Aaron Friedman

Operator

Together, we’re developing a more powerful and equitable talent community.

Trajectory
  • Evergreen Healthcare Partners (Founding Partner & VP of Talent Management)
  • OLASTEO (Our Lives As Seen Through Each Other) (Founder & President)
  • Epic (Implementation Consultant)
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison (B.A., International Relations and Asian Studies)
  • Cornell University (Candidate for EMHRM – 2021)

 

Perspective

“Diversity is being invited to the party; inclusion is being asked to dance.” – Verna Myers As one of the members of the hiring team responsible for placing new talent—within our Launchpad as well as at M13 and our partner companies—the importance of diversity, equity, and inclusion are always at the forefront of my mind.

I’d like to see a global commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion permeate the venture capital community, and it’s exciting to be a part of helping that happen. Together, we’re developing a more powerful and equitable talent community.

Growing up within one of the most racially and economically diverse school districts in New York, I was constantly surrounded by people who, more often than not, didn’t look or think like me. I’d say this taught me to embrace diverse perspectives, but it wasn’t even a lesson—it was simply the way I thought the world worked. It took leaving to make me realize that the make-up of most colleges and professional disciplines looks very different.

That’s among the most rewarding things about recruiting for the Launchpad. By breaking down the barriers most people face in starting their own business, we’re opening up that world to a whole new segment of the population.

I’m deeply invested in every human interaction. I pride myself in having a pulse on how each person in the M13 orbit is feeling in a given week, and this perspective really helps me to match people with opportunities that will afford the chance to meet their full potential.

I originally developed this attitude while working at Epic. During my tenure, the company exploded from 1,000 to 5,000 employees, and seeing the process of bringing that many team members into the fold, while trying to stay intentional about the culture of the company, influenced my perspective in a big way.

Everyone is interesting to me, and I think that shines through because it’s authentic.

We want to know your Origin Story. Who were you before you went to college? Before your first job? What brought you here, to this opportunity, to where you are today?

You have to have the inclusive mindset before you can welcome diversity and ensure equity. Because hiring someone for optics without setting them up to succeed in their role isn’t moving the needle in the long run. That’s one of the things that excites me most about my role at M13—having the opportunity to be a part of a professional culture that has a commitment to diversity in the tangible sense, not just in the abstract.

Make the time, if you can. There’s no replacement for a phone call or a conversation.