August 19, 2016: Friday news roundup

Lots of good stuff to get to this week, including our own CEO dropping knowledge, tips for getting hired or getting funding, and how a Udemy instructor got her start.

Why finding your best mentor has nothing to do with the C-suite
As anyone with a trusted mentor knows, none of us can reach our full potential alone. Not everyone is lucky enough to find someone who will inspire, guide, and push them personally and professionally, but our CEO Dennis Yang has a few suggestions for connecting with the right mentor. Dennis was very prolific this week, also sharing his thoughts on Olympic tennis and company missions. Superstar tennis players get extra-motivated to perform for their countries, and employees need a motivation that’s larger than themselves too.

Inside the mind of a venture capitalist
Steve Jurvetson of Draper Fisher Jurvetson is a titan among VCs. He was one of the first investors to get involved in the startup scene with such early wins at Hotmail. He was also the world’s first owner of a Tesla Model S, which is a nice bit of trivia. Here, he assesses the current climate for venture capital and offers his picks for “hot sectors” to watch.

Why having a problem about something is the smartest way to build a startup
Udemy instructor Vanessa Van Edwards leads highly popular courses to help professionals understand their own behavior better and use that knowledge to communicate more effectively and improve relationships. With more than 80,000 students enrolled in her courses, she’s one of Udemy’s most successful instructors. This article describes her journey from “self-described recovering awkward person” to the business powerhouse she is today.

I hire engineers at Google–Here’s what I look for (and why)
Google has long been regarded as a pioneer in the way it evaluates job candidates (well, they’re pioneers at a lot of things). They were among the first to weigh academic credentials less and focus more on assessing what people can actually do and how well they can learn. Scoring an engineering job at Google will always be hyper-competitive, but this hiring manager writes that they’re casting a wider net these days and he has some suggestions for what aspiring Googlers can do to stand out from the crowd.

How to live wisely
This professor at Harvard Graduate School of Education promotes an attitude and mindset people at all career stages can appreciate. He describes a few exercises he does with university students to get them thinking about how they want to use their time on campus and what they want from life, in general. Often, students find their answers reveal inner conflicts and choices to be made.