Tue. Jan 18th, 2022

In secondary school, Kenan Saleh watched the movie Social media, Dramatic account of the early days Facebook. That’s when he decided that one day he would start his own company. “This is the first movie I’ve seen that shows you can be young and still be the most successful person in the room,” he says. “I must imitate Mark Zuckerberg Some way. “

In true Zuckerbergian fashion, Saleh started a company from his dorm room at the University of Pennsylvania. He collected $ 500,000 during and after the cram for the finals The company sells to elevators In 2019, the year he graduated. Along the way, Saleh realized that he needed a new role model. He no longer wants to be like Zuckerberg, who has been caught up in one scandal after another. Lots of people liked it Steve Jobs, But Jobs died, and reading his biography was as interesting as reading a history book. Larry Page, Sergey Brin and Bill Gates were still alive, but their contributions to Silicon Valley already seemed like ancient history. Saleh wanted a hero who is now making history.

Young people love to idol their predecessors. Jobs has been Silicon Valley’s favorite idol for decades, but to the next generation of startup founders, his legacy seems as old as Web 1.0. Boy talents like Zuckerberg and Evan Spiegel, who became billionaires at the age of 25, have fallen out of favor. So there are tech oligarchs like Jeff Bezos. “We don’t look at these idiots,” said Mark Baghadzian, a 22-year-old founder of a dating startup. “Just because you are a billionaire does not mean that you are positively influencing change.”

Instead, both Baghdad and Saleh now worship Elon Musk, Whom they see as billionaires on a moral mission. “He showed that you can do the best thing for the world and at the same time reap the benefits,” said Saleh, who started watching Mask videos while in college.

WIRED asked more than a dozen young startup founders between the ages of 15 and 30 who inspired them. More than half have nurtured musk. Others cite technology-optimists like Sam Altman and Patrick Collison, who believe that technology can solve the world’s biggest problems, or entrepreneurs-humanists with lesser-known startups. None of them read history books Apples, Google, Or Amazon; They say they have been further inspired by visionary companies trying to solve the world’s biggest problems.

Olav Sorenson, who taught entrepreneurship at UCLA and Yale, said his students appreciate people who have “succeeded without selling.” Some have quoted Seth Goldman, founder of Honest Tea, who now chairs the board of Beyond Meat, as a source of inspiration because “he focused his energy on investing and supporting business with an ethical mission,” Sorenson said.

“This generation is looking at all the problems and trying to say, ‘How can we begin to be part of the solution to the problems that the older generation has created for us?’ Of the Wharton School of Business in Pennsylvania. Rosenkoff says that over the past few years, he has noticed a change in the way students talk about entrepreneurship-not just as a banking or consulting career alternative, but as a way to start entrepreneurship with a “much broader social perspective.”

For many young entrepreneurs, the mask is a prime example of this mentality. “Elon Musk is literally picking up tabs for another generation of mistakes,” said Baghadzian, who read Ashley Vance. Biography of Musk In high school and since then he has been considered a hero. Baghadzian says that while companies like Amazon and Apple have come up with big innovations, the work of masks with electric vehicles and solar energy was much more important.

Other young people were inspired by the troup of the startup founder who struggled on the path to success. One mentioned sleeping on the floor of Tesla headquarters, which they said showed hunger. He also mentioned the stories of some people Airbnb Founder Brian Chesky, who made the most of his credit cards and relied on Ramen Noodles in the early days of the startup.

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