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Success Story Podcast

Randy Haykin, Founder of Gratitude Network | The Importance of Socially Conscious Entrepreneurship

By February 9, 2022January 18th, 2023No Comments

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About The Guest

Randy Haykin is a serial entrepreneur, angel investor, venture capitalist, and philanthropist. Haykin founded and runs The Gratitude Network, a 501c3 not-for-profit that provides coaching services to social entrepreneurs around the world.

In 1997, Haykin co-founded Outlook Ventures, which invested in over 30 growth-stage internet and software companies technology companies over a ten-year span. Haykin’s “street training” came from executive roles at IBM, Apple, Paramount. Starting in 1993, Haykin joined a series of technology start-ups and held senior sales and marketing positions at Yahoo, Electric Minds, and NetChannel.

Haykin has been an angel investor for more than 20 years, investing in more than 30 early-stage companies, including early stakes in AOL, Yahoo, Voquette, eTeamz/Active, Sharie’s Berries, Napo Pharmaceuticals, Solazyme, EyeFluence,, FastPencil, LesConcierges, EnerAllies, CrowdOptic, Apploi, QASymphony, ePharmix, and Sculptology.

Talking Points

  • 00:00 – Intro
  • 04:35 – Randy Haykin’s Origin Story
  • 06:42 – What Made Randy Leave The Venture Space And Start The Gratitude Network?
  • 10:14 – What Is Randy’s Role In The Gratitude Network?
  • 15:10 – What Is The Biggest Difference Between The Gratitude Network And All The Other Accelerators In The World?
  • 17:55 – Some Lessons For Founders Who Don’t Have A Traditional Business Background
  • 23:22 – How Does Randy Make Business Decisions Between For-Profit Versus Non-Profit Business?
  • 27:33 – What Are The Different Variables Randy Looks For When They Are Scaling Startups?
  • 31:52 – Advice When Trying To Find A Coach? 
  • 36:12 – When Is The Right Time To Hire A Coach?
  • 38:42 – Red Flags To Consider When Looking For Coaches?
  • 40:22 – What Has More Merit? A Traditional MBA Program Or Business Coaching.
  • 43:21 – What Should Entrepreneurs Be Aware Of?
  • 52:54 – When Was Randy Happiest?
  • 56:28 – What Is The Mindset Or Driving Force Behind Gratitude Network?
  • 59:39 – What Is Randy’s Advice To Achieve Happiness In Life?
  • 1:03:05 – What Does The Left Brain And Right Brain Term Mean? 
  • 1:08:43 – Why Are New Entrepreneurs Afraid Of Sharing Their Business?
  • 1:11:09 – Where Can People Connect WIth Randy?
  • 1:12:23 – What Was The Biggest Challenge In Randy Haykin’s Career And How Did He Overcome It?
  • 1:14:32 – Who Has Been A Mentor to Randy Haykin?
  • 1:16:59 – A Podcast Or A Book Recommendation Of Randy Haykin.
  • 1:19:22 – What Is The One Thing Randy Would Tell His 20-Year-Old Self? 
  • 1:20:44 – What Does Success Means To Randy?

Show Links

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What is the Success Story Podcast?

On this podcast, you’ll find interviews, Q&A, keynote presentations & conversations on sales, marketing, business, startups, and entrepreneurship.

The podcast is hosted by entrepreneur, business executive, author, educator & speaker, Scott D. Clary.

Scott will discuss some of the lessons he’s learned over his own career, as well as have candid interviews with execs, celebrities, notable figures, and politicians. All who have achieved success through both wins and losses, to learn more about their life, their ideas, and insights.

He sits down with leaders and mentors and unpacks their stories to help pass those lessons onto others through both experiences and tactical strategy for business professionals, entrepreneurs, and everyone in between.








Machine Generated Transcript


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Randy Haykin, Scott D Clary


Scott D Clary  00:00

Welcome to success story, the most useful podcast in the world. I’m your host, Scott D. Clary. The success story podcast is part of the HubSpot Podcast Network. The HubSpot Podcast Network has incredible podcasts like the salesman podcast hosted by wil Baron. Now if you work in sales, you want to learn how to sell or you want to peek at some of the latest sales news and insights. You need to listen to the salesman podcast. The host will Baron help sales professionals learn how to find buyers and win big business and effective and ethical ways. If you think any of the following topics resonate with you, you’re gonna love the show, how to find and close your dream job and sales 12 essential principles of selling digital body language, how to have better zoom sales meetings, or how to tell a remarkable sales story. If these are topics that would interest you. Go check out the salesman podcast wherever you get your podcasts or at Network. Hey everyone, just take a second and thank the sponsor of today’s episode, longshot leaders. It’s a podcast over show to me that I just started listening to because I absolutely love them. It’s hosted by my good friend Michael Stein. It’s edgy, it’s different. He interviews absolutely everyone under the sun and speaks through their journey. unpacks the biggest obstacles they’ve had to overcome to find success in whatever it is they’ve done in their life. So he interviews Academy Award winners, ex cons, Holocaust survivors, sports heroes, you name it, he interviews them, and he himself also has a really interesting background. So Michael Stein’s a host. He’s an entrepreneur, writer, actor, filmmaker, he’s also a stand up comedian. So he kind of puts that all into the interview. And then he gets into the how the why the secrets of why people do what they do. It’s really cool. I actually love the show. He reached out to sponsor but I don’t take any sponsorships best for podcasts unless I actually like them listen to myself, so I listened to it highly recommend you check it out. That is Longshot leaders with Michael Stein. today. My guest is Randy Haykin. He is a serial entrepreneur, venture capitalist, Angel Investor philanthropist. He currently runs the gratitude network. This is a 501 C three, not for profit, he founded it. It provides coaching services to social entrepreneurs around the world. He’s been in the startup game for a minute. In 1997, he co founded outlook ventures they invested in over 30 growth stage internet technology and software companies over a 10 year span. His street training came from executive roles that he held at IBM, Apple and Paramount. In 1993. He joined a series of technology startups and held senior sales and marketing positions at Yahoo electric minds and net channel. He’s been an angel investor for more than 20 years. He’s invested in over 30 early stage companies including early stakes in AOL, Yahoo. He teams Sherry’s berries, Napa pharmaceuticals, I fluence table co fast pencil lay concierge, and our allies crowd optic apploye, QA Symphony he farm mix and sculpt a tautology to name a few. So he’s been doing this for a while. What we focused on is why after working in all these tech companies, why he is so passionate about social entrepreneurship, and why it’s so important to invest and help people that are focused on socially responsible causes and businesses is what the gratitude network is all about. This is what he’s built up. So we spoke about his experience and how startup has matured over his entire career, because he’s been with it for he’s been in it for a while, we spoke about gratitude network, what it’s doing for businesses, different strategies that for profit versus not for profit businesses have how to launch a socially conscious business. Also how to look for help. And this is lessons that could apply to a socially conscious business or entrepreneur founder or somebody who’s just looking for help, but how to find a coach to help your business. What gaps should they fill, what has more merit taking an MBA or continuing education versus finding a mentor or a coach, and some red flags that entrepreneurs should be aware of. So a lot of great entrepreneurship startup lessons, but heavily focused on social entrepreneurship and how social entrepreneurship something that he wants to double down on and his reasons for why it’s so important to support these founders and entrepreneurs. So let’s jump right into it. This is Randy Haykin. He is a serial entrepreneur, angel investor, venture capitalist and philanthropist.


