ABOUT THIS EPISODE

In a very special episode of Traction, we sit down as a team and discuss the new mission of the firm and talk through B2C and B2B examples of the Everyday Economy. We learn what commonalities exist among founders who are redesigning that economy, and the NextView partners share their perspectives on the next big wave of internet innovation. Plus, we share some news about the future of the show.

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Follow the NextView team on Twitter: David: twitter.com/davidbeisel Rob: twitter.com/robgo Lee: twitter.com/leehower Ginny: twitter.com/ginnymineo

Listen to Jay's podcast about questioning conventional thinking at unthinkable.fm

Thanks for listening to Traction!

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TRANSCRIPT

00:00:00so a few weeks ago I woke up early at my new home in Queens and in Astoria New York and I packed the bag and grabbed all my podcast equipment stuff that is in that bag and I hopped on the train to Boston
00:00:18and for the first time ever I got to do something I thought pretty special check check all right I got the record an episode with the entire next few team I mean the whole experience was just it was just during the social medias who is who is doing the social media is not official what's a memorable it was memorable let the grand experiment begin on this very special episode of traction
00:01:04welcome to traction the podcast for next few Ventures where the seed stage VC firm based in Boston and New York and investing all over the US and with me on this episode are the co-founders of the firm in the partners David by Soul Lehigh hour and Rob go and we also have our director of platform Jenny Mineo who was behind the scenes producing this episode so before we dive in a quick heads up there is some pretty big news about about the show at the very end of the episode after the final music players so stick around for that but in the meantime let's Dive Right In to this episode so I'm actually here with with the entire next routine which is kind of exciting I'll do it ever done a group episode before so doesn't sound very good today and I felt like the Yankees symbol on my hat was like Harry Potter's scar as I got closer to Boston is like a burning in my brain here so but I do miss Boston and I miss you guys of course here to discuss is this giant thing the next he was focusing on and I think more importantly
00:02:04entrepreneurs are focusing on and and I think most importantly tons of consumers and businesses are focusing on and care about which is as the internet continues to evolve what's next and where this is why the firm is basically dug in and made it the entire mission of the team so the mission in as articulated in this recent Rebrand is to Champion Founders who are redesigning the everyday economy so Lee tell us what is the everyday economy plus really what this means is the internet and Associates set of digital Technologies are now two decades old and they're really starting to impact and change people's everyday lives and what we mean by that is these Technologies are being used a bit chilly by people every single day there pervasive you know people are building products and services that the touch you know everyone's everyday lives others have said you know the the internet is now
00:03:04things that we thought it would do it 1996 or 1999 and that's really true and we can talk more about specifically what different areas that that is happening in but we see this kind of the next you know 20 30 years plus of how the internet and again related Technologies augmented reality computer vision what have you are actually changing people's everyday lives we're going to talk about the details of what makes up the everyday economy and the different companies and Trends but I want to I want to start with timing so you guys made the decision to make this the mission of the firm it's now articulated in The Branding of the firm so my question is is why now what's going on that made this important right now there's been a discussion over the last year or maybe more money a lot different BC is about what's next like what so you know what is the next big you know momentous shifter technology platform that's going to drive the the following 20-30 years of innovation allowed Gail had a good blog post about this
00:04:04Uruguay thinking NFL is very good you know if you actually is that that line of thinking while interesting in me to potentially correct actually under under appreciate appreciate it it's it's under estimates the super technology that the internet is and the fact that you know the effects of seeing as profound as they are are really just the first innings in what is going to be a Monumental shift in all of the types of categories and products and services that were interacting with every single day and so you know that's that's some of what what created the discussion things I picked up on just being around investors is the way in which you can frame you're thinking of how entire economies unfold entire Industries Tyler Technologies from a very high level and so I think one of the things that this group seems to like to do is visualized where that's heading in a Rob we did a post a while ago that was the shape of traction for exam
00:05:04I will try definitely courage people to check out but we talked a little bit before offline away from the show about these the city of innovation curves so maybe someone can just unpack that idea here as it applies to the everyday economy I mean there's there's a variety of different people who have written even academic research about Innovation curves and disruption and things like that we took a look at it from probably more basic level and thinking about what have we been investing in what's happening in the broader economy how are you in Japan technology shaping that we also all of us but me in particular I'm a fan and student of history and and so we've been thinking and and even we started the firm we talked about this but probably more acutely here in the last year to the other big civilization shaping Innovation waves whether you think about electricity or automobiles are railroads or kind of industrial manufacturing from 200 years ago
