How New Yorkers are Creating Wealth

Startups are popping up in New York like whack-a-mole.  Whether it’s a technology startup or hedge fund startup, individuals in the Big Apple are manifesting their independence in an Eastern startup surge.

It’s no coincidence given the state of the economy that ambitious professionals are seeking wealth outside of the traditional corporate structure.  But why are startups widely considered the way to wealth these days?

It all begins with the definition of wealth.  While wealth is considered to be the state where an individual has an abundance of money, the money part of the equation is actually just the interim step to wealth.

Why is it that individuals who don’t have money feel wealthy?  It’s because the true definition of wealth is not an abundance of money, but rather having an abundance of things around you that have value.  Those things can give you feeling of satisfaction, security and — for some individuals — invincibility.

Money may be used to obtain more things that have a perceived value.  But money in and of itself does not make a person feel wealthy.  Case in point, you don’t see Warren Buffett or Steve Jobs lounging on a pile of money.  They have the things around them — whether it’s family or gadgets — that have value to them.

In a startup, individuals endure a compressed timeline of pain for a compressed timeline of gaining wealth.  In this case, wealth is the value that their company adds to society.

That perceived value is often directly proportional to the money that the company would fetch on the open market.  However, if you asked employees of a highly-valued startup at which point they felt wealthy, it’s not necessarily the point at which they had $500M in their hands.

That feeling of invincibility and value likely occurred before any liquid cash met their hands.  Because even if the startup failed, the skills they developed along the way are immensely valuable to the market.

It’s very difficult if not impossible to develop a concept into a tangible thing of value as quickly if at all within a large corporation as your efforts may be diluted by bureaucracy, policies, procedures and potentially the mediocre work of fellow employees.  Also, allowing the public to provide feedback on the value of the efforts is also more difficult behind the curtain of a large corporation.

So it’s not a surprise that in this economy where many Gen X’ers and Y’ers are concerned about their future, they’re seeking startups as a means to quickly create something of value while energy and opportunity are on their side.  With the playing field leveled post-collapse — especially in New York City — creating wealth today is accessible and anybody’s game.


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