American venture capital firm
Guest: Tom Hale, CEO of OuraWhen he was growing up, Tom Hale's family had pretty ordinary dinner-table conversations: What happened today, how was school, etc. But every day after dinner, Tom and his father would play backgammon, an experience that indirectly taught him a lot about business. Now the CEO of wearable health company Oura, he recalls that the game helped him understand risk-taking, strategy, pattern recognition, and more. Tom's father also insisted they play for money: “If I could win 20 bucks, I could go down to the store and get something. But when I lost, I felt the sting of it. That's the best teacher, because you're learning the preciousness of the decisions you make.”In this episode, Tom and Joubin discuss Tom's radio voice, games of chance and skill, vacation rentals pre- and post-Airbnb, “irritant” service fees, health tracking, the psychology of rebranding, the consumerization of healthcare, personalized medicine, the myth of the founder-hero, rowing machines, and the meaning of work.In this episode, we cover: Returning to the office (00:50) John Doerr and Macromedia (05:15) Post-dinner backgammon (08:01) Tom's past jobs and HomeAway (11:31) Competing against private startups (16:09) How Airbnb captured demand (18:55) Being acquired by Expedia (24:26) What Oura's smart rings do (26:13) Rebranding SurveyMonkey to Momentive (29:55) Leaving Momentive for Oura (31:54) Making the case for himself (34:59) The future of public health, data, and wearables (37:10) “Sleep is strategic” (42:32) Why Oura is an AI company (44:48) The health impact of a taxing job (47:16) Being a non-founder CEO (49:39) Working with people (53:38) What would be in a “working with Tom” doc? (54:52) Managing the psychology of a 10-year-old startup (56:48) Being there for family & colleagues (59:18) Who Oura is hiring, and what “grit” means to Tom (01:02:54) Links: Connect with Tom Twitter LinkedIn Connect with Joubin Twitter LinkedIn Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Learn more about Kleiner Perkins This episode was edited by Eric Johnson from LightningPod.fm
Guest: Rachel Pike, COO at Modern TreasuryPayment operations startup Modern Treasury is not afraid to do things in “our own weird way,” says COO Rachel Pike. Its values statement is a 150 word essay, it has gone viral by writing about nerdy ACH payments minutiae, and it has an unusual rule for quarterly internal reviews: No slides. Instead, departments have to write one to two page essay, which are packaged together and then shared company-wide, and with the board. In previous jobs, Rachel laments, she and her coworkers would waste time “pushing pixels” around 50-slide decks. “It [the essay] actually takes more thinking and less hours to put together a summary of, ‘where have we been?'” she says.In this episode, Rachel and Joubin discuss the state of San Francisco, the value of tradition, hunger to learn, the Draper Fisher Jurvetson split, the opportunity cost of staying put, HIPAA and startups, two-entrepreneur households, career transition coaching, “try before you buy” hiring, learning to be remote, the downside of grasping, and fixing inequalities in compensation.In this episode, we cover: Why Rachel doesn't like talking about herself (01:20) Job-hopping and the Bay Area (02:38) Early adopters vs. brilliant innovators (05:16) Why Rachel left academia (07:44) “I got a phD in startups” (10:24) The “nights and weekends” gig at AngelList (14:05) Describing startups to aliens (16:50) Four years at Grand Rounds (18:28) What makes Modern Treasury “modern” (21:51) How she got hired as employee #1 (24:16) Advice for wannabe early-stage startup workers (30:18) “Wonder is contagious” (32:00) “Do it right the first time” (35:09) Hacker News and other growth levers (38:20) The excitement of scaling (40:49) Advisors and quarterly planning essays (44:02) Forced prioritization (49:20) Hard feedback (51:50) The working with Rachel doc (54:19) How Modern Treasury does comp and bonuses (57:21) What's past is prologue (59:43) Who Modern Treasury is hiring and what “Grit” means to Rachel (01:02:00) Links: Connect with Rachel Twitter LinkedIn Connect with Joubin Twitter LinkedIn Email: email@example.com Learn more about Kleiner Perkins This episode was edited by Eric Johnson from LightningPod.fm
A real Ted Talk with the one and only Ted Schlein. Ted's excellent adventure was a 25 year roller coaster ride at Tier 1 VC firm Kleiner Perkins, by way of Symantec where he talked the company into entering the cybersecurity business. Now he turns full circle and has started Ballistic Ventures where he serves as Chairman and GP. Ted serves on the Board of Trustees and Board of Overseers of the Engineering School at the University of Pennsylvania, and also serves on the CISA, DHS and NSA Advisory Boards, IQT Board of Trustees, and is founder of the DoD-sponsored DeVenCI program. A few of his successful investments include AlienVault, ArcSight, CarbonBlack, Chegg, LifeLock, Mandiant, Phantom Security, and Shape Security.
Navigating the Idea Maze to The Unlikely Birth of FinchFinch, a platform providing a unified API for employment data, was born out of failure and uncertainty. Ansel Parikh and Jeremy Zhang, the co-founders, first met during On Deck's second cohort. Both were passionate about solving the plumbing behind big problems and gravitated towards challenging infrastructure issues.Finch was born out of failure. Initially, they attempted to launch an embedded lending platform, but the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted their plans. Banks and customers began rejecting them as the future of lending became uncertain. Who was going to give a loan in such an uncertain environment? It wasn't until a small business lender they were potentially going to work with approached them with a request to help access employment data for the Payment Protection Program (PPP) that they discovered the opportunity that would eventually become Finch.Although the PPP was nearing its end when they built their solution, Ansel and Jeremy received enough positive feedback to continue pursuing the employment data problem. They embraced a "hard to get information made legible" business model, rather than following a thesis-driven approach. This allowed them to quickly pivot and adapt based on their unique founder-product fit: Ansel's background in fintech and infrastructure investments, combined with Jeremy's engineering and product experience, enabled them to quickly develop a product and secure their first customer. They emphasized the importance of failing quickly and focusing on the problem, rather than falling in love with a particular solution. Ansel also highlights that there is no “perfect moment” to get to conviction, you just need to make a decision.Finding the Right Co-FounderFor Ansel and Jeremy, finding the right co-founder was critical to their success. On paper, they had a unique founder / product fit.Jeremy had a background on engineering and product, and had worked on API challenges before that transferred to employment data ecosystems and the work they were doing at Finch.Ansel had been a late-stage investor at Kleiner Perkins and had spent a considerable amount of time on fintech and infrastructure investments so he was deeply familiar with the space.That said, they had to test whether they actually worked well as a team. They recommend setting up a three-week sprint with a potential co-founder to work on a project together, setting daily goals, and discussing progress. On top of that, they found another co-founder team who were going through the same stage and became accountability buddies. In their case, On Deck played a crucial role in helping them meet and build a strong working relationship because it provided with the structure they needed throughout that period.Embracing Complexity and Turning Illegible Information into Legible DataFinch's business model revolves around transforming illegible, hard-to-find information into legible, connected, and programmable data. The challenge of building a single source of truth for employer-employee relationships lies in the uniqueness, obscurity, and hyper-dynamic nature of these connections.Employment relationships vary significantly across industries and sectors, with different structures and incentives. Blue collar vs. White collar is not the only distinction. As an example, startup employees value equity, other type of non-tech companies value benefits, and factory workers value overtime.Moreover, employment data is often hidden in obscure systems that don't communicate with each other, making it difficult to access. Adding to the complexity, this information is continuously changing, and outdated data is often used for critical decision-making at various levels.The US tax system and the US employment rules are a nightmare. There are different tax brackets and regulations at a city, state and federal level, and they also vary across industries. By focusing on making illegible information legible and valuable, the company offers a playbook for others looking to build successful businesses in the face of adversity.
Guest: Ashley Kramer, CMO & CSO of GitLabOne day, when Ashley Kramer was an SVP at Alteryx, one of her direct reports hit her with a dose of reality: “She said, ‘I think you are trying to put me on a path to be you, and to have your job. I don't want any of that.'” Now the CMO and CSO of GitLab, Kramer — who has been a perfectionist since childhood — used to hold her team to the same high bar. But as she's learned over time, “Not everybody's gonna have your same ambition. Not everybody's gonna work as hard as you. It doesn't mean they're not good at their job. It just means different things are important to them.”In this episode, Ashley and Joubin discuss what companies get wrong in CEO interviews, “the three P's” of company values, loosely held disasters, thinking about the future, “everybody does not want to be like me”, how GitLab does meetings, pre-speech nervousness, context switching, skip-level meetings, credibility with the customer, setting the bar too high, and Naval Ravikant.In this episode, we cover: People, Passion, and Product (04:36) Joining companies right after they IPO (07:16) Scaling questions (10:28) Job-hoppers and ambition (12:06) Parents and dinner-table conversations (16:35) Coping with perfectionism (19:17) Coaching and demotivators (21:36) Confident public speaking (26:21) How Ashley got out of engineering (32:08) Being CPO and CMO of Sisense at the same time (35:49) Representing “two constituencies” (38:54) Why Ashley has two titles again (44:59) The radical transparency of GitLab (47:20) Growing pains and becoming interim CTO (51:28) Working with founder-CEOs (56:08) Tough feedback (58:20) Personal and professional OKRs (01:01:15) Work-life balance (01:03:33) How to network (01:06:10) Who GitLab is hiring and the meaning of “Grit” (01:08:58) Links: Connect with Ashley Twitter LinkedIn Connect with Joubin Twitter LinkedIn Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Learn more about Kleiner Perkins This episode was edited by Eric Johnson from LightningPod.fm
Guest: Jen Vescio, Chief Business Development Officer at Uber and founder of Awestruck VenturesIf you were to look at Jen Vescio's calendar, it might look like a pack of Skittles: Every single one of her meetings is color-coded according to the Insights Color Focus system, which assigns the colors red, blue, yellow, and green based on what methods they emphasize in their work. As the chief business development officer of Uber, Jen has to work with people across that spectrum, and preps for each meeting accordingly.In this episode, Jen and Joubin discuss the pros and cons of media training, Malcolm Gladwell's Outliers, “semi-pro” soccer, how to ruin your Uber rating, the “fluorescent light” journey, working at “it” companies before they were disrupted, the art and science of business development, self-awareness vs. understanding others, Sean Bratches, what is your motive?, side letter PTSD, “speed and silence are your two worst enemies,” forced time off, getting buy-in, and why “Uber is wired for trauma.”In this episode, we cover: “Dancing in the moment” (00:54) The Olympic Development Program (03:22) Jen's parents (08:15) DJing and music in Ubers (10:40) Talking to Uber drivers (12:48) Retiring from soccer (15:04) “The big transition” (17:22) The dotcom boom and Jen's first jobs (20:04) Innovation and disruption (22:15) Buy, build, or partner (27:24) Understanding the “color” of others (35:27) How to talk to a “double red” (38:38) Insights Color Focus and the color of companies (41:16) The Trust Quotient (46:45) The biggest deal Jen has brokered (50:17) The pressure of big deals (51:46) The $350 million deal she botched (55:14) Getting burned out on corporate jobs (58:22) Big, shiny brands like Uber (01:00:38) Mental contracts and taking time off (01:05:07) Tough feedback (01:08:24) Developing trust internally vs. externally (01:09:48) How COVID impacted Uber (01:13:08) Where Uber is hiring and what Jen thinks of when she hears the word “Grit” (01:18:16) Links: Connect with Jen Twitter LinkedIn Connect with Joubin Twitter LinkedIn Email: email@example.com Learn more about Kleiner Perkins This episode was edited by Eric Johnson from LightningPod.fm
Guest: Nikesh Arora, CEO and Chairman of Palo Alto NetworksNikesh Arora has been in the C-Suite for more than two decades, including a 10-year stint as Google's chief business officer and — most recently — five years as Palo Alto Networks' CEO. But the COVID-19 pandemic made him radically reconsider the gap between the executive floor and the rest of the company. “There was a tremendous amount of anxiety and fear and uncertainty,” he says, “and this person I was talking to says, ‘Listen, your job as a leader is to create certainty.' [...] It's simple: Tell your employees you have their back.” That's why, for the past 30 months, Nikesh has been making time to virtually meet thousands of Palo Alto Networks employees on Zoom; he gets candid feedback, communicates company goals, and provides a safe space for everyone to bond.In this episode, Nikesh and Joubin discuss honest CEOs, not having a career plan, process vs. outcomes, remaining independent inside Google, organizational superpowers, understanding your competitors, “evergreen companies,” the ChatGPT disruption, integrating product and sales, blindfolded communication, Evian water, cloud vs. on-prem security, and problem solvers vs. problem representers.In this episode, we cover: Amazing people at Google (02:15) T-Motion and T-Mobile (04:05) “You cannot control the outcome” (07:36) Growing up in India (11:12) 400+ rejection letters (14:38) Loving what you do (18:26) Joining Google (19:55) Sergey Brin and Eric Schmidt (24:16) Relocating to “the mothership” (27:01) “He's not Googly enough” (28:26) Profit, innovation, and paranoia (31:12) Cybersecurity and AI (34:04) SoftBank CEO Masa Son (38:54) Joining Palo Alto Networks (43:04) Hiring as home-building (47:04) “Nobody comes to work to screw up” (50:25) Product and the power of marketing (53:28) Cybersecurity “swim lanes” (56:36) M&A strategy (01:01:14) The two schools of due diligence (01:05:05) Moving past problems (01:07:42) Creating certainty for employees (01:10:59) Links: Connect with Nikesh Twitter LinkedIn Connect with Joubin Twitter LinkedIn Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Learn more about Kleiner Perkins This episode was edited by Eric Johnson from LightningPod.fm
