Office Hours with Spencer Rascoff

When a couple of CEOs get in a room together, what do they talk about? Listen in as Zillow Group's Spencer Rascoff has the kinds of conversations that can only happen between peers: tackling tough questions, sharing hard-won insights, and defining what leadership means today.

LATEST EPISODE

From the Vault: John MacFarlane, Founder and Former CEO, Sonos

John MacFarlane served as CEO of Sonos from 2002 to 2017 and was instrumental in building the company's loyal customer base. Just last week, Sonos filed to go public in a $100 million initial public offering, and the company is on track to do $1 billion in revenue this year alone. In this episode, John discusses Sonos's decision to partner with competitors like Google and Amazon, why he stepped down as CEO and why it's important to be relentlessly progressive.
00:28:01 7/13/2018

Past Episodes

Adena Friedman is president and chief executive officer of Nasdaq, which operates the second-largest stock exchange in the world by market cap. Named one of Forbes' most powerful women, Adena built her career at Nasdaq, starting as an intern straight out of an MBA program. Outside of a three-year stint as chief financial officer at The Carlyle Group, she's been with Nasdaq ever since. In this episode, Spencer joins Adena in New York City to discuss the power of mentorship, the future of the U.S. capital markets and why going public can spark innovation.
00:23:08 7/5/2018
Emily Chang is a best-selling author and host and executive producer of Bloomberg Technology. Earlier this year, she made waves with her book "Brotopia," an expose on how sexism became pervasive in Silicon Valley, despite its utopian ideals. Drawing on interviews with some of tech's biggest names, Emily shines a bright light on a big problem. In this episode, Emily joins Spencer at Zillow Group's San Francisco office to discuss her inspiration for the book, how the tech community got to this point and what we can do about it.
00:31:02 6/21/2018
Alaska Airlines CEO Brad Tilden is in the midst of his "what's next" agenda following the company's successful acquisition of Virgin America. Acquisitions, no matter how well executed, are almost always tough on companies. But the commonalities between Alaska and Virgin - their focus on customers and building alignment among employees - lays the foundation for the former competitors to work together and adopt the best features of both airlines as they move forward under a single brand.
00:30:47 5/31/2018
What will the home of the future look like? Imagine built-in Wi-Fi, voice-activated digital assistants and other technological innovations that will render older homes obsolete before long. Earlier this month, the nation's largest homebuilder, Lennar, took a big swing in this direction, announcing that all of its new homes will include smart locks, Wi-Fi, thermostats and lights ? all controlled by Amazon Alexa. In this episode, Lennar's former CEO Stuart Miller, who now serves as its executive chairman, joins Spencer to discuss how technology will impact homebuilding and design ? and how he helped create a culture that embraces innovation at the 60-plus-year-old company.
00:25:49 5/24/2018
Comedy writer and producer Robert Carlock's spectacular career includes writing and producing credits on iconic shows such as "Saturday Night Live," "Friends" and "30 Rock." Most recently he co-created the Netflix original series "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt,". As a leader in a creative field, Robert doesn't rely on data to make decisions. Instead, he draws largely from his intuition and simply knowing what's going to be funny. And untethering creativity is a lesson all companies and industries can learn from.
00:29:54 5/17/2018
Dara Khosrowshahi is CEO of Uber, a company that's become a household name for transportation. Uber's dominance hasn't come without controversy, however. Uber's reputation as an innovator has often been overshadowed by negative revelations about its culture. In 2017, Dara left his role as CEO of Expedia to take over the reins at Uber from founder Travis Kalanick. His mission: Get the company on the path to cultural reform, profitability and, eventually, IPO. In this episode, Dara and Spencer discuss why he made the move to Uber, what he's learning - and the role of "flying taxis" in Uber's future.
00:34:16 5/15/2018
We revisit our conversation with Eric Holder. Eric knows a thing or two about introspection. In his current role, companies tap the former U.S. Attorney General to ask difficult questions and help businesses improve everything from diversity to how they work with foreign governments. With the democratization of information and the rise of social media, today's leaders and companies can no longer hide behind a great PR team. According to Holder, "Companies can always be introspective in the same way that we can be as individuals and ask tough questions of ourselves or as corporate entities. What are our strengths? What are our weaknesses? How can we do better?"