Randy Haykin  04:35

Well, I grew up on the East Coast. Apparently I was a natural born entrepreneur. Because my parents told me that age eight I was already setting up businesses for all the neighborhood kids and charging them you know, 25 cents for museum fees so they could come look at a bunch of bones and rocks that I’ve put together but I ended up getting a good education after Though at Brown in Providence, Rhode Island, and really enjoyed putting together a independent study there, on the area of organizational behavior, he went on to business school at Harvard. And then Apple Computer, drew me out to the West Coast. I went my first five years out here, sales and marketing for Apple, including creating the worldwide developer program for multimedia, which is sort of the dawn of the internet and digital media age. So timing was perfect. Couple years later, I found myself introduced by Sequoia Capital to Yahoo, to the founders there. And I joined the team as the VP of Sales and Marketing as part of that founding team. And then after Yahoo went public, just a series of startups at the CEO and VP level, different roles that I enjoyed and eventually created a venture firm so that I could invest in the CEOs that I was already working with Outlook ventures, which my partner who is a school made from Brown and Harvard. And I, you know, created lasted about 15 years, we did three funds, about 250 million under management, and a chance to really work with a lot of great entrepreneurs, which is what I love most. And then in 2013, after 15 years of that, I began to formulate plans for giving back and, and that’s when I created the gratitude network, which I’m running today.


Scott D Clary  06:33

So you’ve you’ve done all of it, you’ve you’ve progressed past the venture stage, you are the operator, you you invested now, now you’re giving back. So what was what was it that made you leave the venture space and start this new, like gratitude network? What was the what was the thing that just caused you to need to do this as a next step in your career?


Randy Haykin  06:56

Yeah, well, I know, probably sounds trite, but the word gratitude initially comes to mind and that I think, item very well, career wise and financially, and I wanted to think about what I could, how could I express my gratitude? Actually, Tony Robbins had a major impact on me, I chanced upon meeting him when he was presenting at the TED conference, and he invited me to work with him on a startup called My he live. And then, you know, spent a lot of time going, thinking personally about my own situation, he has date with destiny, which I went through twice. There was also another guy, Bob Buford, who’s the author of halftime, became a personal coach for me and helped mentor me through the beginning of the gratitude network. And I think all of it kind of came together, right around my 50th birthday, I had this crazy idea that I would blog or post something I was grateful for, for 365 days in a row, and pull that off. And somewhere in the middle of actually looking around me and seeing what I was grateful for, and you begin to run out of things after about 100 posts. So you really have to look around this idea of engaging my network, I’ve been very blessed with a good network of friends and colleagues, and how can I engage them in giving back as well. And so that’s, that’s how gratitude network kind of was born out of the, out of the old venture capital career in the sense of gratitude.


Scott D Clary  08:34

And, and in your, in your mind after doing all this, like, what is it? So is gratitude giving back? Or is gratitude, your definition of it, like really understanding what you’ve achieved in your life? Or is it a combination of both?


Randy Haykin  08:48

Yeah, it really is a combination of both. Initially, I think more focused on me grappling with what can I do moving from success to significance, but also just, and of course, the network that I had, and, and how we could all work together to make impact. But, you know, the, the gratitude that we’re thinking, you know, the reason we call them in network is really that the idea is to get around social entrepreneurs who are making impact on children and on education. And so, you know, the, the network effect takes place by finding coaches and finding expert advisors. And, and everyone’s doing this work, you know, pro bono, and then matching them with the most incredible social entrepreneurs around the world. And, you know, coming from a venture capital background, I kind of, I kind of realized, sorry, my therapist keeps falling off here. I sort of realize with venture capital that you can impact people with money, but what it really comes down to is impacting people with You know, one to one support of the top leadership team that really makes a difference. And so that’s really what we wanted to focus on with gratitude network.


Scott D Clary  10:13

And right now, the current iteration of gratitude network, what what are you actually doing? Is it to paint a picture of people is like an incubator? Is it a network of advisory? Is there a venture part of it too, that actually invests, so walk through the whole gamut? And I wanted to unpack some of the companies you work with as well? Sure.


Randy Haykin  10:31

All right, well, first of all, I think of it now we’re evolving, really, as an accelerator. So think of it like an accelerator for impact. Just like an accelerator for startups might be focused on enterprise software, or, you know, internet, consumer internet. This one’s focused on any social entrepreneur around the world, who is focused on Children, Youth or education, so anything up to college age, essentially. And the thought here was let’s surround them with leadership development, as opposed to handing the money, what we’re doing is bringing them resources to be better leaders. But the thinking is, from a leverage point of view of we can even increase by five or 10%, their capacity as a leader, we could impact many, many more children. And so the, that’s sort of the leverage model that it works on. It’s an annual program. So last year, we had 1300 applications. The same this year, we just completed our application process. And we narrow that down in 2021, to 33, out of 1300. So they’re they’re really exceptional social entrepreneurs. What they have in common is that they are scaling up. So most of them are not startups, but they have already proven themselves. And now the issue is, how do we how can we help them, you know, accelerate, accelerate that scaling. And then they also, of course, have in common children, you and education. So there’s a lot of camaraderie amongst them. They get one on one coaching for a year, when the coach has run out of gas on a particular topic that maybe is not their expertise. We have 70 plus expert advisors who are volunteering their time on all different subject matters, to jump in and spend a couple of sessions with those entrepreneurs on what they might need, you know, anything from social media to product development, technology, legal advice, etc. And then we get them together throughout the year. So they’re in a peer group. We divide them into smaller groups, they meet every two months, they’re supporting each other, they’re sharing their common challenges. We have a process called roundtable that they can actually solve problems on these on these calls as a group. We also have a leadership summit during the course of the year, which a lot of fun was here in Pleasanton for several years but with a pandemic, we’ve held it virtually last year over 150 alums and and current cohort went through it and it was afforded a ton of fun and learning for everyone and a lot of connection. So I think that’s basically the program in a nutshell.


Scott D Clary  13:30

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Randy Haykin  15:20

Great, great question. So one, it’s a focus on youth, children and education. So that in itself narrows it down. Pretty much there aren’t that many accelerators or incubators to most incubators or accelerators are focused on early stage. And we’re focused on the the mid to later stage and really the growth stage. And what you find is, they already know how to get funding, if they’re nonprofit, they’re getting funding, you know, typically from corporations, foundations, families, right. But what they are doing is kind of tripping on themselves either because they don’t know what they don’t know, they many of these leaders were former teachers, or people who just stumbled into an amazing nonprofit or for profit, social enterprise, but they weren’t trained, you know, they don’t have, you know, 20 years of street smart as a business person, they don’t have an MBA or anything like that. So what are the leadership skills that we can bring to them and to their senior leadership team that would help accelerate and get them get it help them get out of their own way to accelerate their programs and their and their work with kids. So I would say Joseph differentiate. The other is we’re we’re both hyper local and global at the same time, which is a bit unusual. So we’ve we’re in more than 60 countries around the world over the last six years. And our coaches are spread, we’ve got more than 30% of our coaches around the world and expert advisors, now, almost 20% of them are global. And so each year, the cohorts typically 60%, global 40% us and within the US quite a bit in the major cities, as you would imagine. So a lot of inner city type work, as some rural America work, but in the Bay Area, in particular, each year, there’s typically eight to 10 of our, you know, almost 25% of what we do here. So when we’re going and looking for help or sponsorship, we’re able to tell local companies that, hey, we’ve got a group, a highly concentrated group right here in the Bay Area, if you want to support that, or if your brand wants to support something global, you’re impacting children worldwide, we can support that as well. So kind of come at it from several angles.


