It’s pretty amazing the pathway a startup can take you down, as a founder, or as a member of the founding team. We thought it would be interesting to do a breakdown of our company’s journey and compare it with HBO’s new, sometimes hysterical comedy, Silicon Valley, which is a spoof of the stereotypical Silicon Valley startup journey. All opinions here are our own..
Fact vs. Fiction:
Does every startup team get launched by a dorky startup founder?
The show depicts a geek caricature of the typical startup founder. Richard, Pied Piper’s founder, talks to himself, and builds compression algorithms in his spare time, and to paraphrase one of his manifestos, believes it’s time to take advantage of living in an age where guys like them no longer get beat up for being intelligent, but can now build empires based on their knowledge and unique nerdy skill sets.
We think it’s absolutely true that the typical founder is an introvert, and spends the majority of his/her day thinking how to leverage their insights and vision, but we emphatically believe that it does not require a “nerd” to do it. Rather, it takes a certain style and methodology, counter to the norm, to develop a powerful brand, and that is the one thing a pure nerd/dork can not do - i.e., develop a new culture. So either we have to redefine the classical definition of a nerd, or label this one - Richard - Hollywood fiction.
But what about Erlich Bachman; is there a nut like him on most startup teams?
For those of you who have not watched the show, Erlich Bachman has become the most alluring character in the show, for his outrageous antics, like posturing as if he is the second coming of Steve Jobs to ingesting psychedlic drugs to help him come up with a better name for the startup than Pied Piper - check out what he is made to look like on the show: …
But what is Erlich really good at? He’s great at fostering camaraderie. He motivates the team in their darkest of moments. He is able to bring energy and laughter to any situation, which happen to be critical attributes for any startup. For all the ugly times a startup is going to face, through all the dark corridors, terrifying unknowns, the only things that a startup can do is either succumb and crumble, or resort to laughter to continue moving forward. So, yes, every successful startup in some way, shape or form, has at least one Erlich Bachman in their journey, or should. This one we will call a fact.
Are billionaires really the way the way they are depicted in the series?
Probably. We’ve never met a billionaire before (though our founder slapped Marc Cuban’s hand at South By Southwest - that’s big, right?), but even before we watched the show, we can happily say our team had this image in our minds regarding the characters most billionaires seem to personify. Most are exceedingly intelligent, they do sometimes talk funny, some like Elon Musk spend their time doing crazy things like building spaceships, and probably think of themselves as utter geniuses. The show does a great job of portraying how most people think about them. So we’ll call this one fact.
- Collaborizm Team