Tech and startup industry has developed an extremely strong sharing and collaboration culture. Every year hundreds of books on all aspects of startups functioning are being published. Tech media outlets are almost reaching the size of mainstream media now. Podcasts, YouTube videos, free ebooks in your mailbox, dozens of meetups happening in every city worldwide. Most of the content is still being produced by the blogs.

All for one goal: share the golden wisdom of running technology startups and growing them into fantastic unicorns worth billions! So that we all can get filthy rich and the world would finally live in peace. Now there is a true part about the sharing culture in tech and a part that is being totally misinterpreted.

The True Part

The truth about sharing culture in startups is that industry leaders really want you to succeed building startups. First of all, because it helps them to filter out their network and increases the chances that some smart guys in the area will start their own companies – which they could later invest into.

Local community builders want you to succeed too. They work hard sharing the news and knowledge on building ventures, hosting meetups and managing FB groups. Later when the community grows they would surely start the coworking in the area, monetize on the blog/magazine dedicated to tech, or receive some consultancy contracts helping startups that have just received funding to scale-up.

Small bloggers actually want to share some wisdom and research findings. Each of them would be delighted to help you grow your business. You even should reach out personally to any of them and ask more questions – if they’re any good they’d be happy to chat or dedicate 30 minutes of time having a Skype call.

Because that is how we grow the network, get to know new people and learn new stuff.

knowledge sharing

The False Part

It’s a misleading thinking that everything that’s being written on tech and startups is true. The marketing and business landscapes in tech are changing so rapidly that the knowledge and most of the know-how gets outdated fast. The blog posts on SEO dated 2015 are most probably misleading now after a couple of changes to the Google search algorithm. One of the most valuable skills that only comes from experience working in tech is being able to find and differentiate valuable sources of knowledge from the BS around.

I really have to write a separate blog post with some useful tips on consuming good content. And how not to let Business Insider and Hubspot take 3 hours of your time making you read “20 Tips On How To Build Unicorn Startups Overnight” or something similar.

Now, local tech events are amazing: beer, friends (some of them as speakers) and pizza.   Having a nice chat and sharing the recent news. Many invite their random friends to join.

The people you meet during the professional events and later add on LinkedIn aren’t your best friends immediately though – do not beg them for intros to VCs or feedback on the next day. Invest more into building real human relationships, finding common points of interest and bringing value. The easiness of getting introductions and starting the relationships in tech industry doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t work hard on maintaining and nurturing them.

Have no common interests with the big tech guys or can bring no value yet? Search better, if you really try you surely could help them out somehow and get nice experience or insights instead. Most importantly, bringing value is how you start and build professional connections.

Why We Share

In technology and startups industry it all comes down to the fact that if you are doing a lot of community work – you are most probably successful or getting there bit by bit. The other way around, if you are successful – you are most probably doing a lot of community and educational work.

The reason is being simple – tech industry is evolving and changing way too fast for anyone to get along by themselves. The only way for broader ecosystems to survive and stay competitive is to share information as actively as possible so all can benefit. Usually the fastest way to innovate is to copy two or three best of your competitors or peers – combining their best strategies together and making it work even better. Read a great blog on how to approach tech bloggers? Read ten more, then carefully come up with one strategy which is killing it and works specifically for you.

Investors would never find good startups to invest into if they weren’t organizing free workshops or bootcamps. Startups would have no one to recruit if founders weren’t networking over beer on meetups time after time. Marketers would find it hard to come up with new growth hacks if they weren’t asking colleagues for advice.

Sharing is the core value and key to power in professional networks. Click To Tweet

According to the network theory of power, in a world of networks the ability to exercise power over others depends on two mechanisms: the ability to constitute networks and the ability to connect and ensure the cooperation of different networks. Bringing value via sharing is the key to both of those mechanisms.

sharing and building networks

 

When It Is Time To Share

The time to share knowledge and experience comes when you feel like you have accomplished enough for others to be interested in learning about it. Or when you are extremely curious about things and are willing to do the job of exploring for others and then harvesting the value out of it. Or just both of the things above.

That’s my case now. I am starting with the blog VladShvets.com under my name’s domain for two major reasons. First of all, I humbly believe I’ve got some experience and insights to share which could be interesting for others. Over the last 2 years I’ve worked with different tech companies in different industries, talked with many very smart people and finally feeling like I could put some of it down into text. As my career and life unfold I’m surely going to have new and new topics to share and discuss, and the blog would be the front page of that journey.

I would never start the blog however if I were going to write only on the tech topics I am confident talking about. My experience is surely way too small in comparison to most of the experienced industry professionals who’ve had as vibrant careers encompassing decades of years. But I am curious enough to talk to those people, do the deep research and write on the topics I am exploring about. Sharing the knowledge acquired from others and adding value by putting time into structuring and refining the wisdom out of it.

And so there shall be five verticals underlying my blog:

  • Opinion – short opinion & research essays on growth, marketing, management, culture and the world in general.
  • Niche – research and experience-driven guides on niche topics in marketing and growth.
  • Company – drilling down into the past, present, and future of world’s most successful tech companies.
  • Industry – comprehensive articles providing insights into whole industries, their trends, and realities.
  • Ecosystem – an insider look into tech ecosystems around the world: tech culture, major players, investment climate and gigs happening.

I shall republish all the articles to my Medium and be sure to follow the updates on Twitter.

The blog is to become the place for me to share the experiences from tech conferences, lessons learned from my personal experience in growth and marketing, and the research I am doing on different niches and topics. I am also planning to add up some useful apps and book reviews. With the real genuine goal of bringing value to every one of you guys and boosting up the networks around me.

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