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Reddit AMAs Sam Altman

Reddit AMA

30 Sep, 2014

Altman takes questions in a Reddit AMA. He discusses the investment in Reddit and various themes, including creating a work culture:

Founders should never expect employees to work as hard and care as much as they do, but still, if you join an early-stage startup, expect to work very hard. Most people at Facebook still seem to work very hard. Generally, I think companies should hold off the transition to feeling ‘corporate’ as long as possible, but transition to something with better work-life balance after a few years–no one can work around the clock forever. All of that said, I do think most startups need to get some basic HR in place sooner than they usually do.

Sites that rely on user-generated content should be owned by the users:

1) People take care of what they own. 2) It just seems fair–users create the value, they should get to capture some of it. 3) I do think more sites could benefit from this, and honestly I’m somewhat surprised others haven’t tried it.”

What companies need to focus on

Focus on getting a small number of super-engaged users that love you, and them spread the community. If you’re building it for an exit, you will probably be disappointed. That’s not a specific statement about a community site but a general comment about startups.