Working inside the system to kick butt

I meet many people who bash Snapchat or Facebook as products. They think of the products as a waste of time. That’s one way to approach making products. Another way is to do the opposite. Put Snapchat on a pedestal. Ask “What makes Snapchat addictive? How did they get to over a 100 million users? Can we take their strategies and leverage them to achieve our product x’s goals?”

You can adopt this strategy with your career choices too. Gary Gensler worked for Goldman Sachs and became a top manager (this is a career decision some would ordinarily pooh-pooh as selling out), but then he left and worked for the CFTC (Commodity Futures Trading Commission) to help fix the broken and corrupt derivatives market — and he was the only person fit for the job, because no one else in the government understood how derivatives worked. He eventually helped bring transparency to the $400 trillion previously opaque swaps market, transforming the sleepy CFTC into a powerful regulatory force.*

Gary Gensler defends record as he leaves CFTC