Mid-year review, mental models & monetising your writing
Community action and learning adventures on Network Capital
This past week has been all about the art of writing, mental models and community engagement. Before we dive into the details, here is a quick overview for you -
🧠 Mental Model: Which 20% of actions led to 80% of outcomes?
📚Network Capital Summer School: The Mental Model Graphic Novel - Group Discussion & Book Launch
🚀 Fellowship: The Side-Hustle Fellowship
💌 Newsletter spotlight: Should you quit your job to become a writer?, Writers, Teachers: Underpaid Today, Millionaires Tomorrow, & Generosity is power
We have noticed that our office hours are focused primarily on addressing immediate work related issues. We could be spending a lot more time discussing long-term professional goals and dreams. In the coming 10 days, before the summer school and side hustle fellowship starts, we are opening up the calendar to brainstorm your future self. Think of it as a mid-year review with a coach. Folks like Barack Obama, Adam Grant, Erin Meyer, Reid Hoffman regularly do such check-ins.
If this sounds interesting to you, please complete this assignment and signup for office hours. We plan to make this a regular thing so that you can continually reflect on your life and career choices. Let's not get so busy with the urgent (but less important) issues that we forget what matters to us and why.
Mental models and heuristics are critical sources of knowledge. To make them accessible to the first cohort of the Network Capital Summer School Students, our team has created a graphic novel for some of the most important mental models.
Network Capital Summer School is designed for school students to spark their love for learning. Our focus will be writing, public speaking, critical thinking and deep reading, timeless skills that will serve them well for the rest of their lives. The curriculum includes -
Weekend projects and side hustles make us better thinkers by sparking lateral thinking. We are able to develop a broader perspective on the way the world works and what our unique role is in shaping it. Essentially we are able to connect dots better.
Even if there are no tangible benefits, we would have become smarter through experimentation. Principal Economic Adviser Sanjeev Sanyal, in his Network Capital masterclass, said that there are no failed experiments. We test hypotheses through a process of trial and error, we can’t go into them expecting the result we want.
The joy of discovery is indescribable. Weekend projects propel practical innovation, stuff that actually moves the needle. In addition, they add color to our coronavirus fatigued stay-at-home existence.
Gumroad, a company we invested in, was built over a weekend. Patreon, that recently raised $155 Million at $4 Billion valuation was set up in a few weeks of hacking. The first version of YouTube was ready within days as three former PayPal employees decided to act on their frustration of struggling with sharing videos online. The YouTube of today is far more sophisticated but its origin can be traced to a few weekends of trial and error.
You may or may not build the gazillion dollar company over a weekend project or a side hustle but indulging your curiosity in a failsafe fashion has no downside. We hope you consider it.
Sairee Chahal is the Founder, CEO of SHEROES – a community platform for women, offering support, resources, opportunities and interactions via Sheroes.com and the SHEROES App. Sairee is credited with building up women at work and future-of-work conversations in India, besides building a strong technology play to solve the problems of gender disparity in India.
Ipshita is an incoming Stanford GSB MBA student, and is currently working with Nova Credit. Nova helps immigrants moving to the US start their financial journey on an equal footing, by helping them use their home country credit history, to access financial products in the US. Prior to Nova, Ipshita was the founder of a social-first content discovery platform for educational content. She also spent over three years in early-stage VC and impact investing in India. Ipshita believes in using technology as an equalising force, with a passion for education and financial inclusion.
Should you quit your job to write is an interesting question. What’s clear is that in the 21st century you don’t need hyper scale as a writer to begin with. You don’t need to have the following of a JK Rowling or the NYT to make it. Few hundred or a thousand would do. At least that would be a good start.
Take a look at Sam Parr’s subscription newsletter “Trends” that is making millions in revenue based on the power of words. He has a simple four-pronged strategy that got him to this point.
COVID-19 put inordinate administrative overload on teachers. They not only had to redesign their lesson plans and keep “Zoomed Out” students engaged but also figure out ways to track progress, submit clunky performance updates, and make do with budget cuts across the board.
Two things happened.
First, “star teachers”, teachers loved by students, realized their importance in keeping the education system running.
Second, it occurred to them they didn’t really institutions. In fact, institutions made things slower and more bureaucratic. Also, institutions kept most of the money for themselves. There was no financial incentive to go the extra mile.
While many teachers don’t get into the profession to make money, there is nothing wrong with teachers trying to create new income streams for themselves.
Generosity is power. Be it war, argument, disagreement or infidelity, the generous party is almost always the lesser aggrieved party (or victor where applicable). Let’s explore this both morally and strategically.
⚡️If you are new to Network Capital, start by going through our most popular - masterclass (Career Principles with Nobel Laureate Robert Shiller); newsletter(Writing Fast and Slow); and podcast (The art of writing with Dr. Shashi Tharoor)
💞 If you need an invite to Clubhouse or Lunchclub, let firstname.lastname@example.org know. You can also reach out to them for feedback, suggestions, doubts and any help navigating the Network Capital ecosystem.