What prepared you for this work?
I'm from Atlanta, Georgia, but my childhood was global. My father worked in the energy industry, and he traveled a lot. By the time I was in middle school, I'd lived in Australia, Pakistan, and Thailand. I've learned how to be at home all over the world, and I think that's essential for the work I do. To my mind, it's not enough to focus on a specific region. Instead, we have to think about how businesses and regions interact with each other. That's one of the things that drew me here—that global perspective is part of our DNA.
What kinds of businesses capture your attention?
The ones that are addressing what I consider to be massive opportunities. They may not be alone in their field, but they're responding to the problem they’ve identified at a different scale. It’s also critical that they have a solution that we believe is significantly better than what’s already out there. We're always looking for companies with the "10x difference" over current approaches. And then, of course, there are the people—the managers who can drive the business to really perform. It looks different from business to business, but there's always some mix of these elements.
What inspires you about the founders you work with?
They're visionaries. That's the one thing they all have in common. Think about what it takes to decide to fundamentally transform an industry, which is something the founders we work with are all trying to do. You have to be bold to take on something like that. You have to be incredibly imaginative. That's why I love this job. It's inspiring to be around such smart, passionate individuals.
Founders know more about their companies than we ever will, so we don't second-guess them or try to tell them how their business works.
How do you understand your role?
I try to be really clear about what I know and what I don't know and where my skills lie. Founders know more about their companies than we ever will, so we don't second-guess them or try to tell them how their business works. Instead, we bring the knowledge gained from working with a wide range of businesses over the years and try to offer perspective when it's useful. It's a very partner-driven approach.
What are your guiding principles?
There’s a thin line between hubris and being bold. Hubris blinds people to the real consequences of their actions, while boldness positions you to take risks with your eyes wide open. I prize humility, honesty, and curiosity, because they set the stage for the kind of boldness that can lead to big, positive changes. For the best idea to win, you need everyone to show up with integrity.
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