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Silicon Valley and the limits of ‘leaning in’
SEPTEMBER 20, 2017 Emma Jacobs

Working at Kleiner removed the scales from her eyes. “You can’t always get ahead by working hard if you’re not part of the ‘in’ crowd.” The culture, she writes, is “designed to keep out people who aren’t white men . . . for all the public hand-wringing about how unacceptable this is, no one on the inside can honestly say the absence of diversity is a mystery or a coincidence; this is the way they set up the industry”. Despite Asians being well represented in Silicon Valley, she writes, the “bamboo ceiling” means they don’t make it to the upper echelons.

She was frequently told to be bolder. Now she wonders whether the reserve of “introverted, analytical people, often women” was undervalued. “What if our inclination to assess and avoid the outsized risk of certain ventures could be an asset to our teams? Why does it never seem to occur to anyone that it’s an option . . . for the men to actually listen to us?”

Inspired by the arguments of Sheryl Sandberg in her book Lean In that women should take their place at the table, Pao recalls taking the advice literally and installing herself in one of the “power seats” in a private jet, only to find the conversation turn to pornography and sex workers. Once off the plane, the men ditched Pao to socialise together.
Ellen_Pao  Silicon_Valley  book_reviews  books  women  diversity  Kleiner_Perkins  gender_gap  gender_discrimination  Asian-Americans  upper_echelons  white_men 
november 2017 by jerryking
John Doerr to Step Aside and Become Chairman at Kleiner Perkins - The New York Times

John Doerr is stepping back from the day-to-day management of his firm, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, in a changing of the guard. Mr. Doerr, 64 will become KP's first chairman. The shift reflects a reprioritization of his time from managing the firm to grooming the next generation of leaders. “I see this chair role as a ‘player coach,’” Mr. Doerr wrote in a blog post on Thursday. “I’m super enthused about our next gen leaders and the future.”....“The venture industry is changing all the time,” he wrote. “We must keep changing to better compete and serve entrepreneurs.”
Kleiner_Perkins  John_Doerr  boards_&_directors_&_governance  Silicon_Valley  venture_capital 
april 2016 by jerryking
After Kleiner Trial, Expect Less Shooting From the Hip in Silicon Valley -

In its glory days, venture capital was a freewheeling enterprise with few rules and scant documentation. That may all be over now....This probability became apparent during the testimony of Ellen Pao, the former junior partner who was suing Kleiner. She said that she had discovered Twitter as a potential investment for the venture capital firm. But Kleiner disputed that Ms. Pao had found Twitter because she could not prove it. Twitter is now worth $32 billion.

“There is not a single piece of evidence to suggest Ellen Pao ever sourced Twitter,” Kleiner’s lawyer, Lynne C. Hermle, told the jury....The issue of having to document an idea is now set to ripple through Silicon Valley. While the truth of what did or did not happen with Twitter was one of the many unresolved points of the trial —.... — it is a pretty good bet that the next time a junior partner at Kleiner or any other venture firm thinks he or she has come up with something great, the partner will record it in emails, memos, diaries and possibly stone tablets.
Kleiner_Perkins  Silicon_Valley  women  venture_capital  Ellen_Pao  gender_discrimination  documentation 
march 2015 by jerryking
Kleiner Perkins, Disrupted -

The last decade has not been as kind to Kleiner. Entrepreneurs have less need of venture capitalists and their cash, because it is cheaper to start a company and they now have other funding sources. Kleiner also had self-inflicted wounds: An ambitious bet on alternative energy companies, also known as green tech, did not work out as well as hoped, and many opportunities were missed in consumer Internet companies. When the events at issue in the trial took place — roughly 2008 to 2012 — the firm downsized.

A struggling firm in a struggling industry is, as all connoisseurs of digital disruption know, bound to be filled with unhappiness....Kleiner was a firm in flux, Mr. Hirschfeld recalled. One woman he talked to said Kleiner “seemed to be moving from a brand called KP to a brand of individuals that are part of KP. It was now becoming more of a cult of personality, and each personality had its own brand.” ...Kleiner is coming off at the trial as a place where, whatever its undoubted excellence, the loudest people win, the most aggressive win, and those who can find a mentor by sucking up win. This does not sound like a family, a meritocracy or even a place that is a successful investor over the long term.

Why didn’t Kleiner realize this in 2012, when Mr. Hirschfeld submitted his 26-page report?

