Earn your views

I love the simplicity of this statement: Earn your views. Views can mean something different to everyone but it’s the “earn” part that hits for me.

Somewhere in my 20’s, when I started my first business, I fell in love with the work. Doing the work was the differentiator for me. I knew that if someone was starting a business in the same space that I would simply outwork them. Grind more. Do more.

Success or failure for me was about how much effort was put into the work. Lots = success. Little = failure.

During that time in the heyday of the Internet, magazine covers and news outlets praised the exact opposite. People were rewarded for getting to the starting line, not finishing the race. The world got caught up in the celebrity of the startup.

I didn’t. I always focused on earning my spot. This meant that I could back up the praise with the work. My thinking was that I would get the results to get the views. I would earn them.

This stubbornness has downsides. I certainly did miss out on the quick wealth as we’ve seen in every technology shift in my lifetime. There are always people that are able to sniff out opportunity at the start of the “thing” and be in and out before everyone else. The Dotcom boom/bust, the mobile era, social media, cannabis, and now the AI race are full of entrepreneurs with little expertise reaping rewards from capitalizing on the trend.

No shame at all in doing this if you can. Capitalism is capitalism. I just couldn’t justify doing it that way.

An outsized motivator was the consistent hum of imposter syndrome that most (all?) entrepreneurs suffer from. Doing the work, validation from the effort and being able to defend the outcome helped ease that voice of discontent in my head.

I’m motivated by removing the tenuous nature of success by putting in the effort all the time. You can’t go wrong always asking yourself if the view you are seeing was earned or absconded.

*The title of this post is from Dan Martell who consistently posts about earning his views. I love the simplicity, the focus and the broad application of it. Thank you Dan for distilling the complex to this simple powerful statement.