Masters of Scale with Reid Hoffman

Masters of Scale with Reid Hoffman

www.mastersofscale.com
The best startup advice from Silicon Valley & beyond. Iconic CEOs — from Nike to Netflix, Starbucks to Slack — share the stories & strategies that helped them grow from startups into global brands.On each episode, host Reid Hoffman — LinkedIn cofounder, Greylock partner and legendary Silicon Valley investor — proves an unconventional theory about how businesses scale, while his guests share the story of how I built this company. Reid and guests talk entrepreneurship, leadership, strategy, management, fundraising. But they also talk about the human journey — with all its failures and setbacks. With original, cinematic music and hilariously honest stories, Masters of Scale is a business podcast that doesn’t sound like a business podcast.Guests on Masters of Scale have included the founders and CEOs of Netflix, Google, Facebook, Starbucks, Nike, Fiat, Spotify, Instagram, Airbnb, Uber, Paypal, Huffington Post, Twitter, Medium, Bumble, Yahoo, Slack, Spanx, Shake Shack, Dropbox, TaskRabbit, 23&Me, Mailc


LIVE! Tory Burch: Patience or Speed? Both.
Oct 16 • 59 min
Tory Burch built a billion-dollar business from the ground up, by speeding forward when others might have hit pause, and showing watchful patience when others may have gone full tilt. In our live onstage interview, she shows how this approach plays out in…
Keep humans in the equation — with TaskRabbit’s Stacy Brown-Philpot
Oct 9 • 35 min
You may think that to scale you need to cut humans out of the equation. The opposite is true. You can harness the power of the “human cloud” to solve almost any problem — as long as you keep the word “human” in the equation. That’s what TaskRabbit CEO…
A Strategy Session with Reid Hoffman
Sep 25 • 38 min
In this special episode, host Reid Hoffman answers questions from early-stage entrepreneurs – people in the trenches of startup life all over the world. How do you gain your users’ trust? How do you build a team and company culture at the same time? This…
How to Build Your Company to Last w/Fiat’s John Elkann
Sep 11 • 45 min
Forget being a unicorn. Learn to be a “Phoenix.” Your company can last 100+ years – but you’ll need the resilience to rise and fall, and rise again. Fiat’s Chairman John Elkann shares the principles that allow the “horseless carriage” company founded by…
Dropbox’s Drew Houston: How to take on Goliaths and win
Sep 4 • 42 min
When Drew Houston founded Dropbox, he knew he faced some fierce competition (hello, Google, Apple and Microsoft). But he didn’t back down. Why? Because he believed in his product, and he knew he had an advantage those big, cumbersome competitors could…
Special: Recharge your brain with a Meditative Story by Arianna Huffington
Aug 5 • 23 min
As an entrepreneur, you have to find a way to recharge. This new podcast — from the creators of Masters of Scale - was designed to create calm amid an always-on schedule. The particular episode we’re sharing was inspired by Reid’s interview with Arianna…
23andMe’s Anne Wojcicki: Embrace the gatekeepers
Jul 31 • 39 min
When Anne Wojcicki co-founded 23andMe, she carved out a brand-new space in personal health — helping people become experts on their bodies right down to the DNA level. Then the federal regulators came calling. But instead of trying to outwit, sneak past…
Introducing Meditative Story
Jul 29 • 5 min
This short trailer offers a taste of a new podcast from the team that created Masters of Scale. And just like MoS, it’s unlike anything you’ve heard before. In each episode of Meditative Story, you’ll hear a storyteller who will transport you to a time…
The Big Pivot w/Slack’s Stewart Butterfield
Jul 25 • 37 min
Slack’s Stewart Butterfield knows: There’s more to a pivot than a sharp left turn. First, there’s the opportunity you’re pivoting toward. Can you see it clearly enough to navigate toward it? Can you convince others to come along? Then you have to pivot…
Small Changes for Big Impact w/Bumble’s Whitney Wolfe Herd
Jul 17 • 39 min
Bumble founder Whitney Wolfe Herd knows: The smallest feature can make or break your product. The challenge is recognizing the impact of that feature – and making sure it’s actually positive. This is what Wolfe Herd tapped into when she founded a dating…
Entrepreneurship as a Second Act w/Gwyneth Paltrow
Jul 1 • 41 min
Would-be entrepreneurs, this one’s for you. It’s never too late to join the entrepreneurial party. We’ve all heard the stories of young geniuses, but plenty of influential entrepreneurs founded companies in their 30s, 40s, 50s. There’s value to being a…
10 New Rules for Big Career Changes (The Graduation Episode) w/ Jordan Harbinger
Jun 20 • 74 min
On Masters of Scale, we talk a lot about how businesses grow. But we also talk about how people grow: How key decisions (and happy accidents) can shape your future, and how your setbacks can actually set you up for success. On this special Graduation…
