My guest today is Sarah Friar, the CEO of Nextdoor, which connects people in local neighborhoods together. Sarah’s CV sparkles with impressive achievements at interesting businesses, and we spend a lot of time in this conversation thinking through what excellence looks like as a CEO, CFO, equity analyst, and board member. The rest of our discussion is focused on Nextdoor and how the soon-to-be public business is fostering connections between people and businesses in their local areas.
I do this podcast so I get to meet and learn from people like Sarah. I could have talked to her for hours. I hope you enjoy this great conversation with Sarah Friar as much as I did.
For the full show notes, transcript, and links to the best content to learn more, check out the episode page here.
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[00:03:03] - [First question] - What makes an excellent equity analyst
[00:05:51] - Things Sarah does differently as an operator because she was an investor
[00:08:29] - Key factors that make a great CFO
[00:09:31] - The role of the CFO in regards to capital allocation as a company grows
[00:11:50] - What convinced her to join Salesforce and Square
[00:14:45] - The initial spark and appeal that led her to join Nextdoor
[00:17:35] - Existing problems with ‘community’ and how they approach fixing them
[00:21:36] - Interesting and compelling data points about in-person interactions
[00:23:54] - Network density as a driving factor of product quality
[00:26:43] - What gives Nextdoor a unique angle against some of its existing competitors
[00:28:51] - Thoughts on platform leakage and user retention
[00:30:57] - Successful strategies for deploying Nextdoor in a new country
[00:35:32] - Having a feed and trying to avoid creating echo chambers
[00:37:04] - Some of the biggest mistakes they’ve made while trying to grow
[00:38:49] - Options for a business model and thoughts on advertising
[00:43:25] - The importance of scale, advertising, and their relationship dynamic
[00:45:55] - Ways she’s learned to effectively steer the businesses strategy
[00:49:48] - Why she doesn’t like titles
[00:51:07] - Key levers that will allow Nextdoor to succeed in the future
[00:53:35] - How advertisers evaluate platforms like Nextdoor compared to Google or Facebook
[00:57:19] - What a successful board member looks like and how she’s learned to be one
[00:59:34] - Leading with transparency and empathy
[01:02:00] - An overview of what Ladies Who Launch is and what they do
[01:03:57] - Way to educate our children about finance and encourage financial literacy
[01:07:51] - Making your platforms welcoming and guiding users away from conflict
[01:10:30] - The kindest thing anyone has ever done for her