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Current time:0:00Total duration:2:57

Video transcript

- My name's Dave Gilboa. I'm Co-Founder and Co-CEO of Warby Parker. - I'm Neil Blumenthal. The Co-Founder and Co-CEO of Warby Parker. - [Dave] We started talking about this idea in the computer lab when we were at school with our other two co-founders, Jeff and Andy. And I think all four of us, we couldn't stop thinking about this idea. We each were emailing back and forth at 3, 4 in the morning. We were so excited by the potential to do something different and special. - The next day at school I was like, hey this was a really interesting discussion yesterday. I think this is a really powerful idea. Later that night, we all went to a bar and around the table we committed to each other that, hey, we're gonna bust our butts and work really hard. We didn't know if we were going to be successful, but at least we sorta said we were going to do it. - The more we learned, the more excited we got. And then the next step was, okay, this is a good idea, we were spending time on it, are we willing to put our money where our mouth is. - [Neil] We actually all put in the same amount of money and we're all equal partners. We thought it was going to be really difficult at the beginning to say, "Hey, you're worth 'X' and you're worth 'Y'." So we just figured, hey, if this thing works out, it's gonna change all of our lives. - [Dave] The next step was let's set up a vesting schedule that gets us to graduation and if for any reason one or more of us wants to do something else, they'll get credit for time served but the people that continue building the business will be compensated proportionally for spending more time. Turns out all four of us were incredibly excited and so none of us dropped out of the process, but we wanted to be thoughtful about setting up those mechanisms ahead of time. - We knew that it was risky sort of starting a business with friends and there were people far smarter than us that had started businesses as friends and then quickly sort of become bitter enemies. So, one of the things that we started doing was going back to the bar that we decided to launch the business out of. And on a monthly basis, we would just sit around the table and talk. We'd put people in the hot seat. We'd have those honest conversations. If there were any issues, they would bubble up and we would discuss it and we would resolve it before it exploded. - We really made this firm commitment to each other that our friendship and treating each other fairly and well was more important than the success of the business. And that's been something that I think was absolutely fundamental to the success of the founding of the company and something that we've really tried to infuse through an entire organization now that we have over 300 employees and create a culture where feedback is the norm. - [Neil] And I think that really set the tone for a healthy working dynamic and ultimately for a very collaborative company culture. - We've tried to stay pretty close to Penn's campus and the students there. And every time we're there, we'll go grab a drink at the bar Roosevelt and actually one of our first frames, and one of our most popular selling styles, is called the Roosevelt. Because of that bar.