Sales & Marketing Industry News
Creating Cults, Finding Randomness & Maverick GeniusesJune 9th 2011

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1. How Do Maverick Geniuses Get Created?
Since it was founded in 1861, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology has boasted a stunning capacity to produce graduates who go on to found profitable, innovative companies. “If the MIT was a country, it would have the 11th highest GDP of any nation in the world.” In this piece, The Guardian takes a look at what gives MIT an edge. Not surprisingly the school’s curriculum focuses on doing, not dreaming:

From the moment MIT was founded by William Barton Rogers in 1861 it was clear what it was not. It was not like the other school up the river. While Harvard stuck to the English model of an Oxbridge classical education, with its emphasis on Latin and Greek as befitted the landed aristocracy, MIT would look to the German system of learning based onresearch and hands-on experimentation, championing meritocracy and industry where Harvard preferred the privileges of birth. Knowledge was at a premium, yes, but it had to be useful.

2. Does Great Hiring Mean Creating A Cult? (Yes.)

Via Sebastian Marshall, I recently stumbled on this piece by veteran entrepreneur Steve Newcomb, which dispenses some wonderful, no-nonsense advice on how to hire well and how to work through your anxieties as a business owner. Don’t be deterred by its length, the whole thing is worth reading.

Steve on managing your start-up anxiety:

Whenever people ask me how I make it through, I always say the same thing.  Sit down and write down the shit storms that you are worrying about and divide them into two list.  Those that are under your control and those that aren’t.  Then focus on the list that you can control.  If you stare at that list long enough you’ll realize a commonality.  That the solution to every single one of them begins with having a team that is rock solid, one that isn’t afraid of challenges and one that believes in you as a founder.  If you do this one thing right, it will steady you and calm your mind enough to face and conquer any challenge.

Full article at