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Influencers Transcript: Ben Horowitz, November 14, 2019

ANDY SERWER: Some influencers run successful companies. Others make a fortune knowing how to pick them. Ben Horowitz has done both. He co-founded the high-profile venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, which manages $10 billion in assets, and has hit big with the likes of Facebook, Twitter, and Slack. Before that, he co-launched a data storage company called Loud Cloud, which he later sold to Hewlett Packard for $1.6 billion.

He made waves in 2014 with a best-selling book on how to run a startup. Now he's back with a new book on building company culture. Horowitz is here to offer his latest insight on the investing landscape and to explain why a company's success can depend on factors you don't see on the balance sheet.

I'm here with Ben Horowitz, co-founder of venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz and author of the new book "What You Do is Who You Are." Ben, nice to see you.

BEN HOROWITZ: Yeah, great to see you, Andy.

ANDY SERWER: So I want to talk about your book, of course. But I also want to talk about what's going on in the world of venture capital.

BEN HOROWITZ: All right, all right.

ANDY SERWER: And there's a lot of interest here at Yahoo Finance, in particular, about IPOs and, of course, all the talk of WeWork and the cycle and what's going on. A lot of people saying that's a sign of the top.

BEN HOROWITZ: [LAUGHS]

ANDY SERWER: What is your take on things, [INAUDIBLE]?

BEN HOROWITZ: Yeah, I don't think so. I mean, I think WeWork is very specific to WeWork. You know, it's a unique company with a unique founder and a kind of unmatched investment from SoftBank. So like, I think WeWork is WeWork. I don't think it has anything to do with the rest of the sector.

ANDY SERWER: Are the valuations, though, getting lofty and you're seeing companies doing multiple classes of stock? Are they pushing the envelope a little bit?

BEN HOROWITZ: You know, I don't think that the valuations-- generally, like, so lofty-- venture capital valuations, I would say are, always a little lofty or a little low. So they're usually-- most private companies are worth somewhere between half and kind of double to triple what they should be. And that's just kind of the nature, like, maybe a third to double or triple, because it's a very illiquid market. But that doesn't really constitute, in itself, a big problem like 1999.

So generally, you know, some things that are a little ahead of their valuation. Some things are behind their valuation. But it's not a super unusual period, I would say.

ANDY SERWER: And one more thing about the IPO business and the venture world, and that is some people have complained that the stocks, the companies remain private too long, for various reasons. But then all the profits are going to Sandhill Road as opposed to the general investing public. Is there something there?

BEN HOROWITZ: Yeah, absolutely. I think that's probably one of the biggest issues we have as, you know, economically as a country is that you have all these amazing new businesses that are getting created in the United States. But the way the [? regulations ?] [? went, ?] you know, kind of starting in the late '90s, for various reasons, has made it very kind of expensive, dangerous, et cetera to be public, you know, make it very easy to sue companies who are public and this and that the other. And as a result, I think, we have about half the number, maybe a little less than half the number of public companies that we had 20 years ago, which basically just takes the investing, the growth opportunity, away from, you know, regular people and puts them on the hands of the elite.

And I think that's-- or the economically elite, I should say, maybe not, you know, intellectually elite. And that-- you know, that-- that's a terrible problem. And you know, I, think we either have to make it a lot-- we have to kind of close the gap between what it means to be private and what it means to be public from a just general standpoint, so it's a smoother transition.

ANDY SERWER: Any ideas on how to do that?

BEN HOROWITZ: Well, I think there's one. Like, I just think you have to make what it takes to sue a company more reasonable. DNO insurance for an average company, it runs like over $10 million a year. So if you think about if you're a growth company, let's say you have like $50 million in revenue, well, if you go public, like 20% your revenue goes to insurance. And so-- and that's just the state of litigation and how easy it's been made to do frivolous lawsuits and so forth.

You also have things like Reg FD, which create an asymmetric relationship. Companies are under a Reg FD. Nobody ever enforces that against hedge funds. So, like, I can make up stories, plant stories, write whatever I want as a hedge fund. And then as a company, you're very boxed in. So it's tricky from that standpoint.

There's other things like the short-order handling roles and so forth. But the whole regulatory structure of being public has just made it such that it's very dangerous and difficult for a small growth company to be a public company. So, yeah, [? they ?] wait till they get to $1 billion in revenue. And there's clearly not as much growth left at that point.

ANDY SERWER: So you're a VC, but you're an author.

BEN HOROWITZ: Yes.

