New     Submit     Search     Register  
Moving Up on Smash Notes

Moving Up podcast.

December 28, 2019

Hear directly from business leaders. Secrets to success, struggles along the way, optimal career paths and life in general.



Episodes with Smash Notes

Max started his first business in high school with the goal of making money with his best friend. The growth from there and the transition to creating a viral video for his push for pizza app that created his next business which was acquired by Eaze. Next up was the idea to create a modern-day QVC, raising money from big-time investors and then pivoting to a debit card with a credit card style experience called Extra.


Starting an executive placement firm and helping people craft their brands. George's learnings coming out of the last financial crisis and how to best position yourself to get a job after this one.


After studying finance at IU, Jack followed his passion to LA and became an assistant in the entertainment biz. Working his way up in a talent agency, Jack saw the opportunity to start a concert/festival touring company. From there, a cold email to Mark Cuban secured his first investor and how his concert promotion business has evolved into a tech platform.


After studying finance at IU, Jack followed his passion to LA and became an assistant in the entertainment biz. Working his way up in a talent agency, Jack saw the opportunity to start a concert/festival touring company. From there, a cold email to Mark Cuban secured his first investor and how his concert promotion business has evolved into a tech platform.


Bryce goes in-depth on bitcoin and crypto. How to get buy bitcoin and the reasons you should.


These 2 fun and energetic women help people combine their career with their passion. If you know what you don’t want but aren’t sure what you should be doing then this conversation is for you. Also, why your passion and your authentic self don’t necessarily need to be combined.


Taking an 11-year break to start a family and then getting a job at Bain Capital. How to authentically create mentors and why its important to network with people junior to you.


How to figure out what you want to do (career wise) and then a plan to make it happen. Identifying the traces of your authentic-self and finding the intersection of what it is you want and what you’re great at.


Martin grew up in Switzerland and his journey took him away from the traditional Swiss values of working at 1 company for your career and instead towards an entrepreneurial pursuit. How he knew what was the right path for him, having an open-mind and now creating a virtual office business in Salt Lake City that is revolutionizing the way people work and meet.


A deep dive into the events business. Why people come to conferences, what they look for and where they go from here.


Thinking he would be a chef after college, Brandon quickly took a job at a trading firm. After learning to love fintech, he then saw a huge problem in consumer finance and set out to build what’s now Stash which he calls the consumer finance company of the future.


Turner was determined to become a venture capitalist and he made it happen – but not without some extreme sacrifices along the way. Building a brand on twitter, making the most out of what you have and always finding a way to add value for others.


Gil’s technical background got his career going but his open mind propelled his success. A couple wacky business ideas along his path and the similarities between a comedian and an entrepreneur.


Jason’s a born entrepreneur – how he discovered that and the incredible company’s he’s built as a result. His advice for how to best tackle life, why he likes operating over investing and a fascinating discussion on the role automation will have in shaping the human experience.


Walking away from a lucrative career playing professional poker during college in the pursuit of adding value to society. Starting Blend after seeing the opportunity to digitize and simplify the mortgage process.


With a passion for supporting the working class, Kristen set out on her career to help people. Unfortunately, she graduated during the crisis. So, she went to grad school abroad and then got a job in consulting. Some twists and turns through the startup world and co-founded Catch. Finally, a framework for how to think about being happy in your career.


Stephen left the corporate grind to start his own business. How and why he did that and how everything is about self-awareness. Why in the future we’ll all be working for ourselves and the best exercise for self-awareness and identifying patterns in your life. Also, how to increase your yes to no ratio.

Kyle works for a strategy consultant focused on pricing. We discuss the nuts and bolts of what a consultant does and his cool new book The New Invisible Hand (5 revolutions in the digital economy). Also, a framework for how to write a book.

Hussein left the big company after school to build Facebook games. Pivoted from games to ad monetization and quickly grew from zero to millions a month in revenue and sold for $$. Now building Snap Travel to automate hotel booking using messaging. Inside the entrepreneurial journey and raising money from Steph Curry!

Immad has gone from startup to startup. Joining a company already in YC, starting a video game company and now a bank for startups. Also, his advice for how to network successfully.

Colin had a huge career in finance (GE Capital, Amex and Wells Fargo). He got the experience, identified the problem, and started Varo to re-invent the model. Also, banking in the US vs UK.

