Story In A Bottle Podcast

Every choice you make in life can be a calculated decision. For Stephanie Vaughan, that is the way she let her career evolve. She was originally in the United States Marine Corp after attending the Naval Academy where she studied quantitative economics. Once her tour in Afghanistan was over, she went back to school where she received her MBA from Columbia Business School in order to further everything she already knew about finance and investment banking. She then pushed herself into the world of venture and now is Vice President of Block X Ventures. Over Sierra Nevada Kellerweis at Fool’s Gold in Manhattan, she shares with us how she went from navigating the challenges of a war to navigating the world of bitcoin and venture capital.


What You’ll Learn:

- What is Block X Ventures and the basics of investing in blockchain companies (1:44)

- Why study quantitative economics at the Naval Academy in the first place? (23:11)

- Is there a method to her madness? The plan to go from the Marines to finance (40:22)

Direct download: SIAB_SVaughn_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:59am EST

Zach Mach’s original dream of working in the world of media has finally come to fruition, but not in the way he expected. Zach moved to New York right after he graduated college, in hopes of becoming a writer and even though he did have gigs at places like Gawker, he soon realized that a full time career in that world wasn’t his passion. His greater love in life was beer. And he has turned that into a career but opening ABC Beer Company on Avenue C in the Alphabet City and, now, as a writer covering the beer world for publications like Thrillist and GQ. Over local craft beers at ABC, he walks us on his journey of how he became a bar owner and what he has learned about running your own company...especially the unique aspects of bar life.

What You’ll Learn:

- What does it take to get involved in the bar owning business (3:50)

- The true experience of life in the bar world  (19:00)

- The deterrents to a career in writing and media (1:01:00)

Direct download: SIAB_ZMack_v3.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:34am EST

When you start your career in a complicated industry and are able to realize how much experience you don’t have in order to do it well, that’s admirable. To actually gather that knowledge and then come back is exemplary; that is exactly what Melody Kohdid. After starting in venture capital after college, she didn’t think she was fit for the job just yet and wound up founding her own start up and, later, as head of product for Blue Apron. Now she is finally back to where she started, in VC, as a Venture Partner at NextView Ventures. Over Negronis at Fool’s Gold in Manhattan, she explains how each part of her career shaped who she is now and how it all prepared her for the dream career she would eventually have.

What You’ll Learn:

  • The NextView Ventures thesis Melody’s role on the team?
  • Running a business isn’t about you, so what/who is it about?
  • The best qualities for a founder/CEO
  • Why VC? And Melody found her way into technology.
Direct download: SIAB_MKoh_v3.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:39am EST

When Chris Maddern discovered his passion for technology, he knew he was hooked. His addiction to it lead to a career that started with pioneering the early days of app development with his company AppLaunch, but quickly lead to a passion that has permeated his career since: solving the challenge of making transactions easier everywhere and anywhere. His work on Venmo revolutionized peer to peer payments and after that success he co-founded Button, which created a marketplace allowing publishers and merchants to make it easier for users to quickly buy, well, anything. Over Sidecars at Fool’s Gold in Manhattan, Chris discusses where his love of technology came from and how he translated that into a life.

What You’ll Learn:

  • What is Button and examples of where people would have used it? 4:12
  • How did Chris start up this kind of company? 7:40
  • Did Chris always want to be in the computer science world? 22:27
  • Inside perspective of what the early days of the app store was like 40:40
Direct download: SIAB_CMaddern_v3.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:37am EST