00:06:04all of them had huge economic gains to the innovators and huge economic impacts in the economy but they also change civilization in in society in big big impact always and so you know we were not the only ones but we're strong leave the belief that you know the internet represents this beautiful like when they're determined super technology is not unlike Computing platforms at War 1 supersedes the next instructions the next where you know mainframes were superseded by many computers are for superseded by the PC which was supposed to buy mobile the internet is this both enabling technology super technology in lots of ways that makes changes that affect Computing Commerce Communications media across so many different ways and so we've been thinking about
00:06:53the internet as we know it being 20 years years old as we said and starting to think about okay if you look back and reflect on other historical Innovation waves at work just in A1 Computing platform such superseding the next but rather the things that really impacted Society over many decades what did those look like and how did they play out and history I was it doesn't repeat it Rhymes but you can in reflect on all three of us have been basically building companies and investing over the last 15 to 20 years of of the internet and as we reflect on what kind of Watch What Happens Next and we try to draw lessons from Innovation ways and historical Innovation ways as to what we think is going to happen now
00:07:40I think a perfect example right you talk about this is David beitzel Revolution Transportation but it also change how we eat right at your brought on an era of fast food because you could pull pull right off the highway and pull up in and go through a drive-thru and so you know who would have thought that 50 years are in a 50 60 years after an of mass adoption of automobile it changed how we eat and so we think about internet now affecting many different aspects of Our Lives not just kind of computing and entertainment but food you know home apparel entertainment and transportation actually yummy look at you know we took a look at the Bureau of Labor Statistics of even where people just spend most of their time and money and it's it's really in these like
00:08:40when categories its food home apparel Transportation entertainment health and then it written around financing in financial services we should call at work and money and they're spending their time in dollars and so we think the internet is it has begun and in really is affecting these really everyday parts of our economy after that has obviously been impacting these areas already for the last 10 20 years most of the Innovation though you would argue as been around how how we find and research and distribution are advertising how do you want to think about that you know what's what's different now or what's happening now is the actual experience of Transportation or other things is actually being changed so you think about Uber right you know 20 years ago
00:09:40online travel agencies like Expedia and others came into being as a way to buy a plane ticket with a service like Uber or Lyft actually you can't even at experience that service without without the internet and how you experience and how you use it and how it comes into being a and why it exist in the United Rental than just simply a distribution mechanism investors journalist people who have opinions on the Working World professionally where do they think this Innovation wave is heading or this curve is is going and where do you guys disagree with that I think a lot of journalist and platinum intern many cc's are just looking for what what's the next new thing what's the shiny new thing that's a different buzz word or spin-off technology that we can just really concentrate on and then just talk about over and over over and then flipped to something else and for us as we mentioned before
00:10:40we received the unfolding of the internet internet affecting our everyday lives being a multi-decade fact it's really interesting as a lot of the most interesting company is the fastest growing companies Racine today like they could have been started like 5 years ago like a lot of these opportunities are hiding in plain sight and I think part of it was a little bit of a lack of imagination about you know how much demand there is for these types of services the fact that you could just completely reorient the way people do everyday things right like to do that so you know where is Nocona Cody and Company it's a personalized fashion company for the plus side Market segment the opportunity was hiding in plain sight right it is a very significant portion of the population that they address who's probably address it in a way the way they got started is a business model in a go-to-market that was actually fairly well understood there were
00:11:40this is that look like them in the past and just never applied towards this Market segment and there was nothing about the technology fundamentally especially in the early stages that was completely you need to that moment in time I'm there may have been some cultural Tailwind that have tried to submit have supported the extraordinary growth of this business you know couldn't have done 5 years ago another business outside of our portfolio but also in the same category as mm LaFleur which is in the the the professional women's clothing category there's no reason why they couldn't even started a few years ago. Before they actually started and so you know why there are in a did the next new thing is really exciting and we think that a lot of the redesign that's going to happen and interesting categories is going to take advantage of things like you know I am machine learning in the blockchain it doesn't mean that the opportunity is today are completely dependent on that or that the opportunities that are going to be really exciting we're not ones that existed
