Some people believe that just because a person or company is wealthier (or better funded) than you are, then somehow they are automatically better at doing what you do.

At the risk of a vein popping out of my forehead for even having to say this, let’s be perfectly clear: wealth and prestige doesn’t mean anything other than someone having wealth and prestige. They’re totally beatable.

I had a friend who was concerned that because a major company was possibly moving into his territory, that he’d be pushed out and should consider just joining forces with the enemy.

I’m not sure at what decibel I yelled at him for even thinking that, but it’s possible the cops were called. He is the one that they should be afraid of.

If there is one thing that the digital revolution has made abundantly clear over the last two decades, it is that much of the Fortune 500 ends up slow and stupid.

They inevitably end up moving at a glacial pace, start overflowing with redundancy and are habitually staffed by people who’s depth of professional experience is centered on having gone from college into some soulless corporate job that keeps them doing just enough to not get sacked on Friday.


 

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In the world of endless cubicles, even the smallest decision takes a meeting (or ten) before anything actually gets done.

Instead of working within a lean and tight team of like-minded individuals, team members for corporate projects get stuck with whoever they get stuck with. And, if they’re lucky, their coworker won’t try to stab them in the back in hopes of a momentary supervisor compliment and a better year-end bonus.

When they actually do manage to do something innovative, there is a better-than-good chance that it cost them about 10x what a younger company, or more agile startup, could have done the same thing for.

Don’t believe me? Two words: Elon Musk. He quit college, started his first business with a $28,000 loan and has since become the real life Tony Stark.

Between Paypal, Tesla, Solar City and SpaceX, he has single-handedly turned the work of the global finance industry, international automotive conglomerates and militarized nation-states into something he does before his afternoon coffee.

elon-musk-spacex

And all those billionaires, who aren’t named Elon Musk, that you feel obligated to idolize and suck up to? Here’s a little secret: every single one of them has vomited uncontrollably into a toilet seat at least once in their lives.

When they wake up, there is a good chance they are just as worried about getting through the day as you are. Divorces? Plenty. Hangovers? Raging ones. Drug addictions? With even more potent drugs. Dirty secrets? The kind that need bleach. Worried about money? In a different way, but abso-fucking-lutely.

I’m not saying that every corporate leader and person of wealth has a disastrous personal life and are terrible at what they do for a living (that would obviously be an incorrect and dumb thing to say), I’m just driving the point home that you should never be afraid of them.

They’re all just people. We all have the same 24 hours in the day. That’s more than enough time to conjure up frighteningly inventive ways to get even the mightiest of bank accounts out of your way entirely.

If you’re really that worried about the wealthy, then their money isn’t your real problem – it’s your lack of imagination to do something truly unconventional. – JC