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Shira Ovide

The Fast and the Spurious in Tech

The "move fast and break things" ethos can get out of hand.

The axiom of Silicon Valley is that companies that move fast, break things and grow like weeds are winners. The corollary is that some technology startups move too fast and break.

The latest Silicon Valley cautionary tale is Zenefits, which makes software to automate human resources chores for small businesses and sells employee health insurance plans. Following reports by BuzzFeed and other news outlets that Zenefits allowed workers to sell insurance even if they didn’t have state licenses to do so, the company said founder Parker Conrad had stepped down as CEO and as a director.