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如何创建一家改变世界的公司?

2015-02-28 11:24 语泉外语     字号 [] [] []  

 In 2008 Leah Busque was an engineer at IBM with an idea. She wanted to start a website that would match people with work. She left her job and cashed out her IBM pension to start TaskRabbit, where people can sign up to do odd jobs. Today over 30,000 people use TaskRabbit, and some are able to make a full-time living from their TaskRabbit jobs.

 

    Earlier this week, Fortune’s Adam Lashinsky moderated a panel with a group of startup founders, including Leah Busque. After the panel a man told Busque that TaskRabbit work got one of his friends off of the streets when he was homeless.

 

    Busque answered a few questions about the making of TaskRabbit.

 

    [Transcript lightly edited for clarity.]

 

    Fortune: What’s been the biggest challenge for you as a founder?

 

    Busque: Transitioning from building a world-class product to building a world-class company has been the biggest and most rewarding challenge in my journey as a founder. When I was bootstrapping what was known as runmyerrand.com in 2008, my skills as a former engineer at IBM helped me build an idea into a tool people actually wanted to use –even rely on– in their daily lives. As the product blossomed, I had to start entrusting others to improve that same product I had coded myself. There was a fundamental shift in the way I needed to approach each day. Today, whether I’m focused on fundraising, marketing, financing or operations, I’m still supporting that initial passion that inspired the creation of TaskRabbit.

 

    Fortune: What’s the one thing you wished you knew eight years ago when you first began this journey?

 

    Busque: Don’t overthink it and don’t be afraid to make mistakes. When I was first starting out, more decisions than I care to admit seemed like life-or-death situations, when in reality, each choice has brought TaskRabbit closer to building the strongest business and community possible. When we stumbled, I witnessed the company learn and grow into an even better version of itself. I rely on data and gut in a more balanced way today than ever before.
 

  Fortune: What’s been your biggest mistake?

 

    Busque: There is not one “biggest mistake” I’ve made, only choices where I’ve learned the most. Team building and hiring can be one of the most complicated parts of founding a company. I enjoy the perspective of Adam Grant, Wharton Business School professor and author of Give and Take. He has identified a more scientific system for finding the perfect hire that appeals to the engineer in me. But no system is perfect, and prioritizing “culture-fit” as a key factor in my personal system for hiring has become increasingly important. As a founder and CEO, editing the team is necessary and making quick decisions is critical for the integrity of the team.

 

    Fortune: If you were to start another startup, what is the one thing you would not do?

 

    Busque: The business you found can more or less feel like your baby. But eventually, you need to be open to letting the business grow with the help of other brilliant people. Finding partners — even cofounders — that believe in the product as much as you do can be an important step to take in helping your business reach its fullest potential. These people should complement your skill set and function as a trusted cadre who can share ideas with each other.

 

    Fortune: What’s the one piece of advice you would give up and coming startups?

 

    Busque: Find your mentors because you can’t do it all on your own. Scott Griffith, [Editor’s note: then CEO of Zipcar] became one of my early mentors since founding TaskRabbit. He offered me desk space in the Zipcar office when I moved from Boston, and later introduced me to future investors. To this day, we are able to soundboard ideas off one another and learn from each other’s mistakes as each of our companies grow.

 

    Fortune: What’s next for TaskRabbit? What can we expect from TaskRabbit this year?

 

    Busque: 2015 is shaping up to be an exciting year for TaskRabbit. We’re going to expand into new markets across the United Kingdom and parts of Europe. Several significant business partnerships will also drive a new scale of activity across the marketplace.

译文:
 

2008年,在IBM担任工程师的利亚•布斯克产生了一个想法。她想创建一个网站,为人们提供工作机会。她辞去了工作,取出IBM的退休金,创办了劳务市场平台TaskRabbit,用户可以在网站注册做零工。现在有超过30,000人在使用TaskRabbit,部分用户甚至可以完全依靠TaskRabbit提供的工作维持生计。

 

    本周早些时候,《财富》杂志的亚当•拉辛斯基主持了一场初创公司创始人座谈会,与会者包括利亚•布斯克。研讨会结束之后,有一个人告诉布斯克,TaskRabbit提供的工作让他的一位朋友结束了无家可归的流浪生活。

 

    布斯克回答了关于创建TaskRabbit的多个问题。

 

    [为保证内容清楚,对文字记录进行了适当编辑。]

 

    《财富》杂志:作为创始人最大的挑战是什么?

 

    布斯克:从开发一款好产品转向打造一家好公司,是我在创业过程中遇到的最大挑战,但同时,这也给我带来了最多的回报。2008年成功推出runmyerrand.com时,在IBM担任工程师期间掌握的技能,帮我将一种想法变成了人们在日常生活中希望使用,甚至依赖的工具。随着产品的成功,我必须委托其他人对我编写的这款产品进行持续完善。现在,不论我的工作重心是融资、营销、财务或者运营,我依然保持着最初启发我创立TaskRabbit的激情。

 

    《财富》杂志:在开始创业时,你希望自己八年前能知道的一件事是什么?

 

    布斯克:不要想太多,别担心犯错。创业之初,看起来生死攸关的决定,比我愿意承认的要多得多,而在现实当中,每一个决定都让TaskRabbit朝着打造最强大的公司和社区的目标更近一步。在蹒跚前行的过程中,我看到公司在不断学习,变得更好。现在,我对数据和直觉的依赖更加平衡。

 

 《财富》杂志:你犯过的最大错误是什么?

 

    布斯克:我没有犯过“最大的错误”,那些错误只是一些选择,这些选择让我学到了最多。团队建设和招聘是建立一家公司最复杂的部分。我很赞同沃顿商学院教授亚当•格兰特的观点,他也是《给予与索取》(Give and Take)这本书的作者。他提出了一套更科学的系统,可以帮助在内心仍将自己当作工程师的我,找到最合适的员工。但没有一种系统是完美的,在我个人的招聘系统中,将“文化契合度”作为一个关键因素进行优先考虑,变得日益重要。作为创始人兼CEO,调整团队很有必要,而迅速决策对于保持团队的完整性至关重要。

 

    《财富》杂志:如果要再创建一家公司,有哪件事情是你不会去做的?

 

    布斯克:你创立的公司,从某种程度上来说,就像是你的孩子。但最终,你需要调整心态,接受其他聪明人的帮助,让公司发展。寻找与你一样对产品充满信心的合伙人甚至联合创始人,将是一个重要的步骤,最终能帮助你的公司实现最大的潜力。这些人应该能补充你能力上的不足,并且是值得信赖的核心骨干,彼此之间也能交流想法。

 

    《财富》杂志:你会给未来的创业者什么建议?

 

    布斯克:找一位能够帮你的导师,因为你不能凡事都靠自己。斯科特•格里菲斯[注:时任租车公司Zipcar的CEO]是我创立TaskRabbit之后最早的几位导师之一。我离开波士顿之后,他在Zipcar为我提供了一个办公场所,随后又将我介绍给了未来的投资者。现在,我们还是会对许多想法产生共鸣,我们会从彼此在公司发展过程中所犯的错误中总结经验教训。

 

    《财富》杂志:TaskRabbit的下一步将走向何方?我们今年能够对TaskRabbit有哪些期待?

 

    布斯克:对于TaskRabbit来说,2015年将是激动人心的一年。我们的市场将扩展到英国和欧洲部分地区。多家重量级商业合作伙伴的加入,也将把我们的业务规模推至新的高度。(财富中文网

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