Steve Jobs was not real. The demigod created by the media is only in our heads. Mark Zuckerberg is not real. Not even Bill Gates. They are all fantasies created by the media to peg larger than life successes and failures to mere men. Yes, we’re leaders in our fields, you see us in magazines, use products which development we supervise, yes we picked the color of the website sidebar. So what? What you read about top practicioners in the media is absolutely not real. But you know what, you are real, so let’s get real.
Apple, Facebook, Microsoft, even my small firm, Information Providers, have been built by no-name, talented but inexperienced developers that just want to make a difference. Hundreds of them. We merely inspire you. We were real once, but now no longer are. Articles, talks, interviews, awards, titles and commentary make us so, so unreal.
Humility is the ultimate currency. Use it, borrow it, store it and learn how to get more. Nobody is anybody, we’re all recipients of great luck, great help and greater friends and family. We are nothing without our social networks. Nothing without our mentors. We are nothing without the contractors, designers, developers, consultants and researchers that help us achieve great things. I’m not real, but you are. You’re doing everything on your own know. You’re starting to build a great company, reading three books per week, and hardly sleeping. Yeah, I remember those days. Back then, we were real.
The Forbes 40 under 40 are not real. Contestants in the Apprentice are not real. Beyonce is not real, we’re all products of institutional development. That’s the key issue here.
Institutional development helps craft a persona for leaders and execute upon a shared vision thru the help of employees, customers and suppliers. Institutions deserve all the merit. Apple, Facebook and *ip have built us. These institutions have nurtured our progress, developed our talents and presented us to society in the best light possible. As entrepreneurs, we’re nothing. Nothing but wealth brokers. We take the wealth that already resides in society and try to make something out of it.
But you are real. So real. You’re stating out, making something out of nothing. Waking up at 6am and going to bead at 4am. My suggestion: start going to bed at 8pm, workout, spend ten more times strategizing than executing and leverage, leverage, leverage. Don’t build an App, build an institution. And then, let the institution build you.
Don’t build America, let America build you and then improve America. Don’t build a product, build an institution that’s ideally suited to build products and then, only then release the best products an institution can. It’s called bootstrapping and it’s the key of the game you can also read about as “institutional or organizational development” in your favorite library.
So now you know what you have to do to become unreal. So go out and do it, get real.