Scott D Clary  17:53

So so the follow up to that would be so you’re working with these, these, these founders that have figured out an incredible idea, there is a social component to it as well. But perhaps they don’t have that background of business. So what are some of the things that you find founders are running into some notable differences in potentially just not knowing what they don’t know, versus somebody who would be you know, MBA coming from McKinsey, or having an MBA and then doing like a venture backed software startup has worked in enterprise sales for the past, you know, X amount of years, and then becomes a founder or an engineer focused? Founder, what are some things that you work with, and you help these founders work with, because I want to, I want to unpack some lessons for people that do not have a traditional business background, that you probably help people with, with all the companies you work with, and some things that we can sort of maybe help people understand how they can sort of fill some gaps in their own in their own knowledge.


Randy Haykin  18:45

Yeah, sure. So keep in mind, about 90%, of who we’re working with our nonprofit. So I’m going to kind of frame it a little bit on that side, you won’t hear me talking as much about venture capital, or you know how to attract the next round. It’s more about how do you go for bigger foundations? Or, you know, how do you come up with an internal income model? Obviously, the main areas that I think of our people and talent is definitely a big one. And we’ll come back to that in a second. Then there’s execution, just raw execution. And then there’s probably the what’s the engine? What’s the financial engine that that fires this whole thing up? And of course, product and technology or use of technology for product? So starting with the people from I mean, I think a lot of the times, these leaders are kind of figuring out as they go along who belongs where where are the gaps on my team. What we can do with coaches is we can really accelerate how they think through what the team is today and where it needs to be tomorrow. So first of all, those that you know, they you’ve heard the the expression putting the right people on the bus in the right seats. It’s that kind of work. And that seems to happen a lot. Now, right now there’s a global talent shortage, or it’s very hard to recruit people. So a lot, a lot comes up around recruiting, how do you position your organization to really get the people you need? And a lot related to even what’s the cadence of ongoing meetings? How do you communicate as a team? So it’s a lot about team building a lot about leadership development of your team. So, you know, what is the succession plan, if you’re, if someone’s going to move into a VP level role, who fills their place in New York, and says a lot of succession planning and making sure that the the skills of the team are all kind of progressing so that the whole organization is buoyed by team development? So those are some of the people issues, execution wise, is you see a lot, a lot of the help that a lot of the discussions I think takes place around, how do I better delegate? How do I organize my team for accountability? You know, how can I make sure this team is by building accountable culture? I don’t have that quite in place. What do I do to get that? What is the timing of our strategic planning versus our tactical planning? You know, what do I do if my annual meetings, my quarterly meetings, my monthly meetings, you know, so that whole kins of getting together? What can I do to improve the communication skills of the team so that we’re able to execute better? So those are some examples there? And then on the financial, you know, so the engine, the the flywheel, if you will, what are the elements of the flywheel, particularly as it relates to you know, can I develop some kind of income generating capability of the organization in a for profit 100% is income generating, but in a nonprofit, you’re balancing the work that you’re doing with kids, which is programmatic, where you, you know, don’t you can’t you can charge for it, for example, school system might pay for it, or government might pay for it. But generally, you’re trying to balance that nonprofit work with some sort of income engine, so that you’re not always looking for donations. But you also have you have a donation model, and you have an income model. So a lot of it happens around there. Sometimes legal issues come up, Hey, should we create a for profit entity? That’s an offshoot of our nonprofit or a nonprofit entities an offshoot of our for profit? So we have that? And then lastly, how does my product, my product mix change over time. And you know, with the pandemic, the last couple of years, a lot of our entrepreneurs ran into trouble. I mean, they were doing classroom based product or service, and they had to completely rethink it. And I think gratitude network was able to really help them. Think about how to deploy technology better for their service, and how to get in a different mindset of how they provide that service. So


Scott D Clary  23:13

everything you just mentioned, that’s a lot of stuff to think about as an entrepreneur, when when starting and growing company. You right, like it’s, that’s not that’s not easy. I never even thought about the complexities of starting a nonprofit, I don’t think I’d even know where to start, like how to even like, or actually, where would you even, like, how do you make that decision? If you want to do a for profit versus a nonprofit?


Randy Haykin  23:37

Well, you know, keep in mind, a lot of these, you know, take you know, let me take an example. Give me a second here, I’ll just pull up a poll. Yes. And here is a love this one. So here’s Jyoti, Thea, Georgian, who’s in India, in Bangalore, and God came through our program, I think it was three years ago. And she had already a core team, she’d been a teacher for, for up to, you know, the age of men, she had been a teacher for many years, like, I’m gonna say, 20 plus years, and notice that the education system in India really is not a crate, you know, so she wanted to come up with a better way of giving teachers the resources and the processes that they needed. And so she, she founds this company called Meg Shala. When she came to gratitude, it wasn’t a raw startup. Again, it was a scale up, she already had a team of five to 10 people. And she already had some funding, and she really had a model that perhaps were, but she was a school teacher. Right. And so what does she know about, you know, scaling a scaling a company. So to a certain point, she ran into, you know, difficulties of all the things I just mentioned. Now, we believe a lot in the power of the coach, and that might be something we want to discuss here on this program. What exactly is coaching? But, you know, from where, where she sat getting her coach who just sort of calmly ask each month, tell me what you’re working on, let’s organize this a little more, she began to have, you know, organize, these are my people issues. These are my operating issues, you know, here’s some product issues. And so you know, during that year, she worked on, you know, the quality of her program and adding technology to the program. She connected with different peers on at our, she was here in person actually, in Pleasanton, California for our leadership summit. And then she used a lot of what she learned from her peers, she was watching how they manage and borrowing management ideas from them, but I think it was really the coach consistently with her for a year. Now I was able to sort of get her to think through what are the things that I need to focus on as a leader. So it wasn’t so overwhelming, the coach could really calm her down, get her focused on the critical things. And, you know, we go back and measure how has she done afterwards. And, you know, I can tell you, she went from 6000 students that they were supporting, and today she’s approaching a million students, she went from one state in India, to almost all the states because we gave her the confidence to present to governments and other states what she was doing in, in the state in the state of Bangalore is him. And her revenue in grants increased by 50%, about a year, year and a half, after she went through the program. So we you know, we try to measure these things, by the way, because, you know, with venture capital and for profits, you measure based on what product is come out how your revenues are doing your profitability, all that but with a nonprofit, you want to measure by how many children have you impacted? How many teachers have you impacted? How, how have your donations grown, as your team grown? Things like that? So for for all of our entrepreneurs, we measure those sort of things? And for somebody


