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Verve People
March 04, 2016

Streaming Success: Neha Sampat

Text by Zaral Shah

The CEO of Built.io on being a Silicon Valley entrepreneur and the words she lives by

Neha Sampat, 38
San Francisco, California — CEO, Built.io

The Company
A platform where companies benefit from tomorrow’s technology today as it fast-tracks innovation at the intersection of mobile, web and the Internet of Things.

Entrepreneurial seed sown
“I’ve been an entrepreneur for as long as I can remember. When most kids played house I always pretended I was running my own fashion firm or rubber-band factory. A year after moving to Silicon Valley, the entrepreneurial itch actually kicked in and I started a PR firm with my closest new friends. My subsequent ventures ranged from building parking apps to launching ventures in wine education. Those series of ventures as a young entrepreneur has culminated in my leadership of a world-class software company today.”

Work philosophy
“As an entrepreneur, you never stop chasing success. You hit milestones along the way that are instrumental in demonstrating signs of success. My success mantra boils down to: ‘Be smart, but hire smarter’, ‘Wake up early; swallow the frog’ and finally, ‘Surround yourself with champions’.”

Words to live by
“One of my life mantras is to never be boring. This is why I believe I didn’t find the tech industry — it found me. At university, I majored in French and mass communications and started my career in public relations in Denver. At the time, there was a lot of talk about the dot-com world and Silicon Valley…I applied for a few jobs on a Wednesday, got on a plane for an interview on the following Friday and by the next morning I had packed my bags to start a 1,300-mile drive to a new city, where I had no apartment, close friends or family. On my first Monday there, I walked into the office and started my tech career and I’ve never looked back.”

Healthy competition
“I’m not one to be driven by fear. Competition doesn’t make me nervous but instead pushes me and my team to be stronger and better. For me, boundaries are often blurred between work and play.”

Favourite pastime activities
“I am a certified sommelier so a lot of my trips entail exploring history and culture through wine regions around the world. Of course, reliable access to Wi-Fi is a prerequisite.”

On leadership
“The biggest change I’ve seen in myself is a confidence about the unknown. Entrepreneurship has changed my leadership philosophy. Business is uncertainty. If you have a strong vision and a tight-knit team, things will work out. Leadership is about bringing out the best in people.”

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