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Derek and Zac Talk Digital Nomad

Back in August ’13 my friend Derek Szeto was hired to fill the role of Product Marketer over at Tropical MBA and uprooted his entire life to move to Vietnam. Because I had previous experience leaving everything behind to move halfway around the world to work for one of my favorite internet entrepreneurs, we decided to have a chat about it before he left and share it with the world

He has since been gone for 6 months and has learned a lot, so we will have to catch up with him soon to see how his perspective has changed and what has made the biggest impact business wise.

Future Economy

Mom and Dad Could See the Future

I remember my first computer. I was about 5 years old and it was called a Tandy. I didn’t know many other kids, but looking back I think it’s safe to say most of the other kids in my neighborhood didn’t have one of these.

My father sat me down and said “Son, this is the future. Some day, everyone will have a computer. If you don’t know how to use one, you will get left behind”. Then he then began to teach me my first real operating system, DOS. I feel old just typing this…

Soon we had 3 computers in our home. A tutor came once a week to teach my siblings and I how to insert pictures and save documents on this new fangled “Windows” thing. We were required to do at least one hour of typing lessons a day every single day. No matter how hard we cried or complained my parents stayed firm. “This is the future” they would say, “You need to know how to do this”.

Now, more than 20 years after my first computer, I realize how right my parents were (aren’t they always right?). I see that I am exactly where my parents would have hoped I would be 20 years ago as early adopters of the computer. When they took the time out of their busy lives to make sure their children learned these skills they helped their children prepare for an entirely new type of economy they knew nothing about besides that it was coming.

The future is here and there is more opportunity in front of our generation than any generation before us. There are opportunities today that didn’t exist 10 years ago and that people couldn’t have even dreamed of 20 years ago. You will find that there are new jobs being created every day. Jobs your parents have never heard of and most of your friends would laugh at the title of. “Content wizard, WordPress Guru, Hack Star, ”…. These aren’t your grandfather’s job titles for sure.

These are the jobs that need filling. These are the jobs that are pushing our new economy forward faster than most people have come to realize. The future is bright, but things are changing quickly. Fortune favors both the bold and prepared and you have to be at least one of those things to grab on to one of these new opportunities.

Today’s jobs are evolving. You can’t just be a heavy hitter, you also need a golden glove, a can do attitude, and great teamwork skills. Companies need you to wear many hats and be willing to constantly grow with the technology as it changes, sometimes day to day. If you want to thrive in this new system you have to either evolve or be left in the past.

So here, publicly, I want to say thank you to my Mother and my Father. I hope I can stay ahead of the curve like you both did and prepare myself and hopefully my someday children for a future I can’t see, but I know is on its way. I’m so happy to be a part of it all and I can’t wait to see the way our world’s economy grows now that it is finally here.

Day 1 Startup Institute Journal

Today was my first day as an associate at the Startup Institute in Boston. I’ve been looking forward to seeing exactly what is going on over there. I’m happy to report that I’m very pleased and excited to be a part of it all.

Right off the bat during orientation the CEO and co-founder Aaron OHearn announced the name change from Boston Startup School to The Startup Institute because they are opening another in  New York.  I got the feeling I was witnessing history in the making.

The mood in the room was edgy and fun. In 8 hours I saw a four person panel of a few local startup all stars answering questions, adults making towers out of marshmallows and spaghetti, friends being made, skills being learned, and everyone breaking down what they suck most at.

There were a lot of talented people packed into one room, all well educated and looking to add to their skill set every day for the next 8 weeks. The students themselves were full of knowledge and to see all of them together so eager to learn and share was incredibly inspiring.

The staff was awesome. I was impressed with the product they have put together for the students. They kept the energy up all day long and did not stop throwing out top quality content and kept everyone excited for more. I learned a lot from the team and realized I have a lot more to learn still.

I’m very happy with where I am right now and so thankful for the opportunity to be a part of what I’m seeing happen in front of me. There was so much sharing and growth. If every day is half as great as today, this is going to be a great 8 weeks.

When I’m not passed out on my keyboard I’m planning on blogging about my experiences as an associate at the Startup Institute in Boston during the Spring 2013 class. I think what they do is amazing I hope I can do it justice here so that others can get some perspective.

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