Masters of Scale with Reid Hoffman

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The best startup advice from Silicon Valley & beyond. Iconic CEOs — from Nike to Netflix, from Starbucks to Slack — share the stories and strategies that helped them grow from startups into global businesses.On each episode of Masters of Scale, host Reid Hoffman — LinkedIn founder, Greylock partner and legendary Silicon Valley investor — proves an unconventional theory about how business scale, while his guests share the story of "how I built this company." Reid and guests talk leadership, strategy, management, fundraising. But they also talk about the human journey — with all its failures and setbacks. With original, cinematic music and hilariously honest stories, Masters of Scale is a business podcast that doesn’t sound like a business podcast.Guests on Masters of Scale have included the founders and CEOs of Netflix, Google, Facebook, Starbucks, Nike, Fiat, Spotify, Instagram, Airbnb, Uber, Paypal, Huffington Post, Twitter, Medium, Bumble, Yahoo, Slack, Spanx, Shake Shack, Dropbox, TaskRabbit, 23&Me, Mailchimp, Evite, Flickr, CharityWater, Endeavor, IAC and many more.

64 épisodes

12 septembre 2019
Forget being a unicorn. Learn to be a “Phoenix.” Your company can last 100+ years – but you'll need the resilience to rise and fall, and rise again. Fiat’s Chairman John Elkann shares the principles that allow the "horseless carriage" company founded by his great-grandfather survive the ups and downs of a century of business (including competitor attacks, leader shakeups, financial crises and more). One key: Resilience. Another: Deciding which company traditions to keep, and which to leave in the past. Featuring cameos from Radio Flyer's Robert Pasin, Cue Ball Ventures' Tony Tjan, and ABC Home & Kitchen's Paulette Cole.
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5 septembre 2019
When Drew Houston founded Dropbox, he knew he faced some fierce competition (hello, Google, Apple, and Microsoft). But he didn’t back down from the fight. Why? Because he believed in his product, and he knew he had an advantage those big, cumbersome competitors could never exploit: Dropbox was lean, focused, and fast. Hear how he outmaneuvered the big guys – and what's next for Dropbox. Cameo appearances: Mark Pincus of Zynga, Shellye Archambeau of MetricStream.Music: "Exciting Trailer" by Kevin MacLeod, licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license.
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6 août 2019
Try this new podcast -- it's like nothing you've heard before. In it, you'll hear the story of a young soon-to-be founder -- Arianna Huffington -- as she journeys from her birthplace in Greece to the University of Cambridge to start school. Listen for the lesson she learned from her mother ... about embracing life’s journey without being attached to the outcome. Interspersed with the story, you'll hear prompts from a guide to help you center your mind; after the story, your guide leads you on a quiet meditation to help you recharge and refresh. If you like it, subscribe to Meditative Story on the app you're using now.
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1 août 2019
When Anne Wojcicki founded 23andMe, she carved out a brand-new space in personal health -- helping people become experts on their bodies right down to the DNA level. Then the federal regulators came calling. But instead of trying to outwit, sneak past or straight-up fight the FDA in the name of moving fast, Wojcicki ... slowed down. She made the call to work with regulators directly and honestly. Hear how (and why) she embraced red tape. Cameo appearance: Daniel Ek of Spotify.
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30 juillet 2019
This short trailer offers a taste of a new podcast from the team that created Masters of Scale. And just like MoS, it's unlike anything you've heard before. In each episode of Meditative Story, you'll hear a storyteller who will transport you to a time and place where everything changed for them, telling a story you might find yourself relating to deeply. As the story unfolds, mindfulness guide Rohan will offer gentle prompts to settle you more deeply into the story, and calm your mind.The entire experience is elevated with breathtaking music — all giving you the headspace to feel restored and refreshed. Subscribe today
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26 juillet 2019
Slack's Stewart Butterfield knows: There’s more to a pivot than a sharp left turn. First, there’s the opportunity you’re pivoting toward. Can you see it clearly enough to navigate toward it? Can you convince others to come along? Then you have to pivot away from your old idea. This can be incredibly difficult, because it involves humans. And humans don't tend to let go of old ideas easily. You risk blowback from your co-founders, your staff, your investors and your users. This will likely be be the single greatest test of your leadership skills, because your credibility will come under scrutiny. The moment you find the thing that your users cannot stop doing, you need to slash and burn the rest of your business.
