Getting Paid to Learn


ver since the first dot-com boom I’ve been telling folks there is no mystery to what I do as an entrepreneur. 

I get paid to learn. 

That fact is as true now as it has ever been. As entrepreneurs, we create value by learning what our customers want. We take that information and try to innovate in a way that will make them happier. Put differently, a long-time friend and CTO once told me “We are just one page ahead in the manual.” 

At the heart of it, that’s all it means to be an effective entrepreneur. To study well and solve for X. Getting paid stems from the value you create. So focus on creating value. How can you create anything of value without observation and experimentation? At what point do you stop doing new things in new ways?

The future hasn’t been written, but in order to be at the right place at the right time, it helps to do your homework. It pays to learn as much as you can. To cover all angles. To be a good synth for inputs and inspire those around you to share and act in accordance with a shared vision. 

I look at this moment in our collective consciousness as a moment to learn. How much I learn about the experiences people have determines how I get paid. That is the entrepreneur’s life. I welcome learning as much as I welcome you. 

When you look at it like that, you find out that you’re not one page ahead but one page behind. And that has all the makings of a page-turner.

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