Announcing MBA Mondays Live

I promised to do this a while back but I've been slow in making it happen. MBA Mondays Live is finally happening.

The first class will be on Monday April 16th in the USV Event Space from 6pm to 7pm. The topic will be Employee Equity.

This will be a lecture class. I will be using the whiteboard to lay out the basics of employee equity; how to issue it, how to structure it, and how to figure out how much to give.

There are no prerequisites but I would very much like this class to be limited to founders, co-founders, and/or the finance team in their organization. The class is limited to 75 people because that's the max size of the USV event space. There is a $25 charge to attend this class. Proceeds are being given to The Academy For Software Engineering.

We will livestream this class and archive it. There will be no charge to watch this class live or via the archive. I don't yet have the details of the livestream and archive but I will post the details before the date of the class.

I plan to teach MBA Mondays Live every few months, always on a Monday, always in the USV event space, and always on a topic that I have already blogged about on MBA Mondays.

Tickets to the April 16th class are being sold on Skillshare. You can get them here.

#MBA Mondays

Comments (Archived):

  1. T .S Vineet Devaiah

    Good stuff .. 

  2. David Noël

    Great idea, wish I could attend but thanks for streaming and archiving. Hope you’ll also consider recording it and sharing via the MBA Monday SoundCloud account. #kudos

    1. fredwilson

      yes, we will do that too

  3. Adrian Sanders

    I tried. But Skillshare just gives me a 400 error when trying to log in.

    1. fredwilson

      i am not getting that error. where are you trying to connect from?

      1. Adrian Sanders

        iOS. Really wish their mobile interface was slicker for these morning impulse buys. ;)Sent from my mobile

        1. William Mougayar

          I registered with my iPhone without any issues. What problems did you encounter?

          1. Adrian Sanders

            I got a 400 error and a CRF token issue (dunno what that last bit is all about)I shoulda taken a screenshot.Sent from my mobile

    2. Eric Ma

      Do you remember what the url was for the page you got the 400 error? I’ll look into why that happened. Sorry about that!

  4. markslater

    simulcast at our space in boston?

    1. fredwilson

      it’s livestreamed. you can do that if you’d like. you can make it free or if you want to use skillshare to sell tickets, you can do that too. but please give the proceeds to charity if you do that.

      1. markslater

        oh – i’ll make it free for sure. At a min i’ll have our group watch it. 

  5. Emmanuel Bellity

    Awesome. Will watch it

  6. RichardF

    Love it – #payingitforward

    1. Rohan

      Ah. You’re feeling patriotic. All the best for today! 🙂 

  7. Pejman

    Greetings from Stockholm Fred.This is great and thank you so much for the possibility of live broadcasting!

  8. andreaitis

    hey fred -love this. just sent you email with an idea for the shooting, livestreaming and archiving. let me know what you think…

    1. fredwilson

      i saw the email but haven’t opened it yet. i will and reply.

  9. Luke Chamberlin

    Just signed up and looking forward to this! Happy to support The Academy For Software Engineering as well.

  10. awaldstein

    Great idea.I’ll pick this up on the stream. I always considering scribbling on whiteboards as close as I could ever come to grafitti with meaning and sometimes appeal. 

  11. kidmercury

    i hope you go on tour…..start selling merchandise….i def want a fred wilson 2012 world tour t-shirt…..great way to instantly connect with other fredlanders…….glad to see the blog star business model in action!

    1. leigh

      With @fakegrimlock:disqus ‘s chicken?!/FAKE…

      1. Matt A. Myers

        I have a feeling there will be a whole line of @fakegrimlock products eventually released. It will be epic..

        1. FAKE GRIMLOCK


          1. Matt A. Myers

            IMHO it’s art, and in Canada I believe copyright would allow that.. though IANAL

          2. Mark Essel

            Play your cards right, and you can buy the rights.

          3. FAKE GRIMLOCK


          4. Mark Essel

            Hahaha, I wanted to fight Mr. Bay after transformers 2.

      2. ShanaC

        I don’t know, but I saw a book about how to knit dinosaurs that would be perfect for him.  He could adapt one and make himself a sweater?

