We’re at PandoMonthly’s fireside chat with Reid Hoffman tonight in Madrone Studios. Although Hoffman, who in 2011 either co-founded or invested in five companies that went public, his experience and knowledge came from a long list of fighting and learning from failure. While starting out, and way before joining Paypal, Hoffman would go for regular walks with Peter Thiel and tell him about what he had learned from his last week of reiterations.
“When Peter and Max [Levchin] started PayPal, they asked me to be on the board. What I had been doing was going on walks with Peter every two weeks, and he was getting this update from me, and I was saying ‘I learned this…’” says Hoffman.
While these talks contributed to his future successes, at the time Hoffman says, “I was now playing essentially from a penalty box.”
Hoffman, now, says that for as much as learned through failures, he definitely would have preferred avoiding them. “If you’re not red-lining enough that you have some failures you’re learning from, you’re probably not learning at a fast enough speed,” says Hoffman of the learning-through-failure process. But he goes on, “I’d rather everything I did was successful and just awesome.”
Find all the footage on our YouTube channel.