00:12:40you know 3 or 4 years ago sometimes entrepreneurs haven't found them yet I think there could be some perception that this is just everything right so what isn't the everyday economy in your mind so things like that to us the other day, he doesn't cover are one in a maybe deeper infrastructure technologies that are very important and maybe very good start up and and BC investment opportunities but they're not things that touch and users or change the way and users experience things you know on an everyday basis it's not that we strictly are focused on consumer-facing companies here in about a third of our portfolio is B2B companies but even the beauty companies that were investing in there in neighbouring or changing the experience that that end users have in their daily work or their daily personal consumption life and I think the other thing that are our focus on this digital transformation of the other day, me doesn't Encompass is things that that aren't habitual or aren't pervasive right so
00:13:40wedding planning I think it was a perfect example right it so hopefully I will wants in life lifetime but it's a subset of that like that then there's lots of online resources in forms and services that support that but that's not really every day that's exactly why I related question is whether you know it's a vertical strategy right like I find this thinking around serve habitual or pervasiveness is assertive Amor horizontal lens get right like is this something that is relevant potentially every single person or is this something that is going to be used every single day by meaningful number of people you know Casper witches not interpret flows need some company because everybody has a bad everyone sleeps in it even though you make this purchase only you know once every 5 years on average it is a professor problem or pervasive a category Dropbox is not something that every single human being in the world uses but the people using her interactive in the software every
00:14:40and it's completely habitual in so those are two examples of things outside my portfolio that fit into these lenses but at the outside many people were just missing for both those businesses and it's one of those you know you can point to Chuy which is a e-commerce business focus on the Pet World Turns out a lot of people have pets and you know not everyone has a pet but it is for those that do have a pet you know feeding and caring for them is a habitual important thing in their life and you know it turns out that there's a bunch of multi billion-dollar business opportunities out there we're not that no one has figured them out but they're right in plain sight under everyone's nose and it's sometimes helpful to service them in for us to identify them as great investment opportunities when we are thinking through this every day, lens becomes most clear to me when you describe a chewy or a consumer facing company in in terms of their their place in the everyday economy can someone explain like the beat of be application so like you said a third of the
00:15:40folio the next you has is B2B that's something you're going to try to continue to pursue so everyday kind of me you've made very clear I am Siri isn't Consumer so what are some examples either inside or outside the portfolio maybe we can try to get one or two from inside the portfolio and then if there any outside the portfolio that you really admire that would be great I mean someone from inside the portfolio where investors in a company called upserve and for those who are not familiar with that company what up serve does is they essentially provide an entire Suite of software to help restaurants deal with everything from Payment Processing to internal operations of the restaurant to customer loyalty no consumer who walks into a restaurant and has a meal there that's an option of customer knows that they're there interacting with up serving any way shape or form however thousands and thousands of restaurants use upserve to manage their daily operations process payments and improve customer loyalty and they were able to Delight their customers and serve their customers in bed
00:16:40more efficient ways and so if you think about restaurant dining everybody dies are restaurants nachle everyday obviously but it is back to that habitual versus pervasive it is a pervasive activity and I hear the United States and and so you know up service in needling that you know pervasive activity activity but their customers obviously the business and and making them better at serving their own consumers and better and more efficient at doing so I should go outside he would be like slack you no slack is obviously a beauty SAS company they're not consumer-facing company but in a we have this this area Focus electrical work in money includes financial services but it also includes tools that he will use in their everyday work some of them are tools that you know many people would use but not everyday some of them are tools that not everyone uses but they use every but everyday is a great example that actually it's very widespread now so you can argue that lots of people use it
00:17:40and it will use every day but for those organizations that have adopted slack it is obviously an everyday and user use product that the people love and I get a lot of value better so I came out of the marketing techworld David and able to experience an ad Tech where do things like that fit 7 enabling layer technology that like a lot of marketing Tech that fits into helping and power Publishers to monetize their audiences and so you know what I think about entertainment all our time and really is Digital entertainment now all right and so a different media types are being created and whether there is some ways that we can invest in startups that support Publishers that I think that's just a way that's another betta be kind of Route towards this everyday economy and luxury products eat the wedding thing was interesting cuz it's it to me