        1. FAKE GRIMLOCK


          1. ShanaC

            Dinosaurs don’t get cold in over air-conditioned buildings?

          2. FAKE GRIMLOCK

            YOU MISS JOKE.

          3. ShanaC

            jokes tend to go over my head with a whooshing sound – not surprised 🙂

          4. Donna Brewington White

            ME SEE WHAT YOU DOING HERE — HURR HURR (If you ever need to take a vacation, I can fill in.  Speak robo dino on occasion.  Good rates.)

    2. fredwilson

      i don’t like to travel. i’m a hermit.

      1. ShanaC

        How do you manage that when you have startups in your fund from around the world?

        1. fredwilson

          i travel. but i don’t like to.

          1. John Revay

            Think I once read a comment you made…something like, once your son leaves for college, the GothamGal might make some trips w/ you.

          2. fredwilson

            yes. i don’t mind traveling with her on vacation. in fact i like it. but i don’t like traveling if i’m not relaxing. i do it, but i don’t like it.

          3. Mark Essel

            I have the same experience, travelling for fun / adventure/exploration is awesome. Travelling for work is tight, uneasy, and difficult.

          4. Matt A. Myers

            You just need to find a yoga studio / class / workshop you can look forward to going to once at your destination. 🙂

          5. markslater

            i cant stand it. My last company i was back and fourth to asia every 2 months. I have not actually left boston on a plane since last june! 2 kids and a start up will do it – i’ve turned meetings in to phone calls with west coast folks. not saying that face to face is worthless today – its not – but i never found my “road warrior” groove – i think its a myth. When i hear people say that they are travelling like dogs as a measure of how “busy” they are – i kinda wander how productive they really are. 

      2. kidmercury

        Maybe some day a live conference of all your trusted peers/collaborators gather in one spot for a weekend of nonstop startup learning…..fredstock. or fredapalooza!

        1. FAKE GRIMLOCK


          1. ShanaC

            No thanks.

    3. andyidsinga

      ha! AVCers on a plane / bus / train 🙂

      1. John Revay

        planes, trains and buses – you have a captive audience

    4. JLM

      Let’s make the t shirts happen.  You get a design and I will get them printed.  Anybody out there?Let’s get a design together and let’s move some merchandise.Otherwise I will have to print up some “pay window” shirts.

      1. John Revay


        1. FAKE GRIMLOCK


          1. FAKE GRIMLOCK

            THAT THE PLAN.

          2. fredwilson

            deservedly so

          3. Matt A. Myers

            @fredwilson:disqus Absolutely

          4. Mark Essel

            had to watch all the interviews, caught Reece’s Google+ post yesterday

        2. panterosa,

          Dino charges pay window.

      2. ShanaC

        I say just do the pay window shirt

      3. Donna Brewington White

        We used to have a weather forecaster in Los Angeles named Fred.There were billboards all over the city with the words “Fred said it would be like this.”As I watch trends developing that Fred blogged about one or two years or so ago (mobile, android, etc.), I think about those billboards.

      4. kidmercury

        i been thinking about this for a while — since you issued the challenge i will have to accept! i’ll try to mock up some designs for fredwear and send them over to you. of course, it is a high probability event that there is a member here who is a much better designer than i am — but perhaps i can get the ball rolling and they will be inspired to take it up a notch.

        1. JLM

          OK, I have a design and I am ordering tee shirts tonight.Comfort color brand shirts.Soft and comfortable.They will cost about $8 to make.  They will be a surprise.  All proceeds to charity.I am making 144 of them.Throgs Neck Ventures, anyone?  Could be?

          1. kidmercury

            nice! looking forward to ordering mine!

          2. William Mougayar

            Where do I place my order?

          3. John Revay

            send me the link

          4. William Mougayar

            JLM- I have a dead easy way for you to put them into a shopping cart/payment process using ShopLocket It takes 2 mins to set-up. I’ll send you a secret link because they are in private beta.

    5. Reykjavik

       If nothing else, you’ll be Fred’s #1 groupie (but keep it clean!).

  12. William Mougayar

    I’ve just registered. Coincided w my next trip to NYC. And the topic is very timely for where we are.

