Samuel W. Lessin

Sam Lessin

Partner at Slow Ventures. Former VP Product Facebook. Founder

THIS CHAT HAPPENED ON January 11, 2016


Hi, I'm Sam Lessin. I've been involved in tech and product for some time now, including Starting Fin (, I Invest as Partner at Slow Ventures, was an Intern at TheInformation. Former VP product at Facebook & Founder of Happy to be here - ask away!
Rodrigo Reis
Rodrigo Reis@rodrigoreis22 · Software Engineer
Hi Sam, The virtual assistant space is very hot right now with all the players: Facebook Messenger M, GoButler, Magic, and others... I know slow ventures is also investing in this space and you've founded Fin. What do you think about the future for this space and how Fin is different from all those players in the market? Are you targeting a specific audience right now? PS: I signed up for the beta.. interesting questions you guys asked :)
Emily Hodgins
Emily Hodgins@ems_hodge · Operations @ Product Hunt
@lessin who and what inspires you most?
Avery@averyalchek · Business Operations, Mashable
There is a lot of talk about overvaluations of private companies and a potential bubble. Where would look to grow a career at a scaling company in a pessimistic environment?
Harry Stebbings
Harry Stebbings@harrystebbings · Podcast Host @ The Twenty Minute VC
@lessin thanks so much for joining us today Sam. Big fan of yours, my question is; how important do you think individual VC personal branding is? What methods do you enact to ensure that your brand is as public and recognisable as possible? P.S Would love to have you on @twentyminutevc and share your story!
Andrew Ettinger
Andrew Ettinger@andrewett · 👟 @wearAtoms // ex @Twitter @ProductHunt
gnafster@gnafster · -
@lessin Hi Sam, Are there 'ingredients' that a startup has to put in place (other than making a product people love) before recommendations would naturally occur, and in turn, fast growth? If word-of-mouth doesn't occur, does this necessarily mean (i) our products (in our case, clothes) are not good enough, or (ii) our products are not getting into the hands of more people who would love them to enable referrals (perhaps because we haven't done spreading much brand awareness)? Appreciate your thoughts on this, thanks!
Emily Hodgins
Emily Hodgins@ems_hodge · Operations @ Product Hunt
@lessin What in your career to date have you been most proud of?
Bolak@seanbolak · Engineer / Entrepreneur
@lessin At Facebook, how long did it normally take you to realize that a product you were prototyping "was it", and how did you figure it out?
Jack Smith
Jack Smith@_jacksmith · Serial Entrepreneur & Startup Adviser
Sam; Slow Ventures has invested in a number of hot companies, seemingly stage agnostically. — Given that you guys are not really leading rounds and putting in relatively small checks; to what do you attribute founders' willingness to carve out room for you guys as a new investor in late stage deals?
Jordan Gonen
Jordan Gonen@jrdngonen · trying my best.
Hi Sam, Any recommendations for students trying to get involved in Tech Startups in the Valley? Formal Internship Programs are often restricted to upperclassmen! Thank You!
Andrew Ettinger
Andrew Ettinger@andrewett · 👟 @wearAtoms // ex @Twitter @ProductHunt
Which lesser-known product(s) in Slow's portfolio do you wish everyone on Product Hunt knew about? P.S. Just joined the waitlist for Fin. I think Apple reminders sucks so I'm pumped about this. Happy to do some Beta testing for you!
Jordan Gonen
Jordan Gonen@jrdngonen · trying my best.
Thanks for joining. Could you tell me about a failure that you had?
Theoharis Dimarhos
Theoharis Dimarhos@theo_dimarhos · Marketing+Biz Dev at AngelouEconomics
@lessin What do non-technical people not understand about technicals and what would be the best way to approach them to work together?
Nick Creegan
Nick Creegan@njcreegan
@lessin Thanks for joining, Sam! Having run a very successful (and creative!) product team at Facebook, what are the best tangible ways to nurture and grow innovation on teams? Aside from "trust each other", are there some things that you suggest doing with teams, with space, from an event standpoint, etc.?
Adam Marx
Adam Marx@adammarx13 · Freelance writer/editor and music addict
@lessin Hey Sam, thanks for taking the time to do this! As you mentioned founding to move media around more easily, what are some of the trends in media (publishing, video, music, etc.) happening right now that you find very exciting?