Susan Standiford on the five traits of leadership
Susan Standiford’s impressive career has progressed from “nerdom central” to helping startup companies “create a technology, ethos, and identity” for future growth. Her journey as a technologist has taken her from organizations like Disney Interactive, Travelocity, Oracle, Retek, Rue La La and Zeal, to her most recent position as CTO at IKEA in London. In this episode, she talks about her personal and professional growth with David Cohen, and of the value she has gotten back from being a five-year Techstars mentor.Standiford discusses the “Five Traits of Leadership”—to be smart, able to get things done, able to fight through ambiguity, empowerment of others, and humble leadership (to be curious and willing to learn from others).She talks about the three chapters of her life—coding and building systems, building teams, and then scaling those teams into successful companies with a “growth mindset.” Standiford’s special passion is helping women entrepreneurs succeed in tech startups. And she knows firsthand the importance of the #GiveFirst ethos.Techstars personnel and/or guests who speak in this podcast express their own opinions, and not the opinion of either Techstars or any company discussed in this podcast. This podcast is for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities are for illustrative and/or informational purposes only and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investor or prospective investor, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by Techstars.Certain of Techstars funds own (or may own in the future) securities in some of the companies discussed in this podcast.
Joy Taylor on taking the concept of Give First to the nth degree
Joy Taylor is a force of nature. Coming from a 20-year career in the banking industry (business development, coaching, and training), she now focuses on ecosystem building in her hometown of Toowoomba, Australia — and around the world. In this episode, Taylor shares her journey with David Cohen and talks about how giving first to her community led her to exciting worldwide experiences.At Canvas Coworking, Taylor runs programs and events for entrepreneurs. This includes the WiRE (Women in Rural, Regional and Remote Enterprise) startup bootcamp, Flare Incubator for female-led companies trying to expand internationally, and Zero to Startup for migrants and refugees. Her role as a Techstars Startup Weekend Facilitator evolved into Global Facilitator, where she has helps entrepreneurs around the world to organize their own events.Taylor talks about how one experience led into another, and how giving first came back to her along the way.Canvas Coworking: canvascoworking.com.auElkei Education: elkei.com.auConnect with Canvas Coworking on Twitter: @CanvasCoworkIncFollow David Cohen on Twitter: @davidcohen
Gus Balbontin on fighting momentum and setting up your own success metric
In this episode, Gus Balbontin speaks with host David Cohen about the dangers of building momentum, and how it’s important for entrepreneurs to “look sideways” to meet new challenges. He tells stories about his own journey, from a small town in Patagonia, South America, battling FOMO (Fear of Missing Out), to a dream job at Lonely Planet and a career of supporting and inspiring founders within the Melbourne startup ecosystem and around the world.Gus explains why it’s important to create your own “success metric” and not get caught in the trap of crazy momentum, so that you can quickly reinvent yourself and innovate to adapt to future realities.He’s about to launch the Unrealistic Foundation, dedicated to investing in companies looking to disrupt the education model.Follow Gus on Twitter: @gusbalbontinFollow David Cohen on Twitter: @davidcohen
Semil Shah on turning ideas into reality
Brad Feld talks with Semil Shah, founder of the venture capital fund Haystack, who shares his inspiring founder story. With limited experience in the entrepreneurial world, Semil relied on his mentors to see the potential in him. Seven years later, he continues to pay it forward by helping turn other’s ideas into reality.Semil talks about how he turned his passion for writing about startups into a career as a founder of an early stage investment fund and partner at LightSpeed Venture Partners. Learn how Haystack raised their first million dollar fund and how they differentiate themselves from similar companies in the Bay Area.Follow Semil on Twitter: @semil
Chris Schroeder on the power of global entrepreneurship
In this episode, Chris Schroder opens up with Brad Feld about how a “mind blowing” discovery at a startup convention in the Middle East inspired him to promote global entrepreneurship. With a background in digital technology at The Washington Post and in entrepreneurship as the co-founder of HealthCentral, a health and wellness platform, Chris knows the power of technology and wants to share it with the world.Chris talks about breaking out of his own narrative bias, entrepreneurship being a global language, and why co-authorship is the key to success as a mentor and venture investor. Listen for Chris’s take on the power of mentorship and inspiring founder stories from around the world.
Misti Cain on how to connect during COVID-19
Misti Cain speaks with David Cohen about her journey from a digital marketing strategist to Techstars Anywhere Accelerator mentor, founder of mentorship platform Whyzze, and host of “Werrrk!,” a business reality show.She explains her best tactics for building important relationships in our challenging COVID-19 virtual environment, including having a visual component for a strong human connection, a shared raison d’etre, and clear communication.Listen for Misti’s memorable Whyzze business success stories, her early motivation, her definition of the true meaning of success — and why she believes everyone can Give First.
Fostering Youth Entrepreneurship with Dream Tank
Co-host David Cohen and guest Heidi Cuppari discuss how she co-founded Dream Tank to truly tap into the radical imagination of children. What started as an experiment five years ago is now a place in which kids, such as guest Amelia Rose Battle, can help make the world a better place.Listen as Amelia shares her experiences working with Dream Tank. This includes how they created a VR experience to help veterans adjust to regular life after serving and learning how to support Dream Tank and promote youth entrepreneurship
Brad Feld and the mentor who changed his life
In this episode, Brad Feld is joined by Techstars’ Chief Revenue Officer Frank Alfano and past Chief Innovation Officer Jenny Lawton to talk with their mentor – Len Fassler. They each share their unique experiences meeting Len some thirty years ago, the ups and downs of working together and the tremendous impact he’s had on their lives.Listen to hear how Len got his start in the entrepreneurial world, how he evaluates whether or not to buy a company, and the valuable lessons Brad, Frank and Jenny learned from him.
Philip McKernan on the importance of reinventing yourself
Philip McKernan talks with David Cohen about how to find your purpose in life and his work with entrepreneurs. Through his coaching, he encourages people to take the risk they would only take if they were dying tomorrow. Listen as Philip and David discuss the importance of reinventing yourself, finding a business that fulfills you on a personal level, and how the idea of “holding space” can transform an entrepreneur’s home life. You can find the resources mentioned by Philip here. What would your one last talk be about? Tell David on Twitter @davidcohen. Techstars personnel and/or guests who speak in this podcast express their own opinions, and not the opinion of either Techstars or any company discussed in this podcast.This podcast is for informational purposes only, and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. You should consult your own advisers as to those matters. References to any securities are for illustrative and/or informational purposes only and do not constitute an investment recommendation or offer to provide investment advisory services. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investor or prospective investor, and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when making a decision to invest in any fund managed by Techstars. Certain of Techstars funds own (or may own in the future) securities in some of the companies discussed in this podcast.