How pirates become the navy w/Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi
Jun 4 • 43 min
Early-stage startups are a lot like pirate ships – they need a buccaneering spirit to survive. But every startup needs to shed its pirate nature at some point, and evolve into something more akin to a navy – no less heroic, but more disciplined. Dara…
The case for bootstrapping w/Mailchimp’s Ben Chestnut
May 20 • 44 min
You can bootstrap your business to scale, but you’ll have to make your own luck. Nobody knows this better than Mailchimp’s Ben Chestnut. He used a DIY ethos to grow a $600M company without ever raising a dollar of outside funding. The Mailchimp story is…
Open or closed? The answer is both—w/Joi Ito, MIT Media Lab Director
Apr 29 • 35 min
No organization that’s entirely closed – or entirely open – can scale as successfully as an organization that combines both. Yes, organizations that are open invite a bit of chaos – but that chaos breeds innovation. Knowing which aspects of your…
When your invention becomes a weapon – from Should This Exist
Apr 10 • 32 min
When former Wired Editor Chris Anderson launched DIY drones — an open source community for makers — drones were still considered a military technology. His drones were used by filmmakers, farmers and conservationists. He believes they were also used by…
Take bigger risks w/Shellye Archambeau
Mar 25 • 38 min
If you try to avoid risk, you actually risk total failure. Or worse: mediocrity. Take it from Shellye Archambeau. She led the most stunning Silicon Valley turnaround you’ve never heard of. She took the role of CEO for a failing tech company, months from…
Check your blindspot w/Sallie Krawcheck (Ellevest)
Mar 11 • 44 min
If your company’s dominated by one type of person, you run the risk of tunnel vision. You might move fast — but you’ll often drive straight into traps as you grow. Truly scalable companies need a diverse portfolio of viewpoints to see the opportunities…
Build a more human internet — w/ Caterina Fake (Host of “Should This Exist?”)
Mar 4 • 40 min
How do you build a thriving online community? One human connection at a time. Caterina Fake is the host of our spinoff series “Should This Exist?” and she knows: Whatever you are when you’re SMALL — gets amplified as you grow. So if you’re building any…
The Reid Hoffman Story (Part 2) — Make everyone a hero
Feb 25 • 55 min
We’re back with Part 2 of our special turn-the-tables episode with Reid Hoffman. In this episode, we follow Reid through PayPal, LinkedIn, the Microsoft acquisition, his angel investments, Greylock, and his hosting of Masters of Scale — all the while…
Introducing: Should This Exist?
Feb 20 • 33 min
Introducing a brand new show from the team behind Masters of Scale: Should This Exist? Neuroscientist Daniel Chao created a headset that hacks your brain with electricity so you can learn as fast as a kid again. It’s called Halo, and it helps you learn…
The Reid Hoffman Story (Part 1) — Make everyone a hero
Jan 21 • 43 min
In this special episode, we turn the tables on host Reid Hoffman. He’s the guest and we tell his story, while proving a theory that’s perfect for Reid: You can chart an epic journey to scale, if you make everyone a hero along the way. Guest Host is June…
Let your customers be your scouts – w/Eventbrite’s Julia Hartz
Jan 7 • 34 min
That constant roar of customer feedback? Be thankful for it. It holds all the secrets to your success, if you learn how to read the signs. Listen to what users say, sure. But also watch what they do and interpret what they need. Eventbrite’s Julia Hartz…
To scale, you must master the skill of storytelling w/Charity: Water’s Scott Harrison
Dec 18, 2018 • 47 min
You need a great story to build a great company. And great stories are unwaveringly TRUE. No one embodies this principle more fully than Scott Harrison, founder of Charity: Water. A master storyteller, Scott built his nonprofit on 3 radical principles:…
Your Plan B Needs a Plan B — w/Nancy Lublin of Do Something and Crisis Text Line
Dec 3, 2018 • 33 min
[A favorite episode returns!] To succeed as an entrepreneur, you need grit. But grit is more than persistence. You’re not just charging up the same hill over and over. You’re generating an endless supply of Plans B. And Nancy Lublin always has a Plan B,…
The Millennial Episode — with Brit + Co’s Brit Morin
Nov 18, 2018 • 37 min
You can marshal the power of millennials to grow your company, but you have to redefine your concept of loyalty. To keep millennials as users (and employees), you’ll need to keep evolving — and help them evolve. No one understands this better than Brit +…
The elusive formula for great hiring w/Workday’s Aneel Bhusri
Nov 4, 2018 • 40 min