Today, we have a bonus double episode of the Newcomer podcast for you — two conversations from the Cerebral Valley AI Summit last week. Part 1: Replit CEO Amjad Masad and Hugging Face Clément DelangueTogether, they're a charismatic open-source alliance.We talked about the threat posed by OpenAI's partnership with Microsoft, the questions around Replit and Hugging Face's business models, and where they would like to see more development in artificial intelligence.Charles Hudson, at Precursor, wrote up a smart reflection on the Cerebral Valley event and one of his main takeaways was about open-source companies like Replit and Hugging Face. Hudson wrote:Open-source applications will play a big role in this early phase of experimentation. One of the more refreshing and interesting things for me to hear was the different approaches that open-source companies were taking relative to their more commercially-minded peers. It wasn't simply about business models or go to market approaches — it felt way more fundamental and philosophical about how they wanted to see AI deployed and governed. I didn't have a full appreciation for that difference before the event, but it was one of the things that I was most struck by at the event.The Cerebral Valley AI Summit is presented bySamsung Next invests in the boldest and most ambitious founders.Tell us about your company. We'd love to meet.Part 2: Adept CEO David Luan and Greylock partner Saam MotamediOn stage with Luan and Motamedi, a major investor in Adept, I wanted to know how Adept planned to compete with foundation models like OpenAI and Anthropic — especially now that OpenAI has introduced plugins that allow third-parties to easily connect to ChatGPT. Adept is building an AI model that mirrors humans input into computers. It's a different approach than the language models that are getting built by other foundation model companies.I also asked Luan about his time at OpenAI and at Google. I particularly wanted to know if he trusted his old team at OpenAI to spearhead the AI revolution.Find the PodcastWe're also posting all the on-stage conversations on our YouTube channel over the next few days. Right now, you can watch:* Stability CEO Emad Mostaque one-on-one with me (the first half of my last podcast).* Shane Orlick (President at Jasper) and Cristóbal Valenzuela (CEO of Runway) with Coatue's Caryn Marooney.* Benchmark's Miles Grimshaw's conversation with Quora CEO and OpenAI board member Adam D'Angelo and with LangChain founder Harrison Chase.* A panel of investors (Leigh Marie Braswell at Founders Fund, Bucky Moore at Kleiner Perkins, and Amber Yang at Bloomberg Beta) moderated by me.* Volley CEO Max Child's talk with Lisha Li (Rosebud), Caroline Zhang (Knowtex), Chun Jiang (Monterey AI), and Medha Basu (Defog).* General Catalyst's Deep Nishar with me (also featured in Tuesday's podcast episode) .* Volley CTO James Wilsterman's talk with Yasmin Dunsky (Wild Moose), Emily Dorsey (Pyq), and Lydia Ding (Code Complete). Get full access to Newcomer at www.newcomer.co/subscribe
Loom's Co-Founder and CTO, Vinay Hiremath, joins us to share learnings from the highs and lows of his startup's hypergrowth journey, going from maxing out his credit cards and being inches away from closing the company's doors to having over 14 million users and a $1.5 billion valuation.Specifically, Vinay covers:– Coming up with the idea and finding co-founders.– Managing the chaos of pivots to product-market fit and escape velocity.– Tactics for driving customer acquisition and growth – how Loom got to 14 million users.– Whom to hire and how to build a team from the early stages through hypergrowth and scale.– Lessons from raising money from top investors like Sequoia, Andreessen Horowitz and Kleiner Perkins.– Highs and lows of entrepreneurship and top things to do to prepare for peak mental performance.Learn more at https://tractionconf.ioLearn more about Loom at https://www.loom.com/This episode is brought to you by:In a digital world, customers demand more, especially from support. Intercom enables businesses to connect with their customers at exactly the right moment using powerful messaging and automation. This enables customer service teams to scale without additional investment while still providing efficient and personal customer experiences. Welcome to a whole new way to support your customers. Eligible startups get advanced Intercom features at a 95% discount. Visit https://Intercom.com/tractionEach year the U.S. and Canadian governments provide more than $20 billion in R&D tax credits and innovation incentives to fund businesses. But the application process is cumbersome, prone to costly audits, and receiving the money can take as long as 16 months. Boast automates this process, enabling companies to get more money faster without the paperwork and audit risk. We don't get paid until you do! Find out if you qualify today at https://Boast.AILaunch Academy is one of the top global tech hubs for international entrepreneurs and a designated organization for Canada's Startup Visa. Since 2012, Launch has worked with more than 6,000 entrepreneurs from over 100 countries, of which 300 have grown their startups to seed and Series A stage and raised over $2 billion in funding. To learn more about Launch's programs or the Canadian Startup Visa, visit https://LaunchAcademy.caContent Allies helps B2B companies build revenue-generating podcasts. We recommend them to any B2B company that is looking to launch or streamline its podcast production. Learn more at https://contentallies.com#product #innovation #fundraising #startup #growth
Guests: Alex Smith and Shaun Livingston, former players for the San Francisco 49ers and Golden State Warriors“I just thought, the best of my life is behind me.” That's what former NFL quarterback Alex Smith recalls of a devastating leg fracture in 2018 that threatened to end his football career forever. Former NBA guard Shaun Livingston suffered a similar injury early in his career, and both men were told the only way forward might be leg amputation & retirement. They endured through depression, surgeries, and painful physical therapy, and both of them found their way back to pro sports. “I hopped on a bike,” Shaun says. “'Oh, I can do this!' All right, I hopped on a treadmill. ‘Okay, I can do this.' You give yourself these small victories that, over time, end up adding up.”In this episode, Alex, Shaun, and Joubin discuss going pro out of high school, the pressure of expectations, talking about emotions, Joe Namath, gratitude for life, military medical care and “group suck”, the D-League, competing against yourself, losing well, “rah-rah guys,” no-look slants, Tom Brady, Kevin Garnett, and the difference between winning and losing.In this episode, we cover: Alex Smith's background (01:15) Shaun Livingston's background (02:07) Alex on the fear of failure (03:23) Shaun on “the opportunity of a lifetime” (07:03) Imposter syndrome and burying emotions (10:44) Anxiety as motivation (13:41) Dysfunctional early seasons (16:10) Alex and Shaun's leg injuries (18:57) Depression vs. “small victories” (23:51) Alex's recovery process (25:45) Shaun's stint in the NBA Development League (29:51) Teaching yourself to walk (31:58) Steph Curry and great leadership (36:19) Pat Mahomes and the “final shot” (41:05) Tough feedback (44:32) Recharging in the off-season (47:09) Daily consistency (49:41) Who Alex and Shaun think of when they hear the word “grit” (54:05) Links: Connect with Shaun Twitter LinkedIn Connect with Joubin Twitter LinkedIn Email: email@example.com Learn more about Kleiner Perkins This episode was edited by Eric Johnson from LightningPod.fm
Dave Cole is the CEO and Co-Founder of Open Raven, a Kleiner Perkins-backed post-series B company focused on reimagining data security for the modern era. He also started the Security Voices podcast as a sponsorless show focused on highlighting the diverse people and perspectives in cybersecurity. Dave's fingerprints are visible across the cybersecurity industry from his 26 years of working as a leader in consulting (at Deloitte and ISS), enterprise products (at Foundstone, CrowdStrike, and Tenable), and consumer products (at Norton). Dave is a frequent spokesperson, making appearances on NBC, CNN, and elsewhere while speaking at industry events such as RSA, Black Hat, and B-Sides Las Vegas. He holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Michigan Ann Arbor and is a member of the board of UM School of Information and Inspectiv. Dave is an investor focused on helping to grow businesses in his hometown of Los Angeles where he lives with his wife and son. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Guest: Andre Iguodala, forward for the Golden State WarriorsThe average professional basketball career lasts around four years. By the first time Andre Iguodala came to play for the Golden State Warriors, in 2013, he was already on year 10 in the NBA. “All I wanted to do was get somewhere where I just truly enjoy going to work every day,” he says. And on his podcast with Evan Turner, Point Forward, he doesn't shy away from the fact that being a famous and successful player comes with trade-offs. “When you make it ... you're lifted up, like ‘you're here to save us all,'” he explains. “There's so many things that go on with us as athletes that people don't get a opportunity to truly understand because there's two sides.”In this episode, Andre and Joubin discuss the law of attraction, daily practice, former head coach Mark Jackson, Allen Iverson, the value of sports media, Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf's Tourette Syndrome, Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen, the lowest point in Andre's career, and pivoting to stay alive.In this episode, we cover: What goes through Andre's head when the game rests on his shoulders (01:17) Enjoying work every day and playing under head coach Steve Kerr (05:31) Avoiding the newspaper, and why he started a podcast (09:59) The trauma of success and basketball as a sanctuary (14:07) Playing against LeBron James and with Steph Curry (17:59) Being addicted to success and finding joy on the court (21:24) Kevin Durant's work ethic (25:41) Are the wins or losses more memorable? (28:30) Being a student of the game (32:02) Why Andre's memoir is called The Sixth Man, and what changes in the playoffs (35:34) His final season in the NBA, and being a part of the tech ecosystem (42:04) The qualities of great players, and the most memorable game of his career (45:50) Links: Connect with Andre Twitter LinkedIn His podcast, Point Forward Connect with Joubin Twitter LinkedIn Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Learn more about Kleiner Perkins This episode was edited by Eric Johnson from LightningPod.fm
Guest: Al Gore, Former Vice President and chairman of The Climate Reality ProjectAl Gore has been talking about all kinds of renewable energy for decades. The former U.S. Vice President, Nobel Peace Prize winner, and star of An Inconvenient Truth says it's “thrilling” to see things like wind power and sustainable forestry becoming the norm. But as humanity continues its struggle against the climate crisis, he says, it's worth remembering that political will is also a renewable resource. Effective storytellers and political organizers can overcome the entrenched political power of the oil and gas industry, and young people are flocking to work for climate-conscious companies that share their values. In this episode, Al and Joubin discuss Abraham Lincoln, Silent Spring, “father of the United Nations” Cordell Hull, downhill skiing, “pursuing a grail,” Watershed, An Inconvenient Truth, the Inflation Reduction Act, trolling Newt Gingrich, former CIA director Bob Gates, “let the glory out,” and Greta Thunberg.In this episode, we cover: Which of Al's many accomplishments is he proudest of? (01:52) What he learned from his parents, a pioneering lawyer and a U.S. Senator — and why he decided to get into politics (05:32) Being an underdog and finding the energy to fight injustice (16:15) The distinction between work and play, and commitments of the heart (19:28) The “hidden truth about human endeavors” (28:05) Becoming a great storyteller and getting instant, actionable feedback (31:25) Al's “close as brothers” partnership with President Bill Clinton (36:44) Accepting hardship and renewing political will (48:08) How does Al renew his own energy? (53:57) Links: Connect with AlTwitter Connect with Joubin Twitter LinkedIn Email: email@example.com Learn more about Kleiner Perkins This episode was edited by Eric Johnson from LightningPod.fm
Brett Kopf, the co-founder of Omella and Remind, has dedicated his career to simplifying and enhancing the educational industry for schools, educators, students, and families. In this conversation, we discuss the journey behind creating Omella, a platform designed to streamline financial transactions for mission-driven educational organizations, and the massive success of Remind, a widely-used communication tool for education (over 30 million active monthly users). In addition, we cover the inspiration behind Omella, the value of micro schools, building connections in Silicon Valley, using Notion for company management, the importance of talking to customers, and so much more. Likewise, we also explore the tremendous growth of Remind, including the significant funding it has received, the prominent investors involved, such as John Doerr from Kleiner Perkins and Chamath Palihapitiya from Social Capital, and the platform's widespread adoption, now reaching millions of users.Connect with Brett:→ Twitter: twitter.com/brettkopf→ LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/brettkopfCheck out Omella:→ Website: omella.com→ LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/omella→ Twitter: twitter.com/omellainc→ Facebook: www.facebook.com/OmellaInc→ Youtube: www.youtube.com/@omellainc→ Blog: omella.com/blog→ Newsletter: omella.com/subscribeResources Mentioned in The Episode:→ Brett and Eric Interview (Podcast): /kite.link/jsoundbox53t→ Jason Bedrick: heritage.org/staff/jason-bedrick→ David Perell: perell.com/→ Write of passage: //writeofpassage.school/Help The Louis and Kyle Show:If you enjoyed this episode, please share it with a friend or leave a review!→ Leave a review: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/1504333834→ Drop us an email: LouisandKyleShow@gmail.comSubscribe on YouTube:→ https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCb6qBiV1HAYcep87nKJmGhAFollow The Show on Social Media:→ Twitter: https://twitter.com/LouisKyleShow→ Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/louiskyleshow/→ LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/65567567/Connect with Louis and Kyle:→ Read Louis' Newsletter: https://louisshulman.substack.com/→ Louis' Twitter: https://twitter.com/LouisShulman→ Kyle's Twitter: https://twitter.com/_kylebishop→ Louis LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/louisshulman/→ Kyle's LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/kyle-bishop-7b790050/
The Girl Dad Show: A Professional Parenting Podcast
In this episode, Young interviews Nami Baral: Founder & CEO of Niural, successful entrepreneur, and mother to a young toddler. Nami and Young dive deep into the struggles of maintaining individuality and personal identity while being both an entrepreneur and a parent. She also shares her parenting philosophy for building character and the importance of exposing her child to their cultural roots.Please enjoy and subscribe!ABOUT OUR GUEST:Nami Baral is the Founder & CEO of Niural (niural.com), a globally compliant payroll and contractor management platform . Nami is a repeat entrepreneur with two successful tech exits. Prior to Niural, Nami founded Harvest, a fintech company that leveraged AI to reduce debt for American consumers. Harvest was backed by several iconic investors like Kleiner Perkins, Hustle Fund, Barclays bank and more. Nami sold Harvest to Acorns in 2021. Before Harvest, Nami was Head of Product Partnerships at Twitter, which she had joined as an early employee. Nami graduated from Harvard with a degree in Economics and Mathematics. Nami is a prolific angel investor, and has made 60+ investments till date. Nami is an active mentor especially to fintech, data and AI founders. And most importantly, Nami is the mother of a highly opinionated and active 3 year old.STUFF WE LOVE:Attention founders and investors:Two12.co is the best cap table and fundraising toolkit. Use code TGDS for 25% off!https://bit.ly/3Q7wHsnTry Young's online recording studio!https://riverside.fm/homepage?utm_campaign=campaign_1&utm_medium=affiliate&utm_source=rewardful&via=youngLooking to outsource graphic design? Try Young's favorite resource, Penji: unlimited designs for one fixed cost from some of the world's top design talent!https://penji.co/pricing/?affiliate=3I86N6MSF5358220Learn more about us!Our website: https://thegirldadshow.com/Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/TheGirlDadShow/Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheGirlDadShowShop here for The Girl Dad Show products: https://thegirldadshow.com/collections*If you click on our links, we may receive a tiny commission AND… most of the time, you will receive an offer. Win/Win! The products that The Girl Dad Show recommends are the ones we believe in.
