Foundr Magazine Podcast with Nathan Chan

For Sarah Leary, entrepreneurship has always been in her blood. Growing up in a household of small-business owners including her grandmother who was also an entrepreneur, she knew she would eventually be one, too. She remembers that even when she was working for Microsoft as part of the founding team for Microsoft Office, she knew that being a business owner was her future.

From her development, launch, and successful scaling of Nextdoor into the world’s largest private social network for neighborhoods, Leary has experience in every aspect of entrepreneurialism. Her advice for budding entrepreneurs comes from years of experience in both scaling a business, building a community, and growing brands. 

In this interview with Nathan Chan, Leary reveals the absolute essentials every new entrepreneur needs to tick off when they want to start something new. As a venture partner at Unusual Ventures, Leary has advice straight from the frontline of what she wants to see in a pitch. 

Key Takeaways

  • How Leary grew up in a household of business owners and entrepreneurs and why that means she always knew she would be one too
  • Finding herself in the early start-up culture of Silicon Valley in the 90s
  • Her first business and how she faced failure, the decision to pivot, and a whole new frontier
  • The beginning of Nextdoor, and it’s growth internationally over the past decade
  • Joining Unusual Ventures, and why she wants to dedicate her time to helping others build companies from the ground up
  • Why founders need to be comfortable validating their ideas and assumptions
  • The two essential questions entrepreneurs need to ask themselves before starting
  • How Leary developed Nextdoor through a combination of brainstorming, customer research, and why you need to consider customer painkillers
  • Why every entrepreneur needs to learn to do extraordinary work for a narrow band of people, and then expand
  • How Leary fuelled the Nextdoor community, and why networks need leaders
  • Why Leary believes authenticity is the most important part of community strategy, and why you need to start with it
  • Why Leary stepped down from Nextdoor, and how the team of Unusual Ventures is rolling up their sleeves to help new entrepreneurs 
  • Leary’s reveals the secret to pitching ideas correctly, and what Unusual Ventures looks for in a new business idea

 

Direct download: FP343_Sarah_Leary.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:00am AEST

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