Perhaps the firm was focused on the narrow issue: whether Ms. Pao was the subject of discrimination. Mr. Hirschfeld’s answer was no, and so maybe the details did not matter.
venture_capital  Kleiner_Perkins  disruption  gender_discrimination  women  personality_cults  self-inflicted  Silicon_Valley  Ellen_Pao  John_Doerr  personal_branding  lawsuits  unhappiness  digital_disruption 
march 2015 by jerryking
Dec 4th 2003
From The Economist print edition
Eugene Kleiner, pioneer of venture capitalism, died on November 20th, aged 80
obituaries  Kleiner_Perkins  vc  venture_capital 
october 2014 by jerryking
New Hope for the New Economy
January 15, 2001 | WSJ | By Anthony Perkins. Mr. Perkins is editor-in-chief of Red Herring and co-author of "The Internet Bubble" (HarperBusiness, 1999).

By the end of last year, more than 100 dot-...
Silicon_Valley  George_Gilder  Kleiner_Perkins  Gilder's_Law  Andy_Grove 
january 2014 by jerryking
A tech-powered end to the middle class
Feb. 21 2013 | The Globe and Mail | CHRYSTIA FREELAND.
One way to divide people is into those who think this time is different and those who believe there is never anything new under the sun. That split can be a matter of temperament, of politics or even of religion. But today it is relevant for another, more urgent reason: It describes how people think about the most critical economic problem in the industrialized world – the dearth of well-paying middle-class jobs....
"thanks to the tech revolution, the traditional link between rising productivity and a rising standard of living (i.e. wages) for the middle class has been broken. Gore worries that severed link may be causing the economic slowdown in the developed economies: A weakened middle class lacks the spending power to drive growth.

One of the smartest academics studying this phenomenon is Erik Brynjolfsson, a management professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The co-author of a new book, Race Against the Machine, believes the tech revolution is having a powerful and unprecedented impact. “Most of the debate … is missing the tectonic changes in the way the economy works, which are driven by technology,” he said recently. “This is the big story of our time, and it is going to accelerate over the next 10 years.”

Like Mr. Gore, Mr. Brynjolfsson thinks the canary in the coal mine is the decoupling of gains in productivity and in wages. “Productivity since 2000 has grown faster than in the 1970s, ’80s or ’90s,” he said. “But starting in the late 1990s, we’ve had this decoupling of wages from productivity.” He sees this as a historic watershed, noting that there is “no economic law” that productivity and jobs go together.

That change has tremendous implications. Productivity and innovation, the focus of policy makers and business leaders, no longer guarantee widely shared prosperity. “Digital technologies are different in that they allow people with skills to replicate their talents to serve billions,” Mr. Brynjolfsson noted. “There is really a drastic winner-take-all effect because every industry is becoming like the software industry.”

The danger isn’t structural unemployment (as many feared during the depths of the financial crisis). The problem is what kind of jobs, at what kind of salaries, the tech-powered economy of the future will generate.
'90s  Albert_Gore  books  Chrystia_Freeland  downward_mobility  economic_stagnation  Erik_Brynjolfsson  hollowing_out  innovation  Kleiner_Perkins  leading_indicators  Luddites  middle_class  MIT  productivity  seismic_shifts  the_Great_Decoupling  This_Time_is_Different  wage_stagnation  winner-take-all 
february 2013 by jerryking
In search of up-and-comers: some principles to follow
02 Dec 1995 | The Globe and Mail pg. B.18.| Gary Lamphier.

IMAGINE investing in technology stars such as California's 3Com or Ottawa's Istar Internet - last week's market darling on the Toronto Stock Exchange - long before they've gone public and other investors have jumped aboard.

That's the game venture capitalists play as they scour obscure industry publications and trade shows, attend endless conferences and swap gossip with entrepreneurs in search of tomorrow's success stories.
(1) Most want to see company principals put their money where their mouth is by investing in their own companies. Otherwise, no deal.
(2) The market that the startup company plans to sell its product into must be big and getting bigger.
(3) Any start-up company that hopes to prosper must have exceptionally strong management, the pros agree.
(4) Successful companies breed successful companies.
Sequoia  Michael_Moritz  venture_capital  vc  Kleiner_Perkins  start_ups  rules_of_the_game  large_markets  teams  skin_in_the_game  unglamorous 
july 2012 by jerryking
The Thinker
March 1995 | The Red Herring Issue 19 | by Anthony Perkins.

