Society & Culture
210: Older Entrepreneurs Winning
On today’s episode of Legends and Losers Unlocked, Christopher Lochhead shares the awesome and fascinating article written by Irving Wladawsky-Berger for Wall Street Journal. It tackles the prevalent ageism in Silicon Valley and how research shows that contrary to popular belief, older entrepreneurs are winning.
“I've been a lot more successful as I got more experience. And I think that tends to be true.” - Christopher Lochhead
Pretty much the 20 years Christopher has been in Silicon Valley, the common thinking is that being a tech entrepreneur is a young person’s game. At one point in his career, one of the top venture capitalists in SV told him that all the great startups are founded by men 35 years and younger.
Other people say that if you’re over 50 in Silicon Valley, you have “aged out.” This is peak ageism.
The media celebrates the likes of Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg and Larry Page who were in their 20s when they first made a name for themselves. And then there’s Bezos founded Amazon when he was 30.
There’s a tremendous amount of attention paid to these young geniuses, as they should be. Zuckerberg believes young people are smarter and Thiel created a program providing hundred grand for young people to pursue their ideas. An Economist article even says that entrepreneurs are stereotypically college drop-outs.
Venture capitalist Vinod Khosal said people under 35 make change happen and that people over 45 die in terms of new ideas because they keep falling back on old habits. But Christopher would like to disagree. Not all old people are averse to new ideas, especially in the tech sphere.
Backed up by research, age is still on the side of entrepreneurs. A group of researchers from MIT broke down over 35,000 high-growth firms, both startups and long-standing companies. Needless to say, their findings will make people think twice about their perceptions on age in the tech industry.
To hear more about the article and why older entrepreneurs are winning, download and listen to the episode now!
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