The role model
Last year I went to a very interesting business event, Archangel Summit. The hour before the gates opened I Uber drove a few participants to event. After, I also managed to be around them while at the event. You’ll be surprised by the change in behavior. The driver is somehow assimilated with the car. An absent entity not worthy of a certain controlled behavior.
The speaker I liked the most was Gary Vaynerchuck. Cool, smart, and a hustler. He admits it and it fits with his personal brand. One of the people asking questions started with “you’re my role model.” It felt wrong. Why would I want to be him? I like and admire the guy but he has his path and I have mine. I’ll learn from him, but I can’t be him. I’ll feel stupid thinking something like this. It goes against the evidence that every human being is unique and lives a singular life.
I remember looking up to people and thinking “I want to be like him when I grow up.” But I was 10 years old and even then I knew being like him meant I want to know how he’s done things to see what knowledge I can “steal” in order to get what’s mine.
To idolize and imitate somebody else feels so wrong. There is only one Steve Jobs. Only one Gary Vaynerchuck. I watch the GaryVee Show and I feel good if I get one idea that I can translate into action from every ten videos. You can’t replicate his life experience, but can adapt and “steal” his thinking process. I don’t look at these two, let’s say, as role models. But I’m willing to comb with a fine analytic process all their decisions and actions, in the respective timeframe and economic historical conditions, in order to see what I can learn/teach/use/reuse.
It’s a fine balance between learning from other people experiences and missing the wonderful experience of making your own mistakes.
Focus on living a good life and on being creative. Being a team player when it’s your life as stake is overrated. Being in team GaryVee or team Branson it’s not enough. Set sails alone. Be yourself with no restriction.
Short disclaimer: The Journal of an Uber Driver is a work of fiction.
Long disclaimer: The literary exercise to define a nowadays character for a novel led me to create these 25 blog posts. This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental. Any opinion expressed about Uber should not be interpreted as having a negative connotation. I admire the company as an incumbent of the platform economy and I am a registered Uber driver for research purposes.