Smart entrepreneurs know one of the secrets to scale is leveraging wisdom from others. (In fact, that’s the mission of this show!) But not all advice is right for you right now — and some can even be disastrous. As the founder of the proto-fintech platform LearnVest, Alexa von Tobel scaled her business by seeking advice from mentors and friends … and then, taking only the advice that served her mission. Following Alexa’s story, you’ll learn how to become a good advice detective, with the power to sort the transformative advice from the traps.
For entrepreneurs and business leaders, the path to success is littered with traps. In this special episode of Masters of Scale, we go into the trenches with leaders from Google, Uber, LinkedIn, and more for inside stories on how to identify, decode, and surmount unexpected pitfalls — from organizational jams to overcommunication, from bloated meetings to bungled succession planning. Learn how to get out of, and avoid, these traps, for yourself and the entire organization.
When the FDA blessed Upside Foods’ grown-from-cells chicken as safe to eat, it was a coming-of-age moment for cultivated meat. Upside founder and CEO Dr. Uma Valeti shares his journey of convincing skeptics, landing investors from Bill Gates to food giants Tyson and Cargill, and building a collaborative partnership with the FDA and USDA. Plus, his lessons on leadership from a career in cardiology and what it will take to convert consumers to a never-before-seen product.
Branding is at the heart of any organization’s identity, product, and mission. That’s why brand relevance isn’t a nice-to-have — it’s a need to have. This special episode shares key branding lessons from Nike, Disney, the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee, and more.
As we live and work longer, leaders need to redefine how they think about attracting and developing intergenerational talent. Modern Elder Academy’s Chip Conley is at the forefront of this mindset shift, explaining why “wisdom workers” will take the place of “knowledge workers.” A close mentor to Airbnb founder Brian Chesky, Chip stresses that those in mid-career face both more angst and more opportunity than ever. He provides a roadmap for reframing midlife from crisis to calling, and argues that five generations in the workplace requires a new generational compact.
The tech industry and its investors have been captivated by the spell of the Unicorn for too long — and the ambitious goal of a billion-dollar valuation has done more harm than good. Instead, founders should aim to be resilient Dragons. That’s the view of Maëlle Gavet, who as CEO of early-stage investment business Techstars has unmatched insight into the hopes, dreams, and challenges of thousands of founders. Maëlle also shares her experience as a “Fixer and Scaler” and offers important lessons for all entrepreneurs, from pre-seed start-ups to corporate change agents.
To complete an audacious journey, you need to set short, achievable goals — or waypoints — to avoid getting wildly lost. But waypoints also need to be flexible because when you’re knocked off track, you need to be able to realign your waypoints to get back on course. Aurora’s Chris Urmson shares how he keeps returning to short, flexible waypoints on his daunting journey to make autonomous vehicles part of our everyday lives.
After slashing his NYC restaurant team from 2,400 people to just 45 in the teeth of the pandemic, Danny Meyer has rebuilt Union Square Hospitality Group back to its former size. But in his fifth appearance on Rapid Response since Covid struck, Danny says he isn’t yet triumphant. With inflation creating fresh challenges even at Shake Shack, Danny shares lessons on the good and bad of leading through a crisis, plus explains why he’s handed off his CEO title — and where he finds inspiration to fuel new innovations.
Can a small entrepreneur make an impact within a massive, complex system, like healthcare or education? What’s the best framework to amplify the positive side of having co-founders and avoid the negatives? Reid Hoffman and Bob Safian answer these and more questions from small business owners in the Masters of Scale community. Plus: in our Need to Know segment, Reid & Bob take on a burning question: How can Black founders beat the odds and find funding?
When is it time to double down on your instincts, and when is it time to open yourself up to feedback? Sometimes it comes down to a hard call… that you might get totally wrong. In Part Two of our episode with Patreon’s Jack Conte, you’ll hear how he was able to raise capital by telling his authentic story after a series of pitches that went disastrously wrong! And you’ll hear how his worst mistake as a founder helped him reconnect with Patreon’s mission and community, and build Patreon into a $4B company. How can being wrong accelerate your business? It takes running at the solution with insatiable curiosity.
How can small businesses survive in times of volatility? How should an entrepreneur balance limited resources with big ambitions? Reid Hoffman and Bob Safian answer questions from small business owners in the Masters of Scale community. Plus: another round of Pivot Point, and a Need to Know segment.
Delivering human dignity to your customers is more than just good practice. It can be a powerful engine of scale. This insight has inspired Phaedra Ellis-Lamkins her whole career, as a labor leader, a music manager, and now as a fin-tech entrepreneur with Promise. Her secret? Take a contrarian lens to existing systems.