Bryce began his career in investment banking and then left Wall Street when his real estate private equity group was shut down in 2008. Deciding to become an entrepreneur, trying to start a bank from scratch and a debit card with credit card style rewards. Also, some advice for going from finance to tech. www.realvision.com/wso

Founding Tilt and the learnings from the incredible journey. Now building a real estate tech company to simplify the mortgage process. Working on difficult problems that will can change the world and being stubborn on where you want to be but flexible on how you get there. www.realvision.com/wso


Getting a job at Capital One before it was called fintech. The importance of exploration in a career, what to look for in your job and the future of consumer finance. realvision.com/wso

John is a pioneer in the outsourcing business – hiring workers from the Philippines to automate your life. The importance of keeping your burn low in the beginning of any new startup, making money online and cutting out the middleman.

The founder and CEO of Bloomreach (an AI powered software platform for ecommerce businesses) chats about starting his career at Lazard and turning down HBS to join a startup. How he started his entrepreneurial journey and 2 big pieces of advice for how to take the power in the job search process.

Joseph is the co-founder of Neighbor, the Airbnb of storage. Turning down a job at Bain, how to raise capital from business competitions and create FOMO with investors at the same time. Also, building a company guided by values and why it’s all about the people.

Adam discovered his interest in venture capital while in law school then hustled his way into the industry by offering to work for free. Not being afraid to do the work, going deep and the importance of focus. Starting Clarity Money and selling it to Goldman Sachs 18 months later for $$$.

“Startup guy” Ben discusses how to set intentions for your career. The virtues of starting off at a big company (Microsoft) and how to think entrepreneurially within a large organization. Also, why side projects are so important. www.ansarada.com

James started Tilt – a company that raised $70m, had a huge valuation and was ultimately sold to Airbnb. The tactical takeaways from a massive success and then an outrageous failure. What stops people from thinking big, how to optimally approach every day on your journey and so many more useful insights. www.ansarada.com

What happens after a car accident changes everything. Coming back, asking yourself why and then launching a business. Advice to not get an MBA, the glamorization of startups and how the future of banking is personalized. www.ansarada.com

Moving from Greece, the learnings from many failures and then a huge success (17x exit), what it’s like being a second time founder and building a fintech business based of the problems they experienced. www.ansarada.com

Alex built Birch Finance which was acquired by Even Financial, where he’s now director of strategy. How to maximize your credit card points and building a fintech recommendation engine. What will open more doors – going to work for a big name corporate or a startup? Job offer at the end! www.ansarada.com

Building an online business while living in Bali, highlights from 4-years travelling the world and getting 3x faster with PowerPoint. https://nutsandboltsspeedtraining.com/wso/ https://nutsbolts.samcart.com/products/powerpoint-3x-cpp/#?coupon=wso40




The differences between pe and venture and why venture is so much more about influence. How to think about the first 12-months of a new business and finding the intersection of what you’re good at and what you like to do. www.ansarada.com

Deciding between Goldman Sachs and BCG and then leaving to become a tennis pro at Club Med. Why you shouldn’t think of your career as a race, how the most successful people figure out what they’re good at and pursue it in their own way. Launching the NFL Network and the future of the media/sports business. www.ansarada.com

How to get a job in venture after business school and working at the world’s biggest venture fund (Intel Capital). www.ansarada.com

Alda’s journey from lawyer to venture capitalist. What she learned working alongside Peter Thiel and Sean Parker. Working for both the hedge fund Clarium Capital and the venture fund Founder Fund at the same time and what her dream job is. www.ansarada.com

Building a credit card company from scratch. Raising over $200 million at 20 years old. Dropping out of Stanford and how a CEO’s responsibilities evolve. www.ansarada.com

The power of cold emailing. Why unstructured networking is the way to do it and how to engineer serendipity. www.ansarada.com

Paul describes the idea behind Cushion and how he got it to market. Also, his philosophy to excel at everything you do and run as fast as you can to starting your own company.

A very early employee at LinkedIn and then early at Google, Leo discusses how/why he got those jobs and more career advice.

Eric talks about his investment in Payclub. His new venture Hustle Fund and beginning his post college life starting beatthegmat.com.

Niki went straight to the buyside after college at Vista Equity Partners. Wanted to get his hands dirty outside of finance, saw that the grass is not necessarily always greener, got back into private equity and is now a VC.

Life’s too short to not be passionate about what you do. Trying lots of things in your 20s. How to succeed in venture and important advice for your first year on the job.

Finding confidence with your skill set. Why group chat is the new social network and life hacks at the very end.