Guest: Giancarlo “GC” Lionetti, CRO of Zapier“I live in a constant state of paranoia,” says Zapier CRO Giancarlo “GC” Lionetti, “which I guess is healthy and unhealthy.” A lifelong hard worker who shows up early and stays late, GC could have kept his job at team collaboration company Atlassian, which he joined before the company even offered stock options to employees. But his hunger for new experiences — and desire to learn things about new disciplines, like sales — took him away to unexpected new roles at Dropbox, Confluent and now Zapier. “If you asked me in every single experience what my next experience was gonna be ... I wouldn't have guessed the one that I ended up doing,” he says.In this episode, GC and Joubin discuss in-person retreats, the problem with “hybrid” cultures, in-office perks, dyslexia and ChatGPT, Atlassian as a “mini-MBA,” re-directing energy to find happiness, self-service businesses, “fitting the mold,” the space for meetings, and dinner at home with the kids.In this episode, we cover: The Grit tip jar and being an “anti-remote” person at a fully remote company (00:47) How GC compensates for not being able to walk & talk around the office (06:13) The dying art of being early, and GC's brand of hard work (09:03) His father's exhausting work life, and his first summer job (16:18) Is GC a “pusher” or a “puller,” and some crucial advice from Atlassian CEO Scott Farquhar (21:15) What he thought in the early days of Atlassian's ride to the top (27:48) What Zapier does and how it has helped GC and his wife as parents (31:29) “It was hard to take advice, because nobody understood this world” (34:25) Why did GC leave Atlassian for Dropbox? (38:04) Passing on paranoia, and is balance required for happiness? (41:16) Marketing vs. sales, and the danger of re-running the same playbook in different companies (48:46) Fitting into a box, and learning from people with different backgrounds (56:28) Why GC doesn't like traveling very much, and the place of meetings in Zapier's GTM organization (01:01:09) Separating the “church and state” of work and personal life (01:07:38) Links: Connect with GC Twitter LinkedIn Connect with Joubin Twitter LinkedIn Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Learn more about Kleiner Perkins This episode was edited by Eric Johnson from LightningPod.fm
Guest: Claire Hughes Johnson, author of Scaling People and Corporate Officer at StripeFormer Stripe COO Claire Hughes Johnson's new book, Scaling People, is not your typical business book: Informed by her experience scaling one of the most valuable private companies in the world, it's a tactical reference manual, “almost like a textbook,” aimed at helping managers wrestling with a variety of problems. And one of the big uniting themes is that, to solve anything, they're going to have to look inwards. “Leadership does not start with the other people in the room,” she says. “It starts with you ... if you don't know yourself, you are not gonna be very successful, because you have to understand your work style preferences, your habits, your blind spots.”In this episode, Claire and Joubin discuss in-demand books, Google pre-IPO, headcount as a proxy for success, paranoid mentality, self-driving cars, honoring commitments, the illusion of time, customer insights, “act like a founder,” asking for feedback, prioritizing and saying no, “steady Eddies,” imposter syndrome, fruit on the counter, layering titles, and making time for family.In this episode, we cover: Who should read Claire's new book, Scaling People, and how she expects them to read it (00:57) The challenges of building Stripe in its early days: “It was just consumed by it” (04:51) Why she left Google to become Stripe's COO, and what she did for them as the business was starting to take off (12:34) How Stripe hired the best people — including Claire — and how they could have done it even better (17:25) Leadership starts with self-awareness (26:05) Honest criticism that rocks your world, and taking feedback well (29:43) The “unauthorized guide” to working with Claire (36:18) Getting hired at Google by Sheryl Sandberg, and why Claire didn't follow her to Facebook (40:26) “Pushers and pullers,” a framework for working with top talent (46:43) What entrepreneurs can learn from Condoleezza Rice about impact, passion, and ability (58:33) Putting your (imperfect) expertise out into the world (01:02:03) Implementing Stripe's first performance feedback process, and why it still doesn't “do” titles (01:07:06) Having a life outside of work, and the “clarifying moment” of a surprise birthday party (01:15:26) Links: Buy Scaling People: Tactics for Management and Company Building Connect with Claire Twitter LinkedIn Connect with Joubin Twitter LinkedIn Email: email@example.com Learn more about Kleiner Perkins This episode was edited by Eric Johnson from LightningPod.fm
Giant Robots Smashing Into Other Giant Robots
Eric Liaw and Zack Willis are part of IVP, a leading venture firm with a 43-year history of partnering with entrepreneurs who are undaunted on the path to innovation. Will talks to Eric and Zack about what has made IVP so long-lasting in the Venture Capital industry, how they help companies' portfolios, and the accomplishments they are most proud of. Follow Eric on LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/in/ericliaw/) or Twitter (https://twitter.com/eliaw). Follow Zack on LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/in/zwill/) or Twitter (https://twitter.com/zwill). IVP (https://www.ivp.com/) Follow IVP on LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/company/ivpvc/), Twitter (https://twitter.com/ivp), or Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/ivpvc/). Follow Aarish Shah on LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/in/adsinuk/) or Twitter (https://twitter.com/adsinuk). Follow thoughtbot on Twitter (https://twitter.com/thoughtbot) or LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/company/150727/). Become a Sponsor (https://thoughtbot.com/sponsorship) of Giant Robots! Transcript: WILL: This is the Giant Robots Smashing Into Other Giant Robots Podcast, where we explore the design, development, and business of great products. I'm your host, Will Larry. And with me today is Eric Liaw and Zack Willis, who are part of IVP, a leading venture firm with a 43-year history of partnering with entrepreneurs who are undaunted on the path to innovation. Zack, Eric, thank you for joining me. ERIC: Thanks, Will. It's great to be here, really appreciate it. And I got to say, as the Giant Robot Podcast, as a kid growing up, Transformers were my favorite toys. So this may be the closest I ever get to being a Transformer by being part of Giant Robots, so thank you for the opportunity. [laughter] WILL: Love it. We love robots here, so it's perfect. All right, let's start here. For folks who may not know, tell us about IVP and what's on deck for 2023. ERIC: Well, you gave a great intro, so let me just add to that a little bit. You know, we're really proud of our history and our firm. We've been around since 1980. So we're one of the sort of original Silicon Valley venture firms. But when I speak about the firm in that context, I don't think it does justice to how the firm has expanded over the years and how our investment activity now encompasses not only the Bay Area but major U.S. markets like New York and LA. We have investments in Canada, Australia, and a number in Western and Central Europe as well. And the common theme for us is that we're focused on working with entrepreneurs who, as you pointed out, are undaunted as they innovate and are pursuing dreams to create companies that will become recognizable in households and companies across the world, not just today but tomorrow as well. So that's really what IVP is all about. And it's what we're looking forward to in 2023 despite obviously the fact that the world is a little more challenging these days, a little bit more uncertain in, particular in the venture category. But we're really excited about the things that we're working on. We invested a lot in our team over a number of years. And, believe it or not, despite what you might read in headlines around venture activity, we are very much open for business in 2023 because we think that great entrepreneurs and great ideas come together at all times, regardless of whether the stock market is up or down. And our job is to find them, work with them, and become partners for three, four, or five, six, seven years, sometimes longer than that. So really, there's no bad time to start a company and get to know venture investors like us. WILL: Yeah, definitely. Your company has been around for 43 years. Can you kind of tell me what has made you last that long, for 43 years? That's a long time to be in the venture capitalist world, especially before it was popular and fun. ERIC: You know, it's a great question. I've been at the firm for 11 years now. So a lot of the credit goes to people that...our founder, Reid Dennis, who started the firm. He's in his 90s now, so he has since retired, but a lot of credit goes to people that came before me and before Zack. And I think that's a common theme for any kind of organization or institution, no pun intended, because that's what the I in IVP stands for. But it goes to that sort of common thread. You have to evolve, especially in technology. The technology markets that were successful for IVP in the early '80s that's not really cutting-edge venture anymore. As an example, Seagate was one of our first investments ever when people weren't sure that personal hard drive technology would actually work or whether or not they're getting market demand. I mean, who would actually want storage themselves carried around with them at all times? And now, think about how much storage you have in your pocket. It's pretty gnarly to think about how much technology has advanced. But if you kept only thinking about, okay, I'm going to invest in the next hard drive, you would have really gotten stuck after that. And obviously, the things that have come since out of the minds of technology entrepreneurs have far exceeded what people at the time of the founding of IVP would have thought was possible. So I think that evolution is really important, staying fresh; technology trends evolve. In the early days of IVP and in Silicon Valley, there was a saying among venture capitalists that if you couldn't drive to the board meeting within 30 minutes, you didn't make the investment. That's just not true anymore. There's no way. WILL: [laughs] ERIC: And I think COVID has certainly proved that because investments are being made around the world. Now, maybe in hindsight, that was too fast. There was too much capital flowing around just to resume dating if you will. But the underlying theme is evolution, and I think it's teamwork. Because our founder, Reid, wanted the organization and firm to thrive well beyond his days as an active investor, and you can only do that with building a team that's multigenerational. And I'm proud and lucky to be part of an organization that's done that. WILL: Awesome, awesome. Well, tell me about you. Tell me more about your background. How did you get started in the VC world? ERIC: You know, child of immigrants who came to the United States in the '70s from Taiwan. They met in New York City. Like many other people, moved to the burbs and they started a family. So I was born in New Jersey. My brother and I were both born there. I moved to LA when I was 12. I lived in Southern California until I went to college. Had the miraculous fortune to somehow get into Stanford and went to school sort of in the late '90s into the early 2000s, as good fortune would have it, in the middle of the internet bubble. So I had kind of a front-row seat to that era of technology, innovation not knowing anything about tech when I showed up in Palo Alto in the fall of '96. I got exposed to venture capital while I was in school. There was a pretty memorable, at least for me, speech that I went to. John Doerr, now retired from Kleiner Perkins, was on stage in the engineering auditorium and gave a speech about how Amazon was going to change the world. And this was probably in the fall of '98. And he was right. I just think maybe the timeframe was slightly off, but he was right. I mean, at the time, it was books and CDs, and to some of our listeners, CDs was actually how you used to listen to music. WILL: [laughs] ERIC: But you sort of had this really expansive vision. And it was a really exciting way to understand that there are ways to be involved in the technology ecosystem without necessarily being a software engineer. Because I tried my hand at that, and I wasn't anywhere close to being top of the class, let's put it that way. And so, I wanted to be involved in the industry but also kind of think about how I could play to whatever strengths I had. And then the sort of window into venture capital sort of started to open in terms of my awareness of it. I ended up working at Morgan Stanley for a couple of years out of college, where I got to learn more about technology from a business lens. But I always knew I had an angle or a desire to become a venture capitalist. So got into the industry; it'll be 20 years ago this summer. And I've been fortunate enough to keep doing it for that period of time. So that's kind of the medium-length answer to how I got started [laughs] in the business. ZACK: I don't have quite the story that Eric does there. [laughs] But venture capital was never on my radar. I went to college to be a programmer, and that's where I started out. My first real job was at Anheuser-Busch in Los Angeles, and go Lakers. WILL: [laughs] ZACK: Me and Eric have some LA routes [laughter], so that was a great job. I had a ton of fun. And I just got a call from a recruiter one day that a VC firm was looking for a job as an IT manager. I was very unqualified for the position, went through the interview process. It took like six months. I think I met everybody at the firm, got the job. And that was, like Eric, that was about 20 years ago now. And I have just been in the industry ever since. So it's a great place to be, and I have no plans on leaving. WILL: Oh, that's amazing. I love it. So tell me this, beyond dollars invested...because honestly, when I think of venture capitalists, it is mostly about the money. Hey, how much money have you done? How much money have you sent in? What does that look like? But I don't think we ever cover the next step. What else is there? So beyond dollars, what does IVP do to help companies' portfolio? ERIC: Capital is definitely part of it. It's venture capital, so let's be real. You can't ignore that part of it. But I do think that it is only a part of it because what I think sometimes people don't really think through...because the media in particular likes to write about the day a company goes public or if there's a big acquisition like it all just happened at that one moment, but that is so far from the truth. I mean, the amount of work that entrepreneurs and people at startups put in to drive to those outcomes that sort of culminate in that moment is really one of the things I respect most and enjoy most to be part of as a venture capitalist. And so what our role in that can often be is actually quite varied because no two companies are the same. I mean, there are some common themes, but no two companies are the same. And so how we try and get involved is tailored to what a given company needs at a given point in time. Now, some of the common threads might be working with companies to help build out their teams. We do a lot of that because, ultimately, the team is who's at a company every day. I mean, investors aren't there every day and frankly, if we are, probably something's gone wrong. WILL: [laughs] ERIC: That team is important. And we like to think about getting involved in high-leverage moments. And there are a number of different ones, and Zack is part of this too. So a high-leverage hire is probably someone at the C-level or VP-level because that person then recruits and builds out a team. It's different...not to say that individual contributors aren't also important, but we're trying to think about those key players, moments where we can help, I guess, in a biblical turn, teach people how to fish instead of fish for them. That's our mentality, and recruiting is part of it. Sometimes these are partnerships that can drive significant revenue lines. Sometimes it's debating what a business model should be in a given company. A great example on some of these is at both Coinbase and Discord; there was debate around what the business models ought to look like. Coinbase is very transactional. We pushed them to sort of think through a recurring revenue component, some other services that they could have so that their revenue could be a little smoother and not just dependent on transaction volumes. At Discord, they were thinking through raising money to start an in-house gaming studio. We kind of said, "You know, that's a really competitive industry, and the content creation costs just keep going up. How about a different model? Maybe we can think about a subscription service." And that became what drives the revenue today around buying advanced features for your private servers and things like that. There are a lot of moments...unfortunately, sometimes our companies become targets of bad actors, which brings Zack back to the forefront. Part of the benefit of having a portfolio is we see a lot of these different incidents. And Zack is someone that we sort of unleash with our companies when they face some of these challenges, you know, I got a hack, or I have this going on, and Zack jumps in. You should talk about some of the situations that you've had to deal with. And the bat phone rings when those things happen, and we send them straight to Zack. WILL: [laughs] ZACK: Yeah, I mean, we definitely do everything we can. There definitely have been times where it's, all right; this happened to us; what do we do? How can we help this company? And I've really been deeply involved in security most of my career, and it's kind of where I wanted to go. And I pride myself on that. And we have great security here, and we try to instill the same in our portfolio companies. And recently, we developed these jump guides, which is another way we're helping portfolio companies. So they're kind of like how-to lists. So there would be how to hire your first CFO, how to go IPO, that sort of stuff, and I just authored a couple, actually, that are about how to keep your company safe and how to keep your employees safe. And it's all just tips. It's nothing revolutionary, mind-blowing, but it's just stuff that every