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Clara Shih

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Clara Shih's Social Links


Clara Shih is CEO and founder of Hearsay Social and member of the Starbucks Board of Directors. A pioneer in the social media industry, Clara developed the first social business application in 2007 and is a New York Times-featured bestselling author. She has been named one of Fortune’s Most Powerful Women Entrepreneurs, Fast Company’s Most Influential People in Technology, and Businessweek’s Top Young Entrepreneurs.

Based in Silicon Valley, Hearsay Social provides social business software for relationship managers to attract, retain, and grow customer relationships using popular social networks. Clara previously served in a variety of technical, product, and marketing roles at Google, Microsoft, and Salesforce.com. Clara graduated #1 in Computer Science at Stanford University, where she also received an MS in Computer Science – User Experience and Design. Clara also holds an MS in Internet Studies from Oxford University, where she studied as a U.S. Marshall Scholar.

Companies and Investments

Hearsay Social (CEO and founder)

Lessons Learned

I used to think that if I really put my mind to it and worked really hard, I could do everything better than most people and be totally self-reliant. That’s a flawed mindset, as I quickly discovered the first time I was promoted to manage other people and fully internalized once we started Hearsay Social. True success — every way you define it¬ — is about serving and empowering others, and learning to depend on others.

As an entrepreneur, you face a dire sense of urgency to turn a profit before running out of money. But you can go too far that way and hire prima-donna engineers who turn the culture toxic. There's also the other extreme, where you have great values and a great culture, but no viable business. Many times, those two ideals are at odds, but they don't have to be. You can run a very successful business through a lens of humanity and strong values.

Inspiring Quotes

Buy stock in a business so good that even an idiot can run it, because eventually one will.

Warren Buffet

If Im doing something/making a decision someone else can do, Im not being efficient & using time best.

Ginny Rommety (CEO of IBM)

#1 trait of an effective leader is that they do 1 thing at a time.

—[[:Category:#1 trait of an effective leader is that they do 1 thing at a time.|Peter Drucker]]

Head, heart, and hands are the keys to leadership.

Craig Weatherup

Failure is dying, everything else is learning.

Steve Garrity

[[Category:#1 trait of an effective leader is that they do 1 thing at a time.|#1 trait of an effective leader is that they do 1 thing at a time.]]

Clara Shih's Quotes

As a startup, were resource-constrained. Every day counts. The only way to iterate quickly and stay three steps ahead of the big companies is working together. Theres no room for politics, empire building or ego.

Clara Shih

Men fake it till they make it, but women don’t apply for jobs unless they’re 100% qualified.

Clara Shih

Successful advisors deepen relationships with clients & extend reach within local communities.

Clara Shih

Above all, find people who inspire you and who you can learn from, then work like crazy to not let them (or yourself!) down.

Clara Shih

Be fearless, scrappy, and opportunistic. Don’t let ego or entitlement prevent you from starting at the bottom, working your way up, and carving your own path.

Clara Shih

Influential Books

Erik Qualman - What Happens in Vegas Stays on YouTube

Randi Zuckerberg - Dot Complicated: Untangling Our Wired Lives


Craig Weatherup, Sheryl Sandberg, Aneel Bhusri, Dave Duffield, Vauhini Vara.