ANDY SERWER: How do you reconcile that? What do you like doing more, writing books or being a venture capitalist?

BEN HOROWITZ: Well, you know, like, as an author, I would say writing a little more from my perspective as an entrepreneur, when I was an entrepreneur and building companies than I am as a VC. Although, being a VC enhances it because I see a lot of companies, I would say, from a knowledge perspective. But I'm really just-- you know, I can see where people struggle in kind of building a company because I have a great purview of that. And having been through it, I can then articulate, OK, here are the things that you don't know that I didn't know that would be good to know. And you know, so far, people seem to like the books, so.

ANDY SERWER: So you-- in this book, you draw on some non-traditional characters for management lessons, a gang leader, Genghis Khan.

BEN HOROWITZ: Yes.

ANDY SERWER: How did you think about that? What's the conceit?

BEN HOROWITZ: Well, like, so, in the first place, when you're talking about culture, culture is complex, right, because it's not-- you know, like, people have, you know, these books about, oh, here's your KPIs and your OKRs and your mission statement and so forth. But, like, that doesn't really dictate what your culture's going to be. Your culture ends up being these little difficult things, like, well, do people return a phone call today or next week? Do they show up to the meeting on time or 10 minutes late? Do they-- you know, in a business deal, do they focus on the partnership or the price, like all those little things.

And so how do you move that, how do you influence that turns out to be, you know, very complex. And the problem with culture is if I already have the culture, right, then I can't even see that it's culture. Like, if it's something that I am doing, then I don't even know what-- like, that's just the right thing to do. That's just who I am or whatever.

And so-- and explaining how it works, I thought it was a much better idea to start with cultures that weren't familiar. So you could see, OK, why are they-- you know, why does a prison gang, like, act that way? How-- how does prison culture get so violent? What are the steps that take place? How did the only successful slave revolt occur? What's hard about slave culture as you go to military culture?

These are things most people can look at and go, OK, I'm not identifying with that so I can understand, like, what's cultural and what's not. But the techniques that they use, you know, be it in prison or the Haitian Revolution or an ancient samurai, are the exact techniques that you would use to move culture in a company. And so it's very relevant in that way.

ANDY SERWER: What causes a company to have good culture or bad culture, Ben?

BEN HOROWITZ: Well, you know, I-- I would kind of back off on good or bad. I think cohesive and not cohesive is a better way to look at it, because not every culture is for every company. And like, what's good for Amazon is not necessarily good for Apple, for example. So Amazon, known for their frugality, they've done things technique wise to make it. They used to have, right, ever famously, the [? do ?] you get a door as your desk, you know, on some two-by-fours or whatever.

Apple would never do that. But Amazon's strategy is to be the low-cost leader. Apple's strategy is to have the most beautiful high-design products in the world. So Apple's got, you know, whatever, $2,000 doorknobs probably on their campus and a $5 billion campus. Amazon's not going to have that.

Amazon has low prices. Apple's got beautiful products, two different cultures. One's not good, and one's not bad. But when you're talking about, like, what makes a culture cohesive, there's many, many, many things. And it really gets to what drives people to behave in the way you'd like them to behave when you're not looking? And that's a-- you know, that's a lot of-- there's tremendous complexity, particularly as you grow, particularly as you bring in people from different cultures into your company. And so that's essentially why I wrote the book, to get at that.

ANDY SERWER: Isn't it-- I mean, when you talk about culture, there are various constituents for a company, but it's primarily the employees, right?

BEN HOROWITZ: Yes.

ANDY SERWER: And so isn't it really honesty and decency and a place where people really want to come to work.

BEN HOROWITZ: Decency.

ANDY SERWER: Right. What is decency? Is that what you're laughing at? What are you laughing about?

BEN HOROWITZ: Well, like, yeah, you know, people go, oh, like, we're-- we're-- we are integrity. And you go, OK--

ANDY SERWER: Those are the people who usually aren't.

BEN HOROWITZ: Yeah, but.

ANDY SERWER: Or sometimes.

BEN HOROWITZ: And you know, it gets-- it can get very ambiguous in a company context. So for example, you go and you raise money from some venture capitalists. You say, look, we're definitely going to hit this forecast over the next three quarters.

Then you're out selling your product, and you're like, oh, we're a little short of the forecast. And you have a customer come in, and you go, wow, like, if we just told them this was going to be here in two months rather than in the six months it's really going to take, then we get the deal, and we could keep our promise to the investors that we just made. Or-- but we'd be sort of lying to them. But how big a lie is that?

