Find Your Place

Find Your Place

 “Give me a firm place to stand and a lever and I can move the earth.” – Archimedes

If you are reading this you are likely no stranger to the concept of leverage in its digital context: using technology to amplify your effort.

Code, media, brand, capital — all forms of leverage that (if deployed with good judgement) can keep working after you stop working.

So who wouldn’t want leverage? The desire to get more from less is universal.

So why doesn’t everyone have leverage? Because the first part of the statement is harder to come by: finding (or building) a firm place to stand.

The physical, mechanical explanation makes perfect sense—you need to be standing on a firm surface to be able to apply force to the lever to move the thing.

Digitally, this concept is less intuitive — but you still need a firm place to “stand” in order to direct energy efficiently enough to move something.

Shifts in focus dilute your ability to apply that pressure, and reduce your ability to significantly move things.

For a mental image of this idea, you can imagine trying to apply downward pressure to  many scattered levers at the same time with your two hands.

In summary, leverage is as much about where you are standing as how much force you are applying.

Leverage is as much about where you are standing as how much force you are applying.

If you are building something, it is far more useful to focus on the work you are doing to produce the result than the result itself.

The constraint we apply to package our idea determines their reach & resonance. "Make 1 decision to eliminate 1,000 decisions."

Labor is generally a more interchangeable resource than vision.

To help understand this idea, consider the contrast between the two concepts ancient Greeks used to think about time.

It should be relatively simple to identify when we aren't accumulating net new experience, but in practice, it doesn't seem to be.

Language is an incredible tool. It makes it possible for us to externalize what we think and communicate it to others.