Andrew Yang

Venture for America Founder

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What Is the Secret to a Great Co-Founders' Relationship?

It's about communication, understanding, and trying to keep yourself aligned to goals that, even if you disagree, you know you just disagree on how to get to the same goals. And the biggest things I've…

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How Do You Give a Great Presentation?

Any time you're presenting or pitching, it has to feel like a conversation. So the moment it feels like you're just boilerplating away, people are gonna tune out—it doesn't matter how good the boilerplate is.…

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What's Your Morning Routine?

Well, I've got two kids, which I think you do too, and so it consists of making sure they're alive...and then going up the hierarchy of needs. So it's like alive, check; awake, yes/no; fed;…

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What Advice Would You Give a First-Time Manager?

You know, the best advice for a first-time manager is to think about your first management experience on the other side, when you were an employee, and think about the things you liked, think about…

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What's the Most Surprising Thing About Being a CEO?

I think the thing that people don't expect is that every action has ripple effects. So the first time you make some offhand comment, and then weeks later someone says, "Hey, I heard you said…

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How Do You Overcome Imposter Syndrome?

Something happened to me last year, where a 20something-year-old called me middle-aged. And then I was like, "I'm not middle aged, what are they talking about?" So I whipped out my phone and looked up…

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How Do You Build a Strong Personal Brand?

I just focused on doing the work. And if you do really—it sounds very Asian of me—but if you do really excellent work, people will figure out that your genuine interest is just doing the…

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Do You Have Any Tips for Managing Millennials?

I love millennials. You know, millennials are the future. I think the best advice I could give for someone managing a millennial is to try to give them as much room to run as possible.…

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What Is a Unique Challenge Faced by Women Entrepreneurs?

The challenges facing female entrepreneurs are manifold, unfortunately. So if you look at the mechanics of entrepreneurship, it starts with generally taking your own money and resources, and then raising money from friends and family,…

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How Do You Stop Procrastination?

So my brother is a PhD in psychology, and he told me that the first step in any process is the most difficult. So what you do is fool yourself into saying, "I'm not going…

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How Are Millennials Different From Previous Generations Entering the Workforce?

I think that millennials have something of accelerated timelines, which you have to try and use to your advantage as an organization. Let's say, like, I'm a Gen-Xer. I might have said, hey, let me…

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How Do You Strike a Balance Between Speed and Accuracy in Your Company?

There are certain things you need to prioritize very, very high degrees of accuracy. For example, accounting, taxes, like, you know, no messing around, like get it there, like make it error-free. And then there…

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How Much of Your Career Has Been Planned and How Much Has It Been Left up to Chance?

It's funny, I wrote a list of my life's goals when I was 25. I was inspired by a guy named Ted Leonsis. He wrote a list of his life's goals, and some of them…

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How Do You Manage a Culturally Diverse Team?

Managing has changed a lot even over the last 10 years, and with the diverse team, one thing that they need from you is to know that you're listening. And so if you are able…

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How Do You Celebrate Success?

The way I celebrate success is I try and remind myself of what I would think about various things when I was 24 or 25, just starting out, maybe after my company went bust, and…

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What Are Your 3 Must-Dos Everyday?

So, the first thing is work on staying married, so that's spend time with my wife and kids. With Venture for America, I mean, it sort of an all-consuming job, so in many ways, that…

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Who Do You Surround Yourself With in Business?

There's been a school of thought that you are, you become the average of the 10 people you spend the most time with. And so there are a lot of very successful people I know…

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What’s Your Biggest Career Mistake?

So, you know, one of the lessons we have at Venture for America is that even setbacks end up becoming growth opportunities if you make the most of them. Like, my first company completely flopped.…

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Are Entrepreneurs Born or Can They Be Made?

I 100% think it can be learned. You know, there are so many entrepreneurs that failed their first time out. Some of the stories in my book...Bill Gates' first software company, Traf-O-Data, failed before Microsoft.…

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What Was the Low Point in Your Career?

There have been a lot of tough times. I mean, when my first company failed, I was 25, 26, I still owed $100K in law school debt. My parents would pretend to people that I…

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When Do You Know It's Time to Quit Your Job?

I've been in a position when I should leave a company, and I probably stayed a little long in those instances. So there are a bunch of signs that you should think about leaving a…

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How Do You Put Workplace Diversity Into Action?

Organizations need to actually invest and prioritize it. People will notice immediately whether you're just talking about it or whether you're doing something about it. That shows the most when it seems that a business…

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What Mistakes Do People Make Over and Over Again?

Two things that first-time entrepreneurs tend to do that I think are mistakes. First is, they hoard their idea. They act like, "Hey, if I tell you this then you're gonna run out and do…

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What's an Effective Perk to Attract Top Talent?

Top talent, in my experience, is not attracted to perks. Top talent is attracted to head room, responsibility, room to run, growth. So what you want to do is you want to say, "Hey, look,…

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How Do You Manage People Remotely?

There are best practices around managing a remote team. It's about including them whenever possible through Google Hangouts and disembodied phone calls. It's about including them on correspondence and letting everyone know, it's like, "Hey,…

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"A lawyer turned entrepreneur"

Andrew Yang is the Founder of Venture for America, and has worked in startups and early-stage growth companies as a founder or executive for more than twelve years. He was the CEO and President of Manhattan GMAT, a test prep company that was acquired by the Washington Post/Kaplan in 2009. He has also served as the co-founder of an Internet company and an executive at a health care software startup.

Andrew is the author of “Smart People Should Build Things,” published by Harper Business. He was named one of Fast Company’s “100 Most Creative People in Business,” and has appeared on CNBC, Morning Joe, Fox News, TIME, Techcrunch, The Wall Street Journal, and more. He has been selected by the White House as a Presidential Ambassador for Global Entrepreneurship and a Champion of Change for his work with Venture for America.

He is a graduate of Columbia Law and Brown University and lives in New York City with his wife and sons.