Entrepreneurs are the new labor

Everyone should read “Entrepreneurs are the new labor”. And then don’t ask why I, or any experienced entrepreneur, won’t participate in incubators or pitch events.

“A friend who works at a hedge fund and is starting to dabble in startups on the side wanted a quick primer from me on the popular Lean Startup model. After outlining the basic idea, I added some of my own cautious critical commentary.

My friend immediately leaped to the conclusion that I’d been unconsciously resisting: “So you’re basically saying that lean startups are great for investors, and not so great for entrepreneurs” (he also said “bwaahaahaa!”)

Another friend, a battle-scarred tech veteran, reacted to my views with a metaphor that made even me cringe: “So incubators like Y-Combinator are basically a cloud resource for investors, from which to source interchangeable hustlers, who are prized primarily for their youthful energy rather than any deep market knowledge.” So much for the vaguely romantic notion of startup-founding as being somehow qualitatively different from interchangeable drones in a cubicle farm. Different farm, same metaphor.”

I have previously discussed the dislike in the entrepreneur community for Paul Graham’s obsession with streamlining entrepreneurship. Why? Because its deducing entrepreneurship down to a cubicle farm. Which is exactly what we are all escaping from.

Look into the backgrounds of new founders, and you’ll see an increasing # coming from employment backgrounds. Not entrepreneurial backgrounds.

But I don’t believe “entrepreneurs are the new labor” is the correct term. Entrepreneurs would be rather ineffective labor, so that would never work.

It’s really more like “Your employees are the new entrepreneurs”. Perhaps this is really a by-product of more entrepreneurs becoming investors.

Real game-changing companies have & always will come from our entrepreneurs.

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