What’s Next (?)

It’s time we move past all this nonsense about Coal and Tariffs and focus on what’s next. Other countries are, especially China. Some smart folks like those at the Roosevelt Institute are thinking about the issues of AI, automation, jobs and policy. Their report “Don’t Fear The Robots” is an interesting read. Whether you fear or fear not, it’s time to start paying attention.

Ideas that stuck with me – 2017

What ideas struck you in 2017? You know, the ones that stayed with you…the ones you were still thinking of when you woke in the morning. Here are a few that stayed with me, in no particular order:

Divorce your good business instincts from your bad ideas. If you’re a good entrepreneur, you can assume your instinct is right 95% of the time, and your ideas might be right 25% of the time.
Mark Pincus – Zynga

I like to think I have good instincts, but often have found it hard to reconcile myself to my occasional business failure. I really like the distinction between instinct and ideas.

A youtube channel is the new paper route
Reed Hastings – Netflix

My friends and I often reminisce about our early jobs and lament the lack of part time and entry level positions available to our teenage kids. I think we often have a biased and limited view of what meaningful early employment looks like.

Be proud of your choices, be grateful for your gifts
Jeff Bezos – Amazon

There is a really unhealthy sense of entitlement that comes with everything the tech culture has achieved. It’s important to have a little humility and perspective when your chance gifts of zip code and IQ have so much to do with success, and increasingly drive income inequality.

You could never convince a monkey to give you a banana by promising him limitless bananas after death in monkey heaven.
Yuval Noah Harari – Author of Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind

The most impactful idea I’ve been exposed to this year is that we humans are separated from other species primarily by our ability to organize in huge numbers through establishing vast fictions. Religion, governments, and laws that guide commerce are just stories we tell each other and more importantly believe enough to dictate our behavior. Capitalism, socialism, objectivism, libertarianism, and all the religions are just evolving fictions competing in their own process of natural selection.

I’d love to hear what you found impactful over the last crazy year?