196 episodes

Grit explores what it takes to create, build, and scale world-class organizations. It features weekly episodes highlighting the leaders who are pushing their companies to make a difference. This series is hosted by Joubin Mirzadegan, go to market operating partner at Kleiner Perkins, a venture capital firm investing in history-making founders.

Grit Joubin Mirzadegan

    • Business
    • 5.0 • 176 Ratings

Grit explores what it takes to create, build, and scale world-class organizations. It features weekly episodes highlighting the leaders who are pushing their companies to make a difference. This series is hosted by Joubin Mirzadegan, go to market operating partner at Kleiner Perkins, a venture capital firm investing in history-making founders.

    #195 CEO Salesforce AI, Clara Shih: Above the Clouds

    #195 CEO Salesforce AI, Clara Shih: Above the Clouds

    Guest: Clara Shih, CEO of Salesforce AI
    In 2020, Clara Shih quit Hearsay, the company she founded and ran for 11 years; in hindsight, she says “I probably should have quit a little bit sooner.” But at the time, she cared a lot — too much — about what everyone else thought. “There's a lot of guilt around leaving initially and feeling bad for feeling bad,” Clara says. But her worries subsided when her replacement and former COO, Mike Boese, guided the company with “class and grace” to an exit: A $125 million+ acquisition just this week by Yext.
    In this episode, Clara meets Joubin on the top level of Salesforce Tower to discuss Sarah Friar, AI “frenemies,” practice and discipline, quantifying hard work, burnout, turning off, Intercom, elite operators, “Serviceforce,” ChatGPT, hiring for hunger, kids and achivement, Thomas “TK” Kurian, Slack, David Schmeier, Juan Perez, Nvidia GPUs, Silvio Savarese and Frontier AI, Starbucks, and Sheryl Sandberg.
    Chapters:

    (01:04) - Apple’s OpenAI partnership

    (03:18) - Organizing your life

    (04:45) - Working smarter

    (07:49) - Hindsight

    (08:58) - Hearsay’s acquisition by Yext

    (11:23) - What everyone else thinks

    (14:25) - Productive worry

    (17:27) - Coming (back) to Salesforce

    (20:47) - Paranoia and immigrant hustle

    (25:42) - Quitting

    (26:39) - Meetings and infusing AI

    (29:38) - Internal time savings

    (31:48) - The Matthew McConaughey ads

    (33:48) - Different horizons

    (37:35) - France and sovereign AI

    (38:46) - How Clara uses AI to keep up

    (40:33) - Dis-intermediating Netflix

    (41:27) - Who Salesforce AI is hiring

    (42:05) - Advice from Howard Schultz and Marc Benioff

    Links:
    Connect with ClaraTwitterLinkedInConnect with JoubinTwitterLinkedInEmail: grit@kleinerperkins.com Learn more about Kleiner PerkinsThis episode was edited by Eric Johnson from LightningPod.fm

    • 45 min
    #194 CEO and Founder Sunshine, Marissa Mayer: Innovative Instincts

    #194 CEO and Founder Sunshine, Marissa Mayer: Innovative Instincts

    Guest: Marissa Mayer, CEO and Founder of Sunshine and former CEO of Yahoo
    When Marissa Mayer was first hired as the CEO of Yahoo, the company had lost nearly a quarter of its workforce in the preceding six months. Early on, she was chatting with employees in the cafeteria and one of them got her attention by smacking her tray. “Is it go time?” he asked. He was asking if the board and C-suite were ready to lead the company forward, but Marissa thought he had one foot out the door. “I had just come out of this meeting where they were like, ‘Everyone’s leaving!’” she recalled. “And I was like, ‘Oh no, please don’t go, I’ve only been here for four days!’”
    In this episode, Marissa and Joubin discuss the number 12, contacts and photo sharing, fear of AI, soccer moms, maternity as a “disability,” mothers’ rooms, Jim Citrin, Project Cardinal, HTML5 vs. native apps, Ross Levinsohn, Lori Puccinelli Stern, Joe Montana, David Karp, Mark Zuckerberg, Taylor Swift, hiring at Google, Amit Patel, Hamilton, John Doerr, and the Google APM program.
    Chapters:

    (00:52) - Reading your own press

    (04:55) - Marissa’s lucky number

    (07:19) - Her latest startup, Sunshine

    (15:03) - Burnout, resentment, and rhythm

    (21:46) - The opportunity to become CEO of Yahoo

    (27:00) - Inverting maternity leave

    (31:14) - The big interview

    (36:44) - An epic dinner party

    (42:51) - The voicemail

    (47:18) - Farzad “Zod” Nazem and David Philo

    (50:25) - Last day at Google

    (53:52) - “Is it go time?”

