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Pattern Recognition - Investing in the Future
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Pattern Recognition - Investing in the Future

Author: John Hu

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Pattern Recognition ties together insights across world-class venture capitalists, private equity investors, and startup founders as they invest and manage billions of dollars of capital. Join our host, John Hu, as we dig into the patterns that senior decisionmakers look for as they move markets and stoke innovation. From finance to sales and marketing, we'll dive deeply into every aspect of what it takes to build the next game-changing business.

For show notes and more head over to patternrecognitionpod.com
39 Episodes
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Arianna shares concrete tips on how to excel as a world-class entrepreneur. After transforming the digital media landscape with HuffPost, Arianna embarked on a mission to cure the stress and burnout epidemic. Arianna shares clear rationale to prioritize sleep and turn off your phone, as well as practical strategies to actually execute on your goals. She also shares the key patterns she sees across the most successful entrepreneurs, 
After founding Hotwire and Zillow, Spencer Rascoff is back building dot.LA to support the LA tech ecosystem. Spencer reflects on how the Zillow team kickstarted its early network effects and how it differentiated in consumers' minds with the 'Zestimate'. Spencer also shares how he approaches his board work with Zulilly, TripAdvisor and Palantir with a focus on scaling and managing talent. And lastly, Spencer discusses his work building dot.LA and how he's planning to empower entrepreneurs across SoCal.  
What are the key KPIs that drive the world's leading task marketplace? Leah Solivan, Founder and Former CEO of TaskRabbit, reflects on the operational metrics that define a successful marketplace on both the supply- and demand-side. We also chat about her reflections on TaskRabbit’s exit to IKEA. And lastly, Leah and I discuss what she looks for in startups now that she’s investing fulltime as a general partner at Fuel Capital. For show notes, unreleased episodes, and more check out: https://patternrecognitionpod.com Twitter: @JohnHeezy | Instagram: @johnghu
With a $6bn+ market cap, HubSpot has revolutionized marketing. Brian Halligan, HubSpot's CEO and Founder, and I sit down to discuss how the entire customer experience, from discovery to post-purchase, is the defining factor of winning companies today. From there, we discuss what exactly a demandgen flywheel is and how to build one through inbound and content-driven marketing. Brian also shares his take on competing with large incumbents in mature markets and the key KPIs one should hone in on in building a sustainable marketing engine.  For show notes, unreleased episodes, and more check out: https://patternrecognitionpod.com Twitter: @JohnHeezy | Instagram: @johnghu
Tinder pioneered the dating app market. But where does it go from here and how does it maintain its dominant market position? Elie Seidman, CEO at Tinder, and I discuss how the company has gone from introducing 'swiping' to college campus to becoming a global phenomenon. Additionally, we talk all about user alignment, specifically in the context of the KPIs that drive Tinder's freemium subscription model.  We also touch on the challenges of user trust/safety at scale as well as how authentic human connection will sit at the center of the next great consumer platform. For show notes, unreleased episodes, and more check out: https://patternrecognitionpod.com Twitter: @JohnHeezy | Instagram: @johnghu
Recently named by Fast Company as the most innovative non-profit in the world. Girls Who Code is on a mission to bridge the gender gap. Reshma Saujani, Founder and CEO at GWC, shares how her and the team have worked with over 185,000 girls by partnering with governments and corporates alike. Reshma also reflects on the operational KPIs that have driven Girls Who Codes success as well as how brand authenticity and staying true to your mission are at the core of an impactful non-profit. For show notes, unreleased episodes, and more check out: https://patternrecognitionpod.com Twitter: @JohnHeezy | Instagram: @johnghu
Having most recently raised at a $2.4bn valuation, Carbon is revolutionizing manufacturing by being the first to market with a breakthrough technology that makes 3D printing both scalable and affordable. Phil DeSimone, co-founder and Chief Customer Officer at Carbon, discusses how Carbon is differentiating in both technology and business model. By leveraging a recurring revenue model and 5-7yr contracts in the company's go-to-market, Phil and his team are building a long-term focused business that's truly aligned with its customers' success. In today's episode, we chat all about specific tips around working with large corporate partners like Adidas/BMW, upping customer retention via a customer success department and properly incentivizing your sales team. For show notes, unreleased episodes, and more check out: https://patternrecognitionpod.com Twitter: @JohnHeezy | Instagram: @johnghu
