Sarah Friar, CEO Nextdoor: Building community & addressing isolation through hyper-localized technology (Episode #49)

With Sarah Friar, CEO NextDoor
Share this episode

Show Notes

Sarah Friar is passionate about community and the impact it can have on our lives. She’s the CEO of tech company Nextdoor, which is working to not only forge stronger community ties, but to address isolation and loneliness through a hyper-localized digital platform.

Sarah brings tremendous knowledge and experience to Nextdoor, having held senior positions at Goldman Sachs, McKinsey, SalesForce, and Square. But it’s her small town upbringing in Northern Ireland and her early engagement in her own community that inspires her to use all that she’s learned to facilitate localized solutions to community problems. Sarah will quickly tell you that means you need to need to put down your device (now and again) and get to know your neighbors. Something of an odd, but compelling message from a tech exec!

Sarah talks with us about not only her passion for Nextdoor, but how she’s navigated big career shifts. She shares her advice for knowing when it’s time to make a move. Doing so can be especially tricky when you are moving from a sure and comfortable bet (as she has on several occasions). She talks about the importance of taking that risk anyway, especially when you are pursuing something that you are truly passionate about.

Sarah also gives us advice for keeping our ego in check, while still making sure we are packaging our value and thinking strategically about our careers and the impact we are having in our organizations. “Ego” and “understanding and articulating our value” are not the same thing!

In addition to her work at Nextdoor, she’s the mom of two and she shares her perspective on prioritizing and on delegating to ensure that you are able to focus on what really matters.

Sarah’s practical advice, experienced perspective, and thoughtful approach will inspire you, and she may make you think twice about picking up your device in lieu of reaching out to a friend for coffee! (Big thanks to the Aspen Institute for loaning us their terrific studio for our conversation!)