The Social Network Wake-Up Call

“Harvard undergraduates believe that inventing a job is better than finding a job.”~President Summers from The Social Network movie.

  • How would your life be different if you believed that inventing a job is better than finding one?
  • How would your life be different if your parents held that same belief, acted on it, and modeled it to you?
  • What would our world economy look like if everyone believed that inventing a job is better than finding one?

These are the questions inspired by a “Social Network Wake-up Call.”

I had no plans to watch “The Facebook” movie. Why would I watch a movie about some young, cocky, most likely “privileged,” computer guy who graduated from Harvard? I knew that Bill Gates graduated from Harvard too and as we all know, he continues to make tons of money as a “computer guy.”

Yes, I do regularly use the online social network that was one of Mark Zuckerberg’s brainchildren. However, I did not have any secret desires to know about the lives of the “inventor” or inventors, according to this movie. However, a friend of mine works part-time at a local movie theater, to supplement her income, and gave me a free ticket. Free movie? Why, not.

Fate brought me to this movie to witness the brief scene where two other cocky young men, accusing Zuckerberg of stealing their idea, make an appeal for the university President to take disciplinary action on their behalf. When the President of Harvard made his proclamation about their students beliefs about “inventing jobs”, he got my full attention.

I have been giving dedicated effort to developing my entrepreneurial mindset and skills for the past couple of years. Although, I love my undergraduate Alma mater, Carnegie Mellon University, I now wish that the culture of my own university would have championed the same idea of “students as job creators,” like Harvard obviously cultivates. My career path is probably representative of the first generation professional‘s experience. The work ethic of my family taught me how to be an excellent “employee” and my undergraduate university helped me get “employed.”

I definitely learned how to “invent” and “create” on some level through my undergraduate education. I can build databases or design websites from scratch, which has allowed me to “find” side jobs for myself and earn extra income for the past 16 years. At the same time, I have seen the “market” for my skills in this area shrink exponentially due to more people developing technology skills, cheaper labor in other parts of the world, and inexpensive out-of-the-box technology applications.

In a professional area where a lot of people have similar skills, the ability to “invent” a job for yourself becomes significantly more important.  It’s obvious that even if you “find” a job, your chances of landing that job are questionable when there is more supply (i.e., applicants) than demand (i.e., jobs).

In a state of job recession, like the one we’ve been facing, the skills of “inventing” a job for yourself become invaluable. After reflecting on my own lessons from watching “The Social Network,” I also realized that maximizing my financial wealth could never come through being an “employee” alone. Being an employee is simply one way to earn income.

Most of us have seen the diagrams of corporate hierarchies that resemble the shape of a pyramid with the CEO at the top and the masses of every day employees at the bottom. A few months ago, I had a mind flash about that pyramid, when it comes to the financial side of things. I believe that most employees actually exist near the “tip” of that pyramid, when it comes to the money aspect of a business. However, the pyramid has been flipped upside down and becomes a sort of cash “funnel.”

By the time a person gets a paycheck, she or he is receiving only a “trickle” of the cash flow that a business actually creates. The idea is that the people at the top of the pyramid create more value and therefore they earn more. So, if you, like me, want to maximize your wealth-building opportunities, then answer the wake-up call from “The Social Network.” Discover where you can generate and bring value and start experimenting and inventing jobs for yourself!

Fundamentally, I believe that we will be better off financially, mentally, physically, and spiritually as well as more engaged in our careers by adopting a mindset of heightened creativity.

Take the time to answer these questions for yourself and let me know what important insights come up for you!

  • How would your life be different if you believed that inventing a job is better than finding one?
  • How would your life be different if your parents held that same belief, acted on it, and modeled it to you?
  • What would our world economy look like if everyone believed that inventing a job is better than finding one?

Check out this useful audio download from StevePavlina.com about “How to Make Money Without a Job” and “Embrace the entrepreneurship that’s in your DNA.” ~Sonia Simone.

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