Each week, experienced entrepreneurs and innovators come to Stanford University to candidly share lessons they’ve learned while developing, launching and scaling disruptive ideas. The Entrepreneurial Thought Leaders Series is produced by Stanford eCorner during fall, winter and spring quarters.
Maëlle Gavet (Techstars) - Ruthless Empathy
Maëlle Gavet is the CEO of Techstars and the author of Trampled by Unicorns: Big Tech's Empathy Problem and How to Fix It (Wiley, 2020). In this conversation with Stanford lecturer Toby Corey, she explores how to deploy “ruthless empathy” in tech by combining big ambitions and cutting-edge ideas with a deep respect for other people.
Howie Liu (Airtable) - Building Startups, Fast and Slow
Howie Liu is the co-founder and CEO of Airtable. Inspired by his own experiences learning to code and building customized business apps, he co-founded the company in 2013 to democratize software creation. Prior to that, he was the founder of Etacts, an intelligent CRM tool that was acquired by Salesforce. While Etacts was a furious one-year sprint to acquisition, Liu followed a very deliberate, long-term approach with his second startup. In this conversation with Stanford lecturer Ravi Belani, he offers advice to innovators who seek to create complex products that can’t be prototyped in a week-long hacking session.
Miriam Rivera (Ulu Ventures) - Diverse Businesses Are Better Businesses
Miriam Rivera is the co-founder and managing director of Ulu Ventures, a seed stage venture fund focused on IT startups. Previously, she was a vice president and deputy general counsel at Google, where she joined as the company’s second attorney. In this conversation with Stanford adjunct lecturer Heidi Roizen, Rivera discusses the state of diversity and inclusion in Silicon Valley, how she evaluates investment opportunities to eliminate bias, and the importance of great mentors.
Michelle Zatlyn (Cloudflare) - Scaling with Resilience
Michelle Zatlyn is the co-founder, president, and Chief Operating Officer of Cloudflare, an internet security, performance, and reliability company that is on a mission to help build a better internet. In this conversation with Stanford lecturer Ravi Belani, Zatlyn discusses the intense challenges involved in scaling a high-growth business, and offers insights about how to find optimism and build a great team amid those challenges.
Othman Laraki (Color) - It’s All About Access
Othman Laraki is the co-founder and CEO of Color, a distributed healthcare and clinical testing company. From population genomics programs to high-throughput COVID-19 testing, Color provides the technology and infrastructure to power large-scale health initiatives. In this conversation with Stanford lecturer Toby Corey, Laraki discusses the genesis of Color, the immense challenges and opportunities in the healthcare sector, and Color’s race into COVID testing when the pandemic hit.
Research Insight: New Data on Lean Startup
In our first-ever ETL Research bonus episode, we look at one of the first empirical studies of lean startup. In a recent paper published in the Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal, researchers Michael Leatherbee and Riitta Katila find that lean startup’s emphasis on “customer discovery” — that is, directly testing business hypotheses with potential costumers during product development — does help teams converge on business ideas. They also find that MBAs are both hesitant to embrace the method and especially successful when they choose to employ it. Katila is a professor in Stanford’s Department of Management Science and Engineering and research director of the Stanford Technology Ventures Program, and Leatherbee is a professor at the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile as well as President of the Advisory Board for Startup Chile. In this conversation they are joined by Stanford adjunct professor Steve Blank, whose Lean Launchpad class and 2003 book The Four Steps to the Epiphany were foundational to the lean startup movement.
Fantastic Podcast...great to keep the brain working whilst on my travels.
I've been traveling for 15 months and love listening to this podcast. I went to university 6 years ago in the UK and am getting inspired to apply to a US University...think business school would be a great life experience. I always come away from listening to the podcast in a very positive way. The can do attitude and success stories are so motivational. Keep them coming. Many, many thanks Niki.
Where do I buy a Stanford Tie!?
Over the past 6 months the ETL lectures have accompanied me on my journey to work from Ilkley to Leeds (UK) every day. I run a small business in the UK and I find the guests and the content of these lectures inspirational. It is a real privilege to hear comment from these people with such great vision, passion and immense business acumen. I’d like to thank the Stanford team responsible for the effort that must go into delivering such a valuable source of information. I recommend these podcasts to most of my friends and business associates…so the running joke is that I already have a Stanford tie that I wear every day for my commute and that I carefully remove it prior to walking into the office all charged up having listened to some truly inspirational thoughts from some of today’s greatest leaders. Thank you. Tom Greveson (CEO - Revolution Viewing).
Stanford Entrepreneur Podcasts
I have listened to a great number of Podcasts from various institutions. These ones from Stanford are in my opinion by carvers best. They give an incredible insight into the world of some of the greatest Entrepreneurs to emerge in the last few years. They are also an invaluable source of wisdom and inspiration for all aspiring Entrepreneurs.