    (59:03) - Buying Tumblr

    (01:04:46) - Alibaba and Verizon

    (01:06:24) - Larry and Sergey bucks

    (01:11:05) - Eric Schmidt’s advice

    (01:12:59) - In the room at Google

    (01:18:36) - Teaching and identifying talent

    (01:24:32) - Who Sunshine is hiring

    Links:
    Connect with MarissaTwitterLinkedInConnect with JoubinTwitterLinkedInEmail: grit@kleinerperkins.com Learn more about Kleiner PerkinsThis episode was edited by Eric Johnson from LightningPod.fm

    • 1 hr 25 min
    #193 Former CEO Nextdoor, Sarah Friar: Four Circles

    #193 Former CEO Nextdoor, Sarah Friar: Four Circles

    Guest: Sarah Friar, former CEO of Nextdoor
    Sarah Friar has worked with some of the top leaders in Silicon Valley, including Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff, Walmart CEO Doug McMillon, Block CEO Jack Dorsey, and most recently Nextdoor founder Nirav Tolia, who just replaced her as CEO in May. And one of the things that sets top performers apart from the rest, she argues, is their compassion and their responsiveness. When her former EA’s husband was diagnosed with cancer, Sarah texted Benioff — who she had just left behind to work at Square — for help. Within seconds, she recalls, he arranged an appointment at UCSF. “That is an amazing moment of compassion,” she says, “where he did not need to take that time.” 
    In this episode, Sarah and Joubin discuss public markets vs. VC, George Floyd, working with the board, singular focus, Goldman Sachs, being in “flow,” the freedom of not getting the thing you want, Walmart, Steph Curry, Graham Smith, Charlie Rose and Donald Trump, ugly babies, Elon Musk, Ladies Who Lunch, CNBC, commuting from home, white noise, “frequent Friars,” @TechEmails on Twitter, and the “zone of gratefulness.”
    Chapters:

    (02:04) - Why Sarah left Nextdoor

    (08:18) - The stock market and success

    (10:21) - Going through hell

    (14:48) - Life is not an A/B test

    (16:09) - Multiple tours of duty

    (19:21) - Ikigai

    (22:02) - Perfectionism and drive

    (25:54) - Sarah’s next operating role

    (28:35) - Big transitions

    (30:35) - Personal burn rate

    (35:34) - “Are people gonna take my call?”

    (38:40) - Leaving Salesforce for Square

    (41:27) - Loyalty

    (45:33) - Leaving the right way

    (47:44) - Square and Swiss cheese companies

    (50:03) - Growth companies

    (52:38) - Apolitical workplaces

    (53:42) - Leaving Square

    (55:38) - Loneliness

    (57:18) - Daily routines

    (01:05:03) - Working on weekends

    (01:08:30) - Hyper-responsiveness

    (01:11:47) - Resumé virtues and eulogy virtues

    (01:15:33) - What “grit” means to Sarah

    Links:
    Connect with SarahTwitterLinkedInConnect with JoubinTwitterLinkedInEmail: grit@kleinerperkins.com Learn more about Kleiner PerkinsThis episode was edited by Eric Johnson from LightningPod.fm

    • 1 hr 17 min
    #192 CTO and Co-Founder Discord, Stanislav Vishnevskiy: Ship It

    #192 CTO and Co-Founder Discord, Stanislav Vishnevskiy: Ship It

    Guest: Stanislav Vishnevskiy, CTO and co-founder of Discord
    For many years, the conventional wisdom was the gaming was not social because it was something you usually did at home. “But people who play games are often the most social,” says Discord CTO Stanislav Vishnevskiy. “They’re spending 10, 20 hours with other people online, hanging out.” As a teenager, Stanislav logged more than 1,000 days playing his favorite video game and socializing with friends around the world, but with 200 million monthly active users, the social platform is appealing to a lot more than hardcore gamers. “People online who need to get together and collaborate ... [want] tp have control and create a place,” he says. “That’s not just a gaming need, right? That’s pretty much any community.”
    In this episode, Stanislav and Joubin discuss “Discord moments,” hanging out online, IRC and AIM, Fates Forever, good and bad stress, leadership coaches, Claire Hughes Johnson, socializing online, heart surgery, Slack, Jason Citron, in-browser voice chat, Reddit, authentic CX, hiring slowly, Mitch Lasky, “playing moneyball,” React, content moderation, deprecation plans, and collaborative projects.
    Chapters:

    (02:09) - Discord’s scale and importance

    (07:35) - What is Discord?

    (09:43) - Hammer and Chisel

    (13:18) - How Stanislav’s role has changed

    (15:17) - Imposter syndrome

    (17:47) - Doing stuff for the first time

    (21:22) - Final Fantasy XI and Stanislav’s parents

    (25:12) - YOLO

    (27:02) - Games as social networks

    (30:49) - The evolution of Discord

    (35:58) - Inherent virality

    (39:04) - Building the company

    (41:39) - The COVID effect

    (43:08) - Hiring for slope

    (46:43) - Pivoting back to gaming

    (51:27) - The Discord Store and Nitro

    (54:30) - Emotional stakes

    (56:09) - Midjourney and AI art

    (59:58) - Virtual worlds

    (01:01:30) - Who Discord is hiring and what “grit” means to Stanislav

    Links:
    Connect with StanislavLinkedInConnect with JoubinTwitterLinkedInEmail: grit@kleinerperkins.com Learn more about Kleiner PerkinsThis episode was edited by Eric Johnson from LightningPod.fm

