tv Best of Bloomberg Technology Bloomberg August 11, 2019 5:00pm-6:00pm EDT
♪ emily: i'm emily chang and this is the "best of bloomberg technology." bringing you all the best interviews from this week in tech. coming up, this week, two mass shootings in the u.s. left dozens dead. president trump has called on social media companies to do more to identify mass shooters before they strike. one of the gunmen posted a manifesto online. how to police the internet? we talk with ellen pao, the former ceo of reddit. plus, uber and lyft post earnings.
a big focus for both companies, turning a profit. we will break it down. and fedex drops amazon. the delivery giant says it will not renew its contract as the online retailer expands its own shipping and logistics game. we talked to one of the founding members of fedex ground. first, uber came out with second-quarter results, investors looking for signs the ride hailer will eventually become profitable. did uber succeed? i asked our guests. >> we see multiple ways that management can move towards profitability. we see near-term drivers in the form of reducing driver and rider promotions and incentives. we also think they are things the management teams can do in terms of reducing market expenses and insurance costs to
help move the company toward profitability in the near to midterm. longer-term, we see additional upside in the move toward autonomy as being a key component in reducing costs and moving companies more toward profitability. emily: except that autonomy is just so far out. tom, uber said the losses would decline next year. both have indicated the price wars would subside. but why do you have different ratings on uber and lyft? neutral on uber, buy on lyft. tom: first of all, thanks for having me. look, our neutral view on uber really just comes down to limited visibility. you know, this is a company fighting a lot of battles on a lot of fronts. on one hand, they have the big balance sheet and the scale to probably outlast a lot of the players it is competing with. on the negative side, it is reacting and responding to a lot of the aggressive promotional
activity from some of the ridesharing players and some of the online food delivery players it is fighting with. it creates a situation where it is harder to get comfortable with forecasting the financials. we think it is probably pretty challenging for the management team themselves, to give investors a clear and specific and precise 12-month view of where the financials are going to be. our ratings are based on a 12 to 18 month time horizon and we think the visibility and the share gains at lyft in the north american ridesharing market are -- kind of take it over the edge. emily: so, asad, let's talk about food delivery, because on the call, uber has been focusing on the competition not just in ride-hailing but in food delivery, seeming to indicate that is the super competitive part of the business now. obviously, uber eats has competitors not just in the united states but different competitors globally. what is your outlook for uber
eats and how it can boost or not boost the business going forward? asad: i think this quarter's results really speak to just how competitive the food delivery landscape is, not just domestically, but internationally. uber eats is competing with a whole host of competitors that are really well-funded. companies like doordash and postmates that have received large amounts of funding from deep-pocketed investors like softbank who are not afraid to go after the market in a big way and seek revenue and user-based growth. but that is to the detriment of profitability in the near to midterm and that is hurting companies like uber which is facing so much pressure from investors to show a clear pathway to profitability. in the near-term, we are encouraged by some positive signs we see. if you look at the take rate, which is the commission that uber takes on growth transactions within food delivery, we have seen that
trend upwards over the past three quarters, sequentially. that is something we are encouraged by. we are also incrementally more positive based on signs of consolidation in the space with their rival doordash acquiring caviar. we think that is a positive development and one we hope to see more of. emily: uber's rival lyft also posted earnings this week. ride-hailer projects $3.4 billion in sales compared to the average analyst estimates of $3.2 billion. but immediate enthusiasm was dampened by the decision allowing shareholders to sell earlier than anticipated. the lockup now ending on the 19th. i got perspective from one of the earlier investors, oceanic
partner ceo tim sullivan. >> there is a stock unit plan that is causing this to be moved up from september 24 to august 19. so it is coming up and we are not selling. we are in it for the long haul. emily: why? >> i still believe the managers are doing a great job running a day-to-day business. obviously, the numbers were phenomenal this quarter. $867 million top line, the projections were $810 million. so i think lyft is doing a great job not only managing expectations, but beating expectations. emily: they did lose their coo and they are not going to replace that person. they are going to fill the job in other ways. from a management perspective, since you mentioned management, is that a concern? >> no.
