Episodes
Erik is joined on this episode by Matt Garratt (@mdgarratt), managing partner at Salesforce Ventures. They discuss: * Trends in enterprise software and enterprise investing, including voice, consumerization, and no-code. * How their thinking has evolved over time and where they’re looking to invest. * As a corporate VC fund, how to think about the potential for investing in companies that might come to disrupt the “parent” company. * How their fund is enabling innovation in the...
Published 05/21/19
Erik is joined on this episode by Bee Shapiro (@BeeShapiro), New York Times columnist and founder of Ellis Brooklyn, and Natalie Toren (@NatalieToren), creative consultant. They talk about: * The current landscape in the beauty sector, including the clout of the massive incumbents and some of the up-and-coming brands. * Whether successes like Kylie Jenner's line or Glossier can be replicated. * How fragrance is unique from other categories. * Where Bee would be investing if she was...
Published 05/19/19
Erik is joined on this episode by Mike Duboe (@mduboe), investor at Greylock, Dan Hockenmaier (@danhockenmaier), of Basis One, and David Weinstein (@dw_stein), working on Special Projects at On Deck and TokenDaily. They talk about… * The history and different “eras” of growth as a standalone team. * Why there’s been a shift in mindset towards growth teams, how they will change in the next 5-10 years, and why relentless optimization has backfired for some companies. * Why you should think...
Published 05/16/19
Erik is joined on this episode by Dan Held (@danheld), co-founder of Interchange. He was an early advocate of Bitcoin in San Francisco and is an influential writer in the space. Dan and Erik cover the history of Bitcoin, discuss some of Dan’s most interesting blog posts, and talk about what the future might hold for crypto. Dan explains why Satoshi had a brilliant go-to-market strategy with Bitcoin. He talks about the reasons why various aspects of Bitcoin were set up the way they were,...
Published 05/14/19
Joey Krug (@joeykrug), founder of Augur and co-chief investment officer at Pantera Capital, joins Erik on this episode. A year ago Joey was on the podcast to talk about the launch of Augur, a prediction market platform. In this episode Joey follows up on that conversation to talk about what he’s learned in the last year and to talk about the state of crypto in 2019 more generally. They discuss the launch of Augur, how it has evolved over the last year and what’s next for the platform. Erik...
Published 05/12/19
Erik is joined on this episode by Tim O’Reilly (@timoreilly), Valley legend and founder and CEO of O’Reilly Media, and returning fan favorite Parker Thompson (@pt), partner at AngelList. They start out talking about Tim’s piece in Quartz about the hazards of the view that scaling one’s company as fast as possible should be one's top priority above all else. He says that this approach is not for every entrepreneur and that it’s an artifact of the amount of money floating around today chasing...
Published 05/09/19
Erik is joined by Jenny Rooke (@drjennyrooke), Managing Director at Genoa Ventures, and Jared Seehafer (@seehafer), Village Global Network Leader and CEO and co-founder of Enzyme. They start out by talking about how Jenny got to where she is today and her career journey thus far. She explains what makes the team at Genoa unique and why it’s such a competitive advantage to have a team that is able to look at the raw data that a company is putting out and understand whether it’s compelling or...
Published 05/07/19
Erik is joined on this episode by Sean Linehan (@seanlinehan), Village Global Network Leader, and former VP of product at Flexport. Sean explains how he found his way to Flexport, which he says was like “the TurboTax of customs brokerages.” He explains the trend of entrepreneurs building software companies that are not afraid to “get their hands dirty” in areas that involve a lot of people and logistics. He talks about his study of the history of different industries and why he says that...
Published 05/05/19
Arjun Sethi (@arjunsethi) of Tribe Capital joins Erik on this episode to talk about Tribe Capital’s approach to investing. He talks about the “first principles” approach they take to evaluating companies and why he says rather than the company pitching their firm to Tribe, instead he tells prospective investments, “we will pitch you.” He breaks down the data-driven analysis that Tribe does of the companies they look to work with, and talks about the kinds of data that work best for their...
Published 05/02/19
Elad Gil (@eladgil), entrepreneur and investor, joins Erik and co-host Anuj Abrol (@nujabrol), Chief of Staff to Justin Kan, for a discussion of all things markets. They start off talking about Elad’s philosophy of life and career in general, including why he says that “less happens than you think in 2 years, and more happens than you think in 5 years.” He points out that it’s hard to predict the future and says it’s impossible to say where he will be or what he will be doing 10 years from...
Published 04/30/19
Erik is joined on this episode by Ryan Delk (@delk), COO of Omni, and Jared Fliesler (@JaredSF), COO of Scribd. They talk about the fact that Chief Operating Officer is a relatively new role in Silicon Valley that has emerged over the last several years. They explain how they make sure they are effective COOs. They say that being COO is analogous to being a bumblebee in that a COO is always moving from place to place within the company making sure things are running smoothly. They use “how...
Published 04/28/19
Michael Nielsen (@michael_nielsen), research fellow at Y Combinator Research, joins Erik for a wide-ranging discussion about a variety of topics, including: * Why the top names in the S&P 500 change over time, but the top names in global university rankings don’t — and how to fix that. * How Michael thinks about the role of risk in science, and why he'd like to see more risk-taking. * Memory, including how to improve yours and why professional athletes seem to have such good ones. *...
