The world is populated with people that fall within one of these categories:
Nice people are people that haven’t been burnt.
Perhaps they’ve gone through hard times but someone has always bailed them out, either because of their money, their looks or their parents. These people are irrelevant because they’ve never been tested.
Until you’ve stood on your own feet, walked through the fire and been burnt without a bailout, you’re a nothing.
Being burnt in the fire is where the truth lurks.
People that have been burnt are divided into two categories:
When you emerge from the fire you ask yourself, “Do I continue to blindly trust? Do I not trust anyone ever again? Do I continue to trust, but with filters?”
Paranoid people are those that say, “I will never trust anyone again.” They are the people that have been screwed by someone and never got over it. Maybe it was a business partner, maybe it was a girl, maybe it was a boy. Doesn’t matter. All that matters is that this guy is now convinced the world is out to get him.
And he’s determined to get the world first. So he’s always screwing partners. He rationalizes it as, “He was going to screw me so I screwed him first. Served him right.”
The nice people of the world think they can “save” the paranoid people. They can’t. Paranoid people take advantage of nice people every day until eventually the nice person is burnt so badly that he must make a decision for himself. Really rich people never face this moment, and so instead they carry a trail of leeches to the grave.
Enough of nice people and paranoid people.
The path taken by a true entrepreneur starts with the statement: “I will continue to trust, but with more filters.”
The reason only people that have been burnt and that can still trust can be entrepreneurs is that being an entrepreneur is about being simultaneously sceptical and moving fast. You must be careful who you trust, but its impossible to move fast if you don’t trust at all.
Its hard to walk forwards if you constantly looking over your shoulder.
You need an effective filter system to keep the parasites out. But once someone penetrates the shield you need to be able to implicitly trust him.
That’s it. The path to being an entrepreneur entails the risk of betrayal. Sometimes things don’t pan out and you’re hurt. Its in that moment that you face the test.
Do you continue to trust or do you say “screw the world”? If the latter, you on your own. Good luck with that.
If the former, welcome.
Also published on Medium.