i think john zimmer has been the coo de facto since the beginning. emily: the president and cofounder. >> right. having somebody come in and duplicate his effort did not make sense. it is kind of the same thing going on at uber. they lost their coo because dara is trying to play more of a hands-on role. that is what you are seeing on both companies. emily: does the lockup ending concern you and all of the shares hitting the market even as the share price is down? >> i think that is just the way things are these days. with unicorns going public that many shares hitting the market at lockup expiration, we have seen over and over with every company, the stock takes a pretty significant hit when those shares hit the market. people are hungry for liquidity, and when they have the opportunity, they take it. emily: let's talk about the
future. if lyft vs. uber has been price wars, almost as long as they have been in existence, getting the lowest price means lower revenue and less incentive for drivers, is there an end to that? >> i think we are still in early days and have a long way to go. but i think we will see less drivers and those drivers making more money. emily: why less drivers? >> the business model is geared towards full-time drivers. you are going to see less of those in the future. emily: less drivers making more money, do the companies themselves still make more? >> yes, their take rates go up and the companies make more money. emily: what does that mean for the competition long-term? is it more about the brand?
>> i have always thought there was room for a coke and a pepsi in the ride-hailing space. it's incredibly disruptive, there's a huge market. and it is in early days, there is still growth to come. there is room for both lyft and uber. emily: thanks to tim sullivan of oceanic partners. coming up, another mass shooting and another white nationalist manifesto finds its way to the darkest corners of the internet. we look at what can be done to fight online extremists next. and if you like bloomberg news, check us out on the radio, listen on the app, and on sirius xm. this is bloomberg.
messaging platform 8chan. before their attacks. this shooter gunned down at least 22 people in el paso, texas, posting his a racist screed 20 minutes before the first emergency call came in. the same thing happened with the mosque shootings in christchurch, new zealand where 51 people were killed, and in the california synagogue shooting in april that killed 1 and wounded 3. now, the founder is saying enough is enough, telling the new york times "shut the site down, it's not doing the world any good. it is a negative to everybody except the users who are there and it's a negative to them too." they just do not realize it. president trump weighed in, blaming mental illness, the press, video games, and social media. to discuss, i wanted to speak to
someone intimately familiar to trying to clean up the internet. ellen pao is the ceo of project include, and before that, ceo at reddit where she tried to clean up the site. >> there are so many things to blame, and social media is a big part of it. the founders were very naive, or maybe just lazy in allowing the platforms to be this free for all. now we are reaping the results of it. people are yelling at each other, harassing each other, and have taken it into real life. where they are shooting people down. emily: when you cracked down on speech at reddit, which was not easy and there were people who disagreed with what you were doing, research in the aftermath showed what you did increased positive conversation. some users started behaving as a result, and yet, other users simply fled to other sites like voat, 4chan, 8chan.
talk about the challenges of doing something. in addition, doing nothing. >> it is hard. a lot of people want to see this magic bullet. i am the ceo of reddit, i should take down all the content and that will solve the problem, but it doesn't. there are other places. but it is important to do something. i don't have to solve the whole problem as ceo of my platform, but i should make my platform a place where people can actually have conversations, where real information outweighs fake information, where people are becoming more knowledgeable and better at interacting with each other and not being led down the path towards white supremacy, misogyny, trans-phobia, terrorism. emily: let's take a listen to what the president had to say. he talked about online radicalization. take a listen. >> we must recognize that the internet has provided a dangerous avenue to radicalize disturbed minds and perform demented acts.