Starting her career off in solar power in India, getting a job at Google, business school and then venture. Recognizing themes in your career and embracing ambiguity.

How to connect with people and build a network. Creating habits and making yourself uncomfortable.

Investing in stuff that makes life easier, finding your passion and how there’s no shortcuts in the hustle of careers.

Starting a business at 40 taking it public 5 years later and then selling to eBay for $620m. The value of an MBA, how he became a CEO and why making the wrong choice could be the right one.

How to start a business while working for GS and BCG. Being honest with your current employer and advice for making the jump.

Deciding on startups vs the buy-side. Developing flexible decision making and the secrets of climbing the ranks and making partner in 5-years.

How Venmo came to be, why they incorporated the social stream and how it was life or death at the end.

Comparing working at Google vs. startups. The non-obvious part of being in venture. The pre-seed investing market and the conflict between ambition and discipline

Daniel launched his career at Apple and then became a startup guy before that was common. His quest to find a job that connects both sides of the brain, what goes into design at Apple and my favorite piece of advice ever (at the end).

David is an investor at a top vc fund. His path to get there went through banking but was filled with challenges and required some creativity – even persisting after getting fired. Going from being a financial advisor to investment banker, proving that your serious and exchanging hard work for the opportunity to learn.

Not chasing roles or titles but focusing on the people you will work with and turning down amazing jobs and lots of money in pursuit of learning

Working all over the world going from pe to corp dev to consulting and now vc. Career moving tactics and transactional work vs. strategy.

Super angel investor on pioneering the asset class. How to be good at it, how to value a startup and passing on writing one of the very first checks into Amazon.

Is an entrepreneur born or made? Launching the 1st internet radio service selling it for a life changing amount and then getting into the toilet seat business.

What makes a good entrepreneur, how to accelerate results by going to work for a successful entrepreneur and why startups take so long to build.

Differentiating yourself in IB recruiting. How working in banking made him realize he wanted to be an entrepreneur and building a network when you don’t have one.

Hadley followed his love for technology to get into venture investing. How/why he started his own fund vs working for an existing one. Focusing on 1 thing and a couple life hacks at the end.

Working hard to get what you want but realizing that good things happen when you least obsess about them.

Michael did IB, PE and b-school, founded 4 company’s and now invests in startups at the very earliest stage. Leaving private equity for a career in broken unloved and new businesses.

Choosing love over fear, having it ALL and why you need a personal mission statement.

Mark is a successful VC. We discuss consulting vs. banking (he did both) the biggest mistake of his career and how working for free can save you money (if you don’t get an MBA). Also, how to get a job at a startup.

Buying media businesses in China, taking them public and finding a way to be interesting.

How to do Crossfit for your brain, not finishing books and why tenacity is the only thing that matters.

Mark started his career at Morgan Stanley worked on the Tesla IPO became an early employee at Dropbox and now Partner at Index Ventures. His advice to skip banking and how to get an unfair advantage in tech.

The path from software engineer to lawyer (at a prestigious firm) to tech. Why it’s so easy to chase a big name and big money instead of finding what’s right for you.

Leaving consulting (Mckinsey and Deloitte) to go to Wharton. Staring a business in b-school, the pros and cons.

Brian talks about being one of the first VC’s in SoCal and the grind that it has been. Having humility and confidence in yourself and what he attributes his success to.

The VC funnel, what it takes to be a wine collector and serendipity in life.

2 types of people in the business world – principles and agents and the importance of having fun a long the way.

Mark was an investment banker for 22 years. He sold his bank to RBC, became the COO of Los Angeles and now is a venture investor. Why he doesn’t like traditional meeting structures and how he uses pattern recognition to invest in startups.

Steve started GroupMe, sold it 370 later days for $85 million. How timing is crucial, 2-paths to life, and why he continues to grind.

Discussing all things real estate, learning by doing and how one small investment can build a real estate empire.

Now CEO of Philo, how he made the decision to leave FB and why it was an easy choice. Also, a tip for taking the pressure off of big decisions.

Dropping out of HBS and doing free work to break-in. Being persistent without being annoying. Why there is no shame in not knowing what you want to do.

Fintech investing guru Sheel Mohnot discusses what you need to be successful in the startup world. What investors are looking for and how to embrace failure.

Geoff Woods runs the business behind The 1 Thing, the highest rated business book of all time. Actionable discussion on how to invest your time.

