Reboot Podcast Episode #81 – The Identities That Rule Us – with Semil Shah

The Reboot podcast showcases the heart and soul, the wins and losses, the ups and downs of startup leadership. On the show, Entrepreneurs, CEO’s, and Startup Leaders discuss with Jerry Colonna the emotional and psychological challenges they face daily as leaders.

Episode 81 // April 12, 2018


Semil Shah

Semil Shah

Founder of Haystack and Venture Partner at Lightspeed Venture Partners

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Episode Description

If your closest colleagues were asked to describe the way in which you conducted yourself in your professional career, what might you hope to hear? For Semil Shah, the adjectives he strives for are: dependable, consistent, and reliable. As the founder of Haystack and the father of three young children, Semil takes immense pride in his ability to be seen as available and accountable despite his busy schedule, so much so, that he feels pangs of guilt when he considers his dependability to be slipping.

In his second appearance on the Reboot Podcast, Semil works with Jerry to unpack the driving forces that sit behind his need to be seen by his peers in a certain light, and how this need might be limiting his ability to build honest, meaningful connections with those he cares about. Through their conversation, Jerry and Semil explore the root of Semil’s guilt, the power of perception, and beauty of aging with grace.

Semil Shah on Twitter | #46 – Hitting a Wall – with Semil Shah 

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Show Highlights

Top Quotes:

“I don’t wanna let other people down or think that I’m inaccessible.” – Semil Shah

“How important is it for you to be seen as dependable?” – Jerry Colonna

“I wanna have a hundred percent dependability score.” – Semil Shah

“I want people to see me in a particular way, and I want them to regard me in a particular way.” – Jerry Colonna

“I want to be seen as, I feel guilty if I’m not.” – Jerry Colonna

“Mean what you say and say what you mean.” – Jerry Colonna

“Be who you are and say what you mean. Because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind!” – Dr. Seuss

“What happens when life happens?” – Jerry Colonna

“Ask for forgiveness and move on.” – Semil Shah

“The thing that I can hear you stepping into is relaxing the rules for yourself so that you’d also allow this other part to emerge, which is hey, I’m broken and it’s okay. Or I’m going to miss this meeting and it’s okay.” – Jerry Colonna

“I ascribe a lot of pride and worth in dependability.” – Semil Shah

“Sometimes the most interesting things are the lines we think are just throwaway lines.” – Jerry Colonna

“What would it mean to live into the fullness of your humanity?” – Jerry Colonna

“I wanna be a father who lets my kids make the little mistakes they’ll eventually learn from and to be a reliable strong resource for them, as they mature and encounter their life’s greater challenges.” – Semil Shah

“The realization can hit that like things may not work out the way they did and that I just try to help them find the next thing.” – Semil Shah

“To be there with grace, dignity, means modeling it for ourselves.” – Jerry Colonna