    1. John Revay

      Hi William,I just signed up as well – I will look forward to catching up w/ you.  I am anxious to get the engagio update – still a very happy & engaged user

      1. William Mougayar

        Thanks John. Likewise. We have a few things cooking in the oven, of course.

    2. Brandon Burns

      seeing an avc regular from another country in person is a pretty cool benefit to the class. actually, just seeing all the avc people in person would be sweet. maybe post-class drinks and chit chat are in order? i made a meetup if anyone else is interested:

      1. ShanaC

        I’d be pro that

        1. John Revay

          Hi Shana any chance you attending these events 2X

          1. ShanaC

            by twice you mean? attending/not attending?

          2. John Revay

            Attending Class and the after event?

          3. ShanaC

            hmmm, maybe, haven’t decided yet

      2. William Mougayar

        Good idea. We did that after the last Donors Choose. Actually I had reserved a corner at Punch which is next door & we just rolled over there from USV.

  13. Brandon Burns

    excited for the class. not excited about the hell paypal put me through when trying to purchase tix. i had to get a friend to purchase the tix… and it took about 10 minutes and 15 screens for him, too.complaints about paypal’s experience and customer service are legendary. so why do people still continue to hold them as the standard? especially when there are plenty of other options available?  anyone else feel my pain?

    1. fredwilson

      i will share that feedback with skillshare. thanks for sharing it with me.

      1. Brandon Burns

        no problem

      2. Dave Pinsen

        Does Skillshare use Dwolla to accept payments domestically?

        1. fredwilson

          not that i know of

          1. Dave Pinsen

            The one time times I used Skillshare were before USV announced its investment in Dwolla. Just figured your portfolio companies would start using it where it fit.

        2. John Revay

          Did not see that as an Option – I thought I would.

          1. Dave Pinsen

            If you don’t have a verified and funded Dwolla account, you might have to wait a few days to pay that way, but from USV’s perspective, it would seem like a good idea to offer it as an option.

      3. John Revay

        Minor – on the dash board it only shows the photos/avatars of the first 18+/- people who registered (first) – wondering why they don’t update UI to show or expand to show all attending – like meetup.I am bummed I did not sign up soon enough to be pictured

  14. John Revay

    Skill Share…I was first a little frustrated that they wanted me to sign up w/ my FB account ( I have one…but rather not use it for business stuff) – I very much rather do twitter sign in. i had to scroll down to by pass FB account creationI was also a little frustrated that the I had to use Paypal, got over that quickly when I could use AMEX as part of paypal.

    1. William Mougayar

      I didn’t like the PayPal either, but didn’t see that you could switch to a credit card as part of it. 

    2. Dale Allyn

      I don’t sign-up of for anything with FB or Twitter (well, I’ve made one exception for the latter). If there’s no unique sign-up, I’m out. “Frictionless” has more than one definition when it comes to personal preferences. I hate when sites try to be so “in” that they don’t provide direct signup. Re. PayPal: the online payment arena is ripe for change (as Dwolla) is attempting, but I’ve never had difficulties with PayPal except for the horrible UI. The system does work, but one always feels a bit flogged afterwards.

      1. John Revay

        I once signed up for an account w/ I think i used FB and it worked great – quick, easy, friction less…vs name, rank, serial #. It even brought my profile pic over – I was impressed….My only issue is later in life trying to remember how to log in _ did I create account using FB, Twitter, or set up my own account….then you may end up having multiple profiles which might be a real pain to merge…..I am thinking about building an app…and will likely make it easy to sign up w/ these connectors…just trying to figure out a way a user can log in easily w/o remembering what service they used to provision the account.

        1. Dale Allyn

          John, part of my resistance with “easy” signups is I don’t like sharing my path with every other company. Facebook is never an option for me (they change my privacy settings at will, I’ve unsubscribed to get alerts from others’ updates and now I’m getting them every day again… etc… etc…  ZERO trust there). I’m not a fan of contributing info to companies whose revenue model is data mining unless I’m specifically interested in providing my data for cause. And, as you have mentioned, I can remember how I sign up if I sign up directly with every site. Typically, when one signs up to a service they receive a “welcome email” which gets saved to help me remember which email address I used and any other specifics. 