    • 1 hr 3 min
    #191 CEO and Co-Founder Intercom, Eoghan McCabe: Second Beginning

    #191 CEO and Co-Founder Intercom, Eoghan McCabe: Second Beginning

    Guest: Eoghan McCabe, CEO, Chairman, and Co-Founder of Intercom
    “We are not ready for the degree to which our world is going to change,” says Intercom CEO Eoghan McCabe, “in insane and incredible ways.” When he co-founded the company in 2011, the Irish-born entrepreneur was making it easier for companies to offer human customer service to their customers. But Eoghan believes “every single type of knowledge work” will soon be done by AI, and Intercom is well on its way to that destination: 45 percent of all tickets are being answered by bots now, and he expects that number to climb to 70 percent by 2026. “The agents no longer have to do the repetitive, painful, boring work,” Eoghan says. “They can focus on the more human, creative, interesting work that requires their empathy and creativity.”
    In this episode, Eoghan and Joubin discuss fitting in, Archana Agrawal, authentic comms, taking risks, returning to the company you founded, politics at work, celebrating innovation, therapy for founders, and Ram Dass.
    Chapters:

    (01:04) - Insecurity and success

    (06:16) - What Intercom does

    (08:20) - Reinvention and “big company values”

    (15:50) - Becoming an AI company

    (16:53) - 2011 vs. 2024 in San Francisco

    (21:03) - AI for customer service — and more

    (25:07) - “The s****y gift that being attacked brings”

    (30:25) - Expectations vs. reality, part one

    (33:16) - What success means now

    (36:08) - Running away

    (39:56) - Coming back

    (41:58) - Being busy is BS

    (44:10) - Expectations vs. reality, part two

    (45:44) - Self-mastery

    (50:38) - Sanding off the rough edges

    (55:08) - Who Intercom is hiring and what “grit” means to Eoghan

    Links:
    Connect with EoghanTwitterLinkedInConnect with JoubinTwitterLinkedInEmail: grit@kleinerperkins.com Learn more about Kleiner PerkinsThis episode was edited by Eric Johnson from LightningPod.fm

    • 59 min
    #190 Co-Founder Cost Plus Drugs, Mark Cuban: Mavs to Meds

    #190 Co-Founder Cost Plus Drugs, Mark Cuban: Mavs to Meds

    Guest: Mark Cuban, co-founder of Cost Plus Drugs and costar, Shark Tank
    “I just love to compete,” says Mark Cuban. “And the day I stop is the day I’m dead.” Previously the co-founder of MicroSolutions and Broadcast.com, Cuban is probably best known to the public today for competing with the likes of Daymond John and Barbara Corcoran on the reality TV show Shark Tank. But his real focus — and his real enemy — these days is the pharmaceutical industry. His latest company, Cost Plus Drugs, aims to be far more transparent than established PBMs, or Pharmacy Benefit Managers, and Mark clearly relishes eating their margin. “Everybody talks about disrupting healthcare,” he says. “This is the easiest motherf**king industry I've ever tried to disrupt because it is so opaque, and everybody is so captured by the scale of these big companies.”
    In this episode, Mark and Joubin discuss Luka Dončić, Synthesia, the Sony hack, the American Dream, TikTok propaganda, MicroSolutions, throwing away watches, keeping kids grounded, Black Mirror, keeping up, Ali Ghodsi, the NBA, MGM, gambling in Dallas, the Adelson family, CES, transparency, and Alex Oshmyansky.
    Chapters:

    (00:55) - Game day and superstitions

    (03:08) - Email responsiveness

    (05:48) - Shark Tank

    (09:21) - Retiring young

    (10:57) - American Airlines’ lifetime pass

    (12:55) - Sports and blue-collar work

    (16:02) - Compete or die

    (17:43) - Why Mark hates meetings

    (19:57) - Immortality through AI

    (23:05) - The new AI wave

    (25:07) - Startup founders and low-hanging fruit

    (29:24) - Selling Broadcast.com to Yahoo

    (31:35) - The Dallas Mavericks

    (34:52) - Selling his majority stake

    (37:08) - The missing link in pharma

    (41:27) - Disrupting a huge industry

    (43:57) - The problem with debt

    (44:59) - What “grit” means to Mark

    Links:
    Connect with MarkTwitterLinkedInConnect with JoubinTwitterLinkedInEmail: grit@kleinerperkins.com Learn more about Kleiner PerkinsThis episode was edited by Eric Johnson from LightningPod.fm

    • 46 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
176 Ratings

176 Ratings

SB,CA Working Bus/Econ Student ,

If you like biography of entrepreneurs you’ll like grit

One of the best podcasts in my library (top 3) he does a great job of interviewing business leaders. I like it because it’s mainly CRO and CEO. But mostly because I love biographies of entrepreneurs and hearing their stories and struggles of how the built companies. This is similar and a great insight into how top execs think and live

McGeezer3328 ,

Useful content

Interviewer has annoying habit of asking 3-4 questions in a row, which detracts from interviewees’ answers

Master A. Chu ,

Great discussions.

Only call out is that it’s very much white men skewed….

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