Scott D Clary  27:21

who is for somebody who is listening, who does have, or who does have something that sort of falls under this sphere, this this umbrella of a type of product, that is a social product? Are there things that when you’re helping somebody scale? Are there different variables that you look for to decide whether or not they should focus on getting more grants or monetizing a product? Or is there certain things that you look for that sort of point, a company in one direction versus


Randy Haykin  27:48

another? And that’s, that really is a great question. I would say that it kind of comes out by natural conversation. I mean, I look at my own case, let’s take in my case, I was working with Tony Robbins, and with Bob Buford, Buford in particular would meet with me each month as my coach. He just took it upon himself. He had his shortlist of leaders that he was impacting around around the country around the world. And I made a short list. So I think that he just had me talk and talk and talk until I kind of figured it out for myself, like, where are the biggest gaps? You know, if you know what I mean. And I think this is the best kind of coaching is where the coach gets you to, all they’re doing is asking great questions, kind of like what you’re doing on this interview. Right? But I think that that leaves, right, because these are I mean, here’s another example, Lauren Bush, Lauren, came to us about five, six years ago, she came through the program. She’s president, senior President Bush, his granddaughter, and Lauren has a group in New York City called feed. And my sense was that Lorne works intuitively the more you get her to think about things, the more she will come up with her own ideas of where the gaps are. And I think by and large, that’s, that’s, you know, because these are really bright, folks that they figured out how to get where they are already, by hook or crook, you know, to form some kind of nonprofit or for profit that’s impacting children, and it works. So now the question is, how do you use their own intelligence? How can you get them to just look in inwardly and try to figure out what is missing? That’s the best kind of coaching I think.


Scott D Clary  29:43

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Randy Haykin  32:26

Yeah. So you’ve got, you have like, in my mind, three or four options, you know, I used to teach. So I taught at UC Berkeley and Cambridge University at the MBA level. And so one option, if you’re looking for learning is take a class, or do an online class or do an in person class, like the ones that I taught. In that case, it’s kind of like the group soaking in the lecture, soaking in the reading, maybe discussing amongst the group Professor throws out the right questions. It’s not so much coaching there, I think of that more of, you know, sort of a little bit mentoring combined with course, okay, then you go to a level, you know, where my a consultant versus a coach, to me a consultant, in selling that you would hire to solve an issue that you’re not able to solve yourself, you know, to actually do the work for you. Coaching, the difference is, you’re doing the work as the individual leader, the coach is asking all the right questions for you to assuming that you have the knowledge about your own space, and about the work you’re doing, that they’re trying to get you to realize what’s the next step in what you need. And often because you’re closest to the activity, like you know, the personalities of the people on your team. So if the coach is asking the right questions, it kind of you have your own internal conversation or with that coach one on one conversation and come to talk out and come to, you know, decide on your own, what is the right outcome. There’s also this mentor, you know, what does it mentor, we call at gratitude. We call mentors, Expert Advisors, because we found that the mentor word was confusing for folks. Some people view a mentor as a coach, some people view or mentors, an expert is sort of all over the place. But by calling people Expert Advisors, it makes it clear it’s about the subject matter expertise that they have. So gratitude, we have coaches and expert advisors, and we don’t have anything we used to have mentors but we don’t call anyone mentors anymore due to the confusion. So perhaps that helps a little bit in terms of what what you might use for what type of thing now if I’m, if I’m trying to grow my business, and like, I’ll take right now for gratitude network, I would like to figure out how to approach foundation So as a nonprofit, my choices are either I can hire internally, someone who understands foundations and we attack it, or can hire a consultant. If I hire someone internally, either I’m going to coach them, or someone ought to coach them in terms of their day to day activities, how they work with the rest of the team, they have the knowledge about foundations, but what they might not have is how does it fit into my organization. So that’s where I think coaching could be useful on top of knowledge. With with, by the way, with our program, that’s one two punch of coach, Expert Advisor works great. Because the coach is getting to think about your your challenges as a leader, or getting the leadership team to communicate about their challenges. But when we all hit a wall, none of us have, like, we want to develop a new technology product. Okay, let’s get an expert in to help, you know, consult and be the expert in that area. And then that might lead us to either decide that we we need to hire someone to do the work, or we need to hire internally to get that work done. But let’s start with the expertise that we’re missing.


Scott D Clary  36:12

Okay, I understand and if somebody does see value in a coach, because obviously coaches are not free? How far should they take their business before working with somebody that can provide some expertise?


Randy Haykin  36:28

Well, let’s see. In other words, where do you run out of coaching gas? And you need to call in the experts? Yeah.


Scott D Clary  36:37

Because? Because it’s money too, right? So you want to make sure that you have you know it unless somebody has a lot of money, but let’s assume an entrepreneur doesn’t have a lot of money? They they’re trying to bootstrap an idea? Hmm. Yeah. When would they bring someone in?


Randy Haykin  36:54

I think, well, a general coach would be so with your with a general coach, you’d be you’d be realizing, we got a gap here. We are lacking knowledge on foundations, for example, right. So at that point, you know, you’re going to need to bring in some expertise. So I think it’s at the point where you realize due to the coaching, that you just don’t know what you don’t know, or that you’re going to need some short term expertise to bridge the gap and get you to the next step. Now, a lot of nonprofits rely on pro bono help. So you can get experts you can, and particularly if you’re working with gratitude network, it’s all pro bono. By the way, we don’t we don’t charge our social entrepreneurs, I didn’t know that sorry. We don’t show your work. We’re an accelerator that provides services for free to the social impact entrepreneur. So they aren’t getting so our experts fill that gap. You know, what they would do is they will let the coach know, gee, you know, I’m feeling like, we’ve identified an area foundations that I just tell him the expertise and and you as a coach, don’t either, can you can we request a an expert and foundations, and so gratitude would provide that. But in the real world without gratitude, you, you would reach out, and you could use LinkedIn, or you could use friends and connections, and you’d reach out to an expert and say, Hey, we are doing great work with kids and an education. We don’t have a lot of money. But we love your background. Could you give us a couple hours of your time to help us with this issue that we’re that you’re an expert. And so I think that’s how you would go go about doing it? Would there be


Scott D Clary  38:43

any follow up with that just to sort of, I guess this is a good conversation and just like for entrepreneurs on on coaching, but is there things that you should also be wary of? When you’re trying to find somebody to work with and to coach you? Are there red flags that you would tell people to stay on the lookout for?


Randy Haykin  39:02

Yeah, I think overly prescriptive folks who immediately jump to a prescription when you’re trying to explain the problem is usually a red flag, because they’re not, they’re not empathically listening to what your challenges are before making a suggestion. It’s like they have an idea already before they even get going. So that’s one thing to look for. That would be a red flag. Another would be someone who seems to be leading you toward their service. So you know, you you talk to an expert, and they’re kind of like, it’s the hammer nail theory. They’re looking for, you know, everything to the hammer, everything looks like a nail. And so you’re trying to tell them about your issue and they keep moving you toward the thing that they do. And it doesn’t feel like the right fit. So that can be another red flag. A third would be particularly if you were if your nonprofit if they appear to be The moving you toward, you know, trying to sell you on their services, as opposed to just helping you solve an issue out of out of, you know, the goodness of their heart, you know, just to provide help to a nonprofit, which a lot of people do out of the goodness of their heart. So those are the the couple of things that I could think of.


