The Start-Up of You: Reid Hoffman

Chapter 2: These were my main takeaways from this book. This was actually one of my top 10 books for sure because it had really good actionable items and valuable insights/advice/tips.

These were my main takeaways from this book. This was actually one of my top 10 books for sure because it had really good actionable items and valuable insights/advice/tips.

  1. Identify three people who are striving toward aspirations similar to your own. Use them as benchmarks. How did they get to where they are?
  2. Write down your key assets in the context of a market reality.

Ex: For me, I know I am great at networking and connecting people to other people whom they want to meet. I should leverage that in order to build good karma amongst my network.

In the next month: Review your calendar, journals, and old emails and get a sense for how you spent your last six Saturdays. What do you do when you have nothing urgent to do? How you spend your free time may reveal your true interests and aspirations; compare them to what you say your aspirations are.

  • Think about how you are currently adding value at work. If you stopped going to the office suddenly, what would not get done? Think about the things people frequently compliment you on- those may be your strengths.

Network Intelligence: Meet with three trusted connections and ask them what they see as your greatest strengths. If they had come to you for help or advice on one topic, what would it be?

For me, it is always resume or job related/salary negotiations advice.

Chapter 3: Prioritize learning – Learning does not stop when you graduate from college or even graduate school.

Learn by doing… You can read all you want but the best way to learn is by doing.

  • Schedule a coffee meeting with someone who used to work in your professional niche who pivoted to a new a career plan. How did he or she make the shift? Why? Was it a good move? What were signs that the time was right?
  • Make a plan to develop more transferable skills by simply pledging to sign up for a course or conference or by pledging to spend one hour each self-learning.
  • Reserve a personal domain name. (yourname.com)
  • Reach out to five people who work in adjacent niches and ask them to coffee. Keep up these relationships over time so you an access diverse information.

Chapter 4 notes:

  • Build genuine relationships. The one that throws out business cards to every person without actually getting to them know is not going to make it far. It is much better to have valuable relationships rather than quantity.
  • Be a bridge and a connector. It will serve you in the long run.
  • Look at your calendar for the six past months and identify the five people you spend the most time with- are you happy with the influence those five people are having on you?
  • Make two useful introductions to your contacts who don’t know each other.
  • Keep in touch with your ten most valuable¬†connections regularly without having to ask them for a favor or anything.
  • Make an interesting people fund used for coffee and networking purposes. This will serve you well.

Chapter 5 notes:

Be like Benjamin Franklin and create your own mastermind group.

Hustle, hustle, hustle. Hustling will never be underrated. There is almost no better strategy in business other than hustling.

  • Ask the most curious person you know out to lunch and try to get infected by their sense of awe.
  • Take a coworker in a different department out for lunch or attend a seminar in a different but related field.
  • Opportunities are attached to people. Identify the people in your network who always seem to have their hands in interesting pots. Try to understand what makes them hubs of opportunity and resolve to meet more people with those characteristics.

Chapter 6 notes:

Always have a backup plan because you really don’t know. Just because you work for a huge corporate company, environments and markets are unpredictable you should always have a backup plan even if you work for a government agency.

Chapter 7 notes:

  • Ask good questions.
  • Leverage domain experts
  • Post interesting questions to your Linkedin network, Twitter and Facebook.
  • Schedule three lunch dates to one with a person a few rungs ahead of you in your industry; one with a person with an old friend you haven’t seen in awhile; and one with a person from an adjacent industry whose career you admire.
  • Become a go-to person for other people in your network on certain topics. Make known to your connections your interests and skill by writing blog posts and emails, or set up discussion groups.

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