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In The Media

Character Compassing a Potential Co-Founder

by Larry Chiang on October 26, 2014

By Larry Chiang

Reading people jumps to a higher level when you character compass a person. In short, reading a potential co-founder’s vector. Reading a person was static. My work based on five mentors was to add a direction and magnitude in “Reading People 2.0”
I wanted to call this article…

Larry Chiang (@LarryChiang)
What They Don’t Teach You at YC About Co-Founder Selection

But it seemed too similar to my mentor’s, Mark McCormack’s, book: WHAT THEY DON’T TEACH YOU AT HARVARD BUSINESS SCHOOL. So let me take the ‘unconscious competence’ of YC partners and partners emeritus and break down step, tips, strategies and ideas. Obviously, they all have IQs of 180 or 190 and the YC partners do not teach well. 

Inside #CS183b, it’s been “Reading People 0.5”
Teaching and mentoring requires conscious incompetence a-n-d conscious competence. My sports psych mentor calls ‘unconscious competence’ the Michael Jordan syndrome.  Unconscious competence actually demoralizes mentees. Right now the YC partner teaching team is 12 Michael Jordans*
This brings us to founder selection and lecture #3 inside CS 183B. 
Note: my parents both had IQs over 180. My father went to MIT (Tom Chiang) and my mother Yale PhD (Orando Kao Chiang).image.jpeg
Tom Chiang action photo eating in Taichung TAIWAN. 
I was diagnosed w an 88 for an IQ. So, I am an expert in sniffing out  ‘unconscious competence’. When I was 11, 12 and 13 I didn’t call it  ‘unconscious competence’ but I saw it every hour, every day, every week. Learning w/an IQ that was low, while I was young, indoctrinated me in the fire of an en fuego intellectual house. This formed the base for my “work” aka hobby at Massachusetts Institute about Technology called “Tom Chiang Engineer to Entrepreneur Transformation #TCEET”. Tom may have been the smartest fourth brother but dead last in entrepreneur ranking compared to Uncle #1, Uncle #2, and lol Uncle #3. 

image.jpegBetween pictures, I knew I was low human on the IQ totem pole

Back on topic. The topic is “What They Don’t Teach You at YC About Co-Founder Selection”. CS 183 B is taught by a person who seem like a real life Matt Damon from Goodwill Hunting. Sam Altman learned in one year what Stanford had to teach. His advice on co-founder selection was lecture #2 (embed?).

Summed up: “Find a co-founder who’s like James Bond”. That’s it. One slide.


Then to support the one slide…, the demoralizing statement that I’ll paraphrase for clarity: “Paul Graham (PG) and we all think being like James Bond is more important than domain expertise (keep in mind we are all at Nvidia, at Huang Engineering, at a Top 150 technical college known as Stanfurdh). 
Before I get to the precious PG advice of “WHAT ANIMAL IS YOUR CO-FOUNDER”
Two puppies in a pod. 
Photo credit Alyssa Notdstrom, previously of Nordstrom’s now at a tech startup. (As my hobby, I wanna help her be CEO cuz I love the giggles and the shitzz)
Lets grind out the tactical specifics in co-founder selection via another mentor: John E Reid. He’s the father of modern police interrogation. 

Larry Chiang (@LarryChiang)
What They Don’t Teach You at YC About Open Field Interrogation #JohnReid

Do I took Mr Reid’s “Reid Technique” and augmented it. The Reid technique is closed room law enforcement, two interrogators on one “suspect”. In the real world, we pick co-founders out in the wild. Thus, I birthed the concept of “open field interrogation”. 

It rests on the John E Reid technique so learn it. Learn it by googling 30 years of John E Reid’s work.

When you come back, I’ll go over 

Larry Chiang (@LarryChiang)
What They Don’t Teach You at YC About Reading People #MarkMcCormack

Plot spoiler: it’s in his NY Times bestseller WHAT THEY DON’T TEACH YOU AT HARVARD BUSINESS SCHOOL.

Also, my next next post will be “Co-founder selection when you’re no longer in college”. Lecture 2, CS183b advice was somewhat demoralizing to you Stanford grads because you can’t have out co-founder team be all Stanford*

*according to the YouNoodle study on “best founder team” released inside an ENGR 145 class, 2010. #ENGR145, session #13. PhD candidate Rebeca Hwang said that during Stanford Engineering 145, “Technology Entrepreneurship”
If you’d like WHAT THEY DON’T TEACH YOU AT HARVARD BUSINESS SCHOOL, comment below and I’ll send you my dog-eared copy you can borrow. 

Heck, I’ll even pay shipping both ways!
ENGR145’s two anchor videos move you to the right on the entrepreneur bell curve 
Is a bit ly I memorized that links to
CEO of Duck9
Stanford University’s Founding EIR (Entrepreneur in Residence)
Duck9 = Deep Underground Credit Knowledge 9
c/o UCMS Inc
2021 Midwest Road / 3rd FL
Oak Brook IL
650-283-8008 (cell)
Founder of “What They Don’t Teach at Business School” for CNN iReport:
Author, NY Times Bestseller
“What They Will NEVER Teach You at Stanford Business School about EUTWMPPM @SXSW” comes out 11-11-14
52 Cards. Two Jokers. What They DO Teach You at Stanford Engineering
Emergency swings and cutting deals as an 9 year old

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