You know, you get into these kinds of things. So the definition of what you're doing and what you mean by integrity and in what context ends up being really important. And you know-- and this is why, you know, one of the things that Toussaint Louverture did in the slave revolution is, you know, he was very, very, very big on this concept of, OK, we're going to distinguish our culture by being more ethical than the Europeans that we're fighting against.

And one of the things that he did is he said, OK, look, everybody's pillaging. We're not going to pillage. But you can't just say you're not going to pillage because, OK, is that really the right thing to do because you're in this mercenary war over sugar. And you have to pay the soldiers. Your guys don't have any money.

So you're really going to jeopardize the war over, like, this ethic that, like, nobody else here cares about? But what he said is, we're fighting for liberty, and you can't get liberty if you're taking people's liberty away. And so if you think about what that does, is it changes the whole motivation of the army. And so culturally now they're fighting for a higher cause.

That then rippled out to the broader community. And the stories are, like, you know, the French came in. They set the plantations on fire. They, you know, stole all the cattle. They took everything. And then the slaves came in half naked, didn't take anything. And as a result Toussaint got the local support for what he did.

But, like, that's-- integrity works like that. It doesn't work like, oh, just do the right thing. Nobody knows what the right thing is.

ANDY SERWER: Right. So the end never justifies the means.

BEN HOROWITZ: Well, I think that, yeah, generally in life, the ends don't justify the means. You know, once you compromise that, you're-- you are actually the bad guy. And I think that this-- this is actually a good [? serve ?] for the broader culture. You know, like, if you're running around calling people names, you know, on Twitter or whatever, like, you're actually the bad guy, even though you're calling somebody out for being the bad guy because, like, that kind of behavior, the ends don't justify the means culturally.

You take your place to-- you know, you take your place-- yourself to a place of hatred and, like, that kind of culture, like, where I hate everybody. OK, that's its own punishment. And I think that what Toussaint figured out was the opposite. If, you know, you did the right thing, even if it's not the right means for winning the war, it can pay off bigger.

ANDY SERWER: In the Silicon Valley, isn't there a tendency to-- I mean, we were talking about projections, right? And you have a stretch target. And then I'm trying to get money from Andreessen Horowitz. And when does a stretch target become a lie? I mean, this sort of gets to Elizabeth Holmes, right, doesn't it? I mean, she said that she had a vision and--

BEN HOROWITZ: Yes, without getting into the details, which I, you know-- I--

ANDY SERWER: Theranos?

BEN HOROWITZ: Yeah. Yes, so without, like-- I don't want to kind of pound Elizabeth, not that it isn't a fantastical, amazingly crazy story. But, yeah, I think that's right that you get into-- for what is it? Is fake it till you make it OK?

ANDY SERWER: Right.

BEN HOROWITZ: Well, like, if you do that fake it till you make it, that's not just going to happen with your VCs, right? Like, you're going to fake it to your employees. You're gonna promise them stuff that you can't necessarily deliver on, like, all that kind of thing. Like, that's a big cultural decision to fake it till you make it, like, to legalize lying, in a sense. So all these things do end up mattering and-- and have long-term broad implications.

ANDY SERWER: So there's that. I mean, are there problems with culture in Silicon Valley and problems that are unique to Silicon Valley in terms of business culture? Some people say there are. They're clueless, spoiled brats, et cetera.

BEN HOROWITZ: Yeah, so-- so I think that's, you know, like--

ANDY SERWER: Finger pointing.

BEN HOROWITZ: Look, people are trying to go in and create, you know, something out of nothing on a dream. So like, definitely [INAUDIBLE] I think people think that kind of stuff or just, like, that's just a weird jealous envy thing. Now, because a lot of the founders are very young, don't have a lot of management, organizational experience, and the companies grow very fast, there are things that, I think-- you know, things get uniquely chaotic or maybe not uniquely chaotic. But they do-- like, there are Silicon Valley struggles with that issue. And it's very complex.

It's very complex to kind of build a culture out of nothing. And look, even the very best company cultures are not anywhere near 100%. Like, there's no-- nobody's got a company where, like, everybody, you know, tells the truth all the time, or, like, everybody, like, is very courteous and always returns a phone call and, like, always-- like-- like, that's just not the way-- like, it's not possible to achieve 100% compliance on a culture. So every culture's got problems.

I think the things that Silicon Valley runs into have a lot to do with just how fast they grow, how many people they're getting from other cultures. You know, you hire 50 people from Google. It's hard to resist that cultural force and these kinds of things. And that's-- you know, that's a lot of what I try to get at is, how do you solve these very, very hard problems?