Having built one of the largest financial media conglomerates, David Gardner and his team are now 26 years into democratizing the stock market for the masses. As a firm believer in active management, David's portfolio of stock recommendations has consistently beat the market year after year. So in today's episode, David shares with us the key patterns he sees across his most successful stock picks. Additionally, we get to hear all about the Fool's journey, from dot com boom/bust to the modern era, and how David and his team have honed a culture of innovation, openness and resilience. For show notes, unreleased episodes, and more check out: https://patternrecognitionpod.com Twitter: @JohnHeezy | Instagram: @johnghu
Having built one of the most successful billion-dollar edtech companies, Chip and his team at 2U made a pioneering bet that the future of education is online. Entering the industry with a disruptive business model: Chip and his team invest their own cash upfront during program implementation, instead negotiating revenue share agreements in a way that better aligns incentives across all stakeholders... in pursuit of the best student outcomes.  In today’s podcast, Chip and I discuss how to go about revolutionizing a risk-averse and bureaucracy-laden industry by innovating both in business and delivery model. Additionally, Chip shares the risks inherent in building a $bn edtech businesses and how the 2U team went about convincing the Yales and UNCs of the world to join their journey. And lastly, Chip shares the patterns he sees across successful public companies. For show notes, unreleased episodes, and more check out: https://patternrecognitionpod.com Twitter: @JohnHeezy | Instagram: @johnghu
Having built Nasty Gal into a dominant ecommerce brand in the 2000s, Sophia Amoruso is now leading the #Girlboss movement by creating a new age social network, media company, and community designed to bridge the gender gap and empower women in business. In today’s podcast, Sophia and I reflect on lessons learned during the Nastygal experience, and how those experiences led Sophia to not only start Girlboss, but build the company’s mission, team, and culture in an intentional and deliberate way. Additionally, we also discuss how Girlboss is creating a new age of media as well as how we all can help bridge the diversity gap. For show notes, unreleased episodes, and more check out: https://patternrecognitionpod.com Twitter: @JohnHeezy | Instagram: @johnghu
Having sat at the helm of the world’s premier management consulting firm for close to a decade, Dom Barton has seen what it takes to build leading teams across the world’s most successful $bn companies. Alongside Ram Charan, Dom penned Talent Wins, a guide that lays out how to scale a dominant and long-term business by focusing on people.  So in today’s episode, we discuss how exactly Talent Wins. Specifically, we dive into the structural building blocks found in McKinsey’s culture and values that allow its people to achieve excellence. Additionally, Dom shares the key qualities he looks for in candidates that are applying to McKinsey and how junior talent should think about scaling to senior roles. Lastly, Dom shares the consistent patterns he’s seen across his most successful clients through the lens of multiple economic cycles. For show notes, unreleased episodes, and more check out: https://patternrecognitionpod.com Twitter: @JohnHeezy | Instagram: @johnghu
The startup industry has a diversity problem. Of the thousands of VC partners out there, only 18% are female, and of the VC-backed founders out there, only 9% are female. And when you cut the statistics by race, the picture gets even more grim. Only 1 percent of venture-backed founders are black and 2% are latino. Henri-Pierre Jacques and Jarrid Tingle co-founded Harlem Capital while at Harvard Business School to level the playing field. In today's Pattern Recognition episode, we discuss how diversity actually leads to better business results in today’s globalizing world in addtion to laying out actionable strategies for how companies and firms can up their diversity metrics. We also share a few lessons learned for any entrepreneurial investors on how to go about raising a fund. For show notes, unreleased episodes, and more check out: https://patternrecognitionpod.com Twitter: @JohnHeezy | Instagram: @johnghu