Your first hires = cultural cofounders. And it’s worth your time to get every one right. Workday CEO Aneel Bhusri personally interviewed his first FIVE HUNDRED employees at Workday. He knows how to map back from the culture he wants, to employee…
Shake Shack’s Danny Meyer — When to ignore conventional wisdom
Oct 22, 2018 • 38 min
To revolutionize an industry, you have to cast off received wisdom. Shake Shack’s Danny Meyer knows this well. When he opened his first high-end restaurant, New York’s Union Square Cafe, received wisdom told him food was the star attraction. But Danny…
Arianna Huffington—What great founders do at night
Oct 2, 2018 • 39 min
To survive your entrepreneurial journey, you have to learn to recharge. In fact, knowing when to turn the lights OUT may be the only way to keep the lights on. You need a sustainable strategy that maximizes your team’s efficiency, while avoiding burnout.…
Spotify’s Daniel Ek — How to build trust FAST
Sep 18, 2018 • 37 min
Normally, trust = consistency + time. But when you’re scaling fast — you have to find shortcuts, with your partners and your users. Spotify CEO Daniel Ek knows a thing or two about this. When he founded Spotify, he did what no disruptor had ever done…
Instagram’s Kevin Systrom — Keep it simple while scaling big
Sep 5, 2018 • 35 min
You can scale big with a simple idea (and a tiny team!) — but only if you catch the prevailing winds. That’s what Kevin Systrom did when he co-founded Instagram: The simple photo app tapped the right trends, built on larger social networks, and dodged the…
Marissa Mayer — How to make the star employees you need
Aug 7, 2018 • 41 min
Can’t find the star employees you need? Then make them. That’s what Marissa Mayer did when she founded the Associate Product Manager program at Google — one of the company’s crown jewels. She mentored a team of young, hungry, talented employees in the…
How to kill your bad ideas w/ Zynga’s Mark Pincus
Jul 24, 2018 • 32 min
To succeed, you have to be relentless about pursuing a big opportunity — and ruthless about killing your own bad ideas along the way. Zynga founder Mark Pincus up-ended the gaming industry with social games like Farmville and Words with Friends. And he…
Keep Humans In the Equation w/ TaskRabbit’s Stacy Brown-Philpot
Jul 10, 2018 • 35 min
You may think that to scale you need to cut humans out of the equation. The opposite is true. You can harness the power of the “human cloud” to solve almost any problem — as long as you keep the word “human” in the equation. That’s what TaskRabbit CEO…
Introducing Season 3
Jul 9, 2018 • 2 min
Masters of Scale returns on Wed July 11th with Season 3, featuring the entrepreneurs who wrote the rule book of Silicon Valley - as well as the ones who challenge those rules. We’ll hear hard-won insights from the founders of Spotify, Instagram,…
How to find your big idea w/ Spanx’s Sara Blakely
Mar 20, 2018 • 41 min
To find your big idea? Look for it. And look for it. And be ready to act. Spanx founder Sara Blakely was actively seeking a business idea when she thought of Spanx. Then she moved fast, found help in the right places, and went all-in. The result: A…
How To Do Good And Do Good Business with Starbucks’ Howard Schultz
Mar 6, 2018 • 42 min
You can make your social impact and your bottom line work hand-in-hand. But you’ll have to be as creative and innovative about your company’s values as you are about the business itself. Howard Schultz, chairman and former CEO of Starbucks, not only…
BONUS: The 10 Commandments of Startup Success with Guest Host Tim Ferriss
Feb 27, 2018 • 90 min
Guest host Tim Ferriss shares advice you’ll want to etch into stone: The 10 Commandments of Startup Success. We teamed up with Tim’s eponymous podcast, the Tim Ferriss Show, to bring you this special remix. You’ll hear actionable lessons from every…
Never Underestimate Your First Idea w/ Twitter/Medium’s Ev Williams
Feb 20, 2018 • 43 min
Never put a limit on your first idea. It could span your entire career. Ev Williams, co-founder of Twitter and Medium (and Blogger, before that), shares what he learned in every iteration of his grand vision to connect the world’s brains. A reminder that…
How To Price Your Product To Scale w/ ClassPass’ Payal Kadakia
Feb 13, 2018 • 41 min
The price that bleeds your business could also save it. When you invent something innovative, you can’t know how to price it on day one. First, get people in the door — get a LOT of people in the door — even if you have to price your product fatally low…
How To Build Your Company To Last w/ Fiat’s John Elkann
Feb 6, 2018 • 45 min
Forget being a unicorn. Learn to be a “Phoenix.” Your company can last 100+ years — but you’ll need the resilience to rise and fall, and rise again. Fiat’s Chairman John Elkann shares the principles that allow the “horseless carriage” company founded by…