Our goal is quality, not quantity. You also have to develop competence and expertise in an industry to earn the right to advise entrepreneurs....There's a tremendous marketing and management deficit in Silicon Valley. The really big winners, like Compaq or Intuit, figure out how to enter a market, not just with a superior product, but with a value proposition that is intellectually, emotionally, and economically compatible with a powerful channel of distribution.
John_Doerr  Kleiner_Perkins  venture_capital  vc 
july 2012 by jerryking
Fastest VC in the West
October 25, 1993| Forbes ASAP, p. 105. | by Nancy Rutter.
John_Doerr  venture_capital  vc  Kleiner_Perkins  Intel 
july 2012 by jerryking
Kleiner Perkins, for Better or Verse -
July 19, 2012, 12:00 pm5 Comments
Kleiner Perkins, for Better or Verse
Kleiner_Perkins  sexual_harassment  Ellen_Pao  gender_discrimination 
july 2012 by jerryking
Kleiner Loses Bid for Arbitration in Discrimination Case -
July 20, 2012, 2:30 pm14 Comments
Kleiner Loses Bid for Arbitration in Discrimination Case
Kleiner_Perkins  litigation  sexual_harassment  Ellen_Pao  gender_discrimination  arbitration 
july 2012 by jerryking
Thomas Perkins
August 26, 1996 | FORBES ASAP |Owen Edwards
Kleiner_Perkins  venture_capital  vc  trailblazers  HP  Tom_Perkins  passions 
july 2012 by jerryking
The Young & Restless of Technology Finance
November 1993| The Red Herring | Anthony B. Perkins.

We think that marketing is everything. We try to help our companies figure out what is going to set them apart. We encourage companies to define their biggest risks-up front, work hard to put the risks behind them, and then move forward with very innovative marketing...During the interview process, you see whether entrepreneurs have passion and tenacity. The hardest thing to determine is their ability to stick-to-it. Entrepreneurs need to be very dynamic, wi11ing to adjust. And that's why an important part of our process is checking references, we have to be convinced the entrepreneur has never give up, even when things get tough. In other words, when Plan A work, because Plan A never works, we like to hear entrepreneurs say "That's O.K.,Plan B is on its way. I've twisted this valve and turned this knob and I really think we've figured it out." What we don't like to hear is "Well,it didn't work out...sorry." We also like to see entrepreneurs who are singularly focused on building -great products that fill distinct market needs. We are less interested in people who like nice digs, hype,and PR.

Moritz: ‘We have a very tight on making sure there is a sizable market opportunity in front. of us before we make an investment. We are much more focused on market growth potential and the ability for a company to reach a market successfully and profitably. We have also demonstrated as a firm and individually the ability to get companies off the ground with a small amount of fuel. We like to start wicked infernos with a single match rather than two million gallons of kerosene. This is clearly a differentiated way of getting a company put together. This approach has terrific benefits for the people who start the companies and for all our limited partners. You might say that we have a morbid fascination with our ROI, as opposed no the amount of dollars we put to work. And this is a very different message than you get from a lot of other venture firms.
The: HERRING: How often does a Sequoia partner actually go in and help operate a company?

Moritz: Pierre is the great unsung hero of Cisco Systems. He spent a tremendous amount of time at the company. working behind the scenes helping to make sure the engineering department was designing and getting new products to market. People don't realize the significant contribution Pierre made to Cisco because Don's name is on the hubcaps as the chairman of the company. The ability we have to help operate companies is a useful tool in our arsenal.

The HERRING: Sequoia's image on the streets of Silicon Valley is that you are the Los Angeles Raiders of venture capital--the tough guys who are quicker than the other firms to boot the CEO or pull the financial plug.
Moritz: We are congenitally incapable of pouring good money after bad. Some people. for their own will thrust us into a position to be harbingers of bad new to management, which is all right. But we do not want to continue propping up a company if we think its chances for success have evaporated. We would be wasting our money as individuals and wasting the money of our limited partners. There have been very few instances where we decided to stop funding a company and have regretted it.
The HERRING: What ’s the hardest part of your job?
Moritz: We usually don't make mistakes when it comes to assessing market opportunity. And we are reasonably accurate in predicting how long it will take to bring a product to market. The great imponderable is to judge accurately and predict how well a president is going to be able to run the business. It is easy to mistake the facade for reality
The HERRING: ‘What characteristics does Sequoia look for in a company president?
Moritz: Frugality, competitiveness. confidence, and paranoia.
venture_capital  vc  howto  Kleiner_Perkins  Sequoia  career_paths  Michael_Moritz  no_regrets  endurance  frugality  competitiveness  paranoia  self-confidence  market_sizing  market_windows  team_risk  market_opportunities  ambitions  large_markets  sticktoitiveness  entrepreneur  perseverance  indispensable  Plan_B  off-plan  champions  reference-checking  unknowns  assessments_&_evaluations  opportunities  unsentimental  wishful_thinking  illusions  overambitious 
july 2012 by jerryking
Starting Up in High Gear
July-August 2000 | HBR |An Interview with Vinod Khosla by David Champion and Nicholas G. Carr.

To create the kind of new wealth you’re talking about, we’re going to have to see massive investments in information technology. Where’s the money going to come from?

