Content By Devops .com
Everyday we’re reinventing ourselves. Whether we’re reinventing knowledge through learning, or technology through development, nothing stays stagnant and disruption makes sure of that.
In a TechStrong TV segment, MediaOps Co-Founder and Editor-in-Chief Alan Shimel sits down with Brad Feld, current managing director at Foundry Group and author of “The Entrepreneur’s Weekly Nietzsche: A Book for Disruptors” to discuss this reinvention and the importance of disruptors.
If you’re not familiar with Brad Feld, he’s a well known venture capitalist and author who’s had his hand in the startup community as an author and founder of TechStars, a capital market company. He teamed up with Dave Jilk, a former partner of Feld Technologies, Brad’s very first company.
To cycle back to the word “disruptor,” it’s one Brad wants you to hang on to. He says, “Anybody who is involved in being a disruptor of an industry whether you’re a founder or a leader or an employee of a company, we like to think this is applicable to what you’re doing.”
Because of their focus on disruptors, it’s only fitting that Brad and Dave chose to concentrate on one of the most disruptive philosopher’s in history: Friedrich Nietzche. As Brad says, “In the 1860s to the 1890s, when he wrote the body of his work, Nietzsche was very disruptive to the status quo – of everything.” Like Nietzche, if you’re an entrepreneur or in the tech community today, you’re challenging conformity and reinventing the world.
While this book is intended for entrepreneurs, you certainly don’t have to be one to enjoy this book. “Entrepreneurial thinking is valuable for everybody in all aspects of life. Doesn’t mean you have to be an entrepreneur but the kind of mindset of an entrepreneur is powerful to understand,” says Feld. If you’re a disruptor, or simply enjoy learning, you’ll get a lot from this book.
And if you’re worried about not understanding the philosophy component, fear not. “The Entrepreneur’s Weekly Nietzsche: A Book for Disruptors” is incredibly accessible. Brad uses very small quotes (one to three sentences) from Nietzsche and translates it into contemporary English. After each quote is a short essay intended to “provoke thought, not tell you the answer.” As Brad says, “One of the meta goals of this book is not to tell people what to do. It’s to stimulate thinking.”
As a bonus to most quotes and essays, there’s actually a narrative written by an entrepreneur (some famous, some not-so-famous) discussing their experience and what they thought of when Brad and Dave gave them the quote.
With 52 different topics, this book is not meant to be gobbled down. While you can, you’ll get a lot more out of it when you dip-in and dip-out of areas that you’re interested in. Feld and Jilk’s hope is to simply get people to think: “We’re trying to help people stimulate thought around these ideas. Presumably any one of these topics is something you can ponder and meditate on.”
“The Entrepreneur’s Weekly Nietzsche” isn’t an untouchable academic piece, rather a relatable reflection of the human experience. Talking about the importance of including his own experience in the book, Brad emphasizes, “I don’t write books for a living. I’m a venture capitalist for a living. I write books because I love to write, I love to read and I love to think. My motivation for the writing is part of my own experience learning.”
Whether you choose to read a chapter a week or every few weeks, Brad and Alan recommend you take each chapter on its own. Think about it and internalize it before moving on. And if you’re able to re-read chapters, that’s even better. “Today, what I find myself doing when I do these talks is I’m reading these quotes again and I’m discovering new things in the quotes and what they make me think,” says Brad. “Again, not trying to tell me the absolute truth from the quote, but the thought that it then stimulates.”
If you’re into learning, disrupting or the entrepreneurial mindset, check out “The Entrepreneur’s Weekly Nietzsche: A Book for Disruptors” and attend Brad’s session at TechStrong Con 2021 Virtual Summit, on June 14, to enter his book giveaway.