Why Customer Love is All You Need w/ Y Combinator’s Sam Altman
Jan 30, 2018 • 40 min
Better to have 100 users love you than 1 million that kinda like you. The true seed of scale is love, and you can’t buy it, hack it, or game it. Ask Sam Altman, the president of Y Combinator, Silicon Valley’s legendary startup accelerator. He knows that a…
Model Behavior w/ entrepreneur/investor Caterina Fake (Etsy, Kickstarter, Flickr)
Jan 23, 2018 • 40 min
Whatever you are when you’re small gets amplified when you grow. So if you’re staring any kind of online community (social media, e-commerce, crowd-funding…), be careful what you cultivate. Caterina Fake has founded or invested in companies with…
Learn to Unlearn (Part 2) w/ IAC’s Barry Diller
Dec 12, 2017 • 29 min
To move from one success to another, you have to learn to unlearn. Take everything that helped you win the first time, then discard it and learn a new way. That’s how Barry Diller, titan of “old” media (ABC, Paramount, Fox), mastered the new dot-com…
Infinite Learner (Part I) w/ IAC’s Barry Diller
Dec 5, 2017 • 42 min
Tinder. Top Gun. Roots. The Simpsons. What do they have in common? Media icon Barry Diller. Barry is what we call an “infinite learner.” He’s only interested in things he’s never done before. And if they’ve never been done by ANYONE? Better yet. He…
Learn From Every ‘No’ w/ Bevel Razor’s Tristan Walker
Nov 28, 2017 • 29 min
“If you’re laughed out of the room, it might actually be a good sign.” Entrepreneurs inevitably face a lot of rejection — as does anyone championing a big new idea. But the different ways that investors say “no” could reveal valuable clues about your…
The Big Pivot with Slack’s Stewart Butterfield
Nov 14, 2017 • 37 min
In your company’s darkest moment, remember: You CAN pivot from failure to success. But only if you slash and burn everything that isn’t working. Slack’s co-founder and CEO, Stewart Butterfield, has twice navigated this kind of Big Pivot. He launched two…
Look sideways with Google / VMware’s Diane Greene
Nov 9, 2017 • 35 min
Business plan not entirely clear? Not sure how you’ll make enough money or find your users? That’s OK. Really. The most scalable ideas often come at you sideways. You’ll find yourself crabwalking from a small market to a bigger one to one of unimaginable…
Escape the Competition w/ PayPal’s Peter Thiel
Nov 7, 2017 • 41 min
If you want to grow your business, your goal isn’t to beat the competition — it’s to escape the competition altogether. No one knows this better than Paypal founder Peter Thiel. “Competition is for losers,” he’s been known to say. Thiel is a former…
BONUS: Seven Lesser Known Laws of Leadership
Aug 26, 2017 • 9 min
The Masters of Scale team brings you a special blend of leadership tips from season one guests — including clips we haven’t aired yet. In this bonus episode, we’ll share our favorite insights from Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, Y Combinator’s Sam Altman,…
Let Fires Burn w/ Gixo’s Selina Tobaccowala
Jul 19, 2017 • 34 min
If you try to put out every fire, you’ll only burn yourself out. The best entrepreneurs? They let fires burn. Knowing which problems not to solve is just as critical as knowing which problems must be solved. You won’t have time to sit down and assess…
The Next Silicon Valley Is…? W/ Endeavor’s Linda Rottenberg
Jul 12, 2017 • 41 min
What’s the secret to Silicon Valley? And can any other region nurture such a thriving startup scene? Linda Rottenberg, CEO of Endeavor, makes the case that a startup culture can be nurtured almost anywhere, so long as you have the raw ingredients —…
Bonus Episode: The Ten Commandments of Startup Success
Jul 5, 2017 • 90 min
Guest host Tim Ferriss shares advice you’ll will want to etch into stone: the Ten Commandments of Startup Success. We teamed up with Tim’s eponymous podcast, the Tim Ferriss Show, to bring you this special remix of actionable lessons from every episode of…
BONUS: Uncut interview w/ Netflix’s Reed Hastings
Jun 29, 2017 • 51 min
Host Reid Hoffman visits Netflix’s headquarters for an extended interview with the company’s founding CEO, Reed Hastings. They discuss the distinctive culture that enabled Netflix to leap from DVD’s to online streaming to becoming a content-production…
Netflix’s Reed Hastings in Culture Shock
Jun 28, 2017 • 36 min
I believe strong company cultures only emerge when every employee feels they own the culture — and this begins even before the first job interview. CEO Reed Hastings has built an adaptive, high-performing culture at NetFlix by being unabashedly upfront…
BONUS: Uncut Interview w/ Crisis Text Line’s Nancy Lublin
Jun 15, 2017 • 60 min
In this extended interview, Nancy Lublin, founding CEO of Crisis Text Line, shares insights from her restless career as a serial entrepreneur, recruiting armies of volunteers to the causes she’s passionate about.