Scott D Clary  40:21

And then I guess just one more, one more question on so I just find this interesting as well, because you’ve been on both sides, because you’ve taught at MBA programs and notable institutions, but you’re you’ve also coached individuals. So do you feel as though an entrepreneur would gain more value from one versus the other? Or do you think that a traditional MBA program still has a lot of merit to somebody who wants to start a business eventually?


Randy Haykin  40:43

Great question. I personally loved Harvard Business School, I absolutely love my brown undergrad as well, where I was able to craft my own major or concentration, browns, very liberal. And that as many people know, in that way. So I’m a big believer that school of hard knocks combined with a little pre education is a great combo. I felt like Apple five years at Apple and a couple years at Paramount, which I didn’t mention earlier, but the media kitchen, I was invited to be director at the media kitchen for Paramount, the technology group in Paramount, and so working with all kinds of content and movies and, you know, CD ROM in the early days and great on the street experience, I think it’s a combination of both. I think getting that, you know, a lot of our entrepreneurs that we work with are former teachers, that gives them some really great insight as to what kids and youth really need and want. So I love seeing that. But you know, having some education in business doesn’t hurt. You can even learn it on your own, it probably takes a little longer, some people are quicker than others. Mark Zuckerberg seem to be really quick at you know, figuring out how to run a business when he he didn’t, you know, he never completed his education in Philly needed it. The same with the Yahoo founders, they were getting master’s degrees. I think both of them, at that time didn’t finish their masters, and they created Yahoo in the middle of it. So it really is up, you know, depends on the individual, but having watched young people in the classroom and then see where they end up. 510 15 years later, it couldn’t hurt. I mean, most of the MBAs I’ve worked with at UC Berkeley, and many at Cambridge, have had spectacular careers. I mean, they they’ll email me 10 years later, telling me what they’re up to. And they’re in the, you know, very senior positions in well known companies, so it couldn’t have hurt. But, you know, do you have the money to spend on the formal education or you or you want to, you know, go get the experience hands on there. I think there’s both camps. I like the combination myself. And I’ve always felt that that’s most useful.


Scott D Clary  43:20

No, I was gonna I just wanted to I wanted to ask, So was there any other any other points on coaching that I didn’t bring up? Because I know you’re in this world much more than I am. So any other things that either either on coaching or on on nonprofits, entrepreneurs that are in that space that they should just think about? Be aware of the use of you’ve seen people experience over their careers with gratitude?


Randy Haykin  43:44

Well, you know, I didn’t want to maybe mention a little bit on mindset. You know, the, let’s do I mentioned earlier, you and I, are you, I alluded to this idea of success versus significance. And I don’t know if you want to jump into that, but a lot of that does have to do you know, it’s funny, I’ve literally stamped the word gratitude on my forehead, if you think about it, yeah. You know, if I’m, if I’m demonstrating lack of gratitude to my children and grandchildren or my wife, I will hear about it immediately. Because I was, you know, right on my way to my forehead, but you know, how does it How does that really relate to this whole? I know, I pick a lot of your listeners probably think about success, how do I define success? And some of them are now, you know, as a kid, as we get older, we think, what’s the impact I’m leaving on the world? What’s the significance, not just a signal the success? And for me, I lucked out in that that word gratitude was sort of in the middle of all of that, and I use the gratitude to push myself, you know, everyone says slowly over to the significant side. And, you know, Sarah, the Roman orator said, you know, gratitude is sort of the root To a lot of human elements, you know, if you’re grateful for things you can find love, if you’re grateful for things you can find happiness, etc. And I really believe that’s true. So being grateful, to some extent has helped me a lot. But when I think about this mindset of success versus significance, it always intrigued me that, you know, many of the people in the Silicon Valley that I have worked with over the years, are defining their life based on possessions and based on stock options, and based on how many second, third and fourth homes they can own and, and this kind of thing, and then their happiness depends on, you know, that bar, that the expectation that they’ve set on success, but they never seem to be able to get to the bar. So they always seem a little bit anxious, you know, like, they’re not quite happy. And I noticed this early on, you know, my wife, and I would go to different parties that Apple would have, and we noticed, you know, all the other couples, all they wanted to do in Silicon Valley’s talking about how much money they were making, how many stock options, what car, they’re driving, all the possessions, right? And at a certain point, you run out of possessions, you know, it’s like, Okay, we got enough, what, and you’re grateful for what you’ve been given. So now, how do you lead a life of significance? How are you going to impact others? How are you going to leave a legacy? If you want to, you don’t have to, you can leave a legacy with your children, or your grandchildren, that’s huge. You can leave a legacy globally, which is what we’re trying to do with the gratitude network. We’re impacting underprivileged children that would have no other help globally, and social entrepreneurs who are working with them. So I was encouraged when I’m, you know, I’m doing a lot of one on one coaching outside of gratitude right now, with very seasoned and senior CEOs said they’re running, you know, 100 million dollar, billion dollar for profit companies. And a lot of the coaching is like, they’re kind of tired of chasing success, and what will their life look like the next 20 years? For a significant? So how do they shift that, too? They focus more on family? Do they focus more on church or synagogue? Do they, you know, do they focus more on community? So they want to take trips globally and impact people globally? I’m always trying to get them to think about what are the what are the things that are kind of you’re born with this desire to, you know, that you might have been born with a desire to make an impact? Let’s go back to when you were younger? What is it you want it to change? Or what is it you want to create? Or what is it you want to leave in the world? And get them to come back to that sip this simple? Before we got all caught up with the boats and the cars and the houses? What was the simple thing that we wanted to do to impact the world that would make us happy doing it for each day? So that’s my little mindset. You know, I feel that that’s an important part of the whole entrepreneurial journey.


Scott D Clary  48:16

Was it hard for you to make that shift in your own life?


