Welcome to another edition of Business Twitter, where we collect the best tweets to come out of Silicon Valley so you don’t have to. This article is part of a newsletter — if you want a weekly Business Twitter roundup sent to your inbox every Friday, subscribe here.
This week: A look at Elon Musk’s mental model method of decision making, a shirtless Scott Galloway, Paul Graham’s latest startup theory, and an electronic music NFT made by Brian Armstrong and DJ DAVI.
Here’s everything you may have missed from this week.
1. Elon Musk/Jeff Bezos decision-making
Elon Musk is on record that he makes decisions using the same technique as Jeff Bezos.— Julian Shapiro (@Julian) April 3, 2021
I found YouTube videos of them explaining it.
A thread on thinking more clearly:
Writer and growth marketing expert Julian Shapiro frequently shares insights from some of the brightest minds in business. This week, Shapiro focused on two all-time greats: Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk. As it turns out, Shapiro writes, Musk uses the same decision-making techniques that Bezos does.
Shapiro described the process of making mental models, or frameworks that help you understand how systems work and what decisions need to be made without knowing every detail about a situation.
“First Principles — What is the most efficient way to solve a problem if you started from scratch?” Shapiro wrote. “If you look past humanity’s attempts to solve it, what's the best approach if you reasoned from its principles?”
He then used the example of SpaceX’s early days, when the company decided to examine space flight from scratch as opposed to analyzing NASA’s rockets.
“They let a simple mental model—one that fits on a cue card—guide them through the deconstruction of a massive system so they could drastically improve it,” Shapiro added. “That is the leverage of models. Imagine if you looked at every part of the world this way.”
2. Scott Galloway goes shirtless
After Chamath posted a shirtless selfie back in February, Professor Scott Galloway followed suit. The surprise thirst trap received some praise, along with plenty of replies by users wishing they’d never laid eyes on it.
The satire account VCs Congratulating Themselves replied with “Professor Thirst Takes,” a play on their usual name for him, “Professor Cold Takes,” which Galloway earned after he made some famously terrible market predictions.
3. Paul Graham's startup advice
Something I explained to 12 yo: The biggest startups are always where two basic forces meet. E.g. Facebook = social relationships + internet. But these ideas are rarely found by looking for such intersections. They start as side projects you only later realize have this quality.— Paul Graham (@paulg) April 9, 2021
On Friday, startup guru and Y Combinator founder Paul Graham shared some advice about how startups affect the world. According to him, many startups exist at the crossroads of two forces, and founders are often unaware of what those forces are — they’re too busy building their companies. Y Combinator, for example, is at “the intersection of venture funding and mass production,” Graham wrote.
“We realized this a few weeks after starting it, but it was not our original motivation,” Graham added. “Originally we just wanted to make it easier to start startups.”
4. DJ Brian Armstrong
1/ Over the next few days I'll be releasing some electronic music that I created with DJ DAVI (David Khanjian). We'll be releasing them as NFTs.— Brian Armstrong (@brian_armstrong) April 7, 2021
Coinbase founder and CEO Brian Armstrong has more interests than cryptocurrency. On Wednesday, he announced that he was partnering with DJ DAVI (David Khanjian), to make some electronic music.
According to Armstrong, he wanted to learn how to make his own techno music, so he took lessons from the Los Angeles-based house DJ. Armstrong wrote that “99% of the talent comes from him,” and that “the theme of one of the songs is about building great stuff with technology, and never giving up.”
The music will be released as (what else?) NFTs on Zora, a Coinbase-funded NFT marketplace.
5. That monitor lizard
Hedge funds investing in startups. pic.twitter.com/yZQ7Eg7CHP— Benedict Evans (@benedictevans) April 8, 2021
Lastly, investor Benedict Evans shared one of the more viral tweets of the week, a video of a monitor lizard climbing the shelves of a 7-Eleven in Thailand, likening it to the way hedge funds invest in startups — perhaps by moving slowly and breaking things.