Masters of Scale

"Masters of Scale" is a podcast that offers award-winning business advice from iconic CEOs in Silicon Valley and beyond.

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Latest Episodes

Don’t stop learning: How Cornerstone kept scaling, w/Adam Miller

Don’t stop learning: How Cornerstone kept scaling, w/Adam Miller

Founded at the dawn of the dot-com era, entrepreneur Adam Miller’s original concept for Cornerstone was a kind of Netflix for adult education: training courses through CD-ROMs. Migrating to online offerings for major corporate clients, Adam steered the company through tough times that included an encounter with a loan shark, markets collapsing, and global crises. By the time he sold the company two decades later – for more than $5.2 billion – Adam learned essential lessons about how to scale during uncertainty.

Read a transcript of this episode: https://mastersofscale.com

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The Sequoia “RIP: Good Times” presentation: https://articles.sequoiacap.com/rip-good-times

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Rapid Response: Taking over when tragedy strikes, w/Guild's Bijal Shah

Rapid Response: Taking over when tragedy strikes, w/Guild's Bijal Shah

After Guild’s founding CEO suffered a stroke at the age of just 34, Bijal Shah was tapped to take the helm. Shah joins Rapid Response to share the story behind the emotional leadership change, and how she wrestled with the immense responsibility of shepherding a company out of crisis. Shah also discusses how Taylor Swift inspires her leadership, and why Guild recently partnered with Team USA ahead of the Paris Olympics. 

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Tinker your way to scale: James Dyson

Tinker your way to scale: James Dyson

James Dyson's journey to building a global invention enterprise began with a simple goal: to build a better vacuum. After 5,000+ prototypes and years of precise tinkering, his innovative bagless vacuum was ready. But none of the big brand names wanted it. So he started the Dyson company, betting that customers would be swayed by new technology, better performance, and distinctive design. Today the Dyson Corporation commands $9 billion in annual revenue, and — driven by engineering curiosity — develops products from air purifiers to hair dryers, even making a big bet on an electric car (that never hit the market). James Dyson’s inspiring story of scale involves challenging experts at every turn, relentless iteration, and a resilient view of failure as a stepping stone to the next breakthrough.

Read a transcript of this episode: https://mastersofscale.com

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Rapid Response: Crypto’s new chapter, w/Crypto Council for Innovation’s Sheila Warren

Rapid Response: Crypto’s new chapter, w/Crypto Council for Innovation’s Sheila Warren

For anyone skeptical about crypto hype, Sheila Warren explains why it is here to stay, and what you might be overlooking. As CEO of the Crypto Council for Innovation, Warren joins Rapid Response to take us inside today’s crypto resurgence, in which 1 out of 5 Americans hold crypto in some fashion. Warren shares the story behind Congress’ recent bipartisan crypto bill, and how the industry is cracking down on bad actors and get-rich-quick schemes. Plus, how crypto is part of the underlying tech behind a “new internet.” 

Watch this episode on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-MBe203ko2Q

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For more info, visit: www.rapidresponseshow.com

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Bonus: Angela Duckworth’s “No Stupid Questions” Podcast

Bonus: Angela Duckworth’s “No Stupid Questions” Podcast

Masters of Scale guest, psychologist, and “Grit” author Angela Duckworth also hosts the podcast “No Stupid Questions.” With her co-host, entrepreneur and executive Mike Maughn, she takes up questions on deep issues like purpose and productivity. In this episode called “Do You Need a Routine?” Angela and Mike share notes from their personal lives, colleagues, and experts about value of habit formation.

Check out No Stupid Questions website: https://freakonomics.com/series/nsq/

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QuestBridge: Scaling College Access with Ana Rowena Mallari

QuestBridge: Scaling College Access with Ana Rowena Mallari

Imagine all the highly motivated, high-achieving students who can excel at the most challenging colleges but lack the financial resources to attend. Matching this type of talent with full funding from top-tier schools is the mission of QuestBridge. CEO Ana Rowena Mallari recounts the organization’s 30-year scale journey, during which the program has fostered $5 billion in scholarships and helped 100,000 students. Co-founded by Mallari and Michael McCullough as a summer program at Stanford, QuestBridge now partners with more than 50 schools, transforming how colleges across the U.S. evaluate and admit their incoming classes.

