So I’m going through back episodes of This Week in Startups and finding some great stuff, but after watching this week’s episode of TWiST your time this week is best spent watching the most current episode – #42 with Michael Robertson.
There are a few things I love about this episode. First the caller in the ‘Ask Jason’ segment. Here’s a lesson for anyone trying to get a break in life, be memorable. The question the caller asked was a good one – if you’re considering a job with a startup, and they offer you equity or shares in the company, what questions do you ask to value that? I didn’t know the answer myself so I was interested, and Jason gave an informative answer, which was helpful, then as the caller finished up, he says “btw, I ask because I’m interviewing with your company, good to meet you” obviously I’m paraphrasing, but this is a step up from FedEx-ing your resume to try and get the CEO to see it / know who you are. Ballsy move, and I loved it.
Next, Michael Robertson is a great guest of mp3.com fame. He rates well with me because I like the guests who can think for themselves. Jason appears to have a tendency to be surrounded by “Yes” men, I think due more to Jason’s extrovert/alpha personality than his desire to have everyone agree with him, but guests will fall into this category often. Not consciously of course, these are smart guys, but Jason will push an argument out there then turn to his guests expectantly and say “you agree with that right?” and more often than not his guests will nod passively rather than rebut his argument. Well the guests I love are the ones that are thoughtful to the point of responding with arguments of their own being unafraid of the debate, instead of nodding along with the discussion.
So Robertson has done quite a bit with his career, lots of lessons to lift from him, and really what a treat to have guests like this speaking directly to the entrepreneurial experience. Check it out, runs about 2 hours, so play it in the background, or during lunch, or something like that, but get it going.