The Takeoff Podcast: Sam Altman (CEO of OpenAI; former president of Y Combinator)


Hey everyone 👋

I’m Michael and welcome back for another episode of The Takeoff Podcast. We hope everyone is enjoying the abbreviated work / school week and has an incredible Thanksgiving 🦃.

Today, we are releasing the audio of our conversation with Sam Altman from a few months ago. We originally released this conversation in the form of a newsletter, but a ton of folks reached out asking us to release the audio, too, so here it is! Here’s the written version.

Note from Michael: This is my first podcast episode for The Takeoff. Please, please give feedback by leaving a comment below or shooting me a dm on Twitter (@mspiro3). We love hearing from you! I hope you guys enjoy the listen :)

Listen on:

Sam Altman is the co-founder and CEO of OpenAI. Prior to joining OpenAI as CEO, Sam was the president of Y Combinator, the world’s leading startup accelerator, having helped launch companies such as Stripe, Airbnb, DoorDash, Twitch, Reddit, and Dropbox. Before joining Y Combinator, Sam founded Loopt (a location-based social networking app) while at Stanford in 2005. He later sold Loopt for $43.4M. 

In this episode, Sam joins The Takeoff’s Michael Spiro to discuss:

  1. His experience founding Loopt while at Stanford

  2. His experience running Y Combinator

  3. What he is building with OpenAI

  4. The benefits of founding / joining a high-growth startup early in your career

  5. Why long-term thinking is critical

  6. The importance of “getting good at sales”

  7. How to know which projects to pursue further

  8. His favorite food dish in St. Louis

  9. Why poker is a great way to learn certain business / psychological skills

Sam’s Blog.

You can find us on Twitter @_TheTakeoff.

Interview by Michael Spiro (Founder at The Takeoff. Senior at Washington University in St. LouisJMI EquityEqual VenturesGround Up VenturesIntello).

I’m on Twitter @mspiro3 👋 (direct any thoughts / comments / questions to my DMs)

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