Product Startups Team

Launching Adventure Teams at Moz

Like many software companies moving from the early to growth stage, we’ve experienced our fair share of challenges and pains. At the start of 2012, there were ~50 Mozzers, a very flat management structure, and things like process, communication, and planning were fairly simple. But over the next 12 months, we more than doubled to nearly 120 (today 130+) and…
Marketing Startups

How Can a CEO Lead Social Media Efforts for Their Company?

One of the best parts about Foundry’s investment in Moz last Spring was the incredible access to other CEOs, founders, and companies in their portfolio. I’ve had at least a half dozen phone conversations, more than a dozen in-person chats, and a few invaluable get-togethers with my Foundry cousins and learned a tremendous amount every time. It’s something I hope…
Startups

7 Unlikely Recommendations for Startups & Entrepreneurs

If you’ve been reading this blog much, you know I’m something of a contrarian. One of Moz’s core values is, in fact, to be the exception to the rule, and a big part of that comes from my personal ethos of going against the grain. I love the startup world, but I really love the weird, atypical, non-Valley, non-20-something-Ivy-Leaguers-trying-to-be-Zuckerburg startups.…
Moz Psychology Startups Team

Generosity & Entitlement

I’ve been trying something new at Moz. I schedule 90 minutes every week or two for “office hours,” and invite anyone from any team at the company to come visit and chat about whatever’s on their mind. So far, attendance has been sparse (only 1 person the first week, ~10 the 2nd week, and 4 each of the last two…
Moz Startups Team

Well, He’s Not Going to Get Very Far

Company culture is incredibly fragile. It’s hard for founders/CEOs/execs to understand how little faith and trust people have in us when we stand up at a meeting and say “we believe in our culture” or “we put values first.” That skepticisim has often been built up over years or decades of being let down. People joined companies that claimed to…
Startups

So Why Do I Have the Platform & the Recognition?

Louis C.K. is one of the most entrepreneurial and authentic self-marketers in the entertainment world. I want to write loads about his email campaigns, his online ticket-sales, and the consistency of his persona, but tonight, it’s very late, I’ve just spent 22 hours on planes and in airports, and so this will have to do. From the NYTimes’ interview with…
Startups Team

Scaling Teams and the Fight Against Human Nature

I’ve talked to a lot of founders about their startup experiences and one of the more consistent topics we eventually get to is that, somewhere around 80-100 people, the team dynamics get really hard. So hard, in fact, that many founders opt to leave their companies at around this size and bring in more “professional” management. (via Ana Teresa on…
Startups

Why I Never Want to Have a “For-Profit” Business

Making money is an excellent side-effect of successful businesses. But, it’s a terrible core purpose. Last week, Fred Wilson wrote one of my favorite posts in a while on Short-Term Thinking vs. Long-Term Thinking. Here’s an excerpt: …Sure Samsung is making a killing on handset sales right now. So is Apple. That goes to their bottom line and then onto…
Hiring Startups Team

What Company Culture IS and IS NOT

Frustrated. Disturbed. Disappointed. That’s how I feel after reading a recent article that appeared in Bloomberg Businessweek called “Job Applicants’ Cultural Fit Can Trump Qualifications.” I don’t typically like to rant against stuff on the web, but I’m worried this is a case where the popularity of the piece (note the thousand upvotes, 600+ comments, and hyper-negativity in the Reddit…