Sunday Conversation #4: Adam Nash, Wealthfront

Welcome to the fourth “Sunday Conversation,” this week featuring Wealthfront’s’ Adam Nash. Most people reading this will already likely be familiar with Adam, in some shape or form, or his blog, Psychohistory. What’s perhaps less well-known is how deep Nash’s experience runs leading product teams inside some of the Internet’s defining companies. That’s partly because the Valley has a short memory and partly because Nash doesn’t promote his own history. That’s why I was excited to pin him down for this taped conversation, and now that he works less than five blocks from my apartment, it was easy to walk over and hang out. In this discussion, we talk about a range of topics — what he thinks of eBay’s future, why Wall Street loves LinkedIn, what aspiring product managers should do early in their careers, and much more. Oh, he also talks shop about Wealthfront. Below are the six (6) short video segments separated by topic, and at the bottom of this page is a SoundCloud file if you’d prefer simply to listen to the audio. These questions were designed so that the audience interested in this topic can quickly learn from the guest. Please note the Sunday Conversation series will run twice per month and feature guests in a long-form discussion. ♦

Part I, Tactical Advice For Aspiring Product Managers (3:30) — Nash traces back to the start of his career as a product manager and gives practical tips on how to think about growing a career in the profession today. ♦

Part II, Thoughts On The Future of eBay (3:19) — Nash, a former eBay employee, discusses what the future of the company may look like in a world of Amazon and Google. ♦

Part III, On What’s Happening At Wealthfront (4:07) — Nash explains how software enables an environment of low-fees, smart diversification, and tax minimization at Wealthfront. ♦

Part IV, Startups And Chief Operating Officers, or COOs (3:55) — Nash offers his view as being a COO and when a less mature startup may start to think about recruiting or grooming for the COO position. ♦

Part V, On The Future Of LinkedIN (2:43) — Nash, a long-term and influential early employee at LinkedIn, looks back on the formation of the company and what the future may hold as a platform. ♦

Part VI, Perspective On The EIR Experience (5:31) — Nash was most recently an EIR at Greylock and is currently writing a series of blog posts on his experience as well as frameworks on how to think about the role for others who may be considering it. ♦

Audio Recording, Full Conversation via SoundCloud

A special thanks to the team at Scaffold Labs for sponsoring the Sunday Conversation series on Haywire. Scaffold Labs is a boutique technology advisory firm based in Silicon Valley which designs and builds scientific and predictable talent acquisition programs that helps technology startups hire great people. Scaffold Labs has previously partnered with companies such as Cloudera, Appirio, and Nimble Storage, among others. For more information, please visit