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Thread: Four Start-Up Tips From 'The Social Network'

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    Moderator syc's Avatar
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    Default Four Start-Up Tips From 'The Social Network'

    David Fincher's "The Social Network" blew into theaters last weekend and the film is already generating Oscar buzz.

    While taking in the Sorkinian rapid-fire dialogue, we couldn't help charting the path of the main characters, Mark Zuckerberg and Co., as they rose to prominence.

    The movie is a fictionalized account of how Facebook started and aside from its entertainment value there are a few important lessons from the film that can help you succeed in your tech career -- especially if you're living the start-up life.

    Look for Inspiration in the Smallest Moments

    According to the movie, a fight with his girlfriend prompted Zuckerberg to take to his blog and draw up a prototype of "FaceMash," which allowed users to rank Harvard students' attractiveness. This form of interactive media was the foundation for Facebook's birth. If you're frustrated with something, use that spark as a propeller for creating your own version or designing a new product.

    Ask Your Family and Friends for Seed Money

    In the film, Zuckerberg teams up with Eduardo Saverin, a wealthy classmate from a Brazilian family with resources. Saverin initially funds the venture and provides ample bank to help the project off the ground. When the two get into a massive fight, however, Zuckerberg is forced to ask his family for a loan to keep the servers running (this part isn't depicted in the movie). Big-time angels may come later in the process, but in the beginning, start with those nearest and dearest to you.

    Don't Be Afraid to Dream Bigger

    There's a point where Zuckberg realizes that he and his team have to move to Palo Alto in order to get Facebook the attention it deserves. He drops out of Harvard to pursue the venture, lured in part by Napster founder Sean Parker's words of advice. "A million dollars isn't cool," Parker says. "You know what's cool? A billion dollars." It's that encouragement that enables Zuckerberg to realize that Facebook can be stretch across continents as a behemoth in its own right. Some call it deluded self-confidence, but without it, no start-up can succeed.

    Make Sure You're on the Same Page as Your Coworkers

    Saverin becomes obsessed with putting ads on Facebook pages, an idea that doesn't thrill Zuckerberg in the beginning. Ultimately, their outlooks diverge so drastically that Saverin is forced out and his shares are massively diluted. Creative differences are an important part of the start-up process insofar as they force founders to examine things from all angles, but don't be so unyielding that you're forced out at the outset. Saverin sued Zuckerberg and eventually settled, but after that spat he wasn't able to be a part of one of the most exciting business launches of its era.



    Source: wsj

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    Bipolar neoxiang's Avatar
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    Some good tips there. Sillicon Valley here i come!

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