Stanford GSB ENCORE Award 2012: LinkedIn's Reid Hoffman & Jeff Weiner



Reid Hoffman, LinkedIn’s founder and executive chairman of the Board, and Jeff Wiener, CEO, look back at how LinkedIn got started, the decisions and people that contributed to its early and current successes, and the culture that has grown to be such a strong differentiator for the company. Geoff Yang of Redpoint Ventures, Chairman of the 2012 ENCORE Award Selection Committee, leads the two LinkedIn executives in an informal yet revealing fireside chat. Listed below are his and the audience’s topics and questions, and the times at which they were asked.

0:34 – Tell the story of the founding and the “why” of Linkedin.
3:22 – Explain the original vision of Linkedin versus how it is today.
5:56 – What does Linkedin look like 5 years from now?
9:24 – Why have you invested so much in data science? What insights can be derived from Linkedin data and how will it improve the experience?
13:00 – If you were to start Linkedin today, what would you do differently? [Reid]
14:20 – Talk about why you joined Linkedin and what you saw when you came on-board. [Jeff]
18:55 – What did you take away from some of your prior experiences in management that you decided you wanted to do differently when you got to LinkedIn? [Jeff]
22:40 – Talk about what it takes to be a great entrepreneur, the challenges of starting a company and growing it, and how you decided it was time to bring in a CEO. [Reid]
26:20 – Expanding on the above question, Jeff discusses the transition between founder and CEO
28:00 – What are the tradeoffs that LinkedIn has to consider between more advanced privacy settings and visibility?
33:18 – What did the IPO mean to you as the leadership? What were you trying to accomplish and what is it like to be a public company?
38:35 – How did you get through the comparisons to the Facebook behemoth, were you intimated, if not why not, how did you keep the troops rallied, and how did you stick to the script?
42:40 – What are your reactions to what is happening at Yahoo?

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