00:18:40what time to make subcategories that maybe sit outside of everyday economy on the whole one is it doesn't happen that often so it's neither habitual norpro pervasive and the other is it does have this kind of many people's lives like a luxury ask feel to it so where does just in general luxury your Niche products fit inside or outside the everyday economy what you see is the companies that start Niche but are you able to expand Bradley are ones that don't have their solving fairly ubiquitous problems but they're starting with sort of a niche application of that problem like or in the audience but the the need for the trip human desire is is really really brought which is why that's a good starting point towards redesigning entire Market or category but just messing we stay forever test was a good example of this where you know when they first started out as a startup you know Elon talked about his his Grandmaster vision and and said the here's our secret plan any pop pus and blood was already saw
00:19:40the shirt off by selling $100,000 convertible sports car electric car and that is very much a niche market but the vision for that company was always to expand you use that as a beachhead use that to learn about production techniques use that to improve in a lithium ion battery technology manufacturing and use that to get to eventually a mass-market electric car which you know is it's taking them a decade but you know the model 3 is is you know has the promise to do that are there any Common Thread through these people starting these companies where they pick up on this opportunity or this unfolding of an orrery designing of the everyday economy like what do those types of entrepreneurs tend to have in common cuz your my holdup is it be the opportunities are hiding in plain sight I should get out of the packet ecosystem go talk to some regular people and they'll find billion dollar business is obviously it's a lot more nuanced rigorous than that so what are the common trance I think one that you already
00:20:40lutu is entrepreneurs tend to have direct and authentic insights from their experiences the problem is most entrepreneurs in most species tend to look the same right like it's mostly males it's not very well represented among minorities fairly Ashland meanwhile the biggest portions of population density for entrepreneurs / device used to identify these unique shifts in the market or more late and market demand is ends up being really with limited and so this is why you know as as as bad as it is it is both a good business opportunity to to promote more diversity and balance in this industry as well as the right thing to do right because you know there are billions and billions of dollars of opportunity that are hiding in plain sight and we are ill-equipped is an industry to be able to unlock those opportunities to work eBay many years ago and one thing that really struck me about that company
00:21:40was when we would have our annual I'm seller conference call eBay alive and you would go to the seller conferences and it was actually very moving because you saw you know thousands of people that they weren't that everyday people that you would you would run into a token Valley they were the everyday people in the world and you would see you would see them for the first time being in power to pursue their interests or to build a hospital in Denver is because the internet and and in eBay any of that for them right because they could start to sell businesses around their hobby areas or or products that they had access to and I was a very moving thing for me as as as an operator and you know it's it's one of the things that I feel like is so unique in so special about his moment in time and the types of things that were privilege to work with are also trying to do an execution in their lies around know what makes a difference that are focus on every day, and I think
00:22:40are very much mission-driven right it is about there are looking at a market and want to change the world as they see it right and it's they're using technology as a way to do it it's a it's an able minutes away it's the one more tool as as opposed to being creating the startup just to use technology for technology say a great it's really how much more market-driven approach to thinking about how to go about starting a startup and usually does tend to be very mission-driven right there's some intrinsic motivation for studying the company as opposed to just an external one that I just want to make a lot of money to most not all but most of the best entrepreneurs who built really transformative valuable companies it's almost as if they can't not build that start up and what I mean is
00:23:40it become an entrepreneurship quitting your job and starting a company in making loss personal sacrifice to be startup founder and we've done it year next year before we started this form that's that's a difficult irrational things to do in many ways and so the people who do it almost self-select into doing it because they can't not start the business that they would do they have never mind because they have this problem if they want to solve because it's been nagging them you know for the last 6 or 12 months in the back of their mind because they've been thinking that as a side project so that's that's another feature of you know what drives these Founders and how do they think about the problem of trying to solve each day I should really interesting to note that a lot of the biggest companies in on the consumer space on the counter space are very much mass Market companies Market companies investors are entrepreneurs are the tech press August off and don't miss the don't notice these companies until they're well under the way in terms of interval scale you know where this portfolio company Ann Arbor
00:24:40little over a year ago, Neil pal and in a part of their value propositions extraordinary Li Great Value 222 consumers for their lunch had me at least a start you know when your when your catering lunches in to your VC office or you're very comfortable spending like 12 to $15 for a sweet greens meal or you're going to your corporate cafeteria that has like fancy executive chefs cooking lunch you don't think about this problem you don't think that you know there was a huge portion of the population for whom spending five or six bucks on lunch and getting great value for what would normally cost 9 10 11 bucks and getting Creek convenience on top of that is really really important actually does change you know what they're they're purchasing Behavior it time shifts when they're willing to to to to purchase their meals and if he's about to do other things for the cash like that is really impact. But you don't notice it when that that extra 5 bucks every day doesn't really move the needle for you and top of that it ends up being great value for the