company should be doing to keep themselves safe. And so that's really the message that we try to give to our portfolio companies. We definitely internalize it as well. I think really the key to good security is there's a partnership. There has to be a partnership between you with, the security team, and all the employees. You can have all the layers of defense you want. You can have your firewalls, your antivirus, et cetera, but if your employees don't understand the value of security and why they shouldn't click on that link or they shouldn't download that file, it's meaningless. It's very important to instill that, just have open communication. And what I tell everybody at IVP is that security is in your hands. We're doing what we can, but it's in your hands. So, ultimately, it falls on them. And it's a scary time, you know, new stuff coming out all the time. But, yeah, we do our best to keep on top of it and our portfolio companies as well. ERIC: Zack is being very modest. But if you take a step back, if you think about, you know, in any of our own lives, which there's a parallel, I think for companies, there are certain moments when you're facing a tough spot, and people that were there for you and helped you are the ones that are most memorable. And when there are good days, things are pretty easy. And those hard days are where we want to make sure that we're there for our companies. And some of those hard days are in times like these where companies have to make some tough decisions around their cost structure because the environment has changed; some of these are, as Zack points out when they're facing a hack or a breach of some sort. And so, ideally, some of those you're preventing before they happen. But in the moment, Zack is a great ally and asset for a lot of our companies. And some of these also happen on a day-to-day basis. It works great to have someone like Zack on our team. He can kick around and be a source for feedback for some product testing, which he does with a lot of companies that are in the portfolio. And actually, he does that when we're evaluating companies too, and sometimes they don't score so well on the Zack Willis meter. [laughter] And then we have productive feedback to give them to think about things as they refine what they're working on. So it's one of those things where there are high-leverage moments, but we really focus on trying to be involved but also available. And again, this is repetitive to what I said earlier; no two companies are the same. And these are long-term partnerships. We want to make sure that we help them succeed, and that's what it's about. ZACK: I agree, and availability for sure. It can be around the clock. You don't know when these things are going to happen. And definitely, we pride ourselves on that, on being available for our companies when they need us. WILL: That's amazing. It sounds like maybe the secret sauce is your long-term relationship with the company. It's not just drop millions of dollars into the company and see you later. Hopefully, you sell out; whatever, you make money. We'll get it back. It's not the day-to-day, but when it gets hard when we can help you when we can support you. And we kind of have that same mindset with thoughtbot. We don't just try to build software and say, "Hey, you're on your way." But, no, hey, can we help you hire developers, anyone to help you with this and make sure that it's not going to fall off as soon as we leave? But that long-term thing. So sometimes, when you're in a long-term game, it can get kind of messy. So, professionally speaking, what keeps you up at night? ERIC: One of the challenges of being an investor is that you can never be too happy or too sad, particularly when we have a portfolio. So if you think about it, to your point about being involved, it's not just writing a check or investing and then say, "Here's the money; call me later." We're active partners. We take board seats in two-thirds of the companies that we invest in. And that's not a stat I throw out there to say it's a contest to see how many boards you're on. No, it's actually a reflection that when you're on a board, you have a responsibility to be helpful and involved and help steward the entire company on behalf of all shareholders. And so that's part of being involved in a portfolio of 80 or 100 companies that are active right now. There are going to be some that are having good quarters and some that are having tougher quarters. And so, collectively, we try and be even-keeled as long as we're making forward progress. And Zack is a guy who runs sub three-hour marathons, but some miles are harder than others. And he can talk more about that. But there are going to be some periods in a company's journey that are harder than others. And so we just try and make sure we're sort of focused in the right direction and ultimately that the right goal is in mind. And right now, probably what's topical is it's harder for companies to raise money at any scale. You see, this sort of capital markets have really reversed course, and this is by design with the Fed raising rates and trying to intentionally slow the economy down for a whole host of reasons we probably don't have to get into on this podcast, but it's working. And what does that mean for our companies? It's harder to generate revenue. People are watching their budgets, whether they're consumers or enterprises, which then means that they need to watch their operating budgets. And that's why you've seen a lot of the layoffs that have happened across the technology sector, in particular over the last nine months. And it's not just startups, you know, it's Google announcing one of the biggest cuts that they've ever had in their history. Microsoft did that yesterday. So it is a more challenging time, and it's something a lot of people in the industry hadn't been through because we've had the benefit of such a long bull market run. But for better or for worse, at this point in my career, I've seen it more than a few times. And so this is, I think, an area where we can be a guide partner, sometimes just a sounding board because it's not easy to make these decisions. ZACK: First of all, I'll give thoughtbot a quick plug since you guys really helped us out. I guess this was about seven years ago now. We worked with you guys a couple years to get the first iteration of this system that we have that helps us...kind of part of our secret sauce that helps us find companies to invest in. So I'm very thankful for that. And as far as what keeps me up at night, I mean, aside from my cat, and my dog, and my anxiety, [laughs] it's going back to what we talked about before; it's really security. Did we do everything? Are we staying on top of the latest threats? Are we helping out our companies enough? There was an interesting article that just came out a few days ago that talked about how PE companies and some VCs, private equity and venture capital, are requiring security audits of their firms before they invest in them. And so before they'll make the acquisition, they'll run into an audit, and they'll say, "Okay, well, you're missing these things. We're not going to invest in you until you do these things, until you have two-factor authentication until you have this, until you have that." I think that's an interesting trend. For PE, it's a little bit of a bigger deal since they acquire the company. It's still a way that I believe that we can protect ourselves and our portfolio companies. It helps protect our reputation, helps protect their reputation, and it really gives us the chance to get in there at the beginning and say, "Hey, these things are missing. This is what you should focus on security-wise. WILL: That's amazing, amazing. MID-ROLL AD: thoughtbot is thrilled to announce our own incubator launching this year. If you are a non-technical founding team with a business idea that involves a web or mobile app, we encourage you to apply for our eight-week program. We'll help you move forward with confidence in your team, your product vision, and a roadmap for getting you there. Learn more and apply at tbot.io/incubator. WILL: I wanted to take a step back; when you mentioned Coinbase and Discord, and you said that you helped them set the direction going forward. Honestly, we may not even know those companies if their original plan would have gone forward. How much has your 43 years of experience helped guide that direction with Coinbase and Discord? ERIC: You know, there's a saying that history doesn't repeat itself, but it often rhymes. And so I think that's probably the mentality that we try and take from our collective experience as a team that we try to bring to each company. And we meet as a team on Mondays and Thursdays, and it's a very broad meeting compared to most of the investment world in terms of who attends that meeting internally. And so we talk about companies that we're considering and contemplating. We talk about companies we've already invested in. And I think one of our core cultural attributes that is a great strength is putting our best thinking against some of these problems. Again, when things are going well, those are short conversations. But when someone says, "Hey, you know, I'm working with this company, and we're kind of facing this issue. What do people think? What have we seen that's kind of analogous?" And that's where we get some of these ideas from. So, for example, on the Coinbase example, we've been involved in a lot of marketplace businesses and exchange businesses. Those are great business models. And Coinbase has a fantastic management team. But thinking about this, this is pre-IPO and pre-direct listing, and when they want to be public one day, you know, there is a benefit to having a recurring revenue stream, a little more visibility. And so, how could we layer that on and make that, hopefully, over time, a bigger and bigger part of the business? I think in Discord; we had some perspective that led us to invest in the company. In the first place, we've had a lot of success in gaming companies like Zynga, and Supercell, and Niantic, amongst others. We could see how passionate gamers are and, how they come in all different shapes, sizes, flavors, geographies, and how having a communication tool like Discord is really a benefit. However, we also saw that the cost of producing games continues to go up. And if it's not kind of your full-time job, the likelihood you're going to nail something that a very competitive and discerning universe of gamers wants to play is probably not that high. So how do we think about harnessing that energy, and the talent, and the platform you build in a different way? So I'd say those are kind of some examples where we could think about things we've seen in our perspective but apply it to what's relevant for a specific company. WILL: That's amazing. I love it. Yeah, I've heard the gaming business can be brutal. What IVP accomplishments are you most proud of? ERIC: Well, maybe I'll break that into two parts. I think inside and outside the firm; I'm really proud of the team that we've built. And when I joined the firm 11 years ago, we were probably 20 people, 25 people in total. Now we're 65 people. And that doesn't seem like a lot in comparison to big tech companies or hyper-growth startups. But in a business-like venture capital, really what we're doing in addition to providing capital, internally, it's a lot of discussion, decision-making, ideas, thinking. That is hard to do the way that we do it if we get too big. And that goes back to the size of our Monday meetings, which is rather large and includes a wide representation of the firm. But I'm really proud of the team that we've built. I'm really proud of the capabilities that we've enhanced on the technology side. Really, Zack drove a lot of this in the time that he's been with the firm, and we're leaps and bounds ahead of where we were with your help as well. I think Zack was alluding to what we think is one of our secret weapons, our early detection system, so we're really proud of that. And then I'd say externally, or with our companies, we've had 131 of them go public. We had 15 of them do that in 2021, none did in '22. So the market's changed quite a bit. Those are accomplishments that, like I pointed to previously, they're milestone events. The pride comes in knowing that these companies that we've worked with have put in the work over years, at minimum, years, to get to that point. And that gives, I think, all of us a collective sense of accomplishment. WILL: That's amazing. ZACK: Yeah, I definitely agree with that. In my, I guess, almost eight years here now, we've grown a ton in our hiring. Our team is amazing. It's really the reason why I'm still here, why our turnover is basically nothing. We hire great people. And during that time, we've raised some great funds. We've invested in amazing companies. We've helped out a lot of entrepreneurs. It's just across the board. I've been in this industry a while. I feel like IVP is definitely a unique VC firm, and I'm proud of what we do. WILL: That's amazing. One of my favorite questions that I like to ask on the podcast is, if you could go back in time at the very beginning and give yourself advice, what would it be? ZACK: For me, it's stay relevant, I think. And to me, it just means being more involved in everything. Put yourself out there. Be bold. Learn about different areas in the company. Try to attend different meetings. Talk to different departments, and really just make yourself visible. When you do that, I think the rest just kind of falls into place. And it took me quite a while in my career to really realize that. And it's still tough now, but it's something that I'm always trying to do. Historically, I'm a very shy person, but just putting myself out there and doing the best I can in any situation that I find myself in. ERIC: I think a couple of things, balance, and patience are probably two things, not trying to force it. So I think there's a lot of Yoda Jedi wisdom that probably would be useful. So if you're sort of...when I was first starting out, you're younger and impetuous at times and want to make things happen because you have such a strong desire to try and do something the right way and make a positive impact. But the hardest thing to learn is sometimes the right thing to do is actually to do nothing in the investment world. That is a hard thing for a lot of motivated, energetic Type A people to do, and yet it's sometimes the exact right thing you should be doing. So I think it's hard to hear that when you're starting out in your 20s. And now that I'm a little older than that, [laughs] I think I can look back and appreciate it. But that's probably, as I think through that question, maybe the best piece of advice. And yet, like a lot of things, we were all taught while we were younger from people who had more experience, or age, or wisdom, or whatever, there are just some things you hear, and it's not real until you've kind of lived it. And sometimes, in some of those dimensions, you have to make your mistakes before you appreciate them. You guys probably had this experience writing code. Like, there's got to be...I could just do it this way, and it'd be fast. And then you realize it wasn't really that sound or forward-compatible or something. You had to go back and rewrite your architecture, and that's a pain. So I think it's that same approach, thinking with balance. ZACK: Just to add to what I was saying before, too, I think one of the things also would have been, you know, find something you're passionate about and do it every day. That wasn't the case early on in my career, and I turned to running, and I turned to working out. And I do something every morning, and that really, really grounds me. It helps me focus helps me plan out the day. And it's really just my time that's crucial. And whether it's running, whether it's meditating but just taking some time for yourself, you know, energize yourself, take care of yourself. And that goes a long way in the workplace as well. WILL: I love it, yeah. That's why it was one of my favorite questions, just learning from your mistakes, learning from what you did in the past. It's amazing. So I love that. ERIC: Yeah, I mean, since Zack brought up the Lakers, [laughter] and this isn't the Lakers, but it's basketball-related, you guys might remember this old Michael Jordan commercial. He talks about I've missed this many free throws and this many shots and something like, my team has trusted me 80 times to win the game in the fourth quarter, and I've missed. The tagline is something like, I have failed over and over and over and over again, and that is why I succeed. There's definitely some of that in the venture business and the advice I think we could all give to our younger selves. WILL: Oh, yeah, getting back up. Keep going, yeah. ERIC: The same thing with Dwyane Wade commercial, you know, get knocked down eight times, get up nine, kind of the same thing. WILL: Love it. What's something you would love the audience to know about IVP? ZACK: I think our team and just the way we hire. We hire amazing people. They're smart. They're kind. They're low ego. They're thoughtful. I'm not going to say it's completely different from others, but it is, in my experience, a different culture. And we all get along great. We mesh really well, and we continue to hire great. We hired almost 20 People in the last year and a half. That's a lot, but we still manage to maintain the same level of talent. We help our portfolio companies do hires as well. I think that's one of our benefits. We know talent, and we know it internally, and we know it externally. And it's just a great culture to be a part of. WILL: Amazing. ERIC: The thing to think about with us is if you're an entrepreneur building a company, it's tough. Sometimes it's really lonely. We aspire to be partners with entrepreneurs in good times and in bad. We're not the flashiest ones out there. We're not trying to see who has the most Twitter followers. But when you need something, we're there. I think that is something people lost sight of or didn't care as much about in the last couple of years when things were easy. They're not so easy now. And we take pride in these long-term partnerships, which is why we're highly selective in the number of companies we invest in every year. We're never going to be the most active, but we put a lot of our work, time, effort, energy, mental capacity alongside the capital that we bring to our companies. And I think that's been a great formula for us over our history, and it'll continue to be. WILL: That's amazing. To summarize, I know each VC firm has their own DNA. What makes IVP different from its