Toward the end of a Quibb brunch last year, I floated near the door as people trickled out. I thanked them for coming, and asked some questions about how they liked the event, who they met, and if their eggs were cooked properly. I also used this facetime to get thoughts on a new format of event I was thinking about hosting. The idea was to bring together a small (15–20 people) group to chat specifically about their category & role (e.g. SaaS Marketing, Mobile Consumer Growth, Marketplace Founder). I thought it would be a good way for people to meet and chat with those that were working on similar problems to their own, and was a slightly more scalable way versus 1-on-1 coffee meetings.
Turns out, no one I chatted to was interested in that at all. Of the people I chatted with (and others since), the one thing that they really enjoy about the Quibb events is the ability to meet people who work in the tech industry, but work in a slightly different area than themselves. Seeing companies and products that influence the broader ecosystem through the eyes of someone working in an area slightly different that your own is extremely valuable. A few of the people noted how they were able to think about a problem they were having or issue they were dealing with in a slightly different way, simply because they had now been given the supporting knowledge and understanding to adopt lenses with a slightly different hue.
Learning from experts and grokking their worldview was also one of the key experiences I had that led me to start Quibb. While working on a broad range of products during the first 18mo I spent in the Valley, often met up with startup and tech people for coffee. I didn’t leave one of those meetings without at least one amazingly informative and novel insight. The caliber of people who were willing and excited to share what they were learning with a stranger was astounding to me. What was also really interesting was that these people were not the CEOs of hot-as-shit startups, the VCs with the most blog subscribers, nor the marketing gurus with >100k Twitter followers. They were the people in the trenches, the people who were extremely passionate and compelled to do their jobs really, really well.
These two pieces are what’s led me to start a new podcast for Quibb, focused on sharing the experiences of passionate people across the tech industry. I try to dig into exactly what these people do in their roles, and understand what their unique perspective is on the industry. If you work alongside or in a similar role, I hope their nuanced insights will help you think more deeply about your own work. If you’re in a different role or category in tech, I hope their perspectives allow you to open a different understanding to the work that you do, and the larger ecosystem that we’re all a part of.
The first episode of What I Know Best is available on iTunes — Be sure to subscribe!
I chat with Peter Boyce of General Catalyst/Rough Draft Ventures about the changing East Coast venture landscape, and empowering student founders during his time co-founding Rough Draft while he was at Harvard. Enjoy!