00:25:39this is what they work with by the way you know a retailer small business in general are struggling for margin an increasingly digital world and what's beautiful about their their business model is it allows them to increase throughput during the busiest times of day right like I'm like the Groupons of the world that end up taking advantage of these businesses you know companies like mealpal have been able to figure out a way to shift demand such that with a existing fix capacity is business casual make more money in certain more customers and so it ends up being a win-win it's it's an opportunity that you know your typical software engineer at a fancy company probably wouldn't necessarily think about without some other means of seeing this opportunity to build on that there's this word in the in the positioning or the mission of the firm now which is redesign it to me what you just described is it turn that internally you know what you said next to golazo right thinking big that beautiful goal the big beautiful goal cuz your soccer family
00:26:39oh man I don't know what to say to that but anyways the the idea that there is a complete redesign happening and maybe not like an incremental bit of Polish is really interesting in the way you describe mealpal to me sounds like a total redesign so in terms of the economy when you use that word redesigning what does it actually mean to you guys
00:27:02disruption is he over you so much and so we wanted to have a word that projected what entrepreneurs are doing I got some more effectively and that's why it's taking a market and then conceiving of what it should be and then re-crafting it in the shape of what the odds Runners vision is in for us redesigning really captured the essence of that and I was a much better worker than just the the classical with purchase going to disrupt this Market we think the internet is a multi-decade plan because once they're done you know with with the first step of their of their mission there is steps in a 2 through 5 and then maybe more beyond that the nature of redesigning is more than just an incremental change right so it's not just I'm going to be V provider of a product in this market and I'm just going to do a 10% cheaper or 10% faster
00:28:02it's I'm going to create a differentiated new kind of service and new kind of experience a new kind of product for the the customer and that's going to have a fundamental change your shift in the broader Market Dynamic that exists those are the kinds of things that we see are are trying to redesign an entire Market space I want to add with this idea of of having a mission in the first place so I think one of the word of time here I think I'll hopefully blisters have to there's a lot of things to put a pin in one of the things that I'd like to get to just call out was the idea that a lot of these businesses to David very mission-driven and next to you since I started here anyway has been very mission-driven which I think in a world where technology and products in this case it's Capital but it could be software all that stuff is becoming increasingly commodified I think a differentiator is is what you care about the way you can put yourself in the way you communicate that to the world so this is the new mission of next you it's it's championing Founders that are read
00:29:02signing day everyday economy why is that mission meaningful to to each of you is people This Way Comes Back to the whole concept behind this every economy which is if you think about the internet as just one of a series of Innovations in Computing then you're looking for what's next if you think about it as a super technology that comes around once a generation or less frequently than that then is a great privilege to be in this position where you know you have the the Tailwinds of this amazing you super technology and the ability to impact and change the lives of in a billions of people for the better through the monster energy of a brilliant entrepreneurs in the capital of that is that that's used to build their products and services and so you know I actually think that a big a big part of the mission is to say look at this as a entity could not have been done 20 years ago it probably won't be done in the same way in 50 years it is a unique moment in time so unique opportunity let's try to offer
00:30:02the best product possible for the entrepreneurs that are fulfilling this Mission and to partner with them and Champion them as best we can to be no bring their the future they're trying to to create to life is responsible for
00:30:19I'm joining Robin late start next year when I'm seven years ago now it's I just want to be at the part of startups starting their companies over and over again and this is the way that I can do that personally and so when we've now layered on this this lens which filters those start up so that they're ones that really affect everyone know daily lives. That really motivates me and that's that and I just might want to go party and then doesn't important Point actually you know we talked a lot about our new position and view view of the world a lot of things haven't changed in one of those things is that we continue to be formally committed to being investors at the seed stage and see you today means a brighter side of things than it used to when we got started his next to us we invest across the whole Spectrum whether it's pre-seed post seed property runs whatever you want to call it right where we're excited to partner with owners of the earliest stages of working with him