It’s going to come out of corporate budgets. Companies invest wherever they’re going to get the biggest returns, and right now that’s IT. Look at the trend in capital expenditures. Twenty years ago, information technology accounted for about 10% of capital expenditures in the United States. ...
Today, if you have a plan for a new business, you circulate it in the venture community and you get funded in a week. What you don’t get is an honest, painstaking critique. What are the downsides in your plan? What are the shortcomings? What are the weak links? The strengths of your idea get a lot of attention, but the weaknesses get ignored—and ultimately it’s the weaknesses of your plan that will kill you. A start-up is only as strong as its weakest link....
The first thing we focused on was getting the right set of people for the company—the right gene pool. We started out on the technical end. Pradeep had helped architect the Ultrasparc processor at Sun, so he had strong skills in building technical architectures and could apply those skills to routers. But he needed somebody with experience in building and operating an IP network, and he needed somebody who’d done operating systems software for routers and somebody who’d done protocols for routers. So we drew out a map that said, “Here are the ten different areas of expertise we need.” Then we made a list of the companies doing the best work in each area, and we listed the five people in each company who would make good targets. We went after those people, and piece by piece we assembled a multidisciplinary team that could make Juniper a leader.
IT  interviews  HBR  Kleiner_Perkins  start_ups  large_companies  management_consulting  Vinod_Khosla  executive_search  shortcomings  weaknesses  new_businesses  CAPEX  weak_links  Nicholas_Carr  talent_acquisition  gene_pool  expertise  team_risk  wealth_creation  cross-pollination  interdisciplinary  teams  protocols 
june 2012 by jerryking
Web Revival at Kleiner -

Kleiner Plays Catch-Up
Venture Capitalists Who Jumped on First Internet Wave Get the Feeling

leading Kleiner partner John Doerr and Ms. Meeker have been making the
rounds of Silicon Valley Web start-ups and have personally negotiated
stakes in companies.

There's been an "advent of a perfect storm" of "social, local and
mobile" Web companies, and "so we're pursuing that," said Mr. Doerr in
an interview. "It's a new business for Kleiner Perkins, and so we're
getting up every day and fighting to get into the best investments."

Kleiner venture capitalist Bing Gordon spent an hour onstage espousing
his theory of "gamification"—that is, how start-ups can benefit from
using online gaming techniques—to the gathering.

Read more:
Kleiner_Perkins  venture_capital  VC  Mary_Meeker  Pui-Wing_Tam  games  John_Doerr  SMAC_stack  gamification 
august 2011 by jerryking
Trip Hawkins Blog: DON VALENTINE
September 3rd, 2009 | | by Trip Hawkins
Don_Valentine  Sequoia  Kleiner_Perkins  Apple  Steve_Jobs 
may 2011 by jerryking
Read All About It: News Apps Arrive -
DEC. 9, 2010 | WSJ | By SPENCER E. ANTE. In the news
category of the App Store, news readers such as Pulse, Flipboard &
SkyGrid occupy 5 of the top 10 positions. Both Pulse & Flipboard
claim at least 500,000 users, while SkyGrid claims it`s poised to pass 1
M users during 1Q11......These companies claim news readers provide a
way to keep newspaper and magazine content relevant in a mobile age and
might even help provide a new source of revenue for the industry by
driving traffic back to their websites. "We can help publishers on the
presentation of content and help readers become more engaged," said Mike
McCue, CEO of Flipboard....News readers are built on the news feeds
from publishers' websites. What is novel is how they present the
information in easy-to-read formats built specifically for the smaller
screens of mobile devices..... News apps easy sharing of articles
through Twitter & Facebook.
mobile_applications  newspapers  news  magazines  content  Kleiner_Perkins  Pulse  Flipboard  Skygrid  Spencer_Ante  digital_media 
december 2010 by jerryking
Morgan Stanley's Meeker to Leave -
NOVEMBER 30, 2010| Wall Street Journal | By PUI-WING TAM And
AARON LUCCHETTI A Onetime 'Queen of the Net' Heads to Silicon Valley
Kleiner_Perkins  silicon_valley  Morgan_Stanley 
december 2010 by jerryking
What Hewlett-Packard Seeks in a Successor to Fiorina
Feb 10, 2005 |Wall Street Journal pg. B.1 | Joann S. Lublin and
Don Clark. Ms. Dunn will spearhead the hunt, though some company
watchers expect board member Thomas Perkins to play a major role, too.
Mr. Perkins rejoined the H-P board earlier this week. A founder of the
venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, he is
regarded as an aggressive deal maker and someone who built his career by
pushing technology companies to grow. "The most important thing is not
that Carly is gone, but that Tom Perkins is back," said Mark Stahlman,
an analyst at Caris & Co. in New York.
ProQuest  Kleiner_Perkins  HP  succession  CEOs  executive_management  Tom_Perkins  boards_&_directors_&_governance  Carly_Fiorina 
october 2010 by jerryking
31 October 1993 | Red Herring | Staff. What makes a good venture capitalist?
Sequoia  Michael_Moritz  Kleiner_Perkins  venture_capital 
february 2010 by jerryking

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