we must shine light on the dark recesses of the internet and stop mass murders before they start. emily: calling on the federal government to put pressure on social media companies to try and find mass shooters before they engage in these acts. is that realistic? >> i think it is hypocritical. he, of all people, should just stop radicalizing people. he should stop the racist, white, nationalistic or supremacist, actually, talk that he does using the internet to spread those messages and enable those terrorists. emily: let's talk about that. how much do you think this is a trump-related thing? he retweets right-wing extremists, he does not call for gun restrictions. instead, blames social media. how much is this really social media's fault for letting things get out of control? >> it's a mix, it's always
complicated. obviously, he has a huge role in spreading these messages and in normalizing them. but the media, both social media for amplifying and allowing him to violate rules and amplifying him, and also journalists are amplifying his messages. looking for those clicks and attention and pushing out stories that amplify some of his messages of hate. emily: the former u.s. homeland security secretary michael chertoff had this to say about what he sees happening online. take a listen. >> particularly because of certain elements on the internet, a kind of intensification of the behavior we have seen over the last couple of weeks. it's not that people have changed, but they have been enabled, through the network, to find each other, and in some instances, to encourage or incite people to act on these impulses.
emily: so what more can social media companies do? >> i think they can set up rules, and many have them, but actually apply them across everybody. let's stop giving an exception to people who generate more clicks or more engagement than others. let's stop giving an exemption for the president, let's stop giving exemption for people we think are going to complain the most for being taken off a platform. emily: in the past, you said twitter should ban president trump. do you believe that? >> yes. we look at what's going on, it would be hard to say that he did not impact these acts, that it was not part of him inciting groups to target people
from different backgrounds with different skin colors. it is a very convenient thing to blame the internet, but that does not solve the problem. we have to get down to what we need to do. it's like, let's have these clear rules. you are not allowed to harass people, you're not allowed to threaten people, you are not allowed to incentivize people towards violence or to have people aggregating across different platforms. these are not rules that are new, these rules have been out there. these are the rules at reddit since i put them in there, let's just apply them evenly. enough with the quarantining. when you have different rules for different groups of people, it does not make sense. stick to the rules so people understand that. you do that with your child. when you make boundaries, you make clear rules, and when you make exceptions, it becomes confusing. that is when you get bad activity. emily: 8chan is a site in question today and we have heard from the founder calling for the site to be shut down.
which is interesting. even six years ago, he suggested some of these mass shootings were linked. here we are six years later, nothing has changed. there are also businesses that provide services to some of these websites like cloudflare, which was keeping 8chan's sit up and repeatedly refused to pull it down. but they have, even now, decided to stop servicing 8chan. we got a statement from the ceo saying they have proven themselves to be lawless, causing multiple tragic deaths. even if 8chan had not violated the letter of the law, they have created an environment that revels in violating it's spirit. you pointed out before you came on the show, there are other
companies. twitter, for example, has a verified 8chan account. what are things companies can do to be stricter, even if it comes to the websites themselves? >> a big part of it is thinking about the real-life implications. maybe the words aren't exactly doing something terrible alone, but you look at real life. you look at what is happening on other platforms. all of this work coalesces in really terrible hateful behavior. so how do you think about that in the context of your contributions? how do you think about not necessarily solving the whole problem? so what if they go to other platforms, so what if they still go to aggregate, but you have done your best to solve the problem with the tools that you have. saying that it is too hard or not going to solve the whole problem, that you need to be up to track these people, it's not worked. emily: ellen pao of project include. coming up, samsung's galaxy note 10 comes with a new screen and storage, we talk about
emily: samsung held its annual unpacked event in brooklyn, new york, launching the latest addition to its galaxy note line. it comes as the company grapples with waning chip and smartphone demand. i talked to mark gurman from the event. >> the biggest thing is the screen size, that is the most impressive change, one of the only changes, visually. that really makes me want a bigger iphone. the iphone x s max is out at 6.5 inches and you can really tell that you can see video more clearly, it's better for gaming and productivity. hopefully, apple goes in that
direction. that is the most impressive thing alongside the new 5g model. emily: how will this impact sales? obviously, there is competition from apple. there are lots of things going on with huawei. in general, the smartphone market, globally, is slowing down. >> my view is that this will do nothing to turn it around. this is not going to give new growth to the market. in general, people will not buy their first smartphone because of the note 10. people will not switch away from the iphone because of the note 10. what will happen is people on older notes or people from older notes, the note six, they will want to upgrade to this. as we have talked about so many times, the combination of a lack of major new features with skyhigh prices north of $1300, for the high end, that's a lethal combination for bad news.