Fabrice left Mckinsey to be a tech entrepreneur. Did that, made millions, gave it all away to have nowhere to live and less than 100 items. His journey and how to write yourself an email to help make important life decisions.

Howard tell us why the more paper you have the better. Public vs private markets and how you should be investing. Career path recommendations for wannabe entrepreneurs

Ali discusses his scrappy and creative start to becoming a venture capitalist. The steps he took and his advice on how to become a vc without working for one. How to have others network on your behalf and a little on crypto investing at the end.

How to shift your thinking to the mindset entrepreneurs need. Working on the hard stuff, pushing yourself and then rubbing success in everyone’s face.

Chris Powers, real estate and startup investor, tells us how important it is to be curious and genuine. The advantages of not knowing what you’re doing and what to do if you don’t have a network.

Dale Godboldo is the first movie star to be on the podcast. We chat about his entrepreneurial and social passions along with the business of being an actor.

Joanne Wilson tells us why she has been investing in strong female founders since 2007, blogging since 2003 and how it’s all about pursuing happiness.

Urs Cete runs venture investing for Bertelsmann Digital Media. His path to becoming a VC and what skills set him apart. A day in the life and how to pitch a VC.

Enlightening conversation with storyteller Jordan Taylor Wright. How to remove stress from your life and how the universe will reward you for being yourself.

The future of solar power and how to invest in it. A framework to not let fear guide your decision making and Bryan's philosophy for how to change jobs.

Mark lays out how to start investing in real estate. How he left his IB job and now works 2 hours per week.

Caleb Williams chats about why choosing to go to HBS was a hard decision. The difference between life at McKinsey and Bridgewater and how his goals led him to venture capital.

Bhavin started Magoosh while getting his MBA at Berkeley. He walks us through what that was like, deciding not to return to Deloitte after school and losing his co-founder.

Kelly helps entrepreneur’s build businesses and has invested in over 70 companies. What a VC looks for and thinks about, his relationship with the president (Apprentice Season 2 winner) and why leadership is the only thing that matters for start-ups.

Pete left Bain to become a speaker, author and podcaster. What he learned at Bain that helped him become an entrepreneur and the hypothesis driven thinking necessary to succeed. Also, takeaways from 276 episodes of How to be Awesome at your Job.

Brendan Wallace, Co-Founder of Fifth Wall Ventures discusses tech colliding with the built world. How they raised over $200m for their first fund and what to do if you didn’t start your career at GS.

Energy trading guru Gene Rubio discuses how to go from back office to front office and then start your own company. How to be honest with yourself and how you can hustle your way to success.

Ronald is at a crossroads. Having just graduated from Wharton and taking a start-up through YC, he doesn’t have a job, nor does he know what he will do next. His flaws, how to find happiness while unemployed and a look into his process. Also, what’s a search fund?

Chad shares his 3 hacks for working 100-hour weeks. He walks us through his decision process for 3 incredible offers – a job at Andreessen Horowitz, being the first employee at Dollar Shave Club (which sold for $1B) or starting his own company. How he is starting his own VC fund now and wants you to work at it!

Craig Walker tells us what it’s like to have Google buy your business then leave and have Google fund your new business. How you don’t need a grand plan for your career, his advice on how to make it as an entrepreneur and why you don’t need a desk phone!

How to find out what you’re made of and why mixing your passions doesn’t work. Also, best practices for applying to B-school, from a Wharton grad and current admissions consultant.

Rolly left his trading job at RBC, moved to Peru and became a cage-fighter. What he was thinking while making the decision and his mind-set that prepared him to make such a radical choice. How he thinks about risk and not letting uncertainty get in the way of opportunity.

Ray grew up loving to code. He got a job on Wall Street from a non-target school before becoming a software engineer. Ray discusses his willingness to go anywhere for an opportunity, why the Bay Area is so good for tech, and how to get a job through your connections.

Nupur just earned his MBA from HBS. He left investment banking and a job at Nickelodeon to start a media business. How to get into Harvard business school, when to take the GMAT and the best part of B-school. signup.newsbling.co

A headhunter for hedge funds discusses what will set you apart. How to be honest with yourself and non-traditional paths from finance.

Mags was a single mom and failed entrepreneur putting herself through school. Hear how she persisted and landed a job in private equity. The advantages of being a female on Wall Street, non-traditional paths into finance and how to maximize the leverage you have.