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18 juillet 2019
Bumble founder Whitney Wolfe Herd knows: The smallest feature can make or break your product. The challenge is recognizing the impact of that feature – and making sure it’s actually positive. This is what Wolfe Herd tapped into when she founded a dating app that required a whole new way of communication. She has become a master of understanding what her users want, and then making the small changes to Bumble that help them achieve their goals. While small changes typically lead to incremental improvements, every so often the impact is exponential. With cameo appearances by Steve Spohn (AbleGamer), and Marissa Mayer (Google, Yahoo).
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2 juillet 2019
Would-be entrepreneurs, this one's for you. It’s never too late to join the entrepreneurial party. We've all heard the stories of young geniuses, but plenty of influential entrepreneurs founded companies in their 30s, 40s, 50s. There’s value to being a late-stage founder -- like the fact that you’re bringing along all your life experience. That’s what Gwyneth Paltrow did when she launched Goop. Paltrow transitioned from Hollywood star to startup founder with her lifestyle brand, which now has over 8 million subscribers -- and she did it by leaning in to what she knew, embracing what she didn’t, and coming up with strategies to fill the gap. With cameo appearances by Sara Blakely (Spanx), Brian Chesky (Airbnb), Boyd Martin (Olympic horse rider), and Ruben Harris (Career Karma).
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21 juin 2019
On Masters of Scale, we talk a lot about how businesses grow. But we also talk about how people grow: How key decisions (and happy accidents) can shape your future, and how your setbacks can actually set you up for success. On this special Graduation Episode, guest host Jordan Harbinger teams up with Reid Hoffman to share advice that will help you navigate choices in your career. Including clips from Instagram's Kevin Systrom, Yahoo's Marissa Mayer, Spotify's Daniel Ek, and more. 
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5 juin 2019
Early-stage startups are a lot like pirate ships – they need a buccaneering spirit to survive. But every startup needs to shed its pirate nature at some point, and evolve into something more akin to a navy – no less heroic, but more disciplined. Dara Khosrowshahi, as Uber CEO, took on the most extreme pirate-to-navy transition in startup history. Though Uber blitzscaled to become the most valuable startup in the world, it was also notorious for its toxic culture – and Dara turned the company around. His method? Truth-telling and doing the right thing. Cameo appearances: Arianna Huffington (Thrive Global) and Ben Chestnut (Mailchimp).
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21 mai 2019
You can bootstrap your business to scale, but you'll have to make your own luck. Nobody knows this better than Mailchimp's Ben Chestnut. He used a DIY ethos to grow a $600M company without ever raising a dollar of outside funding. The Mailchimp story is the exception to Reid's rule (Generally: Raise more money than you think you need!). The episode explores a range of options for those who don't fit the VC-funding mold for any set of reasons. Cameo appearances: LeVar Burton (Star Trek, Reading Rainbow, LeVar Burton Reads), Don MacKinnon (Milq), Karen Cahn (iFundWomen).
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30 avril 2019
No organization that’s entirely closed – or entirely open – can scale as successfully as an organization that combines both. Yes, organizations that are open invite a bit of chaos – but that chaos breeds innovation. Knowing which aspects of your organization should be open and which should be closed will set you on a path to rapid scale. No one knows this better than Joi Ito. He has spent his career championing radically open systems, from Creative Commons to cyber currency. Now as Director of the famed MIT Media Lab, he's focused on facilitating open conversations so we can keep pace with the shifting challenges we face in our companies, institutions, and societies. Cameo appearance: Megan Smith (former U.S. Chief Technology Officer).
