The Best Answer An Older Person Can Give When Asked About His Or Her 22-Year-Old Boss

Barry McCarthy clinkleClinkleBarry McCarty, COO of Clinkle and former CFO of Netflix

Imagine going to work for someone who is half your age, running his first startup.

Imagine further that the startup hasn’t yet launched, so it has no real users and no traction. It also has no revenue.

All it has is a 22-year-old CEO and an absurdly giltzy round of financing — a $US25 million seed round which has been dubbed the largest in Silicon Valley history — to its name.

You, as the former CFO of a well-known, publicly-traded company, have a ton of experience. And yet you find yourself working for the 22-year-old.

All of the above describes Barry McCarthy’s situation. He just joined Clinkle as the stealthy payment startup’s COO. Up until 2010, he was CFO of Netflix.

If you were McCarthy, or even the young CEO Lucas Duplan, you might find the age and knowledge gap between you and your new executive colleague disconcerting.

But McCarthy doesn’t seem the least bit fazed. In fact, when AllThingsD’s Jason Del Rey asked McCarthy about his new boss and the likelihood of Clinkle’s success, McCarthy replied with the best answer imaginable.

Here’s the relevant bit of the interview. It sounds like Duplan just made a great hire.

Jason Del Rey: What does your role entail?

Barry McCarthy: Well, Lucas is the CEO. I work for him. I want to be unambiguously clear about that. He’ll continue to focus on product and engineering. My primary focus will be everything else.

Jason Del Rey: Do you believe Lucas can be the long-term CEO of a giant payments company?

Barry McCarthy: Absolutely. And if he’s not, then I will feel like I have not served him as well as I could have.

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