Grit Happens with Crisis Text Line’s Nancy Lublin
Jun 14, 2017 • 33 min
To succeed, entrepreneurs need a good idea, timing, money, luck. But more than anything, they need grit. Don’t confuse grit with sheer persistence; it’s not about charging up the same hill, again and again. The sort of grit you need to scale a business is…
Google/Alphabet’s Eric Schmidt in Innovation = Managed Chaos
Jun 7, 2017 • 30 min
Google has succeeded by innovating again and again. Not just search, but Gmail and Google Docs and even self-driving cars. Their secret? They don’t tell their employees how to innovate; they manage the chaos. Eric Schmidt—CEO of Google since 2001 and now…
BONUS: Uncut Interview w/ Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg
Jun 1, 2017 • 46 min
Host Reid Hoffman met Sheryl in a conference room at One Facebook Way to discuss a vexing subject: How does she lead an organization that doubles or triples in size each year? She also reveals previously unaired insights from her new book, Option B, and…
Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg in Lead, Lead Again
May 31, 2017 • 33 min
In just 6 years, Facebook grew to 2 billion users and 14,000 employees. How? Well first, they hired COO Sheryl Sandberg. And she knew that to lead a fast-changing organization, you have to be as skilled at breaking plans as you are at making them. Great…
BONUS: Uncut interview w/ Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg
May 25, 2017 • 64 min
This is the extended, uncut version of Reid Hoffman’s rare, hour-long interview with Facebook co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg from Ep. 4 “Imperfect is Perfect”. Our recommendation: Listen to the episode first. Then enjoy the full interview, with its…
Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg in Imperfect is Perfect
May 24, 2017 • 29 min
If you’re Steve Jobs, you can wait for your product to be perfect. But there are almost no Steve Jobs’ in the world. For the rest of us, If you’re not embarrassed by your first product release, you’ve released it too late. Imperfect is perfect. Why?…
Beauty of A Bad Idea w/ Walker & Company’s Tristan Walker
May 17, 2017 • 29 min
The best business ideas often seem laughable at first glance. So if you’re hearing a chorus of “No’s” it may actually be a good sign… Google, Facebook, LInkedIn, Airbnb — they all sounded crazy before they scaled spectacularly. So don’t be discouraged by…
The Money Episode w/ Minted’s Mariam Naficy
May 10, 2017 • 28 min
Think you’ve raised enough money for your startup? Think again. You have to run through a minefield of unexpected expenses as an entrepreneur. And you never know where the big opportunity will come from. So always, always raise more money than you think…
BONUS: Uncut Interview w/ Airbnb’s Brian Chesky
May 4, 2017 • 80 min
Host Reid Hoffman interviews Brian Chesky, the co-founder and CEO of Airbnb. In this extended interview, Chesky explains how a willingness to work with his hands laid the foundation for Airbnb’s growth. He also shares previously unaired stories about…
Airbnb’s Brian Chesky in Handcrafted
May 3, 2017 • 29 min
If you want your company to truly scale, you first have to do things that don’t scale. Handcraft the core experience. Get your hands dirty. Serve your customers one-by-one. And don’t stop until you know exactly what they want. That’s what Brian Chesky…
Coming Soon: Masters of Scale
Apr 18, 2017 • 2 min
Coming May 3rd, Reid Hoffman, legendary Silicon Valley entrepreneur and investor, explains how famous founders take their companies from zero to a gazillion. In this trailer for Season One, a taste of this straight-from-Silicon Valley podcast.