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Podcast: Episode 104: Must Listen

How to partner like a shark, part 1

Shark Tank’s Daymond John

How do you create authentic partnerships to build scale? In Part 1 of our two-part series featuring Daymond John, founder of FUBU and one of the original “sharks” on ABC’s Shark Tank, Daymond shares lessons from FUBU’s earliest days in Queens, where he partnered with bouncers, bodegas, his neighbor LL Cool J, and his earliest collaborator and investor (his mom) to turn a great idea into a billion-dollar urbanwear brand. Coming in Part 2: Transcending the transactional with Shark Tank, the Kardashians, and more.

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How to protect yourself from copycat businesses? When should you seek funding? Plus: the Pivot Point game show!

How can you entice funders to invest in a niche business? Business from our signature three-act ads ask host Reid Hoffman critical questions for challenges they’re facing now. With John and Kendall Antonelli (Antonelli’s Cheese Shop), Brit Rettig Wold (GRIT Fitness), Matthew Goins (Puzzle Huddle), Monisha Edwards (Scent & Fire Candle Company), and Ricardo Regalado (Rozalado Services & Route). Plus: the Pivot Point game show, w/Tara Wilson (Fierce Lab), Tudor Mihailescu (SpeechifAI), Greg Gallimore (Gensler Group & WUBI), Becky Pallack (Arizona Luminaria),

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Podcast: Episode 89: Must Listen

How to accelerate expertise

Ariel Investments’ Mellody Hobson

To move at the speed of opportunity, you need to accelerate expertise. Mellody Hobson is co-CEO of Ariel Investments, the largest minority-owned investment firm in the United States, as well as board chair of Starbucks. Her entrepreneurial journey was fueled by an intense attention to learning from every mentor, every opportunity, and every mistake. Becoming both a fast and a deep learner is rarely something you’re born with, but it’s a practice we can all develop.

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Surviving a close shave

Harry’s Andy Katz-Mayfield

Harry’s took a one-two punch in 2020 – right on the chin. First, the federal government blocked a $1.37 billion acquisition of the shaving products company; then Covid-19 lockdowns hit. Rather than reeling from the abrupt change, Harry’s kept its balance. Co-founder and co-CEO Andy Katz-Mayfield explains how the team launched new brands amid the pandemic, tapped into unexpected demand, and even raised fresh capital. It’s a classic entrepreneurial feat: finding new opportunity amid disruption.

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Podcast: Episode 79: Must Listen

How acquisitions become an ecosystem (Part 2)

Disney’s Bob Iger

From Pixar to Marvel to Lucasfilm, Disney’s Bob Iger defied expectations, acquiring world-renowned brands and meshing them seamlessly with the House of Mouse. In Part 2 of our epic conversation with Iger – Disney’s executive chair and former CEO – we delve into the next phase of the process, how he helped build a diverse, sustainable ecosystem for Disney companies in the China market, and how all the lessons learned played out in the massive acquisition of 20th Century Fox.

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Podcast: Episode 72: Must Listen

Building bridges to scale

Kind Snacks’ Daniel Lubetzky

Scaling isn’t only about scaling UP – it’s about scaling OUT: to new products, new verticals, new customers. And to do this, you’ll need to build bridges. No one knows this better than Daniel Lubetzky, the founder and executive chair of snack food company KIND. Daniel has spent his whole life working to bring together disparate supply chains, products, and communities. Through it, he’s learned the right – and the wrong – way to connect. That means building bridges that people actually want, letting people meet him halfway, and focusing on the foundations so those bridges last forever. Cameo appearance: Bianca Wylie (Public tech advocate).

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Podcast: Episode 65: Must Listen

How to turn skeptics into fans

Peloton’s John Foley

Casual fans come and go. But converts stick with you – and spread the word. The trick is knowing how — and WHEN — to convert skeptics into superfans. No one knows this better than Peloton Co-founder and CEO John Foley, who has one of the most epic “No-to-Yes” stories in startup history. When he founded the company in 2012, skeptics abound — especially among investors. But John pushed forward, convincing co-founders, angel investors, and then riders, one at a time. As he converted those skeptical customers — in their flagship fitness studio, in their stores, and on their at-home bikes — the feedback loops kicked in. After pedaling in place for years, Peloton rocketed up the hill to its 2019 IPO. Cameo appearances: Melanie Curtis (professional skydiver).

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Podcast: Episode 64: Must Listen

Why your company needs new rituals

Coda’s Shishir Mehrotra

You need more than a good product to scale – you need strong rituals that help build your culture, cohere your team, and home in on your targets. Shishir Mehrotra learned this when he scaled YouTube to a billion hours of watch-time each day. In his new role as CEO and founder of Coda, he’s learned to constantly ask: What old rituals are holding us back? And what new rituals can we create together that keep us all moving forward?

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Leading with your gut

Lifeway Foods’ Julie Smolyansky

Tapping into both organization wisdom and her intuition, Lifeway CEO Julie Smolyansky embraced action amid uncertainty as she worked to keep her manufacturing open and kefir beverages on supermarket shelves during the pandemic-driven food crises of 2020.

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