Synthetic voiceover of Reid Hoffman used in this episode was produced by Respeecher with full consent and permission.

Read a transcript of this episode: https://mastersofscale.com

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Rapid Response: Robinhood confronts a GameStop sequel, w/CEO Vlad Tenev

Rapid Response: Robinhood confronts a GameStop sequel, w/CEO Vlad Tenev

How will the return of meme stocks like GameStop and day trading influencers like Roaring Kitty alter the fintech landscape? Robinhood’s co-founder and CEO Vlad Tenev, who was a lightning rod for controversy when meme stocks first surged in 2021, joins Rapid Response to explain what’s the same and what’s different this time around. Tenev also shares how his family’s struggles in 1990s Bulgaria shapes his view of the U.S. financial markets today, and whether trading on Robinhood is like using a sports gambling app.

Watch this episode on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8pChXgKIemw

Subscribe to the Rapid Response podcast feed: https://listen.rapidresponseshow.com/Subscribe

For more info, visit: www.rapidresponseshow.com

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Meet “Reid-ish”: The Story of Cloning Reid Hoffman’s Voice

Meet “Reid-ish”: The Story of Cloning Reid Hoffman’s Voice

Masters of Scale goes under the hood of powerful AI in audio, unveiling a full vocal clone for founding host Reid Hoffman. Our CEO Jeff Berman, the Masters of Scale staff, and Reid himself tell the story of creating a synthetic voice we call “Reid-ish.” The company Respeecher is behind the technology, and its CEO Alex Serdiuk walks us through the speech replication process. Through “Reid-ish” we grapple with authenticity, disclosure, labor, and evolving norms around AI in media. Reid ponders what’s possible for greater sharing and learning through this audio technology, as well as what listeners should know about its use.

For more on our team’s principles and practices, go to mastersofscale.com/pledge for our proposed Listener’s Bill of Rights in the Age of AI.

Read a transcript of this episode: https://mastersofscale.com

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

Rapid Response: What campus protests mean for business, w/Ken Frazier and Ken Chenault

Rapid Response: What campus protests mean for business, w/Ken Frazier and Ken Chenault

Amid college campus protests over Palestine and Israel, stark US political divides, and legal challenges to diversity initiatives, business leaders face new pressure on whether to speak out and take action on issues of our time. Ken Frazier, former CEO of Merck, and Ken Chenault, former CEO of American Express, offer their unfiltered advice, as board members of the Harvard Corporation and two of America’s most prominent Black executives. It’s a candid conversation about the most controversial topics in American business, from DEI (Diversity, Equity and Inclusion) to January 6th.

The pair collaborate at the venture capital firm, General Catalyst. Ken Chenault is the Chairman and a Managing Director, while Ken Frazier is the firm’s Chairman of Health Assurance initiatives.

Watch this episode on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QctAB_DGAIM

Subscribe to the Rapid Response podcast feed: https://listen.rapidresponseshow.com/Subscribe

For more info, visit: www.rapidresponseshow.com

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

Bio of Masters of Scale

"Masters of Scale" is a podcast that offers award-winning business advice from iconic CEOs in Silicon Valley and beyond. Hosted by Reid Hoffman, co-founder of LinkedIn and renowned investor, the podcast explores the strategies that enabled these CEOs to transform their startups into global brands and navigate through crises.

The podcast features two distinct formats that provide a comprehensive perspective on business growth and resilience. In the classic format, Reid Hoffman presents unconventional theories about scaling businesses and invites guests to share their personal stories of entrepreneurship, leadership, strategy, management, and fundraising. Listeners gain insights into the challenges, failures, setbacks, and valuable learnings that shaped these leaders' journeys.

In the Rapid Response format, hosted by Bob Safian, former editor-in-chief of Fast Company, the podcast addresses real-time challenges faced by businesses. This format focuses on crisis response, rebuilding efforts, diversity and inclusion, leadership changes, and other pressing topics.

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