elements into alignment, a balanced circle. This concept ensures we invest in founders with whom we’re aligned on mission, meaning, and the belief that entrepreneurship can and should make the world a better place.

What

We Do:

Automate businesses

Our culture enables open and honest interaction. We want founders to feel supported as humans first, and as business leaders second.

Software

We explicitly empower founders to take more risk by creating a safe space for personal expression, wild ideas, and truly novel innovations.

Accelerator

To “true” a wheel means to bring all elements into alignment, a balanced circle. This concept ensures we invest in founders with whom we’re aligned on mission, meaning, and the belief that entrepreneurship can and should make the world a better place.

“For me it’s personal”

Harald Røine, Founder and Head of Growth at BURO Ventures discusses the importance of deeply engaged relationships and mentorship.

Category

Startup

Building a scalable business architecture

Madison Reed Founder and True Partner Amy Errett discusses the importance of deeply engaged relationships and mentorship.

How to map and optimize your business processes

Madison Reed Founder and True Partner Amy Errett discusses the importance of deeply engaged relationships and mentorship.

Automating your processes for day-to-day scalability

Madison Reed Founder and True Partner Amy Errett discusses the importance of deeply engaged relationships and mentorship.

Education Comes First

At True, relationships are our most precious resource. We support founders for the entirety of their creative lives, often investing in their companies multiple times.

Empowered With Tools

What makes a product a movement? How do some companies become a meaningful part of their customers’ lives? Learn how Peloton’s retail showroom strategy fosters connection among local communities.

Blog

Give Robots the Repetitive, Tedious Work

By Rohit Sharma, March 21, 2019

For every new company creating autonomous machines, there is debate about whether or not, when, and how robots will take human jobs. It’s a timely and important discussion, especially in terms of workers whose primary tasks are repetitive, easily learned, and repeated accurately by machines.

Yet the discussions are occasionally distorted and sensationalized by the media; arguments shift to what is feared instead of what is gained long term. This has been the case numerous times in human history. Name an invention and there was likely some fear around its use in the beginning. On Last Week Tonight With John Oliver, the comedic host reminded his viewers of the fear of job loss among bank tellers upon the invention of the ATM. “Their jobs didn’t go,” noted Oliver. “They changed.”

Harvard Business Review recently published the findings of a study examining how automation affects individual workers. While automation does decrease the amount of work available and increase the chance of workers leaving their jobs, loss of work resulting from automation is far less than what is experienced following, for example, a mass layoff. The study notes that while mass layoffs have a sudden, immediate effect on the workforce, the decline in work resulting from automation tends to be more gradual, giving workers time to adjust and redirect their efforts.

That’s, perhaps narrowly, seeing the glass half full and entirely ignoring the table it sits on. As the HBR article suggests, highly educated, highly paid workers are affected more frequently by automation, but they can find new jobs faster. Workers with fewer skill sets who are paid lower wages tend to feel the effects of automation to a greater degree.

This is one of the reasons why entrepreneurs who are creating automation technologies should focus keenly on automating the right kind of tasks, ideally repetitive, tedious, and physically laborious work where there is little job satisfaction and little or no opportunity for advancement. In addition to automating the right kind of tasks, these technologies should be created in a way that enables people to control and operate those autonomous machines that are performing the physical labor.

Most importantly, the impetus to innovate in this domain must come from an intent to automate tasks for workers in order to improve productivity, rather than for abstract business reasons.

But before I share my perspective on emerging technologies in this space, I’d like to talk semantics. As Veo Robotics’ Mikell Taylor asserted, not all robotic machines are robots, which has become a conflated term. A toaster has robotic behavior, but it’s really a pre-programmed machine that, once given input, operates autonomously in order to complete a task.

This allows the human user to spend their time elsewhere, perhaps turning two pieces of toast into a sandwich by selecting a harmonious mix of ingredients. In this scenario, the human handles creativity while leaving the single task of toasting bread up to a machine that’s good at taking simple directions. I like how HashiCorp Co-founder Mitchell Hashimoto summed it up in a Wired article recently: “Humans are good at creativity; computers should be doing the repetitive work.”

This scenario, where we outsource specific, repetitive, and often grueling work to a machine so we can spend time on tasks that require creativity and innovation, can take shape in myriad ways. A farmer can think more creatively about advantageous crop rotation and a nurse can spend their time consoling a family dealing with the outcome of a loved one’s surgery. This shift away from repetitive tasks and toward more work that requires strategic thought or human intellect is an evolution which has been occurring throughout human history.  

In times of rapid growth, we tend to romanticize what is lost instead of focusing on what is gained, even in regards to repetitive, physical tasks. Yet, we don’t mind when a garbage truck extends its mechanical arm to empty a trash bin into its hopper.

We certainly don’t contend to have all the answers here in The Valley, but we do think there are a number of questions we should think about and ask before investing to ensure new automation technology best affects the future of all human workers.

For example, when was the last time you encountered an empty soda bottle or crumpled napkin in an airport waiting area? Currently, janitorial teams struggle to keep large, highly trafficked public spaces like airport floors clean and litter free. Standard commercial floor sweepers can be inefficient and finding people to operate those machines is a struggle too given several factors. These factors include low job satisfaction and inherent disengagement from all human creativity and mental faculties, except the physical engagement of muscle with the task at hand.

As a solution, Ontario-based Avidbots created Neo, an autonomous floor-scrubbing robot for large commercial spaces such as airports, malls, and hospitals. We invested in Avidbots founders Faizan Sheikh and Pablo Molina in 2017, and the company is now expanding its efforts globally.

When they started the company, they did so with the mission to bring robots into everyday life in order to expand human potential. We believe they and their team can do this in a way that provides advancement opportunities to workers and higher efficiency to clientele.

For every new company creating autonomous machines, there is debate about whether or not, when, and how robots will take human jobs. It’s a timely and important discussion, especially in terms of workers whose primary tasks are repetitive, easily learned, and repeated accurately by machines.

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