As leaders become immersed in their products and businesses, they become more focused on the customers they have and less on those they don’t. This natural tendency to gravitate towards your best customers handicaps your ability to build and sustain increasingly inclusive products and services. History is full of companies that failed to sustain their focus on new customers and suffered as a result. If you aspire to engage millions (or hundreds of millions) of people, you must defy this tendency to prioritize features for your best customers at the expense of the “first mile” of product experience. In this session, Scott Belsky explores the psychology of customers during their initial use of a new product or service and the common obstacles and strategies a team must employ to successful scale a product – and business – over time.
Related Article: Medium
The beginning and the end of a creative project or new company get all the headlines and fanfare, but the magic happens in the less understood “journey in-between.” In this session, Scott Belsky breaks down a bold journey from start to finish, chronicling the essential insights of great leaders and teams during the four phases of every venture: Start, Endurance, Optimization, and Finish. Learn the counter-intuitive and often uncomfortable realizations needed to survive the roller-coaster of anonymity, team development, product iteration, and grit required to push ideas to fruition. Whether it is a bold new project, an entrepreneurial pursuit, or an effort to create a new initiative within a large organization, these insights help teams endure the journey and optimize along the way.
Related Article: Medium
Great ideas only see the light of day when creative people and teams are able to get organized, harness the forces of community, and become better leaders of themselves and others. After years of research, Scott Belsky and his team at Behance have found a series of best practices common across some of the world’s most productive creative people and teams. Scott is the author of the national bestselling book “Making Ideas Happen” (Penguin Books, April 2010) and leads Behance, the world’s largest online platform of creative professionals. In 2012, Scott became Adobe’s Vice President of Product/Community after Adobe’s acquisition of Behance. In this session, Scott will share insights and practical tips that you can use to push bold creative projects to completion.
Related Books: 99u
Scott Belsky is an entrepreneur, author, and investor. Previously, Scott co-founded Behance in 2006, and served as CEO until Adobe acquired Behance in 2012. Millions of people use Behance to display their portfolios, as well as track and find top talent across the creative industries. For over three years, Scott served as Adobe’s Vice President of Products, rebooting Adobe’s mobile product strategy and leading Behance, the leading online platform for creatives to showcase and discover creative work.
Scott actively advises and invests in businesses at the intersection of technology and design. Scott was an early investor and advisor in Pinterest, Uber, Warby Parker, and Periscope as well as several others in the early stages. He is now a Venture Partner with Benchmark, a venture capital firm in San Francisco and is also the co-founder and chairman of a new pre-launch company funded by Benchmark in the service marketplace space. Scott is also an investor and Board member of sweetgreen, a values-driven locally-sourced seasonal kitchen.
Over the years, Scott has pursued other projects to help organize and empower the careers of creative people. These include 99U, Behance’s think tank and annual conference devoted to execution in the creative world. Scott is also the author of the international bestselling book Making Ideas Happen (Portfolio Imprint, Penguin Books, April, 2010).
Prior to founding Behance, Scott helped grow the Pine Street Leadership Development Initiative at Goldman, Sachs & Co. Scott serves on the Advisory Board of Cornell University’s Entrepreneurship Program and is a member of the Board of Trustees for the Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum. He attended Cornell University as an undergraduate and received his MBA from Harvard Business School.