My Summer at Chapter One
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September 12th, 2022

I cannot believe my time at Chapter One came to a close. I want to take a moment to reflect on this experience, the amazing teammates I interacted with, and my takeaways.

Setting the Vibe for the Summer

In June, I started as a Studios intern. As soon as I saw the Mirror post a few weeks prior, I knew this was an opportunity I couldn’t miss out on. I had known about Jeff and the team for quite a while and became even more excited as I got to know Maria and Mene throughout the interview process.

Before the internship started, I got the chance to lay a good bit of how I envisioned the summer could go. This not only set a great baseline we used to craft our roadmap, but it also helped me hone in on how Chapter One operated and how I could best fit within their pre-existing structure.

Although I already knew about Chapter One and their mission a good bit, the team’s function and energy immediately stood out once I started. Everyone was so inspired and connected, very akin to the web3 spirit; on top of that, the way that everyone thought about even the smallest tasks as “shipping” made the team feel much more like a startup than a venture firm. Setting the vibe for the summer not only taught me a ton from a product perspective, but it also helped me better understand how I could fit within Chapter One.

Studios

Working alongside one of our incubation companies within Studios was a super-hands-on process. From our first call, everyone on our team was asking questions across the stack, and the founders had tons of ideas and energy. It was amazing to chat in so much depth on a regular basis, from weekly calls to Telegram chats to impromptu Zooms.

Where I really gained the most insight was working on both sides of the startup-VC equation. On one hand, I was able to learn the needs of a founder or venture partner. On the other hand, I saw how those needs translated into solutions that best served everyone.

Studios by Chapter One
Studios by Chapter One

A great example of this on the founder side is the Ecosystem Landscape that I mapped out. Yash was instrumental in helping me craft my market research for the landscape in this process. He helped me learn how to structure the landscape, as well as exposed me to segments of the market I hadn’t explored in as much depth.

I also helped build some of the Studios infrastructure, based on our inaugural founding team’s needs by designing resources that other future teams will be able to leverage. Some of the work I did was around data centralization and documentation.

The Value of Founder Experience

At Chapter One, everything is Founder Experience, and during my time with the team it became even more clear how important being a day-to-day partner to your founders is. By building the fund to support founders on all fronts within Talent, Community, Data, Research, Product, Design, and more, Chapter One is redefining Venture Capital to Venture Contribution. Spending time building under founder experience exposed me to many of the product verticals. I spent some time supporting the infrastructure of what we liked to call the Founder Experience machine. I also learned how to effectively and efficiently manage products while meeting stakeholders’ needs. I was lucky enough to be taught by the Founder Experience 🐐 herself, Maria

Moonshot Week

Moonshot Week was our internal hackathon, which was held in the middle of July. The team’s innovation and fast shipping was mind-blowing. Team members picked up new coding languages, published extensive research, and shipped new products— all in the course of five days. The best part was that the energy continued after Moonshot Week, most notably with the launch of the Chapter One Research Program, led by Yash.

Lessons from the Journey

This summer was a learning experience that I will never forget. This internship exposed me to so many new ideas and people in ways that broadened my perspective. I was able to meet tons of people from Studios and in the greater web3 space. I learned how to better think in frameworks, from focusing on first principles to being your own PM to getting to PMF. Having time to work in these frameworks and see how battle-tested they were improved my skills as a builder.

Understanding two key themes stuck out to me throughout the summer and I will carry these with me throughout my career:

  1. Listening to Stakeholders

    I found out how important it was to think about how the work being done could best fit into others’ lives. This helped make projects have more impact and also helped me learn how I can use other perspectives to organize a project. It’s a theme that stuck out across all of the work I did, no matter the vertical.

  2. Lift-To-Launch

    I also realized the importance of learning how to make the most out of the least amount of resources. This gave me a more realistic perspective on how things get done and forced me to pivot ideas and skills into areas that could be more quickly leveraged.

Special Thanks to Maria

I couldn’t cap off my recap and insights without giving a big thank you to Maria, who taught me the ropes and impacts so much of the founder experience. It was amazing to see how much she cares about her work, makes the most of resources around her, and helps others. I learned so much from her and will never forget the lessons that I learned throughout this experience.

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