  15. Matt A. Myers

    What a great way to extend the online community into the real community, creating a space to allow for a gathering and real engagement. Exciting. This is the type of connecting people want more of, want more opportunities for, and doing it around learning is win-win-win.

  16. Richard

    What are your thoughts about the equity compensation  for a skill based cofounder brought in during the bootstrap phase.  What is the best way to tie  the equity to performance? vest over time? Tie to performance? vest at seed funding round?  Include language that allows for removal not withstanding the vesting? 

    1. fredwilson

      i like a four year vest. i would try to give them restricted stock instead of options since the equity value is low and a grant of stock will not generate a ton of taxable income

      1. markslater

        moores law sais 4 years will become 3 soon no?4 years strikes me as a long time today.

  17. EmilSt

    I just registered. Perfect timing for where we are.

  18. Cody Robbins

    This is so great! I’ve been looking forward to this since you mentioned it after funding Skillshare. And giving the proceeds to AFSE makes me want to pay more than $25.

  19. ShanaC

    Donor’s Choose and Academy for Software Engineering – that going to happen?

    1. fredwilson

      it’s up to the teachers but i suspect it will

      1. ShanaC

        alright! (don’t take this the wrong way, but I have a preference for donating directly, which is why I have such a bias towards donorschoose)

  20. Julie H. Setbon

    Hello Fred, I purchased 2 tix under my name, one for myself and one for my honorary CFO. Looking forward!

  21. John Revay…No  prerequisite noted, why not have people read the MBA Posts 35 to 43…or will that steal thunder of your lecture.   

    1. fredwilson

      they should do that. i will let everyone who gets in know that there is required reading. thanks for suggesting it

  22. Rohan

    Gone to the next level of teaching the the jedi arts, you have..

  23. Guest

    Fred, Please charge for the livestream – something nominal like $5, and  use a simple service like (you make payments through a simple link).Here’s why – 100 people paying $5 is $500 towards the academy.You have done a hell of a job raising money for charitable places and this is another great one!A comedian recently did this and make over a million bucks and gave over $200,000 to  charity.Think about it.

    1. fredwilson

      I’m into paid live teaching funding free online learning all around the world. I think its the new model for education

      1. William Mougayar

        Besides seeing you in the flesh, do live attendees get any advantage over remote ones, like asking questions? And will you take Q over Twitter for eg?

        1. fredwilson

          yes, the live audience gets to ask questionsi wasn’t thinking the livestream audience would get to do thatbut i do need to think about twitter

      2. Guest

        Fred, This is what I was thinking.Charge for the livestream ONLY but let the archive version be be free. The live version has chat where the people watching can actively participate and ask questions. It’s just like they are in the classroom.Ask the livestream guys about this.

        1. fredwilson

          hmmlet me think about that

    2. laurie kalmanson

       i would totally pay for the livestream as a donation; awesome x awesome.

  24. andyidsinga

    or even make it avail via a suggested donaton style system ..suggested donation $5 …but can still pay 0.

    1. Guest

      Hey Andy,Good idea. Fred’s content is worth way more than $5.He can leverage is investment principle of – community of highly engaged users.

      1. andyidsinga

        for sure!

  25. JLM

    This is huge.Words >>> sound >>> visual >>> physical.Personal and professional brand going nuclear.Fred, if you are this insightful and this was your plan all along, you are a very scary brilliant cat.If you have stumbled down this road, you are a very insightful and lucky cat.You should take a long moment to think about how to monetize the channels of distribution.  As it is for charity, you could be fairly aggressive and still sleep at night.Wow!It goes without saying — WELL PLAYED!

    1. fredwilson

      I’ve stumbled onto everything in life JLM. I am a very lucky man.

      1. JLM

        Lagniappe, really.  I know exactly what you mean, mein freund.The earlier you get up, the luckier you get.

        1. fredwilson

          i slept to almost 8am todaybut that’s because i was up at 5am all week

          1. Mark Essel

            Ouch, travelling?

        2. Luke Chamberlin

          When I get lucky it’s usually very late at night.