00:31:19where there's any traction and helping them get more customers build great products and build great teams to be able to show the ultimate potential their businesses and so I'd say has not changed and has been the same since we started for me I mean again as I said I'm a fan of student of History I think I wrote something maybe 5 or 6 years ago where I live it to the fact that internet as a word historically has been capitalized as a proper noun and for me and my career and what we're doing here next to you I'm thrilled that you know we can play very small part in the transition from internet being a proper noun with that's capitalize to a common noun that is just a thing in the same way that you know a hundred years ago every company that did something that pertain to electricity had that in the name of their company electric you Edison's electric light company electric pump companies and so on so forth because electricity was this novel Innovative thing
00:32:19where's today we don't even think about electricity must have time except for you know the the the rare unfortunate occasions we don't have power right we think about you know I think fast forward 50 years we're going to we're not going to think about the internet in the way that it we thought about it in the 90s or even 5 or 10 years ago we're going to think about it the way that we in the 21st century think about electricity and so part of our you know who you were or Venture Capital firm we have a specific lens that we look through there a specific way of what we we do but we're trying to do which is this High conviction Hands-On approach to see nothing but for me you know the the broader Mission and goal with what we're doing here next to you what I've been doing with my entire career is is that transition of you know the internet from a a proper noun to a common noun
00:33:20okay now here is that news that I promise at the very beginning
00:33:24with the firm's new focus on the everyday economy we are actually cooking up some new and different content to help Founders make that kind of impact on the world so this is going to be the last episode of traction
00:33:38at least the current iteration of Attraction everybody me especially but all of us were so thankful that you joined us for this journey and we'd love for you to actually continue with us on to what happens next now we can't share the details of what we're doing but we love if you actually stuck around and stayed subscribed to traction wherever you get this show because that'll help you stay in the loop on future projects that were planning to release also to round out this final episode Rob go decided to sit down with me and ask me for some reflection on making the show and I'm also going to share some some personal news that I think is kind of exciting and hopefully you'll like to check out so here's my little little riff with Rob
00:34:23for what two years is that right oh my gosh I think it's it's over 2 years now I mean we've done probably one every other week for yeah I think like to two and a half years crazy yeah it's amazing so I mean I don't know if everybody knows this but you know when you started traction you were a full-time member of the team here next View and you know a little while ago you actually transition started to do some work on your own so I mean I think it be fun to just share with the listeners what you been up to and you know what are some of the ideas that you're taking with you with your show in the other projects you're working on for the last year in addition to working on traction and and helping you guys out on a more informal basis I've been doing two primary things so the first and really the bulk is keynote speaking which is not something I ever thought I'd be doing especially the stage of my career but I buy the bulk of my business this year's actually traveling around the country delivering opening or closing keynote speeches at all
00:35:23kinds of events big and small which is been really really fun for me and it's it's a lot of really interesting research and storytelling that I got the package and deliver in a in a keynote so that's a bet that made Part II part is something that I'm equally excited about and it does really directly stem from traction which is either hosting or producing original series about work and I think some of the reason is it's pretty personal but I think the working world is full of so much more emotion and meaning that is is currently being shown either in the media that covers the Working World or by like B2B content marketers in house somewhere and I could be like something that's fun or funny as a portrayal of work or introspective an uplifting but like my personal goal is really to tell great stories about the meeting the people find in their work and I think a good vehicle for that is to create a regional shows either for myself or with clients so that's kind of the secondary bucket I've been working on if you would you say is her like the unifying theme behind
00:36:23you know the toxic even giving and what you're trying to accomplish through these these that resists original content I think the way we view what it takes to do exceptional work is backwards especially if it's been hastened by the information age I think we historically of you doing great work as as built on one foundational layer that is now the most commodified thing in the world which is expertise like yes you absolutely need two chops to do stuff but the how to is the most commodified saying in the information age I can Google it I can find on YouTube I can ask people where access people are educational programs I can Outsource or automate and so I think we need to flip the script a little bit I think doing great work or having a great career even building a great company is built on self-awareness and kind of like insight into your own contacts either you and the team or your customers or your own reality more so than whatever some generic advice is out there and we're at risk today in the information age of falling victim to the dark side of the information age
