17 episodes

I interview non-founder/VC/CEO operators that make the startup world go round

delian.substack.com

Operators & Delian’s Ramblings Delian Asparouhov

    • Entrepreneurship
    • 5.0 • 1 Rating

I interview non-founder/VC/CEO operators that make the startup world go round

delian.substack.com

    Operators Ep 17: Ian Fliflet (OfferUp)

    Operators Ep 17: Ian Fliflet (OfferUp)

    Ian Fliflet is the Chief Growth Officer at OfferUp.  Prior to joining OfferUp, Ian was the General Manager at GameHouse, a computer games company.  He also spent 10 years at Real Networks, a digital media company where he worked in Corporate Development. 

    In this episode we talk about Ian’s motivation for moving to a higher risk company, why he finds that focusing too much on the minutiae can result in missing big opportunities, and his largest M&A deal to fall through. He also shares his thoughts on the tech space in Seattle back in 2000, how the metrics were able to show him that OfferUp was something pretty special, and why creating value for customers is still the biggest motivator for him.

    I hope you enjoy the show.

    Full transcript available.

    Get full access to Operators & Delian’s Ramblings at delian.substack.com/subscribe

    • 47 min
    Operators Ep 16: Emil Michael (ex-Uber)

    Operators Ep 16: Emil Michael (ex-Uber)

    Emil Michael was the former Chief Business Officer at Uber.  Prior to joining Uber, Emil worked at two other successful tech companies: Tellme Networks (acquired by Microsoft) and Klout (acquired by Lithium).  He also worked for the Secretary of Defense for a term, and started his career with a brief stint at Goldman Sachs.

    In this episode we talk about why Emil disagrees with the famous adage “great companies are bought not sold”, why he feels that the art of business development is getting lost in Silicon Valley, how he closed an $8B deal in 30 days, and why UberX was the turning point for him. He also shares his thoughts on forming partnerships with huge companies like American Express and Toyota, why we don’t need to get jealous when other people get lucky, and his rationale that Silicon Valley still has the most concentrated ecosystem of tech in the world.

    I hope you enjoy the show.

    Full transcript available.

    Get full access to Operators & Delian’s Ramblings at delian.substack.com/subscribe

    • 48 min
    Operators Ep 15: Olivia Chen (Faire)

    Operators Ep 15: Olivia Chen (Faire)

    Olivia Chen is the Product Lead at Faire, an online wholesale marketplace, where she joined as the second full-time hire. Prior to joining Faire, Olivia spent time interning at Barclays and Bain & Co. after graduating from Duke University.

    In this episode we talk about the myriad of projects that Olivia’s worked on at Faire, the advantages she’s seen come out of remote work, and why more supply is almost always better in a marketplace. She also shares her thoughts on the synergy of working with logical people, why she finds the fast paced world of Faire less stressful than consulting, and how she’s had to scale her communication methods as the company’s grown.

    I hope you enjoy the show.

    Full transcript available.

    Get full access to Operators & Delian’s Ramblings at delian.substack.com/subscribe

    • 37 min
    Operators Ep 14: Keith Rabois (Founders Fund)

    Operators Ep 14: Keith Rabois (Founders Fund)

    Keith Rabois is currently a general partner at Founders Fund. Prior to joining Founders Fund, Keith was an early executive at several successful companies including PayPayl, LinkedIn, and the COO of Square. He also spent six years at Khosla Ventures prior to joining Founders Fund.

    In this episode we talk about Keith’s start as a lawyer and why he decided to leave law, the moment he knew PayPal was going to be a success, and his philosophy on goal alignment. He also shares his thoughts on the joy he has for team building and mentoring, why regulatory risk doesn’t scare him, and the days when he used to scan every LinkedIn profile.

    I hope you enjoy the show.

    Transcript available here.

    Get full access to Operators & Delian’s Ramblings at delian.substack.com/subscribe

    • 1 hr 12 min
    Operators Ep 13: Shani Taylor (Airtable)

    Operators Ep 13: Shani Taylor (Airtable)

    Shani Taylor is a Mid-Market Customer Success Manager at Airtable. Shani joined Airtable as the first customer success hire and the fourth go-to-market hire four years ago.  Prior to joining Airtable she worked at Matthews Media Group and Cross Culture Ventures.

    In this episode we talk about how Shani went about building her first Customer Service Team, her advice on adaptability, and the advantage of unscalable behaviors early on. She also talks about how her background in psychology has helped navigate customer needs, the close relationship customer service has with product and engineering, and her genuine love of Airtable.

    I hope you enjoy the show.

    Transcript available here.

    Get full access to Operators & Delian’s Ramblings at delian.substack.com/subscribe

    • 41 min
    Operators Ep 12: Thomas Dimson (ex-Instagram)

    Operators Ep 12: Thomas Dimson (ex-Instagram)

    Thomas Dimson was the former Director of Engineering at Instagram. Thomas joined as one of the first 50 employees and the 16th engineer there. During his time at Instagram he developed prominent features such as the polling sticker in stories, hyperlapse, emojineering, and authored the feed algorithm. He left Instagram in February of this year and is currently working on a new project. 

    In this episode we talk about the origin and rationale of the algorithmic feed, why he advocated for the Instagram engineering team to not share Facebook’s office but rather have their own space, and the story behind polling stickers. He also shares his claim to fame feature on Kindle, why he considers himself a generalist, and his passion for building things, which ultimately led to his decision to move on from Instagram.

    I hope you enjoy the show.

    Full Transcript Available

    Get full access to Operators & Delian’s Ramblings at delian.substack.com/subscribe

    • 48 min

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