Randy Haykin  48:19

Probably not, you know, I was, I was born to a very creative father, and a very loving mom. And so I had this great combination of like this highly creative dad who is like, run from one thing to the next, doing all kinds of creative stuff. I’ve tried to follow him. And yet my mom was very emotional and very, you know, people oriented. And I think, like, even I remember, at Brown at Harvard, I was writing papers on impact. I was writing, I was thinking about dual career couples, how can they spend time with their kids? How do you have two careers in a family and still have a meaningful family life? You know, things like that. So I think balance was the word I used to think of it back then instead of significance is like, how do you create life balance? So I’m probably one of the luckier ones and that for some reason, early on, it just struck me that and I gotta say, I’ve definitely fallen into the privilege category. So there’s no doubt about that. I would, it would be a lot harder for me if I started off in a different family situation, different neighborhood, different level of education, etc. A different skin color, different race and said, you know, anything, anything other than who I am would have been potentially harder. So I was wondering, you know, I don’t really know how to, I can only be me. I can’t put myself in in the place of an underprivileged child, but I can do the most I can do given what I’ve been had what I have been dealt. And in my case being fortunate it’s like, okay, and at the age of 50, enough, enough of the making money, and now what do we do for the next 40 years? On the giving back part? Hopefully a lot of other people, a lot of other people reach that. Sometimes it’s through unhappiness, I think that people reach that they talk to their friends or therapist and like, I’ve got like, this mansion of a house, three boats, five cars, but I’m not happy. Okay, I’m divorced twice, you know? Yeah, what’s going on? Well, what are you chasing? What is your measurement of success? And is it is that something society has gotten you to chase is that truly what you want to chase where you will find meaning and significance in life. And this is where, you know, unfortunately, with social media and, and digital media, these days, young people, it’s really hard for them to differentiate, differentiate between that huge amount of data coming at them from the world that tells you this is what you should be, versus this is who I am. And I’ve had people in my classes that, you know, Berkeley, you could tell from day one, that person knows exactly who they are. They’re 1920 to 25 years old, they know exactly who they are. And they’re already trying to figure out how to put that to work for good work. And then you can tell who’s a little lost, you know, like, Well, I think I need a job. That’s what, for example, Harvard Business School is amazing how many people wanted investment banking, and consulting jobs. And if you talk to those same people, two years after we all left, and ask them, if they’re happy, 80% of them were miserable, because they were, they were being, you know, used all the time and energy being used up by these large, larger organizations that they were working 80 hour weeks, and not for themselves, or somebody else, and lost their purpose, their sense of purpose. So it’s amazing how you can kind of get in that mode of, I kind of get, I gotta have this, I gotta have this versus what do I what do I want truly to be, you know, for happiness for myself. By the way, with a lot of yeah, having a great life partner, I will say my wife, Patty has been a wonderful life partner. If you’re able to figure that out early and find that great life partner, it helps tremendously. It really does. Because you know, that person may be the compliment, that person will remind you who you are, and they’re probably going to know you best. So they’ll remind you who you truly are, so that you can come back to that center. When you need to. Without


Scott D Clary  52:53

I was gonna ask you like, when you were when when were you happiness in life? Is it now because you’ve gone through like that? So that’s what I that’s what I think I’m hearing you say you you got you’ve gone through this massive amount of success with career with investment. And when were you the happiest?


Randy Haykin  53:08

Well, I’m definitely I would say, I’m definitely have calmed down. I’m happiest. Now as I get older. I would say for a lot of people, that’s true that, you know, the kind of mellow out over time. But I don’t know, I look back each period, I’m sure my wife would remind me know, you were, you know, you’re itching for a change. You weren’t that happy. But I look back, you know, and each thing now, and I go, what was the lesson that I learned in that period? And it seemed like, it seemed like there were elements of happiness at each point, but that I was slowly figuring out where, you know, what do you truly need to do to be happy? And I would, I’m not, I’m not saying I’m 100% happy every day. Now, either. I mean, I think part of what drives me is I want to make impact. And so I won’t be you know, I’ve set a bar, you know, but at least it’s a bar that’s helping others as as opposed to a bar that is the next home in Lake Tahoe.


Scott D Clary  54:11

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Randy Haykin  57:05

Yeah, that is that is that is a really common drum, isn’t it? I I don’t have an answer for that one. Because, you know, be foolish for me to say, if I look at some of the greatest entrepreneurs of all time, they weren’t driven by perfection of their product, like in the case of Steve Jobs, or a search or to make more money or to grow, just love the idea of keep growing, keep growing or to count or conquest. You know, even like, I won’t, I wouldn’t say the current Bill Gates, but the old Bill Gates, I think if you look at Microsoft, in the early days, it seemed to be more about the conquest than about anything else. And just, you know, just being the operating system that everyone used and just beating out the competition. So, you know, everyone has something that drives them, it’d be hard for me to say, No, you have to be completely altruistic. As an entrepreneur. I don’t think that’ll work for a lot of the entrepreneurs. But I do appreciate the entrepreneurs who have built wonderful cultures along the way. And you know, I live through one myself, you know, watching Jerry Yang and Dave, Philo at Yahoo. I think they really purposefully and Tim Kugel, who came in as the CEO, not long after I joined, they really built a nice culture. In the early days of Yahoo, I really believe the culture at Google was something extraordinary and exceptional, even from the very beginning, the culture of Netflix, totally different. You know, a lot of you know, you work your way out of a job. And if you don’t have the next project, you’re gone. All that got posted that early culture. So I think that there are entrepreneurs who give thought to meaning and building meaning and purpose into into the organizations. But I would say in a for profit company, you kind of have to have both, you got to have that drive to beat the competition and make, you know, make a business model that’s going to be effective and convince the venture guys that they should invest. And, you know, I don’t think you can do all that altruistically. In a nonprofit, I think you have more opportunity as a leader to to to have that more altruistic approach because you’re really appealing to the heart of your donors, and you’re trying to appeal to foundations in the impact that you’re making. So they’re, they’re a little more aligned. Very good.


Scott D Clary  59:39

No, that’s it. It’s just a very interesting thought experiment. Because I do believe that if you if you have the mindset you have now you can be happier long term, which is really what everybody wants anyways, yeah, that’s really what the majority of people want. They want to be happy. But how do we how do we get there? So you have to be cognizant of you have to play the game a little bit to get to the point where you can Be happier and be giving more back and then having more of an altruistic view on life.


Randy Haykin  1:00:06

Yeah, and you know, Scott, a lot of us are parents as well. And I think you have a real opportunity as a parent to think through what can I do to help my child understand who they are, and what truly makes them happy. And when they’re little, you can really see that you can see what things seem to make them happy and giggle and have fun. You know, as they get older, and you get the, you know, school pressures in it’s a little it becomes a little harder, but even they’re encouraging them to follow a passion, like, you know, a silly one that my dad encouraged in me. Which, by the way, wasn’t very cool. With the kids. It wasn’t very popular with the kids, but he encouraged me as a puppeteer. what’s intriguing about puppeteering, if you think about it, it’s theater, staging, voice, lighting, performance, all these really interesting things combined it you know, if you look at Broadway stage doesn’t even have totally what puppetry has is, is you got to make the puppets make the costumes create this, you know, all of this. So he got me engaged in a very creative thing. I don’t, I don’t, you know, today, I do it with my grandchildren, just for fun, you know, little puppet shows and things. But I think that kind of creative thinking that right brain thinking really helped me a lot. For example, I was attracted to Apple, because I knew that that’s where a lot of the creators were, I was attracted to Paramount. Again, that’s where all the movie producers and directors and and content creators were. So early days of my digital media career, it really served me well to have the right brain thinking, which you can encourage in a child. And then if they’re, if they’re also left brain thinking, show them how to apply that rigor and the details that they may be good at, or the math, mathematics or physics or whatever, that they’re good at. You know, how do you combine the left and the right brain, I call it the, the intersection of the two brains and of all the different things you can do with your life is like, find that intersection between what you love doing, and you’re good at, and where the world needs you. That, by the way, is called iki. Guy, there is a theory a Japanese theory of eKey guy by KIG, a i e, key guy. And that theory is sort of, you know, where’s the overlap between doing what you love doing, doing what you’re really good at doing? Doing what the world needs you, you know, where there’s a gap in the world? And then maybe the fourth circle, economic doing something that makes money so you can survive? If this is the career that you’re pursuing? That’s, that’s the EEG guy. Theory. I love that. Um,


Scott D Clary  1:03:05

you have you have a, when you work with entrepreneurs, do you find like what you just described with like the left brain, right brain? Do you find that many people who are successful have a combination of both?