you can't charge this kind of price without adding revolutionary new things and expect people to upgrade annually. that's the real problem at hand, i don't see that changing because of the note 10. emily: you reported that when apple unveils its iphones in september, the update will be incremental. but there is a big design overhaul coming next year. is that the same for samsung? next year, there will be a bigger difference? >> apple and samsung are on opposite schedules. they will be small, incremental years for the new iphone. the 10 s and 10 s max, those are some of the smallest upgrades we've seen. samsung seems to view the s 10
and note 10 devices this year as bigger, radical changes. so i don't anticipate big news from samsung next year. we will see if they keep rolling out new folding devices, i think that's where a lot of the market demand is coming for. emily: let's talk about that. the big foldable phone had a lot of problems, which you discovered. are they ready for prime time? >> two words we did not here -- hear today, galaxy fold. but i do think the s 10 will be very different. it is was so quickly, easily discovered fundamental flaws with the fold. what with the s 10 and i had time to play with it today and the other day. these things seem as solid as last year's model. i don't anticipate fundamental
issues. emily: quickly, microsoft's ceo spoke on stage. tell us more about the partnership between samsung and microsoft. >> they really did not announce too much. they have had partnerships in the works for years now. they are expanding and opening up the phone app on microsoft windows 10 support for the new phone. the note 10 will be sold at microsoft stores and the will be -- there will be deeper integration. not very groundbreaking, but just another notch on microsoft's belt for working with more companies. emily: thanks to bloomberg's mark gurman. coming up, softbank holds first quarter results that beat estimates. masayoshi son's vision fund is shaping up to be a success. how it will impact the vc landscape. this is bloomberg. ♪
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emily: welcome back to the best of "bloomberg technology." softbank reported results that beat the highest analyst estimates. it owes that success to its first vision fund. companies like slack and doordash managed to offset declines. the company is getting ready to launch its fund this year. to discuss, we were joined by tom giles. >> this is transforming softbank away from this old-line telecommunications company with a majority stake in sprint.
he is confident that will get the approval it needs. and really position himself as an investor in up-and-coming technologies. he has a $100 billion vision fund. a lot of that money has been deployed. he is starting to reap a return on it from companies like slack that went public this year. doordash is another one. oyo rooms, this hotel business. he is embarking on vision fund two. that will be launched very soon. you start to see new investments from that fund. $108 billion. he wants to position softbank as a cutting edge company as a savvy investor. even though sometimes those investments don't go quite as well as he hoped, uber being a case in point.
emily: many of the investment funds envision fund one have not come to fruition. the question remains can a vision fund two at that size be successful or as successful as the first? >> there are questions about the global economy. there are questions about growth. the trade war is hanging over the entire industry. there are factors that will raise questions about whether or not new investments will work out as well as the previous slate of investments. will you get the return? not to mention the fact that when softbank comes in, sometimes it comes in a little later. when there is less upside for some of these investments. it has a tendency to inflate valuation beyond what it actually should be based on the soundness of the underlying business. vision fund two, will it be as successful as vision fund one, there is a lot of reasons to be more skeptical and less optimistic about its prospects. emily: what are the biggest challenges going to be?