00:27:38 5/3/2018
It's no wonder Fortune Magazine called Cindy a "tireless force of nature." She's the entrepreneur behind the first-ever FDA approved drug to treat decreased libido in women, and she's built two businesses from the ground up, selling them for over $1.5 billion. After securing FDA approval for ADDYI, dubbed "female Viagra" by numerous media outlets, Cindy founded The Pink Ceiling, an incubator and venture capital firm dedicated to helping women-focused businesses. In this episode, she and Spencer discuss the importance of empathy in product design, how the #MeToo movement will alter the venture capital landscape and why Cindy is an unapologetic proponent of the color pink.
00:27:08 4/26/2018
Arianna Huffington needs little introduction. The author of 15 books, including best-sellers Thrive and The Sleep Revolution, Arianna has been named to Time Magazine's list of 100 Most Influential People and Forbes' Most Powerful Women list. In 2016, she stepped down from her namesake Huffington Post (now HuffPost) to launch Thrive Global, which aims to eliminate the stress and burnout that leave so many of us in survival mode. Arianna also joined Uber as its first woman board member, advocating for a culture where "brilliant jerks" aren't tolerated. In this episode, Arianna joins Spencer at Zillow Group's New York City office to discuss her newest venture, why leaders need to model balance for their employees and why we all need to prioritize downtime.
00:26:35 4/11/2018
Sukhinder is a serial entrepreneur and longtime technology executive who had stints at both Google and Amazon. In 2015, she founded theBoardlist, a talent marketplace for leaders to find highly qualified women to join their boards. Among startups, 57 percent have no women in executive positions. On boards, more than three-quarters of privately funded tech companies have no women, and the picture is even worse among public companies. In this episode, Sukhinder discusses why the tech community should add more women partners, executives and board seats - and why she's optimistic about the future of women in tech.
00:22:02 3/15/2018
Companies that transform our lives with one innovation (like Microsoft Windows) often find it difficult to repeat the same feat because everything - from product to revenue to culture - is built on top of that one big idea. This is the challenge Satya Nadella faced when he took over the reins at Microsoft. How could he ensure that the 43-year-old company seized new opportunities and warded off potential threats? The answer: Build the ability to hit refresh into the culture by focusing on mission, leadership and growth mindset.
00:30:57 3/1/2018
Eric Holder knows a thing or two about introspection. In his current role, companies tap the former U.S. Attorney General to ask difficult questions and help businesses improve everything from diversity to how they work with foreign governments. With the democratization of information and the rise of social media, today's leaders and companies can no longer hide behind a great PR team. According to Holder, "Companies can always be introspective in the same way that we can be as individuals and ask tough questions of ourselves or as corporate entities. What are our strengths? What are our weaknesses? How can we do better?"
00:27:44 11/8/2017
The companies within Bill Gurley's investment portfolio have some clear similarities: great user-generated content, a reliance on the network effect and a "power to the people" mentality, meaning they put consumers first. But companies don't succeed solely because of their business model or mission - they also need strong leadership. According to Bill, great leaders tend to be unafraid, innately curious and bold. He looks for these qualities in the founder pitching the investment opportunity because - while the idea is important - it's the person who is going to execute it. In this episode, Bill references his 2012 essay, "The Dangerous Seduction of the Lifetime Value (LTV) Formula." You can read it in its entirety here.  
00:27:19 6/29/2017
As a founding member of several successful companies (Fog Creek, Trello) in the software development space, you could say that Joel Spolsky knows a bit about developers. On his popular online forum, Stack Overflow, developers ask more than 8,000 questions a day to a community of roughly 40 million developers who visit the site every month. Joel talks about software developers with a reverence normally reserved for philosophers: "Every day, developers get a chance to make a decision that's going to impact the world," he says. But with that power comes great responsibility, and managers have an important role to play in helping developers consider unintended consequences and use their power for good.
00:30:53 6/15/2017

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