3 Minutes to read
Jeremy Goillot, Head of Growth at Spendesk
Learning Inspiration 🌈 #32
Jeremy Goillot was the fourth employee at Spendesk and is now the Head of Growth. Jeremy hired and managed a team of ten talented growth professionals to make Spendesk one of the hottest European companies. In this interview, you’ll discover his efficient and straightforward learning routines.
Who is your biggest source of inspiration?
I don’t dream of being the new Steve Jobs or Elon Musk. I know what I want to do, and I trust that. What drives me daily is my team at Spendesk. The people at Spendesk are amazing. It’s a pleasure to spend time with them, even on weekends, because I always learn from them.
How do you keep learning on a daily basis? What are your learning routines?
It’s quite simple as I frequently travel four to five times a month. I listen to podcasts whenever I travel. It’s a perfect format for plane rides. Even if you fall asleep, you can listen to it again.
Then, I like to challenge myself to explore new subjects. For example, if I want to understand how Mailchimp scaled their business, I’ll spend time learning all about it. To learn about a topic or person, I consume all the possible content in a two to a four-hour weekly session. I am interested in a diverse set of subjects, from tech to rap.
What are your favorite books 📚?
I’m not a big reader. However, my team, who reads a great deal, often sends me screenshots of important pages to read.
The Five Dysfunctions of a Team, I read in twenty-four hours; it reads like a novel. It’s very actionable and explains five common team problems and how to solve them. If you work in a scaling startup, you will recognize situations or people in this book.
Small Giants: Companies That Choose to Be Great Instead of Big. This is my reference book. I always have it with me. I use it in particular for my team pitches. This book analyzes twelve companies that could have sold out to make a bunch of money but whose founders refused the takeover and instead preferred to remain the leaders in their vertical. When some startups are bought for astronomically high prices, it literally kills their startup culture.
This book made me realize that you have to look outside of tech for learnings. For example, the restaurants with the highest ratings on Tripadvisors are privately-owned, and so is the French company Feed. There are some very inspiring examples outside of tech.
The challenge that comes with maintaining independence is that you have to be ten times stronger than the competition.
ReWork, I had read it before working in tech, and it is very approachable and easy to read. You learn all the basic concepts of the tech environment.
I am compelled to mention Predictable Revenue, written by a Salesforce alumn. This is the bible of the scrappy. If you are looking to get your hands dirty, you just need to apply this book’s advice. Sometimes the right advice is already there, and you just have to use it. There is a story from a supposed interview of Toyota’s CEO, where he answered the question, what accounts for your success with your business? He responded, “I just applied what I learned from the entrepreneurship books.”
What is your favorite podcast 🎧?
Transfer, this French podcast is fantastic because it features ordinary people who have had an amazing history. After each episode, I have an ah-ha moment. It’s the podcast that evokes emotions in me. The episode with Pierre Lazarevic, where he tells of his captivity in Mali, is just surreal.
In Depth, the VC First Round podcast is excellent. The episode with Molly Brown, who was Head of People at Facebook, is impressive.
Generation Do It Yourself is a fun French podcast. Matthieu Stefani is the only one to dig deep into what matters most. I love the people he features and learning more about them.
I liked Nouvelle Ecole by Antonin Archer, who brought something more into the French podcast landscape. The episode with Yannick Agnel is fascinating.
What is the biggest challenge you had to overcome this year, and how did you do that?
This year I had to go to San Francisco to grow Spendesk in the US, and American immigration made it extremely difficult. We are at a point where we have invested and recruited six people in a country where I cannot go even though I lead the team. It is incredible! However, we have the best lawyers working with us, but it is one step forward for two steps back and endless meetings with the American administration. However, with the new president and the pandemic calming down a bit, I am hopeful that I will be able to return for good in 2021.
If you were stuck alone on an island and only be allowed to bring one item, what would it be 🏝?
It’s almost real life for me. I was confined in Martinique for three months, so I would say without any hesitation: my phone. I was trying to think of a fun item that characterizes me, but I haven’t found anything better than a good pair of hiking boots to explore the peaks. Since I was little, I have loved exploring high elevations. As soon as I get somewhere, I need to climb to the highest place possible.
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