Daniel Ek, founder of digital music service, Spotify, is driven by a desire to solve interesting problems. In this fascinating lecture, moderated by KPCB's Chi-Hua Chien, Ek shares his thoughts on leadership, collaboration, and a laser-focus on building truly great products.
Luke Sykora, Stanford University
A Decade of Innovator Origin Stories
Ten founders and leaders describe how they took action on the opportunities that changed their lives.
Article 2 minutes
Tom Byers, Stanford University Andrew Nelson, University of Oregon Richard Dorf, University of California, Davis
Chapter 2: Opportunities
The identification and evaluation of opportunities is one of the entrepreneur’s most important tasks. Good opportunities address important market needs. Examining social, technological, and economic trends can lead to the identification of emerging needs. Entrepreneurs seek to build new ventures and to act on a good opportunity when it matches their capabilities and interests, exists in a favorable context, exhibits the potential for sustainable long-term growth, and facilitates the acquisition of required resources. Such opportunities offer a reasonable chance of success and require the entrepreneur to make a difficult decision to act or not act. The choice of an opportunity and the decision to act is a critical juncture in the life of an entrepreneur. With the decision to act, the entrepreneur prepares a business summary for the venture that is used to test the new venture with potential investors, employees, and customers. 1. "Disruptive Technologies" with John Doerr, KPCB https://youtu.be/hN8FbeEL2_c 2. "Pressure Points Around Opportunity" with Brad Feld, Foundry Group https://youtu.be/gcbCO3vWE6g 3. "Internet of Everything" with Padmasree Warrior, NextEV https://youtu.be/mc_mlkD7op4 Continue to Chapter 3
Article 1 minute
Mike Peña, Stanford University
Space: The Everyday Frontier
“Regardless of whether it’s a classroom or the offices of a billion-dollar company, space is something to think of as an instrument for innovation and collaboration,” Stanford d.school founder David Kelley says in the foreword for make space. “Space is a valuable tool that can help you create deep and meaningful collaborations in your work and life.” The d.school — formally, the Hasso Plattner Institute of Design at Stanford — teaches design thinking to graduate students in what many would consider a maker’s paradise in the middle of campus. The book make space chronicles the d.school’s experiences in designing its interior features, instructing readers how to replicate its unconventional furnishings and, just maybe, its extremely creative atmosphere. We at STVP think a lot about space, too. Currently, our office is quite open, and everything in it — from the desks and chairs to the storage shelves — are movable. Over the summer, we plan to reconfigure our space in a way that will both continue to foster staff interaction and designate areas for the various activities that take place throughout the year. We’ll share before-and-after photos later this summer on Facebook and Twitter. So be sure to follow us! Staying Hungry and Humble In the video clip below, Facebook’s engineering director, Jocelyn Goldfein, tells STVP Executive Director Tina Seelig about the unfinished ceilings, bare concrete floors and bold phrases — such as “Move Fast and Break Things” and “Fail Harder” — written all over the walls of the company’s headquarters. “The entire environment is meant to keep you from feeling complacent, or comfortable, or like we’ve won,” Goldfein explained during her May 22 Entrepreneurial Thought Leaders talk. “We never want to feel like we’ve won. We always want to feel pretty hungry.” Being Out in the Open In this clip, Spotify Co-Founder Daniel Ek shares how he manages to lead a growing company with a workforce distributed on multiple continents. “I don’t think the physical experience can be replaced yet,” says Ek, who admits to traveling extensively and sitting out in the open to encourage conversations in his company’s offices. Skipping Extravagance In this conversation with entrepreneur Steve Blank, inDinero Co-Founder Jessica Mah offers a humorous story about the dangers of young startups moving into fancy office spaces. She described how one of the luxuries in hers included a hot tub — a particularly amusing admission to Blank, who invested in inDinero. But Mah went on to say how inDinero then moved much closer to home: into an apartment down the hall from her own unit. “It’s cheaper,” she said. “Everyone’s in a small room together. So you really feel like you’re in it together.”
Article 2 minutes