Mindsets + Methods: What can we do differently to advance inclusive prosperity?

Technology reshapes how we work and who benefits from our economy. How can we build a path for everyone to a prosperous future, one where no one is left behind? What does it look like to be thoughtful about this in how we build technology and teams? Talk with founders and investors who are doing it and scaling products to help others get there faster. What did they get right? What had they wished they’d known? And what do they think lies ahead?

It is vital that we make a path – through entrepreneurship, education, equity and access – for everyone to benefit from a more prosperous future, and that no one is left behind by what we create. That’s why Shaily Baranwal and Matt Schulman, Founder/CEOs of Elevate K-12 and Pave respectively, and Lexi Reese from General Catalyst joined CEO Adrian Haro from The Workers Lab for an open discussion on inclusive prosperity. They dialed in on the role of investors in inclusive prosperity, compensation as a root cause for workplace imbalances, and the fundamental role of a strong K-12 education.

Key Takeaways:

  • Good inputs matter  - in securing and moving thru good jobs, in high-quality education, and navigating compensation decisions.
  • Need more information about the labor economy and a good jobs movement: ~50% of global GDP goes towards wage rates and it’s a complete black box, without a formally-tracked, real-time price. Most workers are not making it by on a day-to-day basis.
  • Unit economics can be leveraged to retain your best employees and bring into management team discussions on how you’re doing by team segments (ex. lifetime value of employees, CAC for employees by segment, and LTV/CAC over time).
  • Need to know: access to high-quality instruction is not guaranteed for students in low-income, rural communities; 800,000 teachers have left the profession and in two years, 1.2M teachers are expected to leave the workforce.
  • Building representative teams is the right thing for businesses to do – it hurts your people ops and business to not recruit from the full universe of talent. Expectations are changing for public and private companies.

Supplementary Resources + Readings

  1. Human Enterprises - General Catalyst
  2. Math and Reading Scores Fell (and it’s linked to teacher shortages)
  3. Opportunity @ Work
  4. A Dozen Economic Facts About K-12 Education 
  5. Good Jobs Institute

Session Speakers:

Shaily Baranwal

Founder and CEO, Elevate K-12

Shaily Baranwal is Founder and CEO of Elevate K-12, a technology company dedicated to solving the teacher shortage problem. Elevate K-12 brings high-quality live-streaming instruction into K-12 classrooms. Shaily is a mission-focused entrepreneur building products and services that deeply impact the lives of consumers and disrupt traditional markets, challenging the status quo. Previously, she bootstrapped her first venture to impact more than 40,000 students and created jobs for more than 3,000 teachers before raising her first growth investment round.

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Lexi Reese

Executive in Residence, General Catalyst

Lexi Reese is an Executive in Residence at General Catalyst working in the area of inclusive prosperity. She invests and advises organizations across sectors to end individual and household financial fragility. She also coaches growth companies and founders on how to scale high performance while building representative and inclusive communities. Prior to General Catalyst, Lexi was the Chief Operating Officer of Gusto, the people platform that enables 200,000+ American businesses to build and take care of their teams.

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Matt Schulman

Founder and CEO, Pave

Matt Schulman is the Founder and CEO of Pave, whose mission is to make compensation fair through data. Previously, he was an Engineer at Meta.

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Adrian Haro

CEO, The Workers Lab

Adrian Haro is CEO of The Workers Lab, a non-profit investor that gives new ideas for and with workers a chance to succeed. He joined The Workers Lab in 2017 overseeing the formation of the nonprofit corporation, doubling the budget and staff. Prior to joining The Workers Lab, Adrian built a career in progressive politics, government, and public affairs, including as a field organizer on Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign, and at the U.S. Departments of Education and Labor, and at Civitas Public Affairs Group.

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