00:37:23which is advice overload and and so what I'm trying to do is really help people find more meaning and their work build something more exceptional and really focus on the things that matter the most the more foundational Parts I guess of doing great work which is not the how to it's sort of like the big questions you need to ask yourself about your own contacts now that's really exciting you know I think as as VCS we often run into situations where you see companies that at the service level seem very very similar in people often ask us like you know why invest in this company vs. Company when it seems like they're approaching the market or the problem quite similarly from the outside and I think a lot of it does stem back to the the concept that you're talking about that is connected to the core of you know why these matters are doing what they're doing now they're pushing a problem in the depth at which they on packing these problems do the product so I didn't really exciting really exciting stuff you know maybe to give me an opportunity what if folks on the show want to keep following falling up with you I what's the best way to do that
00:38:23list of the podcast is probably the best way it's it's called Unthinkable and actually a lot of people have said they've come over with me from traction to that which is Grace right yeah so it's you know that's my show we we package it as stories of how conventional thinking forms in our work and then the people who dared to question it and it kind of starts with something I found or something someone showed me where on the outside looking in it seems crazy either crazy great and I'd like to do that but I can't or insane like I would never work and then we talk to those people and so often it's not crazy it's smarter meaningful to them they just know something about their own contact that you don't operating from a generality and I and I hope this will inspire more people to focus more their time again on their contacts yourself your team your customers are resources instead of what we so often fall victim to which is like how do I do this what is the one way or the advice from some Guru blog post and it is just too much of that out there in and not enough people who think for themselves so everybody go go go to Unthinkable and it's a six grade stuff so as with all of our other trash
00:39:23I'd like to close asking three questions that you came up with when we first started the show Alpha Beta And scale so this may be a little messed up but you know for Alpha what is something that you've learned or influence that you had early in your life that is impacted the way that you have pursue your career is harder than giving them why I always will out that people would you say Terrence cuz everybody is tempted hopefully to say parents so I'll I'll impose that rule on myself too so I had this in English literature teacher in High School junior year in a mr. shred who unfortunately is no longer with us but he had this way of like making you feel something when you read us the classic sword or read us you know things he wrote it that we wrote so he made me a better writer and I think a better person but I think when you enter the business world you forget this lesson that he taught me which was like the point of creating something for other people is making them feel like making them feel sick
00:40:23you feel something where they feel something but and that could be empowered inspired or a teas are uplifted whatever it is and I think even the most practical likes cortical boring PDF instruction manual that you're publishing still has an opportunity to make others feel something and I think those are the important things to remember in this world where you know we can measure everything we can find someone's advice for us and other things that make you feel are the things that start moving and see how they get shared they are there trusted in a world void of it and the remembered and and all those things are only getting harder to accomplish and so you don't miss read for me Focus me on this idea of like make them feel like you will feel something too but make others feel with the things that you create and I think that's really had a lasting impact on my on my career my life that's awesome so the second question is on is beta I'm going to twist a little bit but you know the concert is what's something you've learned recently that's impacting how you're pursuing a year of your business now I might throw in you know what is something that has come out of
00:41:23Myriad of interviews that you've done in the discussions on this show that maybe are impacting the way you see the world and see our business now I'll give you I'll try to give you one thing I've learned recently or through the show to your point about like startups of the topics we covered and then and then something I've learned about podcasting and sort of this medium cuz I know a lot of people will be interested in creating around the what I've learned about startups in our world and Tack is is that it's actually a documentary I'm trying to write right now and it which I'm calling it infinite roads so we live in this area again we talked about it a little bit we're like startup knowledge is trying to get everyone's trying to package it neatly into list articles and books and podcast and you know I think those are great starting point even this show and everything next you publish is there great starting points or the great like possibilities to explore but there are three parts to the car and you're you're the driver and see if they decide what road to take and so I think the problem is even though they're starting points are possibility
00:42:23too many people treat the stuff like final answers and so what happens is you think like okay there's a one way to do something because so and so this person I respect said so but I think the best case scenario if you follow someone's generic advice is you do commodity work it's like the stuff that's generally applicable and so everyone else is following it and answer the last time I was there there is no one way and so we spent two years talking to all these people that have these 0-2-1 problems and you know I know it's true of anything in life but certainly at a startup there's not one way to do all these things you know cuz what is a startup ultimately especially the seed stage a group of people in a group of tests all trying to sell the same problem and there's so many ways to go about that and so I think like the punch line here is that this list of viable culture that were living in I think it's I think people tend to confuse how to use with have twos and and that's just the recipe for average results and so I think that's my big lesson about startups and and so the what about podcasting is just kind of
