Monday, November 19, 2007

In search of common sense

Guy Kawasaki wrote an article a few days ago titled "In Search of Inexperience". He talks about why serial entrepreneurs are not necessarily what they're cracked out to be - implicitly arguing in favor of first-time entrepreneurs.

I wrote a comment there which I'm reproducing here:

I agree with the premise, but disagree with the analysis. In other words, the theorem is correct but the proof is wrong.

In the 8 years since I first dived head-first into entrepreneurship, I've found that people with common sense - in this Silicon Valley chockful of analysts, MBAs, VCs, and "angels" - are an endangered species.

It is plain common sense that anyone who is hungry, passionate, persistent and all that good stuff is more likely to succeed than someone who is not as motivated.

But the malaise afflicting the armchair quarterbacks in the Silicon Valley (i.e. anyone who is not an entrepreneur) is the obsession with bottling up the magic potion for success as an entrepreneur.

After once listening to David Thomson, the author of "Blueprint to a billion", I asked him if he knew of anyone who had done it twice. The answer was an embarrassed silence followed by a "no, I never thought about it".

Guy, give it up. There's no "blueprint" for success.

Rich or poor, first time entrepreneur or serial entrepreneur, 19, 27, or 42 years old, none of these things have anything to do with success. The answer is much more fundamental- sooner or later the man who wins is the man who thinks he can (from the poem by Walter Wintle).

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Is the world upside down?

Is the world upside down?
It's a topsy-turvy world out there!