I once heard a speaker on a conference panel say entrepreneurs have the same brain as serial killers. Or something like that. And even though I’ve not been able to properly research this theory, it does have its appeal.
Which led me to postulating a theory of my own – entrepreneurs and superheroes have a lot more in common than you think. Here’s why:
Entrepreneurs work better in teams
The Avengers, the Guardians of the Galaxy, the Justice League, the Xmen, the Fantastic Four… these superhero teams consist of individual heroes who can kick ass and get things done on their own, but when it comes to doing the really epic stuff, they bandy together and that’s when the magic really happens e.g the battle of New York.
Same thing goes for entrepreneurs. Have you noticed how most companies, especially the “unicorns” have more than one founder? Even more, have you noticed how the companies with kickass products always have the best teams/workforce? That’s the law of the superhero universe at work.
Entrepreneurs usually have a specialty
In the comic books, they’re called superpowers. All superheroes have them. Yes, including Batman, who happens to be the world’s best detective, FYI (he’d totally kick Sherlock Holmes’ ass). And these powers are as varied as the heroes themselves.
In the real world, if you’ve ever seen a founder going at his daily grind, you’ll know you’re witnessing something special. Coding skills, marketing skills, people skills, they’re modern day da Vincis.
They are a bit neurotic/psychotic
Let’s put this in perspective for a moment. A teenage kid gets struck by lightning and develops the ability to run faster than the speed of sound. And what’s the next thing he decides to do? Fight criminals. Another teenage kid gets bitten by a spider, gets super strength and can dodge bullets and what does he do with these abilities? He fights criminals.
Any rational person would tell you, these people are not well. If that was me, I’d be using my powers to have the time of my life. This is not even open for debate. What’s my business with crime? I’m serious, getting superpowers would make me the world’s worst nightmare.
So, when I see entrepreneurs, using their superpowers, skills and talent to solve our problems, you understand what I’m getting at. Day and night, they obsessively tackle day to day problems on the micro and macro level. They risk a lot and sacrifice so much to achieve their goals while facing the very real possibility of crushing failure. And even though I think this makes them a bit psychotic, it’s quite admirable.
Finally, entrepreneurs and superheroes solve problems
Think about it. The only reason why superheroes are a thing is because they help people, fight bad guys and stop the occasional global apocalypse. Which is sort of what entrepreneurs do also. Place these two sets of people in a utopia and watch them wither away into irrelevance.
Thankfully, our world is as far from a utopia right now as it can possibly get. Watching the news will prove me right (I found this really depressing story on CNN this morning).
So, here’s to many more years of kickass entrepreneurs.