BTU #44 – Sam Bond: Bain, Coca-Cola, and General Manager at Lyft

“When I left Bain I reached out to a variety of folks… to explore what was out there. I kept in touch with those folks, and made a point to regularly get back in touch with people and see what they’re up to. It was after a meeting like that – we grabbed coffee and didn’t think much of it at the time, but he called me a few weeks later to let me know that Lyft was starting up in Atlanta. It was basically a lightening bolt that made me aware. It appeared and it appeared because I made contacts and maintained them.”
 – Sam Bond

Sam Bond is a General Manager at Lyft – a company most listeners have probably used for their app which makes it simple for you to find a ride whenever you need one. Although only four years old, Lyft has raised $2B in funding, and has nearly 6k employees listed on LinkedIn. Sam started out at Princeton University and then served as an officer in the Marine Corps for 4 years. After his service, he attended the University of Virginia – Darden Graduate School of Business. He worked in consulting at Bain & Company as a Consultant and then Case Team Leader. He also worked at the Coca-Cola Company – first as a Director Supply Chain Strategy and then as a Group Director of Strategy and Portfolio Management.

In this conversation, we cover a lot of topics, including:

  • An overview of the General Manager position at Lyft
  • Indications that a veteran may enjoy the role of General Manager, and indications that it might not be a good fit for them
  • What it’s like to work at an explosively growing startup (and the pros and cons of joining a company on an exponential growth path)
  • An overview of entry level positions at Coca-Cola for a newly transitioned veteran
  • How Sam looks back on his journey to a role of General Manager
  • And much, much more…

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QUESTION OF THE DAY: How can I make these episodes more valuable to active duty military personnel considering transitioning to the civilian world? Please let me know in the comments.

Scroll below for links and show notes…

Links

  • The ride sharing service, Lyft

Show Notes

  • 2:23 – Sam’s background
  • 3:27 – An overview of the General Manager position at Lyft
  • 7:27 – Sam’s day-to-day life at Lyft
  • 11:58 – Indications that a veteran may enjoy the role of General Manager, and indications that it might not be a good fit for them
  • 15:00 – What it’s like to work at an explosively growing startup (and the pros and cons of joining a company on an exponential growth path)
  • 19:20 – Sam’s decision to leave the Marine Corps
  • 22:05 – Sam’s view on an MBA and how essential it is to a veteran aspiring to a General Manager role
  • 24:04 – How Sam decided to enter Management Consulting at Bain & Company
  • 26:25 – Some of the skills that Sam learned at Bain that have helped him in his role as General Manager
  • 29:45 – How Sam’s lifestyle changed between a Consultant to a Case Team Leader
  • 31:50 – After three years, how Sam transitioned from Bain & Company to Coca-Cola
  • 34:50 – An overview of Sam’s roles at Coca-Cola
  • 38:20 – An overview of entry level positions at Coca-Cola for a newly transitioned veteran
  • 41:10 – How Sam transitioned from Coca-Cola to Lyft
  • 47:32 – How Sam looks back on his journey to a role of General Manager
  • 50:00 – How leadership outside of the military differs from leadership within the military
  • 52:20 – Final words of wisdom from Sam