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Peter Thiel, The First Investor in Facebook with Karl Bryan

by | In the Magazine, Karl Bryan, Lessons, Peter Thiel | 0 comments

I’m a huge fan of Peter Thiel and I’ve been studying him and his approach to startups for a long time. He was the first investor in Facebook and that one investment has yielded him billions. Wow!

Peter doesn’t just invest though… he actually coaches the companies he believes in.

Imagine as a business coach what would happen if you were able to identify a company that could generate BILLIONS for you and your family. That’s what his approach is all about and I strongly recommend you read this carefully. Your kids and grandkids might thank me one day   :o)

Often, companies think innovation is about coming up with an improved version of Facebook or a new-and-improved Microsoft… or to fine-tune and optimize existing lines of business.

That’s not Peter Thiel style innovation – that’s merely globalization which could be defined as the art of going from one to many.

True innovation means going from zero to one – creating new, fresh and possibly strange things that have never been done before. It’s usually technology which facilitates these innovations and the underlying theme of finding different ways to do more with less.

If you want to excel as an innovator, don’t carbon copy and then improve something that already exists. Come up with something that hasn’t been done before and create a new and different path.

“The next Bill Gates will not build an operating system. The next Larry Page or Sergey Brin won’t create a search engine. And the next Mark Zuckerberg won’t design a social network. If you’re copying these guys, you aren’t learning from them. Doing what we already know takes the world from 1 to n, adding more of something similar. But every time we create something new, we go from 0 to 1. Unless they invest in the difficult task of creating new things, companies will fail in the future no matter how big their profits remain today.” – Peter Thiel

The question you and every entrepreneur striving for success should ask is “What valuable company is no one building right now?

He has ten major concepts that can help you understand new ways that you and your clients can create success and how they apply to startup businesses.

These include:

  • How to Grow Exponentially
  • Create a  Monopoly
  • Understand Competition
  • Be the Last-Mover
  • Don’t Gamble with Success
  • The Law of Power
  • Secrets are Important
  • The Sales Culture
  • Build a Better Computer
  • The Paradox of Leaders

Concept 1: How to Grow Exponentially

The central challenge for any startup is to question accepted wisdom and rethink business from scratch. Anything else won’t have the power to create an entire industry from thin air.

Concept Two: Be a Monopoly

The real goal of any startup is to build a successful company which becomes a monopoly by solving a unique problem for customers. You have to figure out how to rise above your competitors.

Example: a business coach that specializes in referral marketing for chiropractors in small towns of less than 50,000 people.

Concept Three: Understand Competition

Most people believe competition is good and monopolies are wrong. The reality is the more we compete, the less we end up gaining. It’s time for a massive rethink.

“Competition can make people hallucinate opportunities where none exist. The crazy 90’s version of this was the fierce battle for the online pet store market. It was Pets.com vs. PetStore.com vs. Petopia.com vs. what seemed like dozens of others. Each company was obsessed with defeating its rivals, precisely because there were no substantive differences to focus on. Amid all the tactical questions – Who could price chewy dog toys most aggressively? Who could create the best Super-Bowl ads? These companies totally lost sight of the wider question of whether the online pet supply market was the right space to be in. Winning is better than losing, but everybody loses when the war isn’t worth fighting. When Pets.com folded after the dot-com crash, $300 million of investment capital disappeared with it.” – Peter Thiel

Concept Four: Be the Last-Mover

Everyone raves about the first-mover advantage, but that’s only temporary at best. Moving first is a tactic, not a goal. The real money is made by the last-mover if they can enjoy years of monopoly profits.

Concept Five: Success is not a Lottery

If success is a matter of luck, why is it some individuals have built several multi-billion-dollar companies? The simple fact is your career path is not a lottery ticket. You can control your destiny with a startup.

Concept 6: The Law of Power

Regardless of whether you realize it or not, we all live in a power law world where a small few will radically outstrip all rivals. This is the law of the universe and it applies to startups in every way.

Concept 7: Secrets are Important

Secrets are the key to building a valuable company which nobody else is building at present. You have to think about secrets and get busy finding them to position yourself to excel in a startup.

Concept 8: Building the Sales Culture

The best startups are more like cults than anything else. People who work there get immersed in what’s going on. You also need to make marketing and sales the centerpiece of what you’re doing.

Concept 9: Build a Better Computer

The most valuable businesses of the coming decades will be built by entrepreneurs who seek to empower people with better computers and those who have the right elements in place. They will soar.

Concept 10: The Paradox of Leaders

Successful startups tend to be created by unusual people. It’s always more powerful – but also more dangerous – for a startup to be led by a distinctive individual rather than by an interchangeable manager.

Hope this gives you plenty to think about…. bottom line – create your own MONOPOLY and have your coaching clients do the same.

Competition is for the weak  :o)

Thanks for tuning in,

 About Karl Bryan

Karl Bryan gets clients for Business Coaches…period. He is the editor of The Six Figure Coach Magazine and Chairman of Leader Publishing Worldwide, home of the largest private community of Business Coaches (24 countries and counting) in the world.
His goal is straight forward… to help serious coaches/consultants get more clients and to start using the internet effectively.

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