What’s it like to be a KPCB Fellow and Hear from Jeff Holden?

KPCB is a very prominent and long living Venture Capitalist firm located in the heart of Silicon Valley. They have invested in the most life changing startups of my generation, which include Google, Twitter, Uber, Shape Security and many others.

Each year, the recruiting team at KPCB takes on thousands of applicants for a highly prestigious program in which 3.2% of applicants become fellows. If accepted, you intern full-time at a KPCB portfolio company while getting the chance to attend events throughout the evenings and weekends.

Being a fellow is hard work and hard play — We sailed the San Francisco Bay and heard from Jeff Holden of Uber. I want to spend the rest of this post highlighting Jeff Holden’s talking points. Many of us forgot to write down notes, so this can serve as a notepad to launch back into his ideas.


As an introduction, Jeff Holden helped create Prime while he was at Amazon and now is the Chief Product Officer at Uber. Without further ado in no particular order:

  1. Surround yourself with people who make you feel stupid
  2. Minimize Regrets
  3. Obsess over customers, not competitors
  4. No whining
  5. Spend money on what matters to customers
  6. Culture Matters
  7. Take Risks
  8. Optimize for the long term
  9. The press is in the entertainment business
  10. Seek Truth
  11. Get traction fast
  12. The rate of paradigm shifts is increasing

Originally posted 11–07–2015. Thank you for an awesome time Justin Sayarath & Kleiner Perkins!