How to go big, create wealth, and impact the world

Updated: November 1, 2022 Reading Time: 5 minutes rating: 7


In short: I liked it. While I haven’t read his first book “Abundance” I like the optimism. It is nice to read about the potentials of a better world. The guy knows that we can make the world better, that there are many untapped businesses that we can exploit. It was the first time I read about crowdfunding and crowdsourcing in such depth. Good research there, and more importantly lots of good tips for later.

The book has two big how-to sections which I haven’t read. I will read them once I need them

From the book I got that you need always a system, a set of rules to follow ( check lists!) when making decisions of any kind. Also, you need resilience and patience. Most projects and ideas discussed in the book take time to develop, some 10-15 years even.

The key is to do things to impact the world, take money out of the picture. Money is not the end goal it is just something extra you get along the way!

Notes & Highlights

“Worlds’s biggest problems = World’s biggest business opportunities” Think about waste and waste management. We know that China buys most of the world’s waste, what are they doing with it? Can I disrupt that market? Can we change the way waste is collected/recycled?

Could we produce something that would enable people to get something out of waste and reduce the amount they produce?

The Six D’s “The six D’s are a chain reaction of technological progression, a road map of rapid development that always leads to enormous upheaval and opportunity”

Digitize “Anything that becomes digitized hops on Moore’s Law of increasing computational power”. Deceptive “The first stages of exponential growth go unnoticed” Disruptive “Any innovation that creates a new market and disrupts an existing one”. Disrupt or prepare to be disrupted.

Demonetize “Remove the money from the equation”. Stop charging for a service, generate wealth in other ways (think Google) Dematerialize “is about the vanishing of the goods and services themselves.” Kodak example camera -> digital camera -> smartphone … where’s the camera?!

Democratize “democratization is what happens when those hard costs drop so low they become available and affordable to just about everyone”. Latest example: 3D printing!

In summary: Exponential entrepreneurhsip:

  • Disrupt
  • Give the product for free (demonetize, dematerialize)
  • Reach the world (democratization).

“Decreasing prices, increasing performant and the development of far friendlier user interfaces are making these platforms available to those with a clear vision of where they want to go”

This bit is annoying because it assumes that some people naturally know where they want to go and have a vision. I think you learn this through experience.

“The creation of a simple and elegant used interface gives entrepreneurs the ability to harness this new tool to solve problems, start businesses and most importantly, experiment”

Moore’s Law, Infinite Computing “Every year we produce more computing power than the sum of all prior years. This overabundance is the beginning of a new era”

“People think that bold projects don’t get funding because of their audacity. That’s not the case. They don’t get funded because of a lack of measurability”

Clear goals. “Clarity gives us certainty. We know what to do and where to focus our attention while we are doing it. When goals are clear, metacognition is replaced by in-the-moment cognition, and the self stays out of the picture” “As a focusing mechanism, immediate feedback, is something of an extension of clear goals”

“Flow appears near the emotional midpoint between boredom and anxiety, in what scientists call the flow channel - the spot where the task is hard enough to make us stretch; not hard enough to make us snap”

“The best people to help you with your next project are those who helped you or watched you succeed with your last”

Collect laws. Build a system of maxims to guide you through decisions and life. Peter’s Laws

“We need to be alive to stay alive, simple as that”

“The best predictor of future success if past action. It doesn’t matter how small those actions”

“Doing something,g doing anything, is always so much more important than just talking about it”

“The moment one gets into the ‘expert’ state of mind a great number of things become impossible”

“I want to have an impact. I wanted to create something substantially better than what came before”. — Elon Musk

Go to first principles. Deconstruct “It should be pointed out that first principle thinking works so well because it gives us a proven strategy for editing out complexity, while also allowing entrepreneurs to sidestep the tide of popular opinion.”