Randy Haykin  1:03:16

And I really do, I mean, even you take an engineer, like, I can’t think of at the moment, there are a lot of engineer backgrounds, who become CEOs and have successful companies. But I think if you look at them, they’re highly engineering oriented type. There was a creative side to them, too, it would be hard to create the company to create the excitement that attracts others, to create the market that you have to create to create the product and the feature set, you know, so even even when you’re trained as an engineer, I’ve even seen lawyers have a great example is one of the fellows I worked with at Yahoo. was working for venture Law Group, which served Yahoo. In the early days. He later became a senior VP on the operating side of Yahoo, using his legal background, and then he later became an entrepreneur. His name is Jim Brock. And Jim is a great example of someone who with no legal skills is very rigid, very right brain thinking. He was good at that. But when applied the intersection of his creative area, he was able to run as a senior VP, a major chunk of Yahoo, and partnerships and things like that, and then eventually do several startups. We’re here to create from nothing. Pure startups. So you know, I think I do find that a lot and then come the other direction, a highly creative person. Usually, their best bet is to partner with an operator, right? So if you look at let’s take, you know, in a way, the Google founders, I’m trying to think of a better example of where you have a highly creative person with with a more of an operation style. But I think in the case of Google, you had two highly creative guys. And they pulled in ERIC as as the third and the triumvirate. Eric brought that operational experience and CEO experience to them. But you often will find the summer in the leadership team, you’ve got in the founding team, a, someone who really understands the subject matter, that of what they’re focused on. And that person tends to be more the right brain, the left brain creative. And then you’ve got the operational person that helps them along, helps them set the company up, helps hire all those people, etc. Think of it like the CEO and the CEO, partner, no,


Scott D Clary  1:05:52

no, no, you’re weak, no, no, what you don’t know, know, your gaps. And then, you know, fill that gap accordingly, basically.


Randy Haykin  1:05:59

But that I was counsel entrepreneurs, when they’re starting something, if they clearly are having trouble in either the left brain or the right brain thinking, I tell them look, it’s probably worth your while giving up a piece of the pie to bring a partner in who is good at those things, because you’re just going to lumber along here. You know, and, you know, trying to figure this out was not your forte. So if it’s someone who’s highly creative or specialized in an area, I tell them, Go find an operating or a technology partner, if they’re not strong in technology, and give them a part of the equity just to get them on board early. So they sort of buy into this concept, you’re going to have a bigger pie at the end of the day, then try to do it all yourself. Facebook is a great example. I think at some point, Sheryl Sandberg joining Mark Zuckerberg was like a stroke of genius because he reached the point where he did what he could. He’s highly creative and what he set up and how he dealt with the venture world and the angels. Some of these angels were the top angels in the world that he’s dealing with, and he’s not even through school. So he learned all he could and then it’s like, I need someone to help on the operation side and found a spectacular partner early on.


Scott D Clary  1:07:18

I just want to take a second and thank the sponsor of today’s episode. HubSpot. Now, it’s hard to build a business it’s hard to make your dreams a reality when it feels like you’re spending all your time working on your CRM working on mundane admin tasks. But the HubSpot CRM platform is purpose built for scaling with your business and those big dreams of yours. So it’s impossible to grow now, HubSpot has intuitive visual workflows. It has bot builders, the HubSpot CRM platform can automate campaigns across your website, email, social media, digital ads and chat for clear communication across all your channels. Xero mixed messages. With the HubSpot teams feature you can organize your account by teams and segment leads soar through content and easily view team performance reports and KPI dashboards. And thanks to sequences, you can create flows that automate sales outreach, follow up time to personalized email so you can scale your customer relationships like never before the HubSpot CRM platform is easy to implement and ready to scale. So dream big. Learn more about the HubSpot CRM platform and how it can help your business grow Very good. goes No, those are just good examples. Because I don’t I don’t think many people understand that if they are like, especially your first startup, right? If you are very creative. You have to share a bit of that pie just to get just to get some momentum. If you are highly process oriented. Maybe it does help to bring in somebody who’s more creative. I think that people when they’re first starting their first company, maybe this is just a gross generalization, but a lot of people want to hold on to that thing because it’s their baby. And they they’re scared about giving away equity or giving out too much of that company early on. But what you just mentioned was very smart. You know, it’s better to have a little bit of something than all of nothing, right? So


Randy Haykin  1:09:29

and by the way, it’s usually more than a little bit because the founder generally keep controlling interest but that doesn’t mean you can’t bring in a solid partner for you know, 10 15% early on of the business where they feel like they have a substantial piece and a sentence tangible say another of my favorite examples is there’s a company that I was fortunate enough to work with called I fluence and iPhones was founded by Jim markgraf, who’s highly creative. He’s it technologist, MIT trained, very, very creative in his product design and ideas for growing markets. And he got, you know, I was able to introduce him early on to a clo Dave steer, who is also creative, but he’s very good keeping the trains on track. And he’s very good with the details that perhaps Jim would not want to deal with. Some put the two of them together, and they made magic. And Google ended up buying iPhones three and a half years later. Now they’ve gone off to start a new company called canoe together, because they realized what a great one two punch. And they brought a third partner in on that one early, who could specialize in the digital media and children’s side that the two of them wanted to have in there. So that was like three, and they learned the lesson on the first one. And then they said, Well, what’s missing? On the second one, we’ve got another great idea, but we’re missing XYZ. So they brought in a world class person who could fill that role.


Scott D Clary  1:11:08

Amazing. Okay, I want to I want to pivot into some rapid fire questions just to close this off. But I did want to just say like, if you’re if people want to reach out to you, if you want to go check out more about gratitude network, where are they going? What’s social website, all of that for yourself or for the network?


Randy Haykin  1:11:24

Yep, really easy. So if they want to reach out to gratitude, they just pop into Google gratitude network, we’ll take them to our website, all the cut, you know, the way that site flows through if you’re interested in coaching, it will eventually ask you to put a little bit of information in that goes directly to our director of coaching our senior director of coaching, they want to reach me, I’m my first name at my last name dotnet. Randy, a Hakan dotnet. And so if someone’s interested in being coached, which I do continue to do with senior level folks, love, I love doing that. And a lot of one on one coaching when I’m not running gratitude network during the month, and they can reach out at on that.


Scott D Clary  1:12:15

Okay, perfect. Okay, so these are these are I say rapid fire, but like you can choose there we go extrapolate. Or you can keep a simple if you’d like whatever you want. The biggest challenge that you’ve had in your career, what was it? And how did you overcome it?