they have a place the bets and they have to find companies willing to take that money and it is a lot of money. >> and just in finding smart businesses. we are through the cycle where there is a lot of easy money to be had in consumer facing, ridesharing and ride-hailing businesses like uber, a big investment. big investment. so finding smart investments in an environment where there is less willingness for risk, again, all those questions, we talked about the global economy and the trade war and the outlook for the technology industry, less rosy than it has been in a while. the other big thing you have to remember, for getting sprint off the balance sheet and enabling people to value softbank as a savvy tech investor, the deal is
not done yet. sprint, tmobile has a lot of the federal approvals. there are antitrust lawsuits from u.s. states. you still have to clear that hurdle. the chances are it will but it is not unprecedented for a deal to hit snags this late in the game. emily: bloomberg's tom giles. softbank getting ready to launch its second vision fund this year and it is set to have a considerable impact on the vc landscape. i spoke to two partners. >> the first fund focused on the on demand sharing economy and i think they are now going to focus on cloud computing and enterprise software, which obviously have been growing quite well. in 2016, the multiple revenue for their market cap for their service was about five times now
it is 10 times and i think they are trying to follow where the money is and where the multiples are higher. emily: is there a lot of money to be made in enterprise startup investing? perhaps more than in consumer technology these days? >> i would say consumer gets the headlines. everyone talks about uber and lyft and doordash but the reality is you can't have any of that without cloud computing or enterprise software. without developer technology. my perspective would be that if you are in the fortune 500, you can't be in the fortune 500 unless you are a technology company. everyone is investing in cloud computing, in developers and engineering. you look at zoom, these companies are trading at 25 to 40 x 2019 numbers still. i think most people don't know those names. that is where the returns are going to be in the future as well. emily: as an investor who has made a lot of consumer
investments, what is your reaction to that? david: i think of as natural, whole advent of mobile phones and smartphones. i think consumers had access to that technology first, while the enterprise is still using laptops on their desk. the consumer side was actually natural. there has been a lot more business innovation around the consumer on the smart phone as a platform initially. i think now that is getting penetrated into businesses. fueled by cloud computing. therefore, now, it is the turn for businesses to leverage the smartphone and mobile tech revolution. emily: ed, are there enough
places for softbank to really place all these bets, even in enterprise? some investors complain there is not a lot of great things out there right now. >> i would say yes and no. if you look at the number of $100 million rounds that happened over the last two years, i think last year 130 billion dollars was raised. but half of that was from $100m and above rounds. the perspective really is the enterprise is different from consumer. you can't throw a couple hundred million dollars and expect to win. money is not the competitive edge. there is money from every pocket of the world. there are private equity firms coming in and investing and capital firms have scaled up. unlike consumer where you can throw marketing dollars at media growth, this is a lag time for enterprise businesses to increase their sales. for an enterprise to adopt their
technology. my answer would be yes and no. yes, there are going to be plenty of opportunities. no, it is not the same effect. money is not the main aspect of what is going to win in the enterprise space. emily: how have softbank and the vision fund changed up the landscape? you have softbank coming in with a lot of money. is that changing your strategy? >> i think it has been a very positive thing for early-stage vcs. i think softbank is allowing some of them to exit. the market has changed over the last five years, where much larger late stage funds have prolonged the exit. they have been paying high prices. and they still expect pretty good returns. i think the vision fund fundamentally changed the landscape. typical late stage funds expect 3x over a five-year period.
what they are doing is going to entrepreneurs and saying i am still willing to bet long-term and i am going to write a bigger check so you can change the competition and beat the competition and i am going to stick with you longer. i think that is very appealing to entrepreneurs. based on the check size they write, they typically win the deals because of the late stage folks looking for a little bit more short-term and their check size is smaller. emily: it is great for early-stage vcs. great for entrepreneurs. is there a risk of -- with this much money flooding into the system, are companies being kept afloat that shouldn't be? >> absolutely. there is a long lag period in the private to public markets. lots of money is not necessarily a good thing. the difference between 100 million dollars and $200 million, are you going to hire more marketing folks? i think it means returns will eventually go down.
a lot of times, founders may not do smart things with too much capital. that is one thing to worry about in the enterprise space. that keeps me concerned. emily: david, you are in tokyo. go ahead, respond. david: i was going to say, on the contrary, enterprise software, you need a lot of salespeople to get to the companies to sell. whereas, consumer, you can use that social networking to go grab customers. i would disagree that you actually do need more money to go acquire customers in the enterprise space. it takes longer for the enterprise software or enterprise customers to sign on. so, you do actually need more money for certain sectors.
