MEET THE PARENTS: 8 Grown-Ups Who Turned Hot Startups Into Real Businesses

eric schmidt

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Young tech geniuses are always starting new exciting companies.But at some point the kids can’t run the company by themselves any more and the CEO – or his or her board – has to bring in a grown up.

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[slide
permalink=”sheryl-sandberg-is-mark-zuckerbergs-right-hand-woman-1″
title=”Sheryl Sandberg is Mark Zuckerberg’s right hand woman”
content=”Position: COO at Facebook

Previous position: Vice president of online sales at Google

Mark Zuckerberg is a fiery young CEO that’s a bit awkward at times and devoted to making Facebook an awesome product. But that doesn’t necessarily leave time for building a lasting business out of Facebook — which is why Zuckerberg brought in former Googler Sheryl Sandberg to run the company behind the scenes.”
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[slide
permalink=”dick-costolo-is-taking-charge-of-twitter-2″
title=”Dick Costolo is taking charge of Twitter”
content=”Position: CEO at Twitter

Past position: Product manager at Google

After joining the company as chief operating officer, Dick Costolo took over as Twitter’s chief executive officer. He’s tasked with finding some way for the quick-growing social network to make a ton of money off its 100 million-plus users. Jack Dorsey, the old CEO, has taken a step back to focus on products (and also work at Square.)”
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[slide
permalink=”eric-lefkofsky-was-groupons-grown-up-3″
title=”Eric Lefkofsky was Groupon’s grown-up”
content=”Position: COO of Groupon

Previous position: Co-founder of Mediabank

Business veteran Eric Lefkofsky is running Groupon’s behind-the-scenes activities while Andrew Mason serves as the company’s public figure. He also owns a huge share of Groupon worth more than $1 billion.”
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[slide
permalink=”tim-koogle-took-charge-of-yahoo-for-a-while-4″
title=”Tim Koogle took charge of Yahoo for a while”
content=”Position: CEO of Yahoo

Previous position: President of Intermec Corporation

After Yahoo took off like a rocket, co-founders Jerry Yang and David Filo decided to bring in a big, experiencedguy to run the company. Tim Koogle joined Yahoo in 1995 to do just that. He left the company in 2001, when Terry Semel — a 24-year Warner Bros veteran — took over.”
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[slide
permalink=”jim-barksdale-ran-marc-andreessens-creation-netscape-5″
title=”Jim Barksdale ran Marc Andreessen’s creation, Netscape”
content=”Position: CEO of Netscape

Previous position: CEO of AT&T Wireless

While Netscape was Marc Andreessen’s baby, Jim Barksdale was brought in to run the company. He maneuvered the company to an initial public offering in 1995, and then its eventual sale to AOL in 1999.”
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[slide
permalink=”eric-schmidt-ran-google-while-current-ceo-larry-page-matured-6″
title=”Eric Schmidt ran Google while current CEO Larry Page matured”
content=”Position: Chariman of Google

Previous position: CEO of Novell

While Larry Page and Sergey Brin were clearly brilliant idea guys, they needed someone to run the business as it was getting off the ground. Enter Eric schmidt, a veteran of the tech industry with experience running Novell and working at Sun Microsystems. He ran Google as CEO until 2011, when Page took control of the company once again.”
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[slide
permalink=”john-maloney-is-at-tumblr-to-manage-its-operations-7″
title=”John Maloney is at Tumblr to manage its operations”
content=”Position: President of Tumblr

Previous position: VP Corporate Affairs at HotJobs.com

Moloney joined Tumblr in 2008 to focus on running the company and converting its millions of pageviews into actual revenue for the company. Tumblr has since grown like crazy and accrues more than 15 billion page views per month across all its blogs.”
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[slide
permalink=”keith-rabois-is-running-squares-business-operations-8″
title=”Keith Rabois is running Square’s business operations”
content=”Position: COO at Square

Past position: Vice President, Business & Corporate Development at LinkedIn

Keith Rabois has worked at a ton of now-successful businesses, including LinkedIn (which went public last year in one of 2011’s most successful IPOs). He’s now running Square’s business operations while Jack Dorsey focuses on product at Square (he also works at Twitter).”
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[slide
permalink=”bonus-jay-adelson-came-in-to-run-digg-while-kevin-rose-was-running-other-projects-but-ran-into-a-wall-9″
title=”BONUS: Jay Adelson came in to run Digg while Kevin Rose was running other projects, but ran into a wall”
content=”Position: CEO at Digg

Previous position: Founder of Equinix

While Digg CEO Kevin Rose was off making angel investments and trying out crazy ideas, Jay Adelson was charged with ensuring Digg could continue to grow. Unfortunately for Adelson, Digg made a major slip-up when it launched a redesign, and he eventually left the company.”
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[slide
permalink=”bonus-john-sculley-was-steve-jobs-supervision-then-bested-him-in-a-board-room-battle-10″
title=”BONUS: John Sculley was Steve Jobs’ supervision, then bested him in a board room battle”
content=”Position: CEO of Apple

Previous position: President of PepsiCo

Apple brought in John Sculley to manage the company — and Steve Jobs’ fiery personality. He eventually bested Jobs in a board room battle, which prompted Jobs to depart and found NeXT.”
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[slide
permalink=”bonus-mark-pincus-wasnt-young-by-any-means-but-he-needed-john-schappert-to-calm-zyngas-wild-west-11″
title=”BONUS: Mark Pincus wasn’t young by any means, but he needed John Schappert to calm Zynga’s “Wild West””
content=”Position: COO at Zynga

Past position: COO at Electronic Arts

Not old by a longshot, but serial entrepreneur Mark Pincus was still running a wild west at Zynga.

That was before John Schappert joined the company. He’s a funny guy that had a keen eye for business and wasn’t afraid of crushing projects that weren’t getting the job done. Now he’s tasked with making sure Zynga — the largest IPO since Google — stays on course and turns into a lasting business.”
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permalink=”who-are-we-missing-12″
title=”Who are we missing?”
content=”The list isn’t comprehensive. There are plenty of other veterans out there with the title ‘General Manager’ or ‘Chief Operating officer’ — or, if you prefer, ‘adult supervision.’

Who have we missed? Speak up in the comments below or email us at [email protected]
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[slide
permalink=”those-are-the-grown-ups-in-charge-13″
title=”Those are the grown ups in charge…”
content=”Now meet the 23 tech superstarts that are ready to jump-start 2011 →
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