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Mitchell Baker, "Chief Lizard Wrangler" at Mozilla, discusses the organization's unique, community-based culture and how it has contributed to their success. She explains how freedom, openness, and dedication to improving Internet usability fosters extraordinary contributions from Mozilla's employees and volunteers.
Spencer E. Ante, BusinessWeek editor and author, quotes excerpts from his book, Creative Capital: Georges Doriot and the Birth of Venture Capital, and offers a historical portal into the start and evolution of venture capital. He draws an investment timeline starting with the post-WWII economy, delves into the dominance of Silicon Valley, and discusses current recessionary activity.
Serial entrepreneur Marc Andreessen offers the Stanford audience a rare opportunity to pose open questions. Topics addressed include everything from the state of VC and the stock market, to Facebook's market dominance, to the rebirth of consumer electronics. In addition, Andreessen offers ground rules for the start-up, including tips on attracting top talent.
Shai Agassi discusses his entrepreneurial journey from the enterprise software industry to his current work in clean energy. In the process, he describes the "physics of startups", drawing parallels between principles of business and the laws of physics. He emphasizes the importance of acting on an idea before it's adopted by the mainstream and navigating the inevitable uncertainties that can result in success or failure.
Dr. John Adler, Jr. and John "Trip" Adler III discuss their entrepreneurial experience and evolution as a business leader: For Dr. Adler, he describes his bumpy course in developing his biotechnology company, Accuray Incorporated; for his son Trip, he emphasizes the persistence and luck in developing Scribd, a social publishing site. Despite building companies in different fields, the two offer the same central advice necessary in building a successful company: trust yourself, have common sense, and there are no rules.
Stanford Graduate School of Business professor Jennifer Aaker shares the power behind creating ideas that can build momentum. Through her research on the perception of happiness and meaning, Aaker describes how these concepts relate to a successful and powerful social media campaign. A well-planned effort catches audience attention and offers them an engaging story. Aaker, co-author of The Dragonfly Effect, also offers several personal and corporate examples of effective viral campaigns that garnered real world, and even life-saving, results.
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