96 episodes

Real-time wisdom from business leaders in fast-changing situations — covering the COVID-19 crisis and beyond. These fast, focused interviews with CEOs are the in-the-moment counterpoint to the timeless episodes in the classic Masters of Scale podcast. Hosted by Bob Safian, former editor in chief of Fast Company. 

Masters of Scale: Rapid Response WaitWhat

    • Business

Real-time wisdom from business leaders in fast-changing situations — covering the COVID-19 crisis and beyond. These fast, focused interviews with CEOs are the in-the-moment counterpoint to the timeless episodes in the classic Masters of Scale podcast. Hosted by Bob Safian, former editor in chief of Fast Company. 

    How to decarbonize your business, w/John Doerr, partner at Kleiner Perkins

    How to decarbonize your business, w/John Doerr, partner at Kleiner Perkins

    “Go for the megatons.” That’s John Doerr’s recommendation for how we need to combat the existential threat of climate change. Doerr, a venture capitalist and author of the new book Speed and Scale, joins host Bob Safian to discuss our decarbonization efforts, what he calls “the greatest economic opportunity of the next century.” The book quantifies the specific societal needs, in six discrete areas, to achieve a carbon-neutral world. John isn’t arguing that we all need to be vegan ascetics, but rather, the need for collective action – and the critical role that business plays in advancing that movement. 

    See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

    • 29 min
    How flexibility creates momentum, w/Crate & Barrel CEO Janet Hayes

    How flexibility creates momentum, w/Crate & Barrel CEO Janet Hayes

    Crate & Barrel CEO Janet Hayes has been on a mission to modernize the home decor company since she took over as CEO in August, 2020. When she first joined the company, stores were closed and the future of retail was uncertain as Covid-19 put in-person experiences to a screeching halt. She’s responded by leaning into digital and sustainability for her brands, and flexibility for her employees. “As soon as I said, ‘It's a flexible workplace, and I'm going to value talent, collaboration, and results over location,’ everybody has been working faster and smarter than ever,” she says.

    See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

    • 26 min
    How GoFundMe has facilitated $15 billion in giving, w/CEO Tim Cadogan

    How GoFundMe has facilitated $15 billion in giving, w/CEO Tim Cadogan

    From the start of the pandemic, GoFundMe has served as a consistent global outlet for help. Since its inception, the for-profit crowdsourcing platform has facilitated $15 billion in giving through more than 200 million donations. It’s also attracted big names to the platform, including Taylor Swift, the Dalai Lama, and will_i_am. The key to the company’s success? According to CEO Tim Cadogan: "You need great people who are really ambitious in service of the mission.” Cadogan argues that the difference between GoFundMe and other businesses is that GoFundMe is about “people helping each other,” as opposed to commercial transactions. Asking for help, he says, unlocks more possibilities than people realize – a lesson for GoFundMe users, and for businesses overall.

    See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

    • 34 min
    Re-founding Instacart, with first-time CEO Fidji Simo

    Re-founding Instacart, with first-time CEO Fidji Simo

    This past summer, Fidji Simo departed from Facebook – where she stood among the highest-ranking female executives, serving as the head of their app – for the opportunity to become a first-time CEO at Instacart. She replaced founder Apoorva Mehta, who appeared on this show last spring to talk about Instacart’s incredible COVID-fueled growth. Since then, Fidji has emphasized an evolved company mission, diversifying the company’s leadership and focusing on providing the necessary technology to help grocery retailers best serve their customers. As you’ll hear Fidji mention in the episode, she was raised in a French-Sicilian family where food anchored their daily life. “To me, Instacart’s mission resonated deeply, and I saw a very big opportunity.”

    See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

    • 31 min
    How to turn intentions into action, w/Aurora James, founder of the 15 Percent Pledge

    How to turn intentions into action, w/Aurora James, founder of the 15 Percent Pledge

    In May 2020, as companies began making promises about how they’d help Black-owned businesses in the wake of George Floyd’s killing, Aurora James launched the 15 Percent Pledge initiative with an Instagram post. Tagging major retailers, she declared that 15% of retail shelf space should belong to Black-owned businesses. And she's helped these companies turn promise into action, unlocking $10 billion in revenue for Black-owned businesses. It's a relatable story for any small business or team: the tactics and strategies that allow one small but dedicated effort to deliver outsized results.

    See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

    • 33 min
    "You should be running toward AI," w/Eric Schmidt (frmr Google CEO)

    "You should be running toward AI," w/Eric Schmidt (frmr Google CEO)

    Eric Schmidt, former CEO of Google, breaks down his deep insights around artificial intelligence on Rapid Response. Schmidt, co-author of the new book "The Age of AI: And Our Human Future," alongside Dr. Henry Kissinger and MIT’s Daniel Huttenlocher, says that we’re entering an unknown era with technology – one that requires extra vigilance to ensure that we amplify the positives and de-amplify the negatives. His advice to businesses: You need to be running as fast as you can toward AI applications. If your competitor gets there first, you'll be in trouble. Schmidt argues that AI will change business, society, and potentially humanity itself. "It's important that our systems not enable the worst of us, but instead promote the best of us,” he says.

    See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

    • 32 min

Top Podcasts In Business

Steven Bartlett
Sound and Sounds
Tim Ferriss: Bestselling Author, Human Guinea Pig
WaitWhat
NPR
Gary Vaynerchuk

You Might Also Like

WaitWhat
Greylock Partners
NPR
Harry Stebbings
Floodgate
NPR

More by WaitWhat

WaitWhat
WaitWhat
WaitWhat
WaitWhat