Randy Haykin  1:12:29

Biggest challenge I had was a little company, I started right after Yahoo, where I thought I knew it all. And it was called Electric minds with a pioneer in the whole area of social communities. He wrote the original book on what today is just, you know, a part of our everyday life, but social communities. His name is Howard Rheingold. And so I played the CEO role, he played the creative role. And we just hit bubble at the wrong time, ran out of funding. And man, I took that to heart because we had such a great creative, and technology team. And we had technologists all over the world working with us on building a community called Electric mind. So that one, definitely hit me hard. You know, we had Softbank involved in that, and quite a few angel investors. And that was challenging. What I learned from that, of course, was what are some of the mistakes you can make along the way? How do you pre think your next round of funding so you don’t run out of gas, and who are the key players, you want to have involved early in the business so that you have a lot of help and getting to these future stages. So learn my lesson on that one, and, and it got a little better than next couple. And then with the venture firm, I ended up trying to coach that type of thing to a lot of the CEOs I worked with. Very smart,


Scott D Clary  1:13:55

tough, tough lesson, but but at least you learned that that’s really bad luck to that’s incredibly bad luck. It is what it is. That’s, you know, what can you do?


Randy Haykin  1:14:07

Yeah, you know, the best thing you get out of a situation like this is what was the blessing that I got out of this? Because many years later, you’ll look back on something like that. And you’ll realize, man, my whole career actually would have not been the same. If it weren’t for that negative, that thing that I thought was so negative, so there’s always a silver lining. You just have to put yourself in a positive frame of mind to see


Scott D Clary  1:14:33

if you had to choose one person in your life, there’s obviously been many but somebody who has said it incredible impact. Who is that person and what did they teach


Randy Haykin  1:14:41

you? Ah, well, a lot of people I’m sure choose their parents. I have was very, I was very blessed to have someone in my life. He’s still in my life and this is now 40 years later 3540 years later and that is His name is Barrett Hazel team. And Barrett Hazleton is an incredible person he started teaching 62 or 63 years ago at Brown. Barrett has been teaching for more than 60 years at Brown University, which is, you know, at Ivy League level and his his, his whole focus was on helping, you know, liberal arts school people that were interested in organizations and entrepreneurship and business, there was nowhere for them to go in a liberal arts school, there were no business courses. So he invented something called engine nine, where he had, you know, all kinds of speakers come in, he did case studies, but it was all related to business and entrepreneurs. And I remember seeing John Sculley from Apple come in, and John Johnson, Brown alum, and John came and spoke one day at at the class. And I just thought, This is so cool that this professor has opened up the world, you know, of all these incredible people and bring them into proud. And then, you know, I stayed in touch with Barrett over the years. What was most inspirational about him is, during the summer, he and his wife, Mary would dedicate themselves in Africa, to teaching at universities starting with Malawi, and then several other African nations. And they would just give their time teaching and trying to impact youth in in less privileged countries around the world that really sunk in to me, or, you know, learning about that when I was a student of his. And fast forward, you know, 35 plus years later, he is an ambassador for the gratitude network. And we still are in touch on almost weekly, recently basis. And it’s just wonderful to have a mentor and a coach like Barrett over the years. So I was really, really fortunate to stumble into him. Amazing.


Scott D Clary  1:17:01

If you had a resource, a book or something that you’d recommend people go check out, is there anything in particular that you wanted to recommend that had an impact on


Randy Haykin  1:17:11

this back here is my my favorite books show? If you’re I mean, we’re talking.


Scott D Clary  1:17:15

I know, I feel like I have to ask, because you got like,


Randy Haykin  1:17:19

Neil Stevenson Snow Crash here, right? We’re talking. We’re talking. Tony Robbins, you know, Ray Kurzweil, this is my, my recent favorite. And, you know, here’s why I would recommend this book. So this book is on coaching. And, you know, those of us who are leaders, the thing is we’re, we’re really coaching our team, you know, you’re or you’re coaching your children. Or maybe you’re coaching little league or soccer. You know, every one of us has some element of coaching in our lives. And this book Boyles, Michael Bungay, Stanier is the coach and it boils things down to five questions, the kickstart question, the OG question, the focus question, the foundation question the lazy, says, got all these different interesting questions, and boils it down, you know, something you can literally keep in front of you, when you’re in a coaching session, or with one of your leaders. Even with a venture capitalist, if you’re pitching to a VC, it’s interesting how you can use some of this. You just, you’re asking questions, you know, asking great questions, you’re going to get great results, great solutions, the better the question, probably the better the solution. So I’m a big believer in in this, and he’s done a great job. You know, putting that together. My my favorite of all time, though, I mentioned that earlier. If you want to talk about going from success to significance, half time, by Bob Buford. So Bob is my mentor was really something special, but the book is short and fantastic. And really gets you thinking about how to move from success to significance. I mean, sorry, I said, those are two both. I gave you three more books. You asked her one.


Scott D Clary  1:19:12

I know. Like I’m gonna complain about more books, and both and actually all those. None of those have been on the show yet. So those are all new. Those are all my recommendations, and I appreciate it. Yeah, that’s good. If you could tell your 20 year old self one thing, what would it be?


Randy Haykin  1:19:27

Shut up and listen. true empathy and listening skills do not come to most 20 year olds, especially if they’re on their way somewhere. Right? And however, if you could, if you could put on your you know, sort of listening hat more often before responding. To me that is like the single biggest thing you can do to kind of It doesn’t necessarily slow you down. It just means you’re more informed, because instead of blurting The first thing that comes to mind or having a PRI you know a lot of us when we’re listening to somebody else talk we already know what we’re going to say. So you’re not even really listening to the person talk. So you know, Zipit and do more listening would probably be the number one thing like data immediately came to mind when you ask. The other the other thing I tell my 20 year old self is good job. I pat myself on the back. Good job. Marin, Paddy, Paddy Grant, who became paddy Hagen. Nice work. Good job.


Scott D Clary  1:20:33

I love that. Good. Good. Yeah. No, you’re you’re 100%. Right. If you can find that, find that partner and they’re there for you the whole time. That’s the blessing. That is that is a life hack. For sure.


Randy Haykin  1:20:44

3535 years, we’re going for we’re doubling that we’re going for 70. We decided on? Yeah. So we’re going for 70. We’re at 35. Well,


Scott D Clary  1:20:56

congratulations. Congratulations. That’s very good. And then last question, you kind of already answered this. But I’ll ask it anyways, ask everyone as the last question of the show, what does success mean to you?


Randy Haykin  1:21:08

So I think success means defining a life for yourself and a mindset that are you are, you know, to be true to you. And that, you know, have some impact. And maybe the impact is not on yourself necessarily. It could be impact on family could be impact on others in your community or impact globally. But I think leading a life of success means coming to grips with what are the things that are most meaningful to you in life and making sure that you wrap your day to day and your month to month and your year to your activities slowly, but surely, kind of like an onion over time. So that when you get to the end point, you look back you go, Oh, yeah, I wrapped myself with the right things. And, you know, if you feel like you’re not doing that, immediately, then shift and start wrapping yourself with things that are more meaningful, early, as early as you can, you know, if you’re 50 years old, it’s never too late. 60, whatever. If you’re 20 and you figure this out, hey, hats off to because you are way ahead of your peers.



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