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“I never wanted to be an entrepreneur,” Jack Dorsey at #TCdisrupt #DisruptSF

by Larry Chiang on September 12, 2012

By Larry Chiang

I believe entrepreneurs mean what they say. It’s just that I break down the things that I hear into tidbits we as baby entrepreneurs can take action on.

At Disrupt Conference, produced by, Jack Dorsey dropped a whopper of a quote:

Inc. (@Inc) 9/10/12 8:25 PM “I never wanted to be an entrepreneur.” – @Jack Dorsey #TCDisrupt | via @lindsayblakely

I’m not a newbie. As a student of technology entrepreneurship, specifically ENGR 145 at Stanford University, I’ve heard countless legendary entrepreneurs profess this.

Intel founder: Gordon Moore Groupon Founder: Andrew Mason

There is even a book by Ben Mezrich called “Accidental Billionaires”. It spawned a movie with fictitious liberalizations called “The Social Network”.

As an entrepreneur that peaked sophomore year in college, I’ve been stuck two steps ahead of you, the baby entrepreneur, for about 20,000 hours. It makes me an expert on uber early stage entrepreneurship. Here are patterns I recognize boiled down to patterns you can replicate (and MAYBE purposefully pattern iterate 🙂

-1- The “my thing is just so awesome, I had to be CEO / founder”


How nice for you.

But, I am not buying it 100%. I observe the pattern to be ‘feigned unconscious competence’. I’m all for being humble but let’s get some mentorship in doing something specific…

-2- Conscious Incompetence with Cofounders

Experience the fustercluck of a newbie company in a “Startup Weekend” or better yet do a lemonade stand business concept YOUTUBE embed: Lemonade and Gua Gua Guacamole

There is “Startup Hour” happening in Houston Texas November 7. It’s a sequel to “Startup Weekend”. It’s free. It’s at the Four Seasons in Houston.

-3- While You’re Feigning Conscious Competence, Set an Intention with Your Future Female Mentor

-4- Be Mindful of Sequelized Business Concepts

In the case of Intel, Gordon Moore and Robert Noyce left something that was 80% similar to Fairchild Semiconductor to form Intel.

As an engineering co-founder we can easily innovate the 20% needed for a sequel business to start. I’d guess that Square by Keith Rabois is a 2-25% improvement depending on which payments pundit you quizzed.

-5- Build Up Your FICO Score and Save Your Treasure

I ask CNN money editor Chris Peacock about credit scores

Keep your powder dry and save 30% of your salary. Squirrel it away because when you become an entrepreneur (against your wishes), you’ll need it

-6- State Your Desire to Become an Accidental Entrepreneur (Secretly)

I’d use the Treasure Map method. It’s page 68 of Shakti Gawain’s book Creative Visualization.

I mentor sorority girls at Alpha Phi in Berkeley to do this. If you’re doing it right it looks like a serial killers wall. In movies, when cops find the serial killers HQ, the treasure map wall looks like an orgasm of evidence that is over-the-top and without a doubt “who-dunnit”.

When you’re successful, your treasure map reveals and answers the question: “no wonder she was successful… Look at all she *DID*”


CEO of Duck9 Stanford University Entrepreneur in Residence, Emeritus

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