Published 04/25/19
Erik is joined on this episode by Auren Hoffman (@auren), former co-founder and CEO of LiveRamp and Tod Sacerdoti (@tod), former CEO and founder of BrightRoll. They are now working together on a new fund. They talk about how they came to the idea they’re working on, including how to find the right intersection of ideas among those that are interesting to you, that you are uniquely skilled at, that others don’t yet appreciate, and that are worth working on. They explain what data co-ops are...
Published 04/23/19
Erik is joined on this episode by Ilya Sukhar (@ilyasu) of Matrix Partners and formerly of Parse, and Alex Yaseen (@alexyaseen), co-founder and CEO of Parabola. They start by talking about what exactly “devsumer” is and why it’s important. They discuss some of the biggest names in the space and how these tools are enabling people who are not engineers to have the kind of leverage that engineers typically enjoy. Ilya and Alex talk about the trends in the space and what they would be looking...
Published 04/21/19
Erik is joined by Vinay Gupta, CEO of Mattereum, for a wide ranging discussion about crypto, world government, existential risks, science fiction, energy, and much more. Vinay says that venture capital is a 40-year-old model and that the ICO boom — while having its own significant drawbacks — was a huge innovation in capital formation. He explains why the blockchain is such a huge innovation with wide-ranging applications and laments the fact that people have a hard time seeing past its...
Published 04/19/19
Erik is joined by Scott Heiferman (@heif), co-founder of Meetup. They discuss the reason that IRL (in real life) meetups are important and why in-person contact cannot be replaced by virtual interaction. They talk about some of the most important communities that have started in the past, particularly involving religion, and why the connections they make have been so powerful. Scott mentions the health benefits of belonging to a community and talks about the importance of network effects in...
Published 04/16/19
Erik is joined by Laura Behrens Wu (@LauraBehrensWu), co-founder and CEO of Shippo, and Talia Goldberg (@taliagold), venture investor at Bessemer. They start out by talking about how Laura started Shippo and how the team iterated through different ideas to get to what the company is today. She tells the story of trying to get attention from investors for a space that was not too familiar to them. Talia talks about Bessemer’s investments long ago in then-new retail companies like Staples...
Published 04/14/19
On this episode Erik is joined by Miki Kashtan, author and NVC teacher. They discuss the problems of exchange in general as a way of fulfilling human needs, the issues with reciprocity, and what fulfilling needs via “flow” and “natural abundance” means. Miki talks about some of the more interesting and unique studies that she has seen about societies from the very distant past and what kinds of lessons they may hold for how we should organize societies today. They talk about why in society...
Published 04/12/19
Robert Greene (@RobertGreene), author of The 48 Laws of Power and The Laws of Human Nature, joins Erik on this episode to talk about how we can “penetrate the masks that other people wear” and become effective judges of others' character. He calls his new book the “codebook for deciphering human behavior” and talks about why being able to look at something through the perspective of others is the most valuable thing you can do. He also says you need to combine empathy with a deep...
Published 04/11/19
Erik is joined by Tyler Cowen (@tylercowen), economist, author, and returning fan-favorite. He talks with Erik about why big business should be celebrated and why capitalism is effective but unpopular. Tyler explains why he doesn’t quite believe that the main benefit of the firm is to lower transaction costs. He talks about why big business and capitalism have a branding problem, and what benefits they bring to the American people that mean they should be celebrated. He talks about the...
Published 04/09/19
Erik is joined on this episode by Noah Smith (@Noahpinion), Bloomberg opinion writer, and Parker Thompson (@pt), partner at AngelList. They cover a wide variety of topics relating to, among many others, labor productivity, the gig economy, healthcare, education, solar power and the Green New Deal. They start out by talking about productivity and why it hasn’t increased over the past decades, even though technology has in theory enabled higher productivity. Noah explains his pet theory that...
Published 04/07/19
On this episode Erik is joined by Stephan Kinsella (@NSKinsella), libertarian writer and patent attorney, Noah Smith (@Noahpinion), Bloomberg opinion writer, and Parker Thompson (@pt), partner at AngelList. In a spirited debate, the three of them discuss the relative merits of Austrian economics vs. Keynesian economics. They start out by defining the primary schools of economic thought and explaining where each of the guests sits on the spectrum of economic thinking. They talk about the...
Published 04/06/19
Erik is joined by Zach Perret (@zachperret), co-founder and CEO of Plaid, and David Haber (@dhaber), former co-founder and CEO of Bond Street, now at Goldman Sachs. Zach and David talk about how they met and how they started their respective companies. They explain how to find out whether you are passionate enough about an idea to start a company around it: are you passionate about it enough to be willing to pound the table to get your mother-in-law to invest? David points out that 90% of...
Published 04/04/19
Newt Bailey (@nmbailey), founder of The Communication Dojo, and a nonviolent communication coach, joins Erik on this episode to talk about how the framework of nonviolent communication can help you be more compassionate in your conversations and improve communication at work, and in all aspects of your life. Newt tells the story of a protracted conflict at work that he was able to overcome with the help of NVC and how that was the basis for his work in nonviolent communication. He breaks...
Published 04/02/19
This episode features Kim-Mai Cutler (@kimmaicutler) of Initialized Capital and Alex Danco (@Alex_Danco) of Social Capital. They start out by talking about the huge rise in housing prices over the last decades in the Bay Area and the fact that there is now net-negative domestic US migration to the Bay Area. They discuss the reasons for this, including the fact that in California, property taxes are paid on the value of the property when it was purchased, not the market value. They talk...
Published 03/31/19