“do you think it’s better to build your career around skills or around ideas?”.
Brittany immediately said “skills” and I immediately said “ideas”. We argued about it for a few minutes, and ultimately we both agreed that skills and ideas are both important (duh) and that you can of course build both sides in parallel.
But more interestingly was Brian’s respnose — he had previously asked the same question to Albert, who had a more interesting answer, which was:
“you should build your career around momentum”
In other words, you want one thing to flow into the next, accumulating a crescendo of importance, impact and reach, that builds its own center of gravity and energy. This really struck me, and has been on my mind since then. Now that I’m writing this, it strikes me as a very natural answer to get from an investor, as momentum is what startups hope to create — traction, energy, network effects, “the flywheel”.
Separately, the word momentum has been on my mind a lot lately because of the really awesome and inspiring Momentum chrome extension that replaces your “new tab” screen with an inspirational photo and a simple prompt asking you what your goal for the day is. Mine looks like this today:
As simple as it is, the Momentum screen has really been great in the week or two I’ve been using it. The idea of identifying a single focal point and priority for the day is refreshingly simple and surprisingly calming. And really nailing your top priority, rather than getting spread thin and scattered across a million other things, is how you build momentum.
So, momentum. Momentum. mmmmm.