emily: that was ed simm and david chao. coming up, fedex snips another tie with amazon, announcing the end of its ground delivery contract. we will talk to one of the founding members of what became fedex ground next. later, a google veteran is created with creating the field of people analytics. he is bringing ai and machine learning to hr outside of google. we will talk about his start up next. this is bloomberg.
emily: fedex is offloading a ground delivery contract with amazon. it is the latest move by fedex to reduce its dependence on amazon as the online retailer builds out its own logistics network. with more on how it affects both companies, we are joined by a founding member of what became fedex ground. >> amazon is so big and they have built their own capability to deliver their own packages so rapidly in less than 2 years, that amazon is not going to feel anything from this. i would tell you that as of june and july, they have not been using fedex at all. it was an academic exercise that fedex is terminating its contract. there was no business fedex was getting. so fedex will have to replace the volume with other e-commerce shippers. emily: how does fedex replace
that volume? >> how do they replace it? by offering that capacity to other big guys like walmart and target and kohl's who are fairly large shippers of fedex and making their capacity available so they can have some of the business they are giving to ups and the post office and have it converted to fedex. emily: would you agree, no pain for amazon, just a lot of work for fedex? >> amazon spends more than $31 billion in shipping every year. this is a couple hundred billion dollar business with fedex. this is a long time coming. this is not something that was unexpected. the risk is not revenue; the
risk is margins. amazon is going to one-day shipping and going into the holiday season. there is a lot to cope with. ups and usps is there. they have their own capacity expansion as well. if your member, back in 2015, you have a miss because their capacity was overwhelmed and they have to pay more for shipping. shipping, variability and margin variability is something they have to think about. from a margins perspective, this was expected. -- from a long term perspective, from a top line perspective, this was expected. emily: for someone who founded the company that became fedex ground, what do you make of the longer-term prospects for fedex, given they are keeping their relationship with ups, they have a relationship with the postal service and fedex, globally has had some patchy issues, struggling particularly in europe. >> that is a great question. i think you are going to see that for the next three or four quarters or more, the company is going to be challenged to produce. they have lost express volume. they are losing some ground. it is not going to be easy.
it takes time to have customers replace another carrier with fedex. there is going to be hard work and tough times ahead for fedex. until they recover from it. long-term, when you dominate a customer and put a press release out, it leaves a bad taste in the minds of the shipper and amazon would be very reluctant, even if they have fedex coming and knocking on their door, amazon will think twice before they give them any business again. emily: what about the other companies like walmart and target that are trying to compete with amazon on delivery to narrow their own delivery time, could this be an opportunity for them? >> walmart has the biggest tractor delivery network in the u.s.
a private network, if you may. they are well-equipped to handle their own. there is a lot of direct to consumer demand and there is a shipping model that they have been benefiting from for a long time. you have consumer demand from companies that do not want to sell on that platform. maybe that is an opportunity they can go after. it is a big market in the end, but losing access to 300m+ customers that are willing to buy products because you're on a platform, that holds that big volume back. as far as walmart is concerned, they are equipped. emily: coming up, when human resources meets ai, 10 years of experience at google. we will talk to a google hr veteran about his new start up next. this is bloomberg.
emily: over the course of a decade, google grew to 72,000 employees. during that time, google was recognized as a top employer over 150 times, racking up titles like best company to work for in the united states. the company has received more criticism recently. laszlo bock is bringing his google learnings to other companies with move. they use machine learning and artificial intelligence to make behavioral changes with the goal of creating a happier workplace. i caught up with humu's ceo and co-founder. >> the biggest thing i learned was, on a bad day when i was there, the worst thing was the lobster bisque was cold. it was a pretty privileged ways to work. for people like me who worked hourly jobs or cafes, work was not going to get much better, sooner.