competitors? ERIC: I'd say a couple of things. And again, I've only worked at two firms, and so there are a lot of firms I haven't worked at, so I don't want to attempt to speak too much into the intricacies of how they work. But I'd say inside our four walls, our culture of teamwork and collective outcome and benefit and effort is really special. Every investment we approach has access to the entire firm's resources and capabilities. And I think it's really different. I mean, we're very happy to partner with one another internally, help each other out, help companies that we might not be mostly directly involved with for the benefit of our firm, and our investors, and the companies that we work with. And I think that is something that a lot of firms talk about. I don't think it's always true at a lot of firms. And so, for us, it's really special and something that we've worked really hard to build as a culture, and keep as a culture, and preserve every day. Because I think it's easy to feel like you're on an island in this business at times, but we want to make sure that we feel that connectivity as a team. For our entrepreneurs, we are here to work with you and support you, probably not daily because I think, again, that goes back to having the right people, but weekly, monthly, quarterly, over years, that's our approach. We believe great things take time to build. WILL: That's amazing. Zack, I want to summarize this portion with you. How do you keep your firm and your employees safe from online threats? Do you share that with your portfolio companies? Because I know especially in the tech world and in the news, you're hearing about those scammers, those threats, summarize it for me, like, how do you do that? ZACK: There are a lot of pieces, of course. And as I was talking about before, I think the most important thing is really just getting buy-in from the whole firm. Me and my team we definitely try out the latest products, get the top-of-the-line security stuff, and really make sure that that stack is solid and that we're monitoring everything and getting the buy-in. So it's a lot of training. It's keeping them up to date. It's instilling the messages. Like, when I first started here, I did a security training. The firm had never done a security training. We were pretty light on security at the time. And so, I tried to make the presentation fun and a little scary. So I brought in the FBI. WILL: Wow. ZACK: The FBI scared everybody a little bit. And then I came on and just talked about what to do and not to do. And I actually had a song composed [laughs] about security and what employees should be doing. It was just a funny jingle that people still sing today. [laughter] But yeah, I think just making it memorable. And we have a Slack channel called Tech Talks. I'm always updating the latest information on there on different breaches and different attacks we're seeing, and what we can do to prevent that, and what our employers should be doing. And absolutely, that extends to our portfolio companies. And those jump guides, I believe they're out now with all my technical recommendations. We use those internally. I definitely gave those to the firm but also to our portfolio companies. And there's some interesting stuff in there that you may not think of, like removing your information from the internet. Like, get a company, Optery, something like that, which we pay for for all our employees, and it scrubs the internet of your information, and that's great. It cuts back on phishing, spam calls, you know, just going beyond too. We also have this product that we use that monitors employees' personal email addresses for breaches. So we're not just caring about IVP. We're also caring about what someone's doing in their personal life because that can also lead to a breach of IVP. So yeah, so someone's Gmail account gets exposed, and we're going to know about it, and we can let them know. And then, really, it's just staying on top of things. One of the things we just did, you know, passwords are the worst, everyone knows that, and so we just rolled out this product called Beyond Identity. And it's a password list provider. The difference between them and other password list providers is they offer a layer of security on top of the password list. So it's not just convenient; it's also added security, which was always my worry about going password list; it's just more convenient and less secure. But this company does it right. And it's things like that, just staying ahead of it. All right, passwords are a problem? Let's get rid of passwords. Following those trends and keeping up to date. ERIC: I mean, Zack is a very tough critic. So he's given a couple of shout-outs which means he really likes those products, and I'm glad that we have them. And I very much remember that training session that he did for us or organized. And we did a refresh of it a couple of years ago. I think we've done at least two of them now. It sounds really boring [laughs], and maybe I'm just kind of a geek in that way, but that was one of the most memorable training sessions that I've ever been part of in my time at IVP. And we had Zack's buddy from the FBI come in and give kind of an overview of all the vulnerabilities that they see, and that's obviously very, very cutting edge. And they had some footage of people sort of passing off USB sticks here and there in subways in New York City. So you can kind of see them go in in one entrance. They got a different shot of the camera while they're on the tracks, and they go their separate ways. I mean, this is straight out of some spy stuff, and it's happening. It makes you think...that's an extreme; we know we're talking about sort of most likely state-sponsored bad guys, but the ones that are commercially oriented, I think maybe they're not as frequent...they're more frequent, and so we have to be on guard all the time, especially as a firm that does have access to and move around a lot of money. I'm geeking out because I learned a lot from it. And Zack also likes to keep all of us on our toes with a lot of sort of...it's like the security equivalent of pop quizzes. He's always planting fake links and stuff to see who clicks on them. [laughter] And then he's pretty kind because he doesn't out you by name when we talk about them on Mondays. [laughter] But he says something like, "Hey, you know, there are 65 people who got this test, and the good news is that 50 of you passed. The bad news is that 15 people didn't, which means that could have resulted in a lot of different intrusions. So try and be better," so stuff like that. And it is actually kind of fun and reminds us that while we're a venture capital firm, we are people that comprise the firm just like everybody else, and we got to be vigilant. ZACK: That's a good point, too, just about the FBI and them showing us all the crazy stuff. I mean, one of the things that they really tried to drill in, and I still talk to my friend in the FBI today, is VCs are a target. VCs are absolutely a target. And it's not necessarily what you have; it's what you're perceived to have. And so, okay, they probably think we have a lot of IP and a lot of things like that that we don't necessarily have, but they're still going to try to get in. They're still going to try to hack their way in. And I think that's important, too, just instilling that message like, yeah, we're a VC firm. We're a target; you need to understand that; here's why. And that's true for most firms. We're not special. But it's definitely something you need to instill. ERIC: Oh, Zack's probably going to cringe if he hears me say this, but I definitely take the point that you know, you don't have to be faster than the bear; you just got to be faster than the next guy. So you just have [laughter] to be more secure and more of a pain to try and penetrate, and they'll move on to somebody else. ZACK: I mean, that's totally true. That's a big part of security. If they come knocking on your door, and you have that deadbolt, and the next house doesn't, then yeah, they're going to go the easier path. So that's absolutely true, Eric. WILL: Well, you're doing something right because he remembered the training, and he enjoys it. [laughter] You're doing something right. ERIC: I guess I'm just weird in that way, but it was actually kind of fun. WILL: Well, thank you, Eric and Zack, for being on here. It was amazing. Where can the audience find more information about you, connect with you? ERIC: www.ivp.com is probably the best place. It sounds so old school, but it's the most relevant. Follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn. But I've had a great time talking with you. This has been a lot of fun. Hopefully, you got some nuggets for your audience, too. ZACK: Yeah, I agree. Thank you very much for having us. This was a lot of fun. WILL: Yeah, I've really enjoyed it, so thank you. You can subscribe to the show and find notes along with a complete transcript for this episode at giantrobots.fm. If you have questions or comments, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can find me on Twitter @will23larry. This podcast is brought to you by thoughtbot and produced and edited by Mandy Moore. Thanks for listening. See you next time. ANNOUNCER: This podcast is brought to you by thoughtbot, your expert strategy, design, development, and product management partner. We bring digital products from idea to success and teach you how because we care. Learn more at thoughtbot.com. Special Guests: Eric Liaw and Zack Willis.
Guest: Rania Succar, CEO of Intuit MailchimpTen years out of college, and with two advanced degrees under her belt, Rania Succar knew she wanted to be an operator. Taking a job at Google taught her a lot, but she chafed under the limitations imposed on her control and personal impact. At Intuit, she finally found what she had been searching for: “We really do have a structure that's set up to give you massive amounts of accountability and responsibility.” For seven years, Rania worked across the Quickbooks team before becoming the CEO of Mailchimp in August 2022. And along the way, she also discovered the “beauty” in jointly owning some functions with her teammates: “It can actually be brilliant.”In this episode, Rania and Joubin discuss immigrant culture, boundless energy, the search for meaning, the illusion of control, getting back to equilibrium, registering your ambition, “Mailkimp,” prioritizing family, sleep experiments, passing the baton, finding problem-solvers, and meetings that give you energy.In this episode, we cover: The importance of family to Syrians, Persians, and immigrants (00:43) Navigating two cultures at the dinner table, and Rania's entrepreneurial father (04:48) The arc of her career, and figuring out where she wanted to put her energy (08:59) What motivates & energizes her, and what takes energy away (14:28) The need to own things end to end, and the beauty of sharing the controls (18:32) What Rania has learned over seven years at Intuit, and how she pushes to do more (24:32) Mailchimp's “genius” sponsorship of Serial, and preserving its scrappy culture (30:46) How Rania allocates her time every week, and finding “30% more efficiency” (34:13) Learning about the importance of sleep “the hard way” (38:45) Getting through the early months of COVID and being authentic with her team (43:30) Learning from leaders like Intuit's Bill Campbell and Scott Cook, and defining the “next chapter of exceptional” (46:51) How a visual impairment became a source of strength (52:54) Setting priorities and being a prisoner of one's calendar (57:16) Links: Connect with Rania Twitter LinkedIn Connect with Joubin Twitter LinkedIn Email: email@example.com Learn more about Kleiner Perkins This episode was edited by Eric Johnson from LightningPod.fm
Arvind Jain, Glean CEO and Rubrik co-founder, started Glean in March 2019 to make it easier to find answers strewn across myriad SaaS apps. Prior to Glean, Arvind had an incredible run at data security company Rubrik which he co-founded in 2014. Prior to Rubrik Arvind was a distinguished engineer at Google. Glean became a unicorn last year having raised $100M in May from a list of iconic investors including Lightspeed, General Catalyst, Kleiner Perkins, and Sequoia.Enterprise search is one of the best examples of a field that was in desperate need of disruption. In this episode, we meet one of the disruptors.Listen and learn...Where there's a gap in traditional search technology including GoogleHow to retrieve the best answers across hundreds of SaaS appsHow to understand what users need even when they don't know the right way to ask for itHow to use LLMs like ChatGPT to improve search accuracyHow products like Alexa and Siri are teaching us to ask questions using natural language rather than searching with keywordsHow to personalize enterprise search without improperly using user dataWhat is the future of knowledge managementReferences in this episode...The ethics of ChatGPTSeth Earley from Earley Information Science on AI and the Future of WorkThe Glean blog
Guest: Lesley Young, CRO of GemLesley Young's favorite book is “The Obstacle Is The Way,” in which Ryan Holiday argues that the process of working hard to achieve something is more important than the achievement itself. When you find yourself in a position of leadership, the Gem CRO says, “you realize there's a lot of wisdom that you've gained in those experiences that you've had.” One of her passions is helping other people develop in the careers, which includes convincing them that “that hard yards are going to be the ones that are gonna grow them the most.”In this episode, Lesley and Joubin discuss speaking vs. observing, meeting your heroes, the Great Depression mindset, developing people, Workplace by Facebook, the power of discontent, choosing to show up, controlling the controllable, repeatable success, being “open for business,” getting fired up, remote work, “only the paranoid survive,” and hard feedback.In this episode, we cover: Prepping for public presentations (00:59) Meeting Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff and working with Snowflake CRO Chris Degnan (04:44) Fear of everything evaporating, and becoming resourceful (09:28) The “purpose statement” Lesley wrote for her career, and why she loves to learn (14:16) Choosing to not be *the* leader all the time, and taking a risk on Facebook (20:35) Her relationship with her parents and being motivated by unfinished work (25:45) Ryan Holiday's “The Obstacle Is The Way” and the journey to the achievement (29:32) How to work with founders such as Box CEO Aaron Levie (35:58) Former Segment CEO Peter Reinhardt and asking the right question (41:03) Why Lesley joined Gem on the eve of a hiring downturn: The long-term play (47:26) Why Gem CEO Steve Bartel is an “amazing recruiter,” and the return of in-person collaboration (52:14) The toughest feedback Lesley has ever gotten about herself (59:42) Why delivering tough feedback is harder than receiving it (01:03:49) Links: Connect with LesleyLinkedIn Connect with Joubin Twitter LinkedIn Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Learn more about Kleiner Perkins This episode was edited by Eric Johnson from LightningPod.fm
We have discussed Ellen Pao and her tweets saying that everyone knew what Maxwell was up to previously and in this episode we take a look at the party that they were all attending together, and the people who threw that party.(commercial at 7:20)to contact me:email@example.com:https://www.businessinsider.com/ghislaine-maxwell-attended-kleiner-perkins-vc-party-alleges-ellen-pao-2020-7
Margaret O'Mara, Scott and Dorothy Bullitt Chair of American history and professor at the University of Washington, leads the conversation on big tech and global order. CASA: Welcome to today's session of the Winter/Spring 2023 CFR Academic Webinar Series. I'm Maria Casa, director of the National Program and Outreach at CFR. Thank you all for joining us. Today's discussion is on the record, and the video and transcript will be available on our website, CFR.org/Academic, if you would like to share it with your colleagues or classmates. As always, CFR takes no institutional positions on matters of policy. We are delighted to have Margaret O'Mara with us to discuss big tech and global order. Dr. O'Mara is the Scott and Dorothy Bullitt Chair of American history and professor at the University of Washington. She writes and teaches about the growth of the high-tech economy, the history of American politics, and the connections between the two. Dr. O'Mara is an Organization of American Historians distinguished lecturer and has received the University of Washington Distinguished Teaching Award for Innovation with Technology. Previously, she served as a fellow with the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, the American Council of Learned Societies, and the National Forum on the Future of Liberal Education. From 1993 to 1997, Dr. O'Mara served in the Clinton administration as an economic and social policy aide in the White House and in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. She is the author of several books and an editor of the Politics and Society in Modern America series at Princeton University Press. Welcome, Margaret. Thank you very much for speaking with us today. O'MARA: Thank you so much, Maria, and thank you all for being here today. I'm setting my supercomputer on my wrist timer so I—to time my talk to you, and which is very apropos and it's really—it's great to be here. I have a few slides I wanted to share as I talk through, and I thought that since we had some really interesting meaty present tense readings from Foreign Affairs as background for this conversation as well as the recent review essay that I wrote last year, I thought I would set the scene a little more with a little more history and how we got to now and thinking in broad terms about how the technology industry relates to geopolitics and the global order as this very distinctive set of very powerful companies now. So I will share accordingly, and, Maria, I hope that this is showing up on your screen as it should. So I knew I—today I needed to, of course, talk—open with something in the news, this—the current—the ongoing questions around what has—what was in the sky and what is being shot down in addition to a Chinese spy balloon, which is really kind of getting to a question that's at the center of all of my work. I write at the intersection of economic history and political history and I do that because I'm interested in questions of power. Who has power? What do they value? This is the kind of the question of the U.S.-China—the operative question of the U.S.