After exiting Twitch to Amazon for $1bn, Justin Kan set out on a mission to redefine B2B legal services... but on the way realized that something wasn't right. Despite his highlight reel, he felt that something was missing, and that something was a source of meaning and fulfillment that no business success can sustainably achieve. Although today's episode covers Justin's business lessons learned as a serial entrepreneur (M&A, virality, market vs. execution risk), our conversation centers around the structural practices Justin embeds into building a conscious work culture, feeling good, and making the space for mindfulness and gratitude in our day-to-day.  For show notes, unreleased episodes, and more check out: https://patternrecognitionpod.com Twitter: @JohnHeezy | Instagram: @johnghu
After building Politico into the go-to source for politics, Jim VandeHei and Roy Schwartz went about revolutionizing the media industry again, this time through Axios. As a combination of Twitter and The Economist, Axios seeks to meet modern media consumption needs through a concept Jim and Roy call "smart brevity". So it's no surprise that Axios is scaling rapidly as today's source for expert opinions and differentiated content. In today's episode of Pattern Recognition, Jim and Roy discuss how to raise venture capital funding to build a sustainable, long-term focused media business. Additionally, we discuss how Trump has changed the media paradigm (for both good and bad) and how to evangelize a new kind of sale. For show notes, unreleased episodes, and more check out: https://patternrecognitionpod.com Twitter: @JohnHeezy | Instagram: @johnghu
Breaking through the unicorn barrier in less than 2 years, Andrew Dudum and his team at hims & hers are on a mission to make medicine more accessible... and they're having a ton of fun while they're at it. Andrew shares his insights around the novel ways hims is building a memorable and unique brand among consumers along with how he thinks about maximizing LTV/CAC. Additionally, we discuss the key performance metrics that are core to hims and hers and how the team measures their performance through concepts like multi-touch attribution. After listening to this episode, it'll be no surprise to you as to why hims has raised venture capital funding from some of the best consumer VCs out there. For show notes, unreleased episodes, and more check out: https://patternrecognitionpod.com Twitter: @JohnHeezy | Instagram: @johnghu
Scaling a technical organization that's reached $100M ARR is quite the challenge. Prashant Pandey, VP Engineering at Asana explains how he's built a thriving engineering organization that's put collaboration and efficiency at the center of its process. We dive into the concept of DevOps and how Prashant hires and structures his team to deliver value to the customer as quickly as possible. 
With a $1.8bn market cap, Upwork is revolutionizing the way we work. As the head of the largest freelancer marketplace, Stephane Kasriel walks us through the operational metrics required to scale a billion dollar marketplace, from user retention to trust and safety. In addition to sharing how Upwork differentiates, Stephane recounts his experience merging the two leading competitors in the space to form Upwork and then ultimately taking the company public in a highly successful IPO. As Stephane shares his M&A integration tips and recounts each step of the IPO, you won't want to miss out on this episode!
Having raised at a unicorn valuation from SoftBank's Vision Fund and Kleiner Perkins, Alex Garden and his team at Zume are revolutionizing the way we consume food. In today's episode, Alex and I discuss everything from the unit economics of restaurant delivery to saving the world from global climate change. And within our broad conversation, we dive really deep into how Zume is using robotic preparation and mobile kitchen deliver to provide both consumers and restaurants with a higher quality, better tasting and cheaper experience.  We also get into the nitty gritty of how Alex and his team think about KPIs and metrics, and how data-driven decisioning serves as the cornerstone of Zume’s business.
With a $19bn market cap, Ripple's cryptocurrency XRP is revolutionizing the global financial ecosystem. Monica Long, SVP Marketing at Ripple, demystifies what exactly Ripple is and does... and why their blockchain-based network is so disruptive. Additionally, she shares a few key patterns critical to evangelizing a new market, working with large financial partners, and navigating a complex regulatory system.
What does the food innovation process look like? In our age of wellness-focused living, Keith Belling has helped pioneer better-for-you products in both the snack and pantry aisle. Keith shares how he and his team focus on scaling a brand's awareness via field marketing and targeted partnerships as well as how he thinks about forecasting supply/demand in the early innings of a CPG startup.
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Comments (1)

Mauro Costa Neto

Awesome.... great interview

Jun 20th
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