Sarah Tavel | The Value of Intellectual Rigor

If you choose the wrong metric, you end up optimizing for the wrong thing. You end up deciding on different features you’re going to build that optimize for something that’s top of the funnel base as an example here. All startups are incredibly resource-constrained. Even despite that, there is so much capital of chasing startups, at the end of the day, you’re still a capital constraint environment whereas as a founder you have to make sure that you’re allocating your dollars in the way that will generate the most equity value for the company long term, and you just waste a lot of effort.



Sarah Tavel has spent the past four years as a general partner at venture capital firm Benchmark, after previously serving in the same role with Greylock Partners and as the first-ever product manager at Pinterest. In this episode Shane and Sarah how studying philosophy helped in her career as a venture capitalist, the value of intellectual rigor, her concept of the net-present value of pain, why every strength has a corresponding weakness, where executive boards go wrong, assessing the performance of a CEO, lessons of rapidly scaling at Pinterest, and so much more.



Like the mentor you’ve always dreamed of having, The Knowledge Project shares timely yet timeless lessons for work and life. Past guests include Naval Ravikant, Daniel Kahneman, Jim Collins, Angela Duckworth, Seth Godin, Melanie Mitchell, & Esther Perel.

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