we started humu thinking about bringing that goodness to other organizations. emily: you are using ai to help employees be better versions of themselves. what does that mean in practice? >> it is hard for organizations to change. it is hard for managers to be good managers and it is hard for employees to be good team members to feel safe and secure. our idea, which has worked pretty well, is that if you better understand what is going on with the people at an individual level, they want to be better and learn and grow. small reminders, that we call nudges to a team or colleague can drive behavioral change for the good than all of the training in the world. emily: give me some examples. >> one example is there is a restaurant chain we work with and they wanted to roll out a new product. they wanted soup in their stores and it was new. the underlying problem we identified was not product development or launches, it was that people did not feel free to ask their managers questions.
in the workforce it is largely hourly, high school educated, a diverse workforce. the nudges we sent were simple. we told managers to ask people for advice and their opinions. we nudge individuals to assume good intent. often, you assume your manager is out to get you. that caused people to say why don't we give out free samples? why don't we let people try the product? that led to more sales and more business. that was great. more important was more trust with their managers and team members and people felt better about the work. emily: you mentioned contractors and you came an interview without talking about google. one of google's criticisms is how they handle vendors. you have people today sending a letter to the google ceo, calling on them to make them employees full-time. they make up half of googles workforce. do you think you should hire all of the stems as employees? >> i think in general, you --
emily: you think google should hire all of these temps as employees? >> i think in general, you should. at humu, we have someone working part-time for us and i said i would rather have you as an employee on the books, with benefits, with stock. i can see situations where you try before you buy. you don't know if the person is going to work out. there are some jobs that are like that. also if you are ramping up and down rapidly, you don't know if as a business, you are going to invest for the long term. i generally think if you are going to employ people, you should employ them. emily: what if they say it is too expensive? >> if the company says that? emily: yes. >> i think that is the cost of doing business. emily: you mentioned that there were times at google where the biggest problem was the lobster bisque being cold. now you have employees complaining about sexual misconduct and 20,000 employees leaving the company, how could they have handled that better? >> it's hard to say because on
the ground, things always look different. one of the nice things about being at humu with a great team of co-founders, is that we get to make our own policies and decisions. we have a very clear policy. if you engage in any kind of behavior of that kind, you are not there anymore. that has served us well. emily: a google employee who was on maternity leave said she was not going back and wrote a memo and it went viral via motherboard, saying despite these clear policies google says they had, she had a problem with her manager. this person retaliated and it is not a safe place for her to work. google says they prohibit retaliation in the workplace. it is a very clear policy. there are multiple channels to report concerns. what about when the policies don't seem to work? >> that is one thing that is tough about management.
i haven't been at google for a while. i was excited when we came up with five months of full pay maternity leave. that was a groundbreaking in the u.s. at the time. not so much in canada. they have better. we think that is important. it is a special time in someone's life and you should care for that child. at humu, we have a year. you shouldn't have financial pressure. emily: are people taking it? >> we have two. one just came back to work. the first one took six months. they just came back. it was amazing. we will see about annie. emily: it is interesting, some of the things where you have full control, you're doing it differently. why? >> one of the things about leadership, this is one of the things i learned that my last job, if you're lucky enough to have a large brand behind you that carries responsibility, like spider-man's uncle, with great power comes great responsibility. there are certain issues that you should speak out. it is also true that inside a company, if you are not the founder or ceo, you have limited ability to do that. it is a blessing to be able to
say the right thing is if somebody engages in bad conduct, you let them go. emily: how do you think humu can make a company like google or any company better. >> what we have seen in companies like -- there are only a few companies where we can share the name publicly. places like fidelity. sweetgreen. places like virgin atlantic. the cumulative effect of small interventions helps people be their best selves. you see that in terms of sharing and gratitude and how people treat one another as human beings. which, by the way, ends up having a business impact. you see a productivity lift. the cool thing for me is people come to work happier and leave happier. emily: that does it for this edition of the "best of bloomberg technology."
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