Tips for professional dads: Get the talking technology
Our next roundup of Rubicon’s rad dad is Michael Allegretti, our senior vice president of policy and strategic planning. Bringing technological innovation to urban areas is Michael’s M.O., so it’s no wonder that he is in charge of our Rubicon Smart City product. As Atlanta, Santa Fe, and other places are currently working on technical cooperation, Michael shared with us the secret of success as a hard-working father in a big city.
From Uber to Rubicon, you have solved public policy issues and battled large incumbents for some of the country’s hottest startups. Do you have any suggestions for entrepreneurs trying to break into or "subvert" traditional industries or business models?
Michael: Stay focused. In the case of Rubicon, this means relentless focus on keeping materials out of landfills and improving the efficiency, transparency and effectiveness of the waste and recycling industry. This doesn't mean going to war with the government and other partners, as some other startups we have seen do. Sometimes people will look away from the prizes. My suggestion is to focus on continuous improvement and put all resources into it.
Once you think you have "success", it may mean that there is more work to be done, there are more ways to look at the problem, it is time to expand the field. This is what we do at Rubicon. We began to change the way of commercial waste and recycling and reuse. Fast forward to today, we are solving this problem, and there are more. From thinking about how to remove waste from space, to developing technologies that help cities run more efficiently-we are still focusing on keeping materials away from landfills and improving efficiency, transparency and effectiveness-but we are only at the forefront of expansion.
New York + kids + entrepreneurial work. You can handle some very fast-paced environments. What is your secret to playing with everything and loving it?
Michael: The wonderful life partner of my wife Paula. A good partner of Delta Air Lines. The technology of talking to each other. I like my iPhone and my MacBook Air. There are also outdoor sports. When I am in New York, I like to run along the Hudson River or Central Park. When I was in Atlanta, I liked running in Piedmont Park or on the belt line best.
So you are now a waste expert. Why waste? What motivates the work you are doing?
Michael: I was driven to solve ubiquitous problems that exist in all economic, ethnic and geographic boundaries or boundaries.
At Uber, it’s about getting from point A to point B. This is a problem that everyone around the world faces every day, and my job makes it easier for them to do this. At Rubicon, it is about taking out the garbage, but there is more, which is what drove me here.
How do you turn what has hitherto been regarded as a liability-one's trash-into an economic asset? Use it as a teachable moment where the community can continue to improve? How do you tell others that the way waste management exists today is not necessarily the way tomorrow? Will small changes made by one family, one person, and the air we breathe, the water we drink, and the communities in which we live, work, and play radically change? This is what motivates me to do the work I am doing.
Give us your best "Dad advice".
Michael: This is a very emotional question...well. patience. That's it. patience. Be patient and kind. And know that your child is always listening. From their birth to adulthood, deep in their lives, they have been listening and learning. be patient. Be kind. Beware.