      2. William Mougayar

        I too believe that luck is a reward for the hard working / honest person.Everything comes to you in due time, and luck is the combination of timing, being there, and doing the right thing.With every passing day that one does the right thing, they increase the odds of them being lucky.In life, and in business.

        1. Donna Brewington White

          I think that his generosity of spirit is a huge factor as well.

        2. panterosa,

          Posted first favorite phrase above. Second favorite is from Edna in The incredibles – ” Luck favors the prepared.”



        1. fredwilson


      4. panterosa,

        I’m a huge fan of my grandfather’s phrase, which was always repeated by my mother –  “I’d rather be lucky than rich.”

    2. Matt A. Myers

      It’s interesting where synergy can happen, especially when you’re mostly only doing what you want to be doing – where work and personal can align then the results I see can be exponential due to no wasted energy or inefficiencies created.Extensions seem to evolve naturally, where they can, with little mental friction, with enough time and planning.This is the opposite of course of trying to force something, plans or an idea – or forcing yourself into doing something you don’t enjoy. This will fill space that otherwise would be free to allow more fluidity in thought and emotion, and eliminate space for things to naturally, organically evolve – preventing your mind from exploring deeply of where things can lead if you allow the space for them to evolve that way (which would help to include a bit of strategic serendipity).I’m in a bit of a philosophical mindset today. Apologies if this reply feels like a huge tangent or off topic. 🙂

      1. JLM

        Nailed.  It.  Well played.

        1. Matt A. Myers


      2. Mark Essel

        Zen life/work balance.

    3. Matt A. Myers

      Fred’s the perfect case study for how the future celebrity, educator, mentor, activist / politician will exist. And it makes sense, afterall he has been helping guide to have the tools developed and available that he’s wanted to see exist and being of value to him, and therefore also everyone else.

      1. Mark Essel

        I’m not sure many could pull it off the way Fred has (and similarly Seth G, Howard Lindzon, and Brad Feld have). These guys appear to have frightening reserves of energy and enthusiasm.

    4. William Mougayar

      Why don’t you consider using this occasion to make it up there with your wife & attend this inaugural session.

      1. JLM

        In San Fran that w/e.

  26. maxhaot

    Hi Fred, Livestream’s production team is happy to help Livestream the class. In any case I bought my ticket ! Max

    1. fredwilson

      Thanks. I may take you up on that.

      1. Michael Karnjanaprakorn

        Max,I’ll email you to setup the Livestream for the class!Michael

  27. jason wright

    Teach Cancellara how to sprint.

  28. kenberger

    wow– monday night pro basketball at USV?! That is 1 diversified venture firm! (i can’t be the only 1 who initially read the title that way).Seriously Fred. You’ve been a key mentor of mine, and I’ve learned so much about the venture business via your blog. I am very excited to get and share even more value by watching those archives.

  29. Dale Allyn

    Thanks for doing this, Fred. Something good in many ways: help the community learn; provide more exposure and funds for the academy; continue to build your brand (USV’s and FW’s) so that more good can be done moving forward. Cheers!

  30. jason wright

    Fred, out of curiosity, were you still at MIT when Stewart Brand wrote The Media Lab, Inventing The Future At MIT?

    1. fredwilson

      i don’t think so

  31. Braydon Johnson-McCormick

    Fred – just sent you an email about doing the live streaming for you. We’d love to handle it end-to-end for you.  Braydon 

    1. fredwilson

      i am pretty much committed to using livestreambut i really appreciate your offer

  32. BillMcNeely

    You should reach out to @bhunstable at U Stream ( Former Army Officer West Pointer ) he has some ways to help on the monitizing front

  33. mikenolan99

    Thank you!

  34. Pete Griffiths

    Great idea.

  35. Donna Brewington White

    Excited to see this come to life.

  36. Robert Thuston


  37. impartialvoice

    Great idea, Fred. I will definitely listen it live whenever I can. Would you also consider having guest lecturer in future classes?

  38. Mark Essel

    Could be an ideal target for live stream offsite meetups for non-locals.

  39. Braingame234

    Fred! So glad to see you living out the dream of being a teacher – this is incredible. Thanks so much for putting this out there, I’m going to really enjoy it.

  40. Dasher

    Where is the link to the live stream?