What is a secret is how much. Is it changing a lot? Has most of the change already happened? What does the future look like?
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If you wanted to get rich, how would you do it? I think your best bet would be to start or join a startup. That's been a reliable way to get rich for hundreds of years.
The word "startup" dates from the s, but what happens in one is very similar to the venture-backed trading voyages of the Middle Ages. Startups usually involve technology, so much so that the phrase "high-tech startup" is almost redundant. A startup is a small company that takes on a hard technical problem.
Lots of people get rich knowing nothing more than that. You don't have to know physics to be a good pitcher.
But I think it could give you an edge to understand the underlying principles. Why do startups have to be small? Will a startup inevitably stop being a startup as it grows larger? And why do they so often work on developing new technology? Why are there so many startups selling new drugs or computer software, and none selling corn oil or laundry detergent?
The Proposition Economically, you can think of a startup as a way to compress your whole working life into a few years.
Instead of working at a low intensity for forty years, you work as hard as you possibly can for four.
This pays especially well in technology, where you earn a premium for working fast. Here is a brief sketch of the economic proposition. You could probably work twice as many hours as a corporate employee, and if you focus you can probably get three times as much done in an hour.
Then there is one more multiple: Suppose another multiple of three. Combine all these multipliers, and I'm claiming you could be 36 times more productive than you're expected to be in a random corporate job. Like all back-of-the-envelope calculations, this one has a lot of wiggle room.
I wouldn't try to defend the actual numbers. But I stand by the structure of the calculation. I'm not claiming the multiplier is precisely 36, but it is certainly more than 10, and probably rarely as high as Startups are not magic.May 13, · Imagine a town where inequality existed in everything.
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