-China rivalry and the—and concern about China, what are the values, what are the—and Chinese technology and Chinese technology companies, particularly consumer-facing ones. And this is also an operative question about the extraordinary concentration of wealth and power in a few large platform companies that are based on the West Coast of the United States—(laughs)—a couple in my town of Seattle where I am right now talking to you, and others in Silicon Valley. It's very interesting when one does a Google image search to find a publicly available image and puts in Silicon Valley the images that come up are either the title cards of the HBO television comedy, which I was tempted to add, but the—really, the iconic shot of the valley as place is the Apple headquarters—the Spaceship, as it's called in Cupertino—that opened a few years ago in the middle of suburbia. And this is—you know, the questions of concentrated power in the Q&A among the background readings, you know, this was noted by several of the experts consulted about what is the threat of big tech geopolitically and concentrated power, whether that's good, bad, if that's an advantage geopolitically or not. It was something that many of those folks brought up as did the other readings as well. And this question of power—who has power and taking power—has been an animating question of the modern technology industry and there's an irony in this that if you think about the ideological granddaddy of Apple itself is the Whole Earth Catalog, which I—and this is—I quote from this in the opening to my review essay that was part of the background readings and I just thought I would pop this up in full for us to think about. This is Stewart Brand. This is the first issue of the Whole Earth Catalog. The full issue is digitized at the Internet Archive as are so many other wonderful artifacts and primary source materials about this world, and this is right here on the—you know, you turn—open the cover and here is the purpose: “We are as gods and might as well get used to it. So far, remotely done power and glory as via government, big business, formal education, and church has succeeded to the point where gross obscure actual gains. In response to this dilemma and to these gains a realm of intimate personal power is developing—power of the individual to conduct his own education, find his own inspiration, shape his own environment, and share his adventure with whoever is interested. Tools that aid this process are sought and promoted by the Whole Earth Catalog.” The audience of the Whole Earth Catalog was not a bunch of techies, per se. It was back to the landers, people who were going and founding communes and the catalog was—you know, which was more a piece of art than it was an actual shopping guide, had all sorts of things from books by Buckminster Fuller to camp stoves and to the occasional Hewlett Packard scientific calculator, making this kind of statement that these tools could actually be used for empowerment of the individual because, of course, the world of 1968 is one in which computers and AI are in the hands of the establishment. We see this playing out in multiple scales including Hollywood films like Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey, which, of course, follows, what, four years earlier Dr. Strangelove, which was also a satiric commentary on concentrated power of the military industrial complex, and computers were, indeed, things that were used by large government agencies, by the Pentagon, by Fortune 50 companies. And so the countercultural computer or personal computer movement is very much about individual power and taking this away from the global order, so to speak. This is the taking—using these tools as a way to connect people at the individual level, put a computer on every desk, connect everyone via computer networks to one another, and that is how the future will be changed. That is how the inequities of the world would be remedied. The notion of ultimate connectivity as a positive good was not something that originated with Facebook but, indeed, has much, much deeper origins and that's worth thinking about as we consider where we are in 2023 and where things are going from there. It's also worth thinking about the way in which global—the global order and particularly national security and government spending has played a role—an instrumental role—in the growth of the technology industry as it is. Take, for example, the original venture-backed startup, Fairchild Semiconductor, which is legendary as really starting the silicon semiconductor industry in the valley. It is the—it puts the silicon in the valley, and the eight co-founders known as the Traitorous Eight because they all quit en masse their previous job at Shockley Semiconductor working for William Shockley, the co-inventor of the transistor, and they went off and did something that one does not—did not do in 1957 very often, which was start your own company. This was something that you did if you were weird and you couldn't work for people. That's what one old timer told me, reflecting back on this moment. But they, indeed, started their own company, found outside financing and in this group contains Robert Noyce and Gordon Moore, the two co-founders of Intel, as well as Gene Kleiner, co-founder of Kleiner Perkins, the venture capital firm. This is really the—you know, the original—where it all began, and yes, this is a story of free-market entrepreneurialism but it also is a story of the national security state. This is a—Fairchild is founded at a moment when most of the business in the Santa Clara Valley of California, later known as Silicon Valley, was defense related. This is where the jobs were. This is the business they were doing, by and large. There was not a significant commercial market for their products. A month after they're incorporated—in September '57 is when Fairchild incorporates itself. October 1957 Sputnik goes into orbit. The consequent wave of space spending is really what is the literal rocket ship that gets Silicon Valley's chip business going. The integrated circuits made by Fairchild and other chip makers in the valley go into the Apollo guidance system. NASA is buying these chips at a time that there is not a commercial market for them and that enables these companies to scale up production to create a commodity that can be delivered to the enterprise. And so by the time you get to the 1970s you are not talking about defense contractors in any way. These are companies that are putting their chips in cars and in other—all sorts of one time mechanical equipment is becoming transistorized. And Intel is Intel, still one of the most important and consequential—globally consequential tech companies around at the center of the action in the CHIPS Act of last year, not to mention others. But this longer history and this intertwining with the military industrial complex and with broader geopolitics—because, of course, the space program and the Apollo program was a Cold War effort. It was about beating the Soviets to the moon, not just doing it because we could. But that really kind of dissipates and fades from collective memory in the Valley and beyond with the rise of these entrepreneurs like Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Bill Gates, young, new-time CEOs that are presenting a very, very different face of business and really being consciously apolitical, presenting themselves as something so far apart from Washington, D.C. And this notion of tech, big or little, being something separate from government and governance is perpetuated by leaders of both parties, not just Ronald Reagan but also by Democrats of a younger generation that in the early 1980s there was a brief moment in which lawmakers like Tim Wirth and Gary Hart were referred to as Atari Democrats because they were so bullish on high-tech industries as the United States' economic future. And the way in which politicians and lawmakers from the 1980s forward talked about tech was very much in the same key as that of people like Steve Jobs, which is that this is a revolutionary—the tools have been taken from the establishment, and this is something that is apart from politics, that transcends the old global order and is a new one. And, in fact, in the speech in May 1988 in Moscow at the end of his presidency Ronald Reagan delivers a—you know, really frames the post-Cold War future as one in which the microchip is the revolutionary instrument of freedom: “Standing here before a mural of your revolution”—and a very large bust of Lenin—“I talk about a very different revolution that is taking place right now. Its effects are peaceful but they will fundamentally alter our world, and it is—the tiny silicon chip is the agent of that, no bigger than a fingerprint.” This is really remarkable, if we sit back and take a deep breath and think about it, and particularly thinking about what happens after that. What happens after that are decades in which, again, leaders of both parties in the United States and world leaders elsewhere are framing the internet and understanding the internet as this tool for freedom and liberation, a tool that will advance democracy. Bill Clinton, towards the end of his presidency, famously kind of said, effectively, that I'm not worried about China because the internet is going to bring—you know, internet is going to make it very hard to have anything but democracy. And this notion of a post-Cold War and beyond the end of history and tech and big tech being central to that that, in fact, aided the rise of big tech. That was a rationale for a light regulatory hand in the United States, allowing these companies to grow and flourish and so big, indeed, they have become. But I want to end on a note just thinking about the—you know, why this history is important, why this connective tissue between past and present actually does matter. It isn't just that, oh, this is nice to know. This is useful. Lawrence Preston Gise was the second—sorry, the first deputy administrator of DARPA in 1958, created in the wake of the Sputnik—post-Sputnik panic, originally called ARPA, now DARPA. He later ran the entire Western Division of the Atomic Energy Commission—Los Alamos, Livermore, et cetera. Longtime government public servant. In his retirement he retired to his farm in west Texas and his young grandson came and lived with him every summer. And his grandson throughout his life has talked about how—what a profound influence his grandfather was on him, showing him how to be a self-sufficient rancher, how to wrangle cattle and to build a barbed wire fence. But the grandson—you know, what the grandson didn't mention that much because it wasn't really relevant to his personal experience was who his grandfather was and what he had done. But when that grandson, Jeff Bezos—a few years ago when there was—when Google employees were writing their open letter to CEO Sundar Pichai saying, we are not in the defense business. We are—we don't like the fact that you are doing work with the Pentagon, and pressuring Google successfully and other companies to get out of doing work with the Pentagon, Bezos reflected, no, I think we're—I think this is our patriotic duty to do work—do this kind of work. And as I listened to him say that on a stage in an interview I thought, ah, that's his grandfather talking because this little boy, of course, was Jeff Bezos, the grandfather of Lawrence Preston Gise, and those—that connective tissue—familial connective tissue as well as corporate and political connective tissue, I think, is very relevant to what we have before us today. So I'll leave it there. Thanks. CASA: Thank you, Margaret, for that very interesting introduction. Let's open up to questions. (Gives queuing instructions.) While our participants are gathering their thoughts would you start us off by providing a few examples of emerging technologies that are affecting higher education? O'MARA: Yeah. Well, we've had a very interesting last three years in which the debate over online learning versus in-person learning very quickly was not necessarily resolved. We did this mass real-time experiment, and I think it made—put into sharp relief the way in which different technologies are shaping the way that higher education institutions are working and this question of who's controlling the—who controls the platforms and how we mediate what learning we do. Even though I now teach in person again almost everything that I do in terms of assignments and communication is through electronic learning management systems. The one we use at UW is Canvas. But, of course, there are these broader questions—ethical questions and substantive questions—about how our AI-enabled technologies including, notably, the star of the moment, ChatGPT, going to change the way in which—it's mostly been around how are students going to cheat more effectively. But I think it also has these bigger questions about how you learn and where knowledge, where the human—where the human is necessary. My take on it is, aside from the kind of feeling pretty confident in my having such arcane prompts for my midterm essay questions and research projects that ChatGPT, I think, would have a very hard time doing a good job with it but although I'm looking forward to many a form letter being filled by that technology in the future, I think that there is a—you know, this has a history, too. The concern about the robot overlords is a very deep one. It extends from—you know, predates the digital age, and the anxiety about whether computers are becoming too powerful. Of course, this question of artificial intelligence or augmented intelligence kind of is the computer augmenting what a human can do rather than replacing what a human can do or pretending to have the nuance and the complexity that a human might be able to convey. I think there's, you know, these bigger questions and I'm sure—I imagine there are going to be some other questions about AI. Really, you know, this is a—I think this is a very good learning moment, quite frankly, to think more—you know, one of the things I teach about a lot is kind of the information that is on the internet and who's created it and how it is architected and how it is findable and how those platforms have been developed over time. And what ChatGPT and other AIs like them are doing is they're scraping this extraordinary bounteous ocean of information and it is as good as the—it's as good as its source, right. So whatever you're able to do with it you have—your source materials are going to determine it. So if there is bias in the sources, if there is inaccuracy in the sources, there is—that will be replicated. It cannot be—you know, I think what it is is it's a really good rough draft, first draft, for then someone with tacit knowledge and understanding to come into, and I like to think of digital tools as ones that reveal where things that only people can do that cannot be replicated, that this—where human knowledge cannot be, where a machine still—even though a machine is informed by things that humans do and now does it at remarkable speed and scale it still is—there is—we are able to identify where humanity makes a difference. And then my one last caution is I do—you know, the one thing you can't do with these new—any of these new technologies is do them well really fast, and the rush to it is a little anxiety inducing. CASA: Thank you. Our first question is from Michael Leong from the—he's a graduate student at the University of Arizona. Michael, would you like to unmute and ask your question? Q: Yeah. Hi, Dr. O'Mara. Hi, Ms. Casa. Sorry for any background noise. I just had a, like, general question about your thoughts on the role big tech plays in geopolitics. Specifically, we've seen with SpaceX and Starlink especially with what's going on in Ukraine and how much support that has been provided to the Ukrainian Armed Forces, and potentially holding that over—(inaudible)—forces. So, basically, do we expect to see private companies having more leverage over geopolitical events? And how can we go forward with that? O'MARA: Yeah. That's a really—that's a really great question. And you know, I think that there's—it's interesting because the way—there's always been public-private partnerships in American state building and American geopolitics, and that's something—it's worth kind of just noting that. Like, from the very beginning the United States has used private entities as instruments of policy, as parastatal entities, whether it be through, you know, land grants and transcontinental railroad building in the nineteenth century all the way through to Starlink and Ukraine because, of course, the Pentagon is involved, too—you know, that SpaceX is in a very—is a significant government contractor as ones before it. I think that where there's a really interesting departure from the norm is that what we've seen, particularly in the last, you know, the last forty years but in this sort of post-Cold War moment has been and particularly in the last ten to fifteen years a real push by the Pentagon to go to commercial enterprises for technology and kind of a different model of contracting and, I should say, more broadly, national security agencies. And this is something, you know, a real—including the push under—when Ash Carter was in charge of DOD to really go to Silicon Valley and say, you guys have the best technology and a lot of it is commercial, and we need to update our systems and our software and do this. But I think that the SpaceX partnership is one piece of that. But there has been a real—you know, as the government has, perhaps, not gotten smaller but done less than it used to do and there's been more privatization, there have been—there's been a vacuum left that private companies have stepped into and I think Ian Bremmer's piece was really—made some really important points in this regard that there are things that these platform companies are doing that the state used to do or states used to do and that does give them an inordinate amount of power. You know, and these companies are structurally—often a lot of the control over these companies is in the hands of very, very few, including an inordinate unusual amount of founder power, and Silicon Valley, although there's plenty of political opinionating coming out of there now, which is really a departure from the norm, this kind of partisan statements of such—you know, declarations of the—of recent years are something that really didn't—you didn't see very much before. These are not folks who are—you know, their expertise lies in other domains. So that's where my concern—some concern lies where you have these parastatal actors that are becoming, effectively, states and head of states then