ANDY SERWER: But these companies become so big Ben, too. I mean, you go to Google, and you go to Facebook. I mean, they're all of a sudden, giant companies that--

BEN HOROWITZ: Very fast.

ANDY SERWER: Very fast, that have-- run the risk of becoming insular, right?

BEN HOROWITZ: Yeah. Well, all culture's [INAUDIBLE].

ANDY SERWER: All culture, right. I'm not-- that's not singular to Silicon Valley. But maybe it's surprising to them because, you know, 10 years ago, they were six people, and now they're tens of thousands.

BEN HOROWITZ: Well, and success is distorting, right? Because you do something, you succeed, you draw that connection, whether there's a connection or not, right? Like, you know, you always run the risk of being, like, a [? cargo ?] cult. You know this story, right?

ANDY SERWER: Right.

BEN HOROWITZ: Where, you know, the stuff drops out of the sky, and they were doing a dance or whatever. And that's a dance to get stuff to drop out of the sky. So there's always-- you do run into that. And that's just, like, one of the, you know, many problems that you get as you grow. But what you really-- when you're talking about designing-- you're not trying to solve everything. You're just trying to say, look for what we're trying to do as a company, what are the behaviors we need to differentiate ourselves to-- and to, like, make that strategy succeed?

So I'll give you, like, a really simple example. So at Andreessen Horowitz, one of the things we want to do is-- very early on is we need to respect the entrepreneurial process and the entrepreneur. Now, every single VC in Silicon Valley around the world would make that statement. It's the obvious statement.

But, like, if you think about the daily interactions that you have as a VC, it's like this. I have the money. You want the money. You got to come see me. And I decide whether you get the money. So psychologically, I, all of a sudden, feel like the big person, and you're the little person.

And so what are the behaviors that you always hear about? Oh, they show up 30 minutes late to meet with you. Oh, they ghost you when you, you know, like, you leave a meeting. They're not investing. But they don't even return your email after that, after you took the time to go down there, wait 30 minutes for your meeting and do. That so is that respect? No, that's, like, the ultimate in disrespect.

So how do you deal with that, you know, if you're-- if you're kind of a firm? And so what we did is several things. One is we put I put a rule in place. If you're late for a meeting with an entrepreneur, you pay $10 a minute. Oh, you had to go to the bathroom? No problem. You're five minutes late? $50.00.

Oh, you had a really important phone call, and the most important deal we're doing and you're 10 minutes, late? No problem, $100. And people are like, well, Ben, why are you charging me to work here? Like, I'm working. Like, you should be paying me not charging me. And I'm like, because I need you to plan what you're doing so that you respect the entrepreneur's time.

And that mechanism, where every single time they have to meet with entrepreneur they have to think about why they have to be on time and why they have to plan to go to the bathroom early and why they have to end their prior meeting in time to get to that next meeting, that process sets the culture. And so when you're talking about culture, you're talking about programming and mechanisms that make people-- or encourage people to move in the direction that you want them to move.

ANDY SERWER: I love that specific example. But how much money have you collected? And where does it go?

BEN HOROWITZ: It's thousands of dollars.

ANDY SERWER: Philanthropy?

BEN HOROWITZ: Ah, no. So we-- we have taken to kind of just giving it directly to the entrepreneurs lately. We-- we also have a pool, historically, and so forth. But--

ANDY SERWER: What about when the shoe's--

BEN HOROWITZ: --most people show up on time.

ANDY SERWER: Right, I would imagine. What happens when the shoe is on the other foot, though, in other words, when you have a company that's in the driver's seat, where all the VCs are chasing it? How do you sell Andreessen Horowitz then?

BEN HOROWITZ: You know, like, and a lot of it-- and this is-- this kind of gets back to it a lot of it, if you ask entrepreneurs-- [INAUDIBLE] like, without overly talking smack, if you poll entrepreneurs, we rate out very highly. And the reason we rate out very highly, when you get into it, is the culture. And it's just we feel different than other firms.

We respond differently, or the interaction is different. I'll give you another example. When we reject an entrepreneur, the rule is you have to do that in-- you have to reject them explicitly and say why. And to ensure that we do that with quality, we survey every single entrepreneur that we reject with a, you know, basically customer satisfaction survey.

