Buzz surrounding Twitter and its executives has reached a fever pitch ahead of the company's upcoming IPO. But perhaps no one has been placed under the spotlight lately more than co-founder and Square CEO Jack Dorsey. Nick Bilton's upcoming book on Twitter's rise paints an at times unflattering portrait of Dorsey, alleging that he forced out Noah Glass — another of the company's earliest workers.
But in a just-published profile from The New Yorker, Dorsey disputes this account. Bilton says that Dorsey threatened to bail on Twitter if Glass wasn't forced out, but Dorsey claims he "didn't have that leverage." "Ev made his decision," he says, referring to co-founder and former CEO Evan Williams. According to the report, Glass was in the midst of a failing marriage, a situation that wasn't helped any by the stresses that (at the time) came with working at a startup like Twitter. His personality had become "unpredictable" according to other employees, and eventually led to his departure.
Dorsey and Mark Zuckerberg met "regularly" over dinner
And while Bilton reports that Mark Zuckerberg (among others) tried to purchase Twitter on numerous occasions, Dorsey doesn't confirm as much. Nor does he acknowledge whether or not Zuckerberg tried to recruit him to join Facebook. But it's clear the two developed a close friendship. At one point, Zuckerberg was "regularly" cooking dinner for Dorsey, with both influential men discussing their observations of the latest tech industry trends. Reflecting on one conversation (presumably before Twitter snatched up Vine), Dorsey says, "He’d ask me if I had any ideas. Am I seeing anything in video? And, immediately, I’d turn back the question: ‘What are you guys seeing?’"
These days, Dorsey's primary focus is Square. The New Yorker says he visits Twitter's office just once each week. "Our niche is countertops and farm stands," Dorsey says of his successful (and quickly growing) payments service. But contrary to reports of a rocky relationship, it seems that Dorsey's stepped back presence at Twitter has helped keep things cordial between he and fellow co-founders Williams and Biz Stone. As the company they built together prepares to go public, they offer nothing but praise for Dorsey. "What I have seen in the last few years as a Jack observer is his intense focus on his work and on himself to become better. It’s amazing," says Evan Williams. For the full, exhaustive look at one of Silicon Valley's most successful executives, head over to The New Yorker.