Am I as experienced, or mature, or smart as others CEOs? No probably not, but there's something, I think, very useful about having a founder as the CEO.
I've been very lucky, from the beginning. I've found that as long as you're fundamentally good - as long as you're not being bad to people - people give you a lot of room to be yourself, because being yourself is being honest. And that's what people want to see.
Most small business owners are not particularly sophisticated business people. That's not a criticism; they're passionate about cutting hair or cooking food, and that's why they got in the business, not because they have an MBA.
Most of the time, the things that really change the world exist for something fundamentally selfish and then the world-changing ends up being a side-effect of that.
Groupon as a company - it's built into the business model - is about surprise. A new deal that surprises you every day. We've carried that over to our brand, in the writing and the marketing that we do, and in the internal corporate culture.
There are over 2,000 direct clones of the Groupon business model. However, there's an equal amount of proof that the barriers to success are enormous. In spite of all those competitors, only a handful are remotely relevant.
One of the challenges of innovation is figuring out how to wipe your mind clean about what you should be doing at any given moment, and not having a religious attachment to what's gotten you there thus far.
If you have a great business, if you're great at your craft people should be coming in there. It shouldn't be this secret.
Once you have something so deeply infused in your culture and your brand, it would be very difficult to reverse that inertia if you wanted to.
I look at being a capitalist businessperson like riding a bike - if I go too slowly, I'll fall over. Or it's kind of like a shark: if I stop swimming, I'll just die.
I think if there's any difference between me and a traditional CEO, it's that I've been unwilling to change myself or shape my personality around what's expected.