And nobody else does that. And our number-one refer of deals, our number one source is rejected entrepreneurs. And so this is kind of a cultural statement we put out there that ends up being a differentiator for the business. This conversation usually goes to good versus-- it gets very Shakespearean. That guy's evil. Like, we need to take him down. He's set a toxic culture, duttah-duttah-duttah, duh.

That's not actually what's going on. It's very rare that there is, like, a bad-intentioned CEO that's setting a bad culture. What's really going on is kind of a Greek tragedy. It's humans against the gods. And the gods are the system, and the system is the culture. And designing a system that works is very, very difficult.

And by putting all the emphasis on this, like, false whatever narrative of good versus evil, we miss the whole point and the opportunity to improve it. Like, I hear things about, you know, oh, well, how can these guys-- [? it's like, ?] well, if they just studied liberal arts, they would-- like, that's-- like, first of all, you're not going back to school. It doesn't help anybody. And you're just basically saying, these guys are evil.

And so that's why the culture-- they're not evil. They-- they have-- most of them are super earnest, have great intent, want their companies to be great. They just don't know how to do it.

ANDY SERWER: But is there a problem, Ben, with what's going on in social media, those companies, with Twitter, with Facebook, with YouTube? Is there a cultural problem? Is there something that needs to be addressed from a regulatory standpoint?

BEN HOROWITZ: So I think that we're in a brave new world. And nobody yet knows how to deal with it. And this is actually, I would say, the ultimate humans-against-the-gods systems problem. So if you look at the history of technology and media, it is a history of really changing the world.

So the radio got Hitler elected. You'd agree with that. Like, I think most people would say without the radio, Hitler never takes power. Is the radio evil? Were the people who invented the radio evil? Like, what was going on there?

Television got Kennedy elected. I think Nixon wins for sure, without television. That's pretty well known. So like, if you're a Republican, is, like, television need to be dismantled? And then now, 2008, Facebook gets Barack Obama elected. And the funny thing about that, if you're like working at Facebook, you're Mark Zuckerberg, [INAUDIBLE]? [CLAPPING] Yay, Barack Obama! We love Facebook! Amazing, he's a social media genius, duttah-duttah, duttah-duttah, duh.

Then, like, Facebook gets Donald Trump elected. Well, we've got a crisis. And so, like, it was very hard for the company to anticipate that that was going to be the reaction, given what had just happened and what had happened just historically.

But yes, we are in a world where we have to look at social media and say, well, what are the rules? Like, what are the rules of the public square? We had rules when there were 1,000 people in the square, and it was all in the US. Now it's international, and there's two billion people in the square. And we don't have any rules. And it is very chaotic and with consequences that are hard to predict and, you know, sometimes scary.

So it has to be addressed. But the idea that we're going to, like, do something to Zuckerberg or do something to Jack, and it's going to, like, stop social media? Like, really? Like, you think we're going to turn back the clock, like, oh, we'll just stop television. We'll just stop social media. We'll break it up.

Like, that's not gonna-- you're not actually gonna stop it. You might move it to China. How do you like their roles, you know? Daryl Morey doesn't do a tweet-- does a retweet, deletes it immediately, and they're ready to shut down the NBA. Like, do you want that as controlling your social norms?

So, like, I think we have to think this through, actually. Not that there aren't problems. There are problems. But this whole, like, vilify the CEO thing is just stupid.

ANDY SERWER: Have you given any thought to how we might address it, though?

BEN HOROWITZ: Well, look, I think that it's very, very complex. So, like, I don't want to prescribe, like, the answer for, like, how we manage the public square, like, in two minutes, because I think it's complicated. But I do think there's an answer that ought to be better than the world we were in because we now are in a place where everybody can have a voice.

Now, how those voices work and what the rules of expressing that voice are, absolutely, we need kind of to think about what that means a lot more than-- than we used to in the past. But we ought to be able to get to a better world. And there's definitely no, like, turning back the clock.

It's like Andy Grove said this. It was one of my favorite quotes from him. They asked him, is the microprocessor good or bad? And he was like, what are you talking about? That's like asking if steel is good or bad. It is, and we got to deal with it. And that's how I feel about social media. Like, it doesn't matter if it's good or bad. It is. And we have to deal with it.

ANDY SERWER: What do you think about the problem in the United States, if-- if in fact, you think it's a problem, in terms of income and wealth inequality? And if you look, for instance, in the Bay Area, California writ large maybe, [? the ?] homelessness problems. And it sort of struck me that people often talk about Silicon Valley, greatest wealth creation in the history the planet. And yet, at the same time, homelessness in the Bay Area has soared.

