My writing has been on a hiatus. A lot has being going on. But, its mostly me being lazy. I decided to move on from my job in LA end of October. I moved to SF about ten days ago. SF is everything that I thought it would be, both the great and upsetting parts. One of the greatest advantages SF has is the critical mass of great people here. It is like a social network with its own IRL network effects that are very hard to break despite all the countering forces like cost of living and a whole host of other problems.
Turns out moving to a new city, exploring what’s next and trying to set up meetings with people is not the best idea when the holidays are right around the order! I knew it would be tough to have conversations when everyone is slammed and trying to finish up the year-end priorities but I had to do my best given my circumstances and timeline. I am shocked at how many well respected and successful people actually ended up taking calls and meetings with me. Everyone from GPs at top tier funds and successful founders to top execs at companies I admire to my internet friends!
Of course, these weren’t cold emails or reach outs. These were all people who I had built relationships with over past two years on twitter. I had no intention of moving to SF for the longest time! I even took a 12 month lease on my place in LA, which I ended up breaking just 6.5 months into it! All those back and forths on twitter, day after day, formulated my relationships with so many in the Bay are over the years. The best meetings so far have been with the people who have been following me for a while and have a ton of context on how I think, what ideas I care about, how I talk to others, who else in the community talks to me etc. on twitter. Everyone cared about my past experiences and journey but not so much as to hold any of it against me in any way in terms of evaluating what I can do in the future now that I am here. It is unbelievable how some people went well above and beyond taking a 45 min meeting with me by constantly and proactively connecting me with their network and brainstorming ideas about my options.
What I experience on twitter and IRL here isn’t “networking”. If you think thats networking, go try to network and you ll see how poor the results are long term in most cases in tech. Networking, in the conventional sense, works really well in other areas like consulting and finance. I know because I have done it. I had no short term agenda in forming these relationships over the years. People that took the time out for me had nothing to benefit by taking a meeting with an online acquaintance in December. For me “networking” has merely meant learning from others in my twitter network, constantly discovering new interesting folks, participating in conversations with both high profile people and engaged people with small followings, not being afraid to share strong views and ask questions and curating the people I follow very frequently. It is that simple.
Another thing that I have been amazed by is how small and tight the community is here. People who have spent a decent amount of time here and are fairly open to meeting new people are generally just one or two degrees of separation from most people not in ther personal circles. The information flow is so rich and fast. It is crazy how many times the subset of brilliant and nice folks here who have been here for a long time get brought up in my conversations.
I am excited to start my journey here! I do miss my friends in LA though…