Sameer tells us why getting a job in tech after banking was the hardest thing he’s ever done, his advice for you and how to follow your passion. Check out his side hustle; Wall Street to Silicon Alley, a group that helps financiers transition into tech: http://www.wallstreettosiliconalley.com/

Charlie Nooney, CEO of mobiTV describes what steps he took to become CEO and what specific skills set him apart. Leaving Disney to run a venture backed company, reporting to a board, the future of TV and the most important 2 things to do in your career.

Geoff Blades will tell you how to turn success into a method. How to find out what you want and then how to go get it.

What you need to do to prepare yourself before you start looking for job and how the PRIME method is the key to landing the job. Tips to differentiate yourself in the resume submission/interview process and how to go from cold emails to job offers.

Jared Dillian describes how he accomplished the impossible and his advice for you can do the same. How to stand-out, how to get the inside edge and what you can be doing now while still in school.

Ben Altman worked at Blackstone M&A and then Hellman & Friedman. He walked away, moved to Brazil and started a business. How he did it while working in finance and what makes him happy today. Advice for what you should do if you don’t like your job.

WestPoint grad and platoon leader in Afghanistan, Dom Latino tells us about his path to Evercore. Why he wanted to do it and what IB recruiting in business school is like. Also, how much you make!

Greg goes from McKinsey to Bain Capital to a hedge fund in San Francisco. His 2 principles for progressing in the world of investing and why he chose consulting over banking. Also, networking tips if you don’t have the big names on your resume and how he found happiness.

Andre didn’t have the right background to break into Wall Street – but he did it anyway. How he did it and his four stories to making it happen. The unconventional strategies you can use to break into Wall Street when interviews are not available. Getting fired from Goldman Sachs and how not to make excuses for yourself. https://www.linkedin.com/in/buenobomb/

Dennis has had a huge career. Starting off in the entertainment business with Ted Turner tapping him to run Turner, being one of the first guys at Lionsgate and then running TV at Sony. Having a fascination for how tech impacted the content business, Dennis transitioned to an investing role in the venture capital world. Dennis tells us what it’s like to be at an influential venture firm from the very beginning and how his career has helped him see where to put his time and money on the non-profit side and how easy and important it is for you to get involved now.

Professor of entrepreneurship "Coach" discusses why he enrolled in law school after earning an MBA, being a successful entrepreneur and a professor. Coach then tells us how to know if you’re doing the right thing in life and how to define happiness. We end the podcast with Coach singing the alphabet backwards, sharing his favorite movie quotes and discussing a book about the most important business decision you will make in your life.

Hedge fund analyst discusses his transition from sales and trading to banking to hedge funds. What it’s like working for Houlihan’ s restructuring group, distressed debt investing and the hedge fund interview process.

Darren and I talk about his career going from a pilot to PE associate to 15 years at McKinsey and now Google. Darren leads a team of 600 at Google. We discuss his advice on how to get to get there and the skills and attitude that will set you apart. We finish with how to find happiness in where you are now and what you need to do to get a job at McKinsey or Google.

Mike walks us through his career and tells us about the skills that got him to where he is today. Why he got an MBA while working at Fox, the future of Hulu and the media industry and if I can have a job when I graduate.

We have a mind-opening chat with ex-investment banker Josh about the importance of gaining self-awareness and understanding who you are and how to do that. We discuss whether you should get an MBA and how to make a complete life.

Max Levenstein, 2nd year MBA student discusses why investment banking was not for him and how he found what was. What success means for him and how it has changed over time and what you can do in business school to get the most out of it.

John talks about the trade-off of working hundred hour weeks in investment banking but how they help you find a great job after. We discuss the PE recruiting process and why he chose to come to business school rather than staying with his fund. John interned in the strategy group at the Wonderful Company over the summer and we discuss how he thinks about what he wants to do now.

Andres Engel, strategy executive and HBS grad chats about his passion to work with people and empower teams, growing up in Chile and why LA reminds him of South America. His background in investment banking both before and after business school and why he didn’t see himself as a banker long-term.

Shahzad Khan VP at Moelis discusses what is what like working for Bear Sterns during the crisis and how being persistent can set you apart. Shahzad tells us why he went from banking to consulting and then back to banking and the differences between the jobs and personalities. Also, what he looks for in hiring analysts and associates.

The Chief monkey stops by to discuss his background, how he got a banking job after not having an internship and then getting fired from his private equity job 6 months in. Patrick talks about what working 100 hours a week teaches you about yourself and the value of his Wharton MBA. We end with how he started WSO and the future plans for the site.