BEN HOROWITZ: Yeah. Yeah, I know, and-- it's-- I think it's-- like, it's complex on many levels, in that the people who are also governing both California and the city of San Francisco and so forth are the exact people who you would elect if you thought you cared about the homeless, right? Like, they're the people. So, like, their policies, like, clearly also aren't working. And so what is the answer is-- is a big question.

It's definitely-- I mean, like, it's probably one of the biggest problems that we're facing is, like, OK, how do we make the wealth work for everyone? But that, too, is complex. It's not just a matter of going like, I love the homeless. Let's get-- San Francisco has more money per capita, I think, than any city in the world to spend on this problem. And the mayor herself, London Breed, said, look, money-- like-- like, more money isn't even necessarily the answer. Like, we haven't figured out the answer.

And I think, you know, like, she was being very earnest and thoughtful about it, because we've just had this-- like, this whole new bill to raise a lot more money to fix the homeless problem. But there's more to it than that, you know. And-- and I don't know. Like, I don't want to say I know what the answer is. But I would just say, again, it's a systems problem. It's-- it's complex. And we have to think about the consequences of things. It's not just evil people give the money to the good people.

ANDY SERWER: I think they've kind of tried that, too, right? I mean--

[INTERPOSING VOICES]

ANDY SERWER: [INAUDIBLE] [? Apple ?] has a new program they're going to be trying to do with housing.

BEN HOROWITZ: Yeah, look, and, you know-- and it's not just housing. Like, housing, for sure, you know-- housing, just building housing is very, very expensive and complicated to do in the Bay Area. So one thing is, like, you have these, whatever, not-in-my-backyard people who want to-- there's tremendously complex, like, infrastructure and lattice of housing [? rules. ?] There's the associated corruption that goes with all that regulation. There's-- and then you have-- you layer on top of that, mental health issues and other things that can't just be addressed by housing, that, you know-- we-- and in the US, like, the whole fact that we have the words mental health is crazy, like it's health.

Like, how's your mental health and your physical health? They're very connected. Like, if you have a mental health issue, you inevitably have a physical health issue. And often if you have a physical health issue, it causes a mental health issue. Yet, from, like, an insurance standpoint, we separate them out, you know. You have to really get to the core issues of these things and not just go, well, that person has a lot of money, and that person's homeless. So, like, that'll solve it, because it didn't.

ANDY SERWER: What are the most exciting areas for investing as we see right now?

BEN HOROWITZ: So there's-- there's tremendous opportunities in financial services, for one. So fintech, as we call it, is growing amazingly fast. And this is actually one of the kind of weird evidence of the financial crisis, as it turns out, that if you're a young person, like, not like you or I, like, say, in your 20s, you probably don't have a credit card. And you may not have a bank account. And you certainly don't trust banks the way we did.

And so that creates an opportunity for new businesses to come in and not have hidden fees or, you know, all the crazy things. It's so funny. You know, we have these usury laws in the United States. But if you break them down, like, the overdraft fees are way more-- they exceed the user draft-- the usury laws buy a ton. But, like, they don't fall under the usury laws.

So, like, regulating it is-- is very tricky. But, like, new companies, competition can kind of beat regulation on delivering better financial services. And that's happening all over the place.

Computationally-- computational biology is amazingly exciting, in that you can now apply, because we have an information model of the human body, as opposed to just a chemical model, we can now apply computer science techniques to doing diagnosis and-- and engineering drugs and finding cures and so forth. So that's another great area. Cryptocurrency is, like super interesting, as it relates to a lot of the things we've been talking about, which is how do you scale a society, you know, internationally? And we start to get technologies that will help with things, like, money and law.

ANDY SERWER: And finally, Ben, this show is called "Influencers." And so I'm curious as to how you see you using your influence on the world?

BEN HOROWITZ: Well, I think, you know, like-- and we've talked about a lot of things that I would say are probably beyond where my influence is good because it's out of my lane, beyond my pay grade, you know, some of these political issues. But in terms of how you build a company and how you build an organization that's a place where when people go to work, they're-- they go, you know, that time in my life was well spent, and the way we treated people and the way we treated our customers and each other, that's the way I want to live my life. Like, I can help people build organizations like that, and that's why the book.

ANDY SERWER: Ben Horowitz of Andreessen Horowitz, author of "What You Do is Who You Are," thanks very much for joining us.

BEN HOROWITZ: Thank you. Thanks, Andy.

ANDY SERWER: I'm Andy Serwer. You've been watching "Influencers." We'll see you next time.