and they are not, indeed, speaking for—you know, they're not sovereign powers in the same way and they are speaking for themselves and speaking from their own knowledge base rather than a broader sense of—you know, they're not speaking for the public. That's not their job. CASA: Our next question is from Michael Raisinghani from Texas Woman's University. Michael, if you could unmute. Q: Thank you, Ms. Casa and Dr. O'Mara. A very insightful discussion. Thank you for that. I just thought maybe if you could maybe offer some clarity around the generative AI, whether it's ChatGPT or Wordtune or any of this in terms of the future. If you look, let's say, five, ten years ahead, if that's not too long, what would your thoughts be in this OpenAI playground? O'MARA: Mmm hmm. Well, with the first—with the caveat that the first rule of history is that you can't predict the future—(laughs)—and (it's true ?); we are historians, we like to look backwards rather than forwards—I will then wade into the waters of prediction, or at least what I think the implications are. I mean, one thing about ChatGPT as a product, for example, which has been really—I mean, what a—kudos for a sort of fabulous rollout and marketing and all of a sudden kind of jumping into our public consciousness and being able to release what they did in part because it wasn't a research arm of a very large company where things are more being kept closer because they might be used for that company's purposes. Google, for example, kind of, you know, has very in short order followed on with the reveal of what they have but they kind of were beaten to the punch by OpenAI because OpenAI wasn't—you know, it was a different sort of company, a different sort of enterprise. You know, a lot of it are things that are already out there in the world. If we've, you know, made an airline reservation and had a back and forth with a chatbot, like, that's—that's an example of some of that that's already out in the world. If you're working on a Google doc and doing what absolutely drives me bonkers, which is that Google's kind of completing my sentences for me, but that predictive text, those—you know, many things that we are—that consumers are already interacting with and that enterprises are using are components of this and this is just kind of bringing it together. I think that we should be very cautious about the potential of and the accuracy of and the revolutionary nature of ChatGPT or any of these whether it be Bard or Ernie or, you know, name your perspective chatbot. It is what it is. Again, it's coming from the—it's got the source material it has, it's working with, which is not—you know, this is not human intelligence. This is kind of compilation and doing it very rapidly and remarkably and in a way that presents with, you know, literacy. So I'm not—you know, does very cool stuff. But where the future goes, I mean, clearly, look, these company—the big platform companies have a lot of money and they have a great deal of motivation and need to be there for the next big thing and, you know, if we dial back eighteen months ago there were many in tech who were saying crypto and Web3 was the next big thing and that did not—has not played out as some might have hoped. But there is a real desire for, you know, not being left behind. Again, this is where my worry is for the next five years. If this is driven by market pressures to kind of be the—have the best search, have the best—embed this technology in your products at scale that is going to come with a lot of hazards. It is going to replicate the algorithmic bias, the problems with—extant problems with the internet. I worry when I see Google saying publicly, we are going to move quickly on this and it may not be perfect but we're going to move quickly when Google itself has been grappling with and called out on its kind of looking the other way with some of the real ethical dilemmas and the exclusions and biases that are inherent in some of the incredibly powerful LLMs—the models that they are creating. So that's my concern. This is a genie that is—you know, letting this genie out of the bottle and letting it become a mass consumer product, and if—you know, OpenAI, to its credit, if you go to ChatGPT's website it has a lot of disclaimers first about this is not the full story, effectively, and in the Microsoft rollout of their embedding the technology in Bing last week Microsoft leaders, as well as Sam Altman of OpenAI, were kind of—their talking points were very careful to say this is not everything. But it does present—it's very alluring and I think we're going to see it in a lot more places. Is it going to change everything? I think everyone's waiting for, like, another internet to change everything and I don't know if—I don't know. The jury's out. I don't know. CASA: Thank you. Our next question is a written one. It comes from Denis Fred Simon, clinical professor of global business and technology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He asked, technology developments have brought to the surface the evolving tension between the drive for security with the desire for privacy. The U.S. represents one model while China represents another model. How do societies resolve this tension and is there some preferred equilibrium point? O'MARA: That is a—that's the billion-dollar question and it's—I think it's a relevant one that goes way back. (Laughs.) I mean, there are many moments in the kind of evolution of all of these technologies where the question of who should know what and what's allowable. If we go back to 1994 and the controversy over the Clipper chip, which was NSA wanting to build a backdoor into commercially available software, and that was something that the industry squashed because it would, among other things, have made it very difficult for a company like Microsoft to sell their products in China or other places if you had a—knew that the U.S. national security agencies were going to have a window into it. And, of course, that all comes roaring back in 2013 with Snowden's revelations that, indeed, the NSA was using social media platforms and other commercial platforms—consumer-facing platforms—to gather data on individuals. You know, what is the perfect balance? I mean, this is—I wish I had this nice answer. (Laughs.) I would probably have a really nice second career consulting and advising. But I think there is a—what is clear is that part of what has enabled the American technology industry to do what it has done and to generate companies that have produced, whether you think the transformations on balance are good or bad, transformative products, right. So everything we're using to facilitate this conversation that all of us are having right now is coming from that font. And democratic capitalism was really critical to that and having a free—mostly free flow of information and not having large-scale censorship. I mean, the postscript to the Clipper chip—you know, Clipper chip controversy is two years later the Telecom Act of 1996, which was, on the one hand, designed to ensure the economic growth of what were then very small industries in the internet sector and not—and prevent the telecoms from ruling it all but also were—you know, this was a kind of making a call about, OK, in terms when it comes to the speech on the internet we are going to let the companies regulate that and not be penalized for private—when private companies decide that they want to take someone down, which is really what Section 230 is. It's not about free speech in a constitutional sense. It's about the right of a company to censor or to moderate content. It's often the opposite of the way that it's kind of understood or interpreted or spun in some ways. But it is clear that the institutions of—that encourage free movement of people and capital have been—are pretty critical in fueling innovation writ large or the development and the deployment and scaling of new technologies, particularly digital technologies. But I think you can see that playing out in other things, too. So that has been, I think, a real tension and a real—there's a market dimension to this, not just in terms of an ethical dimension or political dimension that there does need to be some kind of unfettered ability of people to build companies and to grow them in certain ways. But it's a fine balance. I mean, this sort of, like, when does regulation—when does it—when do you need to have the state come in and in what dimension and which state. And this goes back to that core question of like, OK, the powerful entities, what are their values? What are they fighting for? Who are they fighting for? I don't know. I'm not giving you a terribly good answer because I think it's a really central question to which many have grappled for that answer for a very long time. CASA: Thank you. Our next question comes from Ahmuan Williams, a graduate student at the University of Oklahoma. Ahmuan? Q: Thank you. Hi. I'm wondering about ChatGPT, about the regulation side of that. It seems like it's Microsoft that has kind of invested itself into ChatGPT. Microsoft had before gotten the Pentagon contract just a few years back. So it's kind of a two-part question. So, first of all, how does that—what does that say about government's interest in artificial intelligence and what can be done? I know the Council of Foreign Relations also reported that the Council of Europe is actually planning an AI convention to figure out how, you know, a framework of some type of AI convention in terms of treaties will work out. But what should we be worried about when it comes to government and the use of AI in political advertisements and campaigns, about, basically, them flooding opinions with, you know, one candidate's ideas and, therefore, them being able to win because they're manipulating our opinions? So what would you say would be kind of a regulation scheme that might come out of these type—new flourishing AI devices? O'MARA: Mmm hmm. Mmm hmm. That's a good question. I think there's sort of different layers to it. I mean, I see that, you know, the Pentagon contract—the JEDI contract—being awarded to Microsoft, much to Amazon's distress—(laughs)—and litigious distress, is a kind of a separate stream from its decision to invest 10 billion (dollars) in OpenAI. I think that's a commercial decision. I think that's a recognition that Microsoft research was not producing the—you know, Microsoft didn't have something in house that was comparable. Microsoft saw an opportunity to at last do a—you know, knock Google off of its dominant pedestal in search and make Bing the kind of long—kind of a punch line—no longer a punch line but actually something that was a product that people would actively seek out and not just use because it was preinstalled on their Microsoft devices. That is—so I see that as a market decision kind of separate from. The bigger AI question, the question of AI frameworks, yes, and this, again, has a longer history and, you know, I kind of liken AI to the Pacific Ocean. It's an enormous category that contains multitudes. Like, it's—you know, we can—oftentimes when we talk about AI or the AI that we see and we experience, it's machine learning. And part of why we have such extraordinary advances in machine learning in the last decade has—because of the harvesting of individual data on these platforms that we as individuals use, whether it be Google or Meta or others, that that has just put so much out there that now these companies can create something that—you know, that the state of the art has accelerated vastly. Government often is playing catch up, not just in tech but just in business regulation, generally. The other—you know, another example of this in the United States cases with the—in the late nineteenth century, early twentieth century, with what were then new high-tech tech-driven industries of railroads and oil and steel that grew to enormous size and then government regulators played catch up and created the institutions that to this day are the regulators like the FTC created in 1913. Like, you know, that's—of that vintage. So, I think that it depends on—when it comes to—the question about electoral politics, which I think is less about government entities—this is about entities, people and organizations that want to be in charge of government or governments—that is, you know, AI—new technologies of all kinds that incorporate ever more sophisticated kind of, essentially, disinformation, that—information that presents as real and it is not. The increased volume of that and the scale of that and the sophistication of that and the undetectability of it does create a real challenge to free and fair elections and also to preventing, in the American context, international and foreign intervention in and manipulation of elections but true in every context. That is, you know, getting good information before voters and allowing bad actors to exploit existing prejudices or misassumptions. That is an existing problem that probably will be accelerated by it. I think there's—there's a strong case to be made, at least in the U.S. context, for much stronger regulation of campaign advertising that extends to the internet in a much more stricter form. In that domain there's—I think we have pretty good evidence that that has not been—you know, having that back end has made the existing restrictions on other types of campaign speech and other media kind of made them moot because you can just go on a social platform and do other things. So there's—you know, this is—I think the other thing that compromises this is the rapidly changing nature of the technology and the digital—and the global reach of these digital technologies that extends any other product made—you know, any other kind of product. It just is borderless that—in a kind of overwhelming way. That doesn't mean government should give up. But I think there's a sort of supranational level of frameworks, and then there are all sorts of subnational kind of domain-specific frameworks that could occur to do something as a countervailing force or at least slow the role of developers and companies in moving forward in these products. CASA: Thank you. Our next question is a written one. It comes from Prashant Hosur, assistant professor of humanities and social sciences at Clarkson University. He asks, how do you—or she. I'm sorry. I'm not sure. How do you think big tech is likely to affect conventional wisdom around issues of great power rivalry and power transitions? O'MARA: Hmm. I don't—well, I think there are a—these are always—these definitions are always being redefined and who the great powers are and what gives them power is always being reshuffled and—but, of course, markets and economic resources and wealth and—are implicated in this for millennia. I think that tech companies do have this—American tech companies and the tech platforms, which I should preface this by saying, you know, none of the companies we're talking about now are going to rule forever. Maybe that just goes without—it's worth just note, you know, this is—we will have the rise and fall. Every firm will be a dinosaur. Detroit was the most innovative city in the world a hundred and ten years ago. There's still a lot of innovation and great stuff coming out of Detroit, but if you—if I queried anyone here and said, what's the capital of innovation I don't know if you would say Detroit. But back in the heyday of the American auto industry it was, and I think it's a good reminder. We aren't always going to be talking about this place in northern California and north Seattle in this way. But what we have right now are these companies that their products, unlike the products of Henry Ford or General Motors, are ones that are—go across borders with—you know, the same product goes across borders seamlessly and effortlessly, unlike an automobile where a—to sell in a certain country you have to meet that country's fuel standards and, you know, safety standards, et cetera, et cetera. You have a different model for a different market. Instead, here, you know, a Facebook goes where it goes, Google goes where it goes, YouTube goes where it goes, and that has been kind of extraordinary in terms of internationalizing politics, political trends. I think what we've seen globally is very—you know, the role of the internet in that has been extraordinary, both for good and for ill, in the last fifteen years. And then the kind of—the immense—the great deal of power that they have in the many different domains and, again, Ian Bremmer also observed this kind of the—all the different things they do and that is something that is different from twenty-five years ago where you now have companies that are based on the West Coast of the United States with products designed by a small group of people from a kind of narrow, homogenous band of experience who are doing things like transforming taxis and hotels and, I mean, you name it, kind of going everywhere in a way that in the day of the—you know, the first Macintosh, which was like this cool thing on your desk, that was—yes, it was a transformative product. It was a big deal and Silicon Valley was—became a household word and a phrase in the 1980s and the dot.com era, too. That was—you know, everyone's getting online with their AOL discs they got in the mail. But what's happened in the twenty-first century is at a scale and—a global scale and an influence across many different domains, and politics, this very deliberate kind of we are a platform for politics that has really reshaped the global order in ways that are quite profound. This is not to say that everything has to do with big tech is at the root of everything. But let's put it in context and let's, you know—and also recognize that these are not companies that were designed to do this stuff. They've been wildly successful what they set out to do and they have a high-growth tech-driven model that is designed to move fast and, yes, indeed, it breaks things and that has—you know, that has been—they are driven by quarterly earnings. They are driven by other things, as they should be. They are for-profit companies, many of them publicly traded. But the—but because, I think, in part they have been presenting themselves as, you know, we're change the world, we're not evil, we're something different, we're a kinder, gentler capitalism, there has been so much hope hung on them as the answer for a lot of things, and that is not—kind of giving states and state power something of the past to get its act together that instead states need to step up. CASA: Our next question is from Alex Grigor. He's a PhD candidate from University of Cambridge. Alex? Q: Hello. Yes. Thank you. Can you hear me? O'MARA: Yes. CASA: