How to Succeed as a Tech Entrepreneur

I wanna, before I start, I want to thank the audience. Of course, I know that you can be some other place. I know that you can be hanging out with your friends, maybe playing sports, or maybe you were just forced to be here by your teacher. But regardless, thank you very much for investing your time in this talk, and I will do everything in my power to make sure that each and every single one of you go outta this room with something that you can use over the horizon. Today we stand at the precipice of unprecedented human progress. A bit dramatic, I know. But basically all that means is there’s just so much opportunity there, especially for leaders and entrepreneurs to succeed. And today I’m gonna spend the next 10 minutes sharing some of those secrets with you. But before I go and reveals those secrets, I would like to attempt to define what I mean when I say success. Now this gentleman here is Earl Nightingale. Besides having an awesome name, he is an author and a radio talk show host from the 1950s. He says that success is the progressive realization of a worthy ideal. Notice. He doesn’t say success is being a doctor or being an engineer. He doesn’t even say success is a million bucks.

There are two components to success. The first one is having a worthy ideal, something that you can be proud of, something that you can be passionate about, something that fulfills you. And the other component is progressively moving in the right direction. It can be two steps back as long as the following steps are three steps forward. Now, the tech entrepreneurs of our time all say something along the lines of this. Everybody probably knows Mr. Musk by now. He’s all over the news. He says, you are paid in direct proportion. You are paid in direct proportion to the difficulty of the problems you solve.

In other words, success, both personal success, where you are fulfilled, where you’re passionate to achieve a personal goal, and also financial success, where you actually have a number in mind. Maybe your financial success is a hundred dollars worth of goods and services to live a comfortable life. Maybe it’s a few million dollars because you want financial freedom. Or maybe it’s a billion dollars because you wanna leave a legacy and you want to give it all away to charity regardless of the type of personal and financial success that you want. One way that tech entrepreneurs do this is by solving society’s problems. So money is basically a byproduct of solving problems.

If you solve society’s problems, society basically gives you an i o u in the form of dollars or euros or yen or taiba. You can use this i o u in the future to exchange for other things of value, food, shelter, gadgets, whatever it might be. So if money is a byproduct of solving problems, then we should all be solving problems, but not just any old problem. Because again, a tech entrepreneur that I deeply respect, Naval Ravikant, says, if you want to achieve high levels of financial success, then you need to solve a problem of a society that they haven’t solved yet and solve it at scale. So what does that mean? That means, well, you gotta solve a problem that people haven’t solved already, and you have to solve it for a lot of people.

So today I want to introduce one such problem, trust that I believe the solution blockchain can solve at scale. Now, these two concepts are quite difficult to grasp, so I’m gonna attempt to try to explain it through a simple demonstration. So if you can just maybe, um, get in pairs so the person sleeping on their right can maybe, uh, become pairs with each other. Yeah. Now, if you don’t have a partner, I’ll be your partner. No problem. So first, if you wanna be partners, you gotta look at the person next to you. So just quickly look at the person next to you. There we go. Fantastic. All right. Now I want you to look at that person and think to yourself, do you trust that person? All right, let me ask, uh, a more specific question. Do you trust that person with $500? Do you trust that person with your beloved smartphone? Maybe the answer’s yes, maybe the answer’s no. Let me take the example a step further. Let’s say the person on the left has a mobile phone they wanna sell. The person on the right has $500 that they want to use to buy that mobile phone.

Great. Okay, so would you be comfortable in handing that person the phone and wait for the money? Cuz that person might just run off with a phone. Would you be comfortable handing that person the cash and she can promise that? Look, I promise I’ll deliver the phone to you tomorrow. Come on, would you maybe? Alright, maybe the person next to you is somebody that you already trust, so look behind you. How about the person behind you?


Alright, how about the person across the room? How about the person that is not in this room? How about the person that is not in this country? How about the person on the other end of the world through the internet? How about a person that has a handle name and you don’t even know if it’s a person. It might be a bot. You can see the further you go from your circle of trust, the more you need a third party to vouch.

And there are companies in this world that do just that. They facilitate trust. These companies are called financial institutions. So we know there’s a problem of trust. You can’t even trust the person sitting next to you or behind you. But we also know that there are companies that already exist that facilitate this trust. Make sure that nobody gets scammed. The problem though is that facilitating trust is actually quite expensive. You have to check the ID of the person, you have to make sure that they have a proper address. You wanna make sure that they have a credit history. There are many, many things that you need to do in order to facilitate this trust. And so it costs a lot of money. And that is why there’s still 1.7 billion people on this planet that don’t have a bank account because financial institutions would rather deal with people that can afford the fees. It also just so happens that according to the Global Fin Index data, the top three reasons that people don’t have a bank account is because they can’t afford the fees. There’s no branch close by or they just don’t have that much money.

So what me and my team are attempting to do is to try to solve the problem of trust at scale. How are we doing that? We’re doing that through what we call a web three wallet. It’s essentially an application. You can download it today. It captures the goodness of the blockchain technology and allows the facilitation of trust at a 10th of a penny. If you have a mobile phone and you have the internet, then you can give the access of trust to the billions of people that don’t have it today. Not just that things can also have wallets, refrigerators can have wallets, washing machines can have wallets, and cars can have wallets. Actually, today we are working on a few use cases where a refrigerator or a washing machine pays its owner to press that echo button. A car can incentivize its driver to take an eco-friendly route. So over the horizon, we see things starting to be involved in commerce. And in order for all of us to navigate this new world, we need to raise our digital literacy. We need educators and governments all around the world to make sure that we arm the next generation of entrepreneurs and leaders to understand technology and to be used to it.

So in conclusion, think big. Think about all the problems that you can solve in the world.

Grab that problem. Give society what it wants and do it at scale. But that is only the first step because there are a lot of dreamers in this world and they just dream and don’t act. There’s a second step, which is start small. If you wanna learn about blockchain, go to the internet, start learning. Download an app. There’s a lot of art in the the hallway. Create NFTs, start selling them. Display it in the metaverse. You can create a school coin. You can incentivize student behavior. You can have the school accepted at the confectionary. I just wanna leave you with this one final thought. Knowledge is only potential power. It becomes power only when and if it is organized into definite plans of action and directed to a definite end.

Thank you.

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