Joel Gascoigne, Buffer CEO interview at 2016 Responsive Conference


Today’s guest – I’m thrilled to announce – is Joel Gascoigne – the co-founder and CEO of the social media company Buffer.

This interview is an experiment, recorded live at the Responsive Conference on September 20th, 2016. I’ve admired Joel and his company for several years, as they have paved the way for a new kind of company. As we discuss in this interview, Buffer exemplifies the exploration at the forefront of the future of work.

Buffer has transparency is a wide variety of usual areas. Employee salaries are known, based on specific and published criteria. The company’s revenue are published regularly for all to see.

I admire Joel’s ownership, his willingness to experiment and own up to his mistakes. Recently Buffer did away with all managers, and we explore the consequences in this interview. Joel describes running a “future of work” company as a series of experiments, where it is his responsibility to allow the pendulum to swing first away from traditional models of leadership, then towards them, to find new operating models best suited to his company.

Whether you are a face of social media, or think that new forms of communication are troubling distraction, Buffer and this interview with Joel has a lot to say about how companies can and will organize in the 21st century. Enjoy!

Show Notes

3:00- 4:00 Live podcast at the Responsive Conference
5:00 – 8:00 Buffer’s experimentation with transparency
9:00 – 12:00 Finding balance as a company among pendulum swings
12:00 – 15:00 Self-management
15:00 – 18:00 Fully distributed company
18:00 – 21:00 Naivety and optimism led to experimentation
21:30 – 25:00 Managing a completely remote workforce
25:00 – 28:00 Sacrifices and strengths of being a founder/CEO
28:00 – 30:30 Budgeting and company retreats
30:30 – 34:00 Impact on company culture after not doing company retreat
34:00 – 38:15 Facing the reality of their mistakes when laying off employees
38:15 – 41:15 Risks of transparency at Buffer
41:15 – 44:30 What’s the next big experiment?
44:30 – 47:30 Challenges in implementing self-management
47:30 – 48:25 Contact Joel:
Buffer Website:
Twitter: @joelgascoigne
Joel Website:

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