Yes. Q: Yeah. Hi. Thank you, Ms. O'Mara. Very insightful and, in fact, a lot of these questions are very good as well. So they've touched upon a lot of what I was going to ask and so I'll narrow it down slightly. My research is looking at cyber warfare and sort of international conflict particularly between the U.S. and China but beyond, and I was wondering—you started with the sort of military industrial complex and industry sort of breaking away from that. Do you see attempts, perhaps, because of China and the—that the technology industry and the military are so closely entwined that there's an attempt by the U.S. and, indeed, other countries. You see increase in defense spending in Japan and Germany. But it seems to be specifically focused, according to my research, on the technologies that are coming out of that, looking to reengage that sort of relationship. They might get that a little bit by regulation. Perhaps the current downsizing of technology companies is an opportunity for governments to finally be able to recruit some good computer scientists that they haven't been able to—(laughs)—(inaudible). Perhaps it's ASML and semiconductor sort of things. Do you see that as part of the tension a conscious attempt at moving towards reintegrating a lot of these technologies back into government? O'MARA: Yeah. I think we're at a really interesting moment. I mean, one thing that's—you know, that's important to note about the U.S. defense industry is it never went away from the tech sector. It just kind of went underground. Lockheed, the major defense contractor, now Lockheed Martin, was the biggest numerical employer in the valley through the end of the Cold War through the end of the 1980s. So well into the commercial PC era and—but very—you know, kind of most of what was going on there was top secret stuff. So no one was on the cover of Forbes magazine trumpeting what they've done. And there has been—but there has been a real renewed push, particularly with the kind of—to get made in Silicon Valley or, you know, made in the commercial sector software being deployed for military use and national security use and, of course, this is very—completely bound up in the questions of cyber warfare and these existing commercial networks, and commercial platforms and products are ones that are being used and deployed by state actors and nonstate actors as tools for cyber terrorism and cyber warfare. So, yes, I think it's just going to get tighter and closer and the great—you know, the stark reality of American politics, particularly in the twentieth and into the twenty-first centuries, is the one place that the U.S. is willing to spend lots of money in the discretionary budget is on defense and the one place where kind of it creates a rationale for this unfettered—largely, unfettered spending or spending with kind of a willingness to spend a lot of money on things that don't have an immediately measurable or commercializable outcome is in national security writ large. That's why the U.S. spent so much money on the space program and created this incredible opportunity for these young companies making chips that only—making this device that only—only they were making the things that the space program needed, and this willingness to fail and the willingness to waste money, quite frankly. And so now we're entering into this sort of fresh—this interesting—you know, the geopolitical competition with China between the U.S. has this two dimensions in a way and the very—my kind of blunt way of thinking about it it's kind of like the Soviet Union and Japan all wrapped up in one, Japan meaning the competition in the 1980s with Japan, which stimulated a great deal of energy among—led by Silicon Valley chip makers for the U.S. to do something to help them compete and one of those outcomes was SEMATECH, the consortium to develop advanced semiconductor technology, whose funding—it was important but its funding was a fraction of the wave of money that just was authorized through last year's legislation, the CHIPS Act as well as Inflation Reduction Act and others. So I'm seeing, you know, this kind of turn to hardware and military hardware and that a lot of the commercial—the government subsidized or incentivized commercial development of green technology and advanced semiconductor, particularly in military but other semiconductor technology and bringing semiconductor manufacturing home to the United States, that is—even those dimensions that are nonmilitary, that are civilian, it's kind of like the Apollo program. That was a civilian program but it was done for these broader geopolitical goals to advance the economic strength and, hence, the broader geopolitical strength of the United States against a competitor that was seen as quite dangerous. So that's my way of saying you're right, that this is where this is all going and so I think that's why this sort of having a healthy sense of this long-term relationship is healthy. It's healthy for the private sector to recognize the government's always been there. So it isn't though you had some innovative secret that the government is going to take away by being involved. And to also think about what are the broader goals that—you know, who is benefiting from them and what is the purpose and recognize often that, you know, many of the advanced technologies we have in the United States are thanks to U.S. military funding for R&D back in the day. CASA: Our next question is written. It's from Damian Odunze, who is an assistant professor at Delta State University. Regarding cybersecurity, do you think tech companies should take greater responsibility since they develop the hardware and software packages? Can the government mandate them, for instance, to have inbuilt security systems? O'MARA: Hmm. Yeah. I think—look, with great power comes great responsibility is a useful reminder for the people at the top of these companies that for—that are so remarkably powerful at the moment and because their platforms are so ubiquitous. There are—you see, for example, Microsoft has really—is a—I think what they've done in terms of partnering with the White House and its occupants and being—kind of acting as a NSA first alert system of sorts and kind of being open about that I think that's been good for them from a public relations perspective, and also—but I think it also reflects this acknowledgement of that responsibility and that it also is bad for their business if these systems are exploited. Yeah, I think that, again, regulation is something that—you know, it's like saying Voldemort in Silicon Valley. Like, some people are, like, oh, regulation, you know. But there's really—there can be a really generative and important role that regulation can play, and the current industry has grown up in such a lightly-regulated fashion you just kind of get used to having all that freedom, and when it comes to cybersecurity and to these issues of national security importance and sort of global importance and importance to the users of the products and the companies that make them there's, I think, a mutual interest in having some sort of rules of the road and that—and I think any company that's operating at a certain scale is—understands that it's in their market interest to be—you know, not to be a renegade, that they are working with. But I think having—you know, there can be a willingness to work with but they're—having a knowledge and an understanding and a respect for your government partners, your state partners, whether they be U.S. or non-U.S. or supranational is really critically important and sometimes tech folks are a little too, like, oh, politics, they don't know what they're doing, you know. We know better. And I think there needs to be a little more mutual exchange of information and some more—yes, some more technical people being able to be successfully recruited into government would probably be a help, too, so there's—on both sides of the table you have technically savvy people who really understand the inner workings of how this stuff is made and don't have simplistic answers of like, oh, we'll just take all the China-made technology out of it. You're, like, well, there's—like, it's kind of deep in the system. You know, so having technologists in the conversation at all points is important. CASA: Thank you. I think we have time for one more question. We'll take that from Louis Esparza, assistant professor at California State University in Los Angeles. Q: Hi. Thank you for your very interesting talk. So I'm coming at this from the social movements literature and I'm coming into this conversation because I'm interested in the censorship and influence of big tech that you seem to be, you know, more literate in. So my question is do you think that this—the recent trends with big tech and collaboration with federal agencies is a rupture with the origin story of the 1960s that you talked about in your talk or do you think it's a continuity of it? O'MARA: Yeah. That's a great way to put it. The answer is, is it both? Well, it's something of a rupture. I mean, look, this—you know, you have this—you have an industry that grows up as intensely—you know, that those that are writing and reading the Whole Earth Catalog in 1968 the military industrial complex is all around them. It is paying for their education sort of effectively or paying for the facilities where they're going to college at Berkeley or Stanford or name your research university—University of Washington. It is the available jobs to them. It is paying for the computers that they learn to code on and that they're doing their work on. It is everywhere and it is—and when you are kind of rebelling against that establishment, when you see that establishment is waging war in Vietnam as being a power—not a power for good but a power for evil or for a malevolent—a government you don't trust whose power, whose motivations you don't trust, then you—you know, you want to really push back against that and that is very much what the personal computer movement that then becomes an industry is. That's why all those people who were sitting around in the 1970s in Xerox Palo Alto Research Center—Xerox Park—just spitballing ideas, they just did not want to have anything to do with military technology. So that's still there, and then that—and that ethos also suffused other actors in, you know, American government and culture in the 1980s forward, the sort of anti-government sentiment, and the concerns about concentrated power continue to animate all of this. And the great irony is that has enabled the growth of these private companies to the power of states. (Laughs.) So it's kind of both of those things are happening and I think, in some ways, wanting to completely revolutionize the whole system was something that was not quite possible to do, although many—it is extraordinary how much it has done. CASA: Margaret, thank you very much for this fascinating discussion and to all of you for your questions and comments. I hope you will follow Margaret on Twitter at @margaretomara. Our next Academic Webinar will take place on Wednesday, March 1, at 1:00 p.m. Eastern Time. Chris Li, director of research of the Asia Pacific Initiative and fellow at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard University, will lead a conversation on U.S. strategy in East Asia. In the meantime, I encourage you to learn about CFR's paid internships for students and fellowships for professors at CFR.org/Careers. Follow at @CFR_Academic on Twitter and visit CFR.org, ForeignAffairs.com, and ThinkGlobalHealth.org for research and analysis on global issues. Thank you again for joining us today. We look forward to you tuning in for our webinar on March 1. Bye. (END)
Guest: Javier Molina, CRO of StarburstStarburst CRO Javier Molina's peers, colleagues, and even his wife often tell him the same thing: He's difficult to read. That doesn't mean he's not listening, though; in fact, he's focusing on many different things, speech patterns, the words used in addition to the social cues, a habit he describes as both a superpower and his Achilles heel. “It allows me to interview really well and assess talent,” says Javier, who describes himself as a social introvert. “It allows me to read situations ... [but] I think a lot of people like extroverts because of how they're so expressive and flashy ... and that's not me.”In this episode, Javier and Joubin discuss Austin culture, making eye contact, social introverts, living in the future, self-awareness, betting on yourself, workhorse culture, reverse job interviews, short-term wins, in-car WiFi, great partners, and world-class interviewing.In this episode, we cover: San Francisco vs. Austin and the flood of techies moving to Texas (01:08) The “movie that you can't turn off” and assessing people quickly (05:49) Patience, focus, and being present (14:10) “What is a common misconception of you?” (19:53) Self-awareness as a proxy for potential, and feeling different from the crowd (25:04) Buying houses, and betting on yourself (32:00) Being hired as an executive, and the culture of teams at bootstrapped companies (39:00) What Starburst does and turning the tables on CEO Justin Borgman (45:44) Being intentional, celebrating wins, and “enjoying the climb” (50:31) Getting away from work, and the strength of entrepreneurs' relationships (57:22) The little things in interviews, and why “a problem well stated is half solved” (01:02:50) How to screen for grit (01:07:41) Links: Connect with Javier Twitter LinkedIn Connect with Joubin Twitter LinkedIn Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Learn more about Kleiner Perkins This episode was edited by Eric Johnson from LightningPod.fm
All of Dennis Lyandres' mentors — and even his parents — thought he was making a mistake when he joined Procore in 2014. At the time, he was working at the “it” company in Silicon Valley, Cloudera, and the startup was more than 10 years old without any major wins under its belt. But he knew someone “was gonna build a massive company” in construction software, and he found out that Procore's team was uniquely obsessive about making its customers successful: “It felt like a culture that wouldn't lose,” he says. In this episode, Dennis and Joubin discuss the power of food, being a “prep maniac,” finding satisfaction, the potential for greatness, the tickle of urgency, imposter syndrome, construction software, magical CEOs, internal pep talks, learning from failure, the wisdom of others, strong relationships, the Procore IPO, and life partners.In this episode, we cover: The Procore campus and employee experience (01:03) How Dennis prepped for this podcast and lifelong learning (05:00) “Have I plateaued? Is this it?” (11:31) Channeling energy into your work, and knowing what you can change (17:42) Dennis' parents and how he thought about work for most of his career (22:30) His first jobs and why he left Cloudera for Procore (27:11) The first “oh shit” moment and the 10-year success story (34:25) The winning culture and what Dennis would do with a second chance (39:47) Scaling to nine-figure revenue and personal growth through failure (43:20) Great vs. terrible leadership and finding the right mentors (48:21) Procore CEO Tooey Courtemanche and relationships built on trust (55:08) Fixing the technology in construction (58:19) Powerful advice about ethics and interpersonal relationships (01:02:49) Thoughtful gifts and making space for another person in your life (01:08:58) Links: Connect with Dennis Twitter LinkedIn Connect with Joubin Twitter LinkedIn Email: email@example.com Learn more about Kleiner Perkins This episode was edited by Eric Johnson from LightningPod.fm
How I Raised It - The podcast where we interview startup founders who raised capital.
Produced by Foundersuite (www.foundersuite.com), "How I Raised It" goes behind the scenes with startup founders and investors who have raised capital. This episode is with Hubert Palan of Productboard.com, a software platform that helps product managers collect customer desires and plan and prioritize product roadmaps. In this episode we go deep into both product management and fundraising. On the product side, Hubert gives advice for new Product Managers, striking a balance between the needs of sales and customer support, and how to prioritize a product roadmap. On the funding side, he shares his approach for how and why he's raised $260 million in venture capital (all the way to Series D), tips for thoughtfully deploying a large cash war chest, tips for screening and vetting investors, and more. Productboard has raised $260 million in total. The most recent raise was a $125M Series D funding round led by Dragoneer Investment Group and Tiger Global, with participation from existing investors Bessemer Venture Partners, Sequoia Capital, Kleiner Perkins, Index Ventures, and Credo Ventures. How I Raised It is produced by Foundersuite, makers of software to raise capital and manage investor relations. Foundersuite's customers have raised over $9.7 Billion since 2016. Create a free account at www.foundersuite.com.
你今天《跨進跨境電商》了嗎？ 由台灣歐美日跨境電商第一把交椅，視宇 X 秩宇共同打造，幫你把複雜的營運知識整理成十分鐘好上手的電商補帖，讓大家順利踏出獲利的第一步！ 只要產品夠優秀，我們幫你賣全球 ▸ 節目連結 https://lihi1.com/Zi7Fi -- 爆片、爆卦不間斷，全新的壹蘋新聞網。App免費下載：https://app.nextapple.com/GMQ7 －－－－以上訊息由 SoundOn 動態廣告贊助商提供－－－－ 飛碟聯播網《飛碟早餐 唐湘龍時間》2023.02.01 週三財經產業趨勢單元 國立臺北大學金融與合作經營學系教授 黃啟瑞 《OKR實現淨零排放的行動計畫》 ※主題：《OKR實現淨零排放的行動計畫》/ 約翰‧杜爾、萊恩‧潘查薩拉姆 / 天下文化 ※來賓：國立臺北大學金融與合作經營學系教授 黃啟瑞 ◎節目介紹： 我們已經耗盡解決全球氣候危機的時間，為了避免災難發生、拯救適宜居住的地球，就必須抱持野心、快速行動。我們需要一項可靠的計畫，本書正是為了號召眾人而寫，而且過程中不能犯錯，現在就要馬上行動。 2006年，約翰‧杜爾在一場晚宴後，下定決心翻轉全球暖化的現況。他廣邀各路專家、科學界領導者、政策制定者、運動人士、商界領袖以及慈善家，共同設計了一份藍圖，致力於減少威脅全球的溫室氣體。杜爾從中學到深刻的經驗。他指出，儘管我們已經握有氣候解決方案，卻缺乏政策、投資與全球共識以付諸實行。我們必須擴大現有創新的規模，同時開發尚未完善的新方法。簡單來說，「現在」與「未來」一樣重要。 他選擇採用OKR，這是幫助全球創新組織達成驚人目標的有效工具，他則是用來設計一套行動計畫，捍衛後代子孫的未來。本書詳細列出各個產業減少排放的方法，也指引眾人如何在2050年前達成淨零排放。 書中詳實分析解決氣候變遷的綠能新經濟與未來趨勢，並介紹相關新創公司與大型企業的發展，不只是全球各行各業積極領導者的行動指南，更是注重永續發展投資人的投資指引。 ◎作者介紹：約翰‧杜爾（John Doerr） 工程師、創業投資經理人、創投公司凱鵬華盈（Kleiner Perkins）董事長。過去四十年來，他以獨到的眼光、樂觀的態度投身創投業界，幫助新創企業打造大膽的團隊，以及破壞性的公司。身為Google與亞馬遜（Amazon）的第一代投資人與公司董事，杜爾參與造就了超過百萬個就業機會。從2006年開始，他投資零排放技術，是矽谷潔淨科技趨勢先驅。在凱鵬華盈之外，杜爾與社會企業家合作，共同解決氣候、公共衛生以及教育領域的系統性問題。 ◎作者介紹：萊恩‧潘查薩拉姆（Ryan Panchadsaram） 致力於解決系統性社會難題的工程師與專業投資人，在凱鵬華盈擔任約翰．杜爾的技術顧問，專門投資以改變世界為目標的公司創辦人與技術。歐巴馬執政時期，潘查薩拉姆擔任美國副科技長（Deputy Chief Technology Officer），大力鼓吹創新、創業精神與開放資料。 ▶ 《飛碟早餐》FB粉絲團 https://www.facebook.com/ufobreakfast/ ▶ 飛碟聯播網FB粉絲團 https://www.facebook.com/ufonetwork921/ ▶ 網路線上收聽 http://www.uforadio.com.tw/stream/stream.html ▶ 飛碟APP，讓你收聽零距離 IOS：https://reurl.cc/3jYQMV Android：https://reurl.cc/5GpNbR ▶ 飛碟Podcast SoundOn : https://bit.ly/30Ia8Ti Apple Podcasts : https://apple.co/3jFpP6x Spotify : https://spoti.fi/2CPzneD Google 播客：https://bit.ly/3gCTb3G KKBOX：https://reurl.cc/MZR0K4