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11 avril 2019
When former Wired Editor Chris Anderson launched DIY drones — an open source community for makers — drones were still considered a military technology. His drones were used by filmmakers, farmers and conservationists. He believes they were also used by ISIS to drop bombs. What is Chris's responsibility? Did he foster innovation for a community of like-minded do-gooders or democratize a weapon for a terrorist group across the globe? Chris, who's now CEO of 3DR, joins host Caterina Fake, Quartz Editor in Chief Kevin Delaney and Comedian Baratunde Thurston, to explore the inventor's dilemma: What happens when you accidentally create a weapon?
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26 mars 2019
If you try to avoid risk, you actually risk total failure. Or worse: mediocrity. Take it from Shellye Archambeau. She led the most stunning Silicon Valley turnaround you’ve never heard of. She took the role of CEO for a failing tech company, months from bankruptcy. Through a series of calculated risks, she led it through a complex merger, a head-spinning pivot, and grew it into MetricStream, which now boasts 1,200 employees and a valuation in the hundreds of millions. How? Clear goals and big risks — the same principles that have defined her career. With a cameo appearance by champion poker player Liv Boeree.
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12 mars 2019
If your company's dominated by one type of person, you run the risk of tunnel vision. You might move fast — but you'll often drive straight into traps as you grow. Truly scalable companies need a diverse portfolio of viewpoints to see the opportunities others miss. Sallie Krawcheck knows this well. As an investment banker, she rose through the ranks of Wall Street, and saw firsthand the challenges a lack of diversity brings. She went on to found Ellevest, an investment platform aimed at women. Her straight talk — and hilarious asides — create the clear business case for diversity of all kinds. Cameo appearance: Steven Johnson (host of the podcast American Innovations; and author of best-selling books, including the recent "Farsighted: How We Make the Decisions That Matter the Most").
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5 mars 2019
How do you build a thriving online community? One human connection at a time. Caterina Fake is the host of our spinoff series "Should This Exist?” and she knows: Whatever you are when you're SMALL — gets amplified as you grow. So if you're building any kind of community (e-commerce, crowd-funding, social media), emphasize the human, and be careful what you cultivate. Caterina cofounded the pioneering photo site Flickr and helped build companies like Etsy, Kickstarter, Stack Overflow, and even Blue Bottle Coffee from their beginnings. Her wise words for every founder: You have has a responsibility to shape the community from day one -- because the tone you set is the tone you’re going to keep, even as you go viral. With a cameo appearance by Joi Ito (Director, MIT Media Lab).
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26 février 2019
We’re back with Part 2 of our special turn-the-tables episode with Reid Hoffman. In this episode, we follow Reid through PayPal, LinkedIn, the Microsoft acquisition, his angel investments, Greylock, and his hosting of Masters of Scale — all the while proving our theory that you can chart an epic journey to scale if you make everyone you enlist a hero — in their OWN story and not just yours. Guest Host: June Cohen (Former Exec Producer, TED; Exec Producer, Masters of Scale & Cofounder of WaitWhat, the company behind it). Cameo appearances: Arianna Huffington (Thrive Global) and Jeff Weiner (LinkedIn).
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21 février 2019
Introducing a brand new show from the team behind Masters of Scale, Should This Exist?Woebot is a mobile app that gives one-on-one therapy and gets 2 million messages a week. But Woebot isn't a person – it's a chatbot. It was invented and developed by psychologist Alison Darcy and it uses AI to guide users through a session, anytime, anywhere. Darcy hopes that Woebot will help break down the stigma of therapy and help provide services to communities with a lack of mental health resources. But what happens when we remove the human therapist from therapy? Host Caterina Fake, Woebot founder and CEO Alison Darcy, and experts Esther Perel, Baratunde Thurston, and Kevin Delaney debate the possibilities.
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22 janvier 2019
In this special episode, we turn the tables on host Reid Hoffman. He’s the guest and we tell his story, while proving a theory that’s perfect for Reid: You can chart an epic journey to scale, if you make everyone a hero along the way. Guest Host is June Cohen, Executive Producer of Masters of Scale, CEO of WaitWhat, and former Executive Producer of TED. Cameo Apperance: Matthew Mercer, host of the web series Critical Role.
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