“Learn to sell. Learn to build. If you can do both, you will be unstoppable.”
Although I didn’t stumble upon this twitter thread until two years after it was posted, it caught my attention because of how relevant it felt at the time. I had recently finished reading Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki, and in that book the author also encourages learning how to sell. I was immediately hooked and signed up for an online graduate-level sales course. Armed with useful knowledge about storytelling, asking the right questions, and targeting your customer, I still felt like something was missing after completing the course.
Then I discovered Naval Ravikant.
I had learned to sell, but felt a little confused about learning to build. Build what? Obviously that can mean a lot of different things. In Naval’s case, he built a hugely successful online startup community.
Seeking further wisdom, I went back to Naval’s twitter thread to see if he clarified this any further. Here’s what I found:
“Code and media are permissionless leverage. They’re the leverage behind the newly rich. You can create software and media that works for you while you sleep.”
“If you can’t code, write books and blogs, record videos and podcasts.”
Here’s what I took away from this:
(A) Learn to sell, and
(B) Learn to code, or
(C) Learn to create media
This drove me into a short period of existential crisis. I didn’t know how to code, and I didn’t know how to create media.
I knew learning to code would be hard. There was no motivation to learn because I didn’t have any great product ideas that required coding. On the other hand, I’m an avid reader with lots of different interests, and writing a book is on my bucket list. So as you probably guessed, I decided to take path C and am now dedicating my free time to writing.
Let me get one thing clear – Naval’s Twitter advice was aimed at how to get rich. Do I want to become rich one day? Of course. Is that the primary motivation for starting this blog? No. Blogger and founder of Compound Writing Stew Fortier wrote an article titled Why You Should Share Your Ideas Online. One of the most compelling reasons for me was what he called “pouring gasoline on your career”. Here’s what he says about this:
Sharing your ideas online is one of the fastest ways to gain visibility as an expert or leader in your industry.
Although I’m still early in my Finance career and my industry can change in the future, I’d still like to have a foundation upon which I can share ideas about topics that are important or interesting to me.
So what’s important and interesting to me now? Here’s what you can expect to read from this blog:
- Topics about finance, capital markets, and fintech
- My experience working at a hedge fund and market maker
- Blockchain and my journey to understand it
- Other random topics that interest me, like learning a foreign language or lucid dreaming
You can read more about me here. When it comes to other bloggers, I’m a big fan of Cedric Chin from Commonplace, Shane Parrish from Farnam Street, and Stew Fortier from Compound Writing. These are some heavy-hitters when it comes to building great media, and one day I hope to offer something of similar value.
If you’re reading this, thank you for visiting the blog. The journey has just begun, and I’m excited to build something awesome.
Onward and upward!