00:43:22did this Golden Rule of audio which is get them to the end like there's so many podcasts out there and and I think we were one of the few in the start of World that focused on Mike the mechanics of what happens inside an episode like we have a firm angle on a topic and we try to engineering experience and my goal there is to get you to the end cuz as a listener you really have two options to engage start and stop that that's it and so if I get you to hit start which hopefully the topic for the gas for the name of the firm or whatever would if you had start I have one goal and won alone which is a make sure you don't hit stop and so unlike you know the headline breaks or embedded Media or pop ups and hyperlinks of like a blog post there's only one direction you can go and podcasting and that's forward and so everything I have to do as to align with that psychology and I look at our competition I look at a lot of podcast in every category and they front-load housekeeping or they they don't deploy the mechanics of good storytelling like cold opens or open loop sore music which you can use to get people to the end and
00:44:22so I was blown away with like 12 to 15 episodes in you know like Forbes ranked us on their list and techstars put us at the top of theirs and we were up against like Andresen and entrepreneur on fire and all these shows of hundreds of episodes and I think the reason that we stood out and got these results is just like honoring that one Golden Rule of get them to the end that's a great the great North Star and hopefully people are still listening at this point other than yeah I've been high but I'll be totally hypocritical what's something that you believe about the future that you think most other people don't yeah I think about attention a lot of my work and life is like the carbon atom atom of my working and many others too I think we're without attention of your consumers you just have no life in your work it doesn't really exist and so I firmly believe that we're living through this shift and how companies think about consumer attention and my role in all that is too hopefully push and Polk and in some cases like bite and Claw and fight company is to move through this transition faster so here's here's what I believe
00:45:22before the information age before so much like stuff existed our jobs in business was basically to acquire attention whether it's like acquiring you through an ad or buying your way into someone's life or interrupting it or acquiring you as in like you bought the product and I think the shift is now instead of just acquiring your attention great companies are built on holding your attention like retaining you overtime whether you're in product in your goal is is retention of the customer or the user or you're in marketing and the goal is you know what time I work as an example building an original series to hold your attention over time and so I mean this is everything we're trying to get out of our businesses like we're building trust we're building loyalty we're able to up-sell you two more products or more content or the next step in your buyers Journey but it's just getting harder and harder to do that because the consumer has all the power you know if you don't want to spend time with me you you can choose anything to get around me and like Edelman just came out with a great report call the trust barometer report
00:46:22and for the first time in 6 years of doing this report consumer trust felon in four major institutions offer that they look at angios government media and business and so like how do you gain trust how do you build loyalty how do you spark a movement build a thriving business you have to switch your focus from just acquiring people's attention to holding it and I think the winners in business of people who spark movement to thrive in the future are going to focus on that really cool j and just to close here is there anything else you'd like to say to you to our listeners as we are wrapping some oh my gosh I will so first of all I've spent a lot of time addressing you The Listener at an inside I need to say thank you to you whoever's listening right now because you've been an amazing support group and people bounce ideas off of me and you guys have been awesome but I do address you a lot like for a living so so Rob I got to address you man and really the whole team is next to you so
00:47:20like I think there's one thing that binds the startup world together and it's it's a bit into work the next who does which is US wanting to matter in our work and US wanting are our work to matter and I think like honestly working next to you I mean it was that like it was a perfect overlap of that it was like you hated me this baby of yours is brand and you were like what should we do what could we do and you trusted me and I think it's the highest possible compliment anyone can pay someone else in in work to do good enough work where you know I found tremendous meaning in the job in the role and the show is like a shining example of that and also I think the work that we did together really matter then I think hopefully the listeners would not go that so I just want to end by thanking you David and lie and you know and I'm really excited for all the massive success I know that's going to come for it for next year in your portfolio of Jay that's really kind of you to say you know we thank you a ton for your contribution to the Furman to the show over the years and I think we we we've come a long way as a Furman
00:48:20through the lot of the work that you did and so we really appreciate that and that we miss seeing you around a day today but thankfully the world is small and we have many collisions now and in the future so thanks so much been a lot of fun thank you and thank you for listening whoever is out there listening I know a lot of you already and thank you for listening contraction

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