Have I mentioned to you that Nicholas Nassim Taleb was the man responsible for me to jump into the world of Entrepreneurship and Startups? well, he did. He is by far the most brilliant mind and thinkers that we have in the world today. He has a new book out and I could not wait to get my hands on it, and thanks to Technology and Kindle, I got it the first day it was released. I love the Internet. The title of new book is Antifragile. I have not been able to put the book down, I can really see where he is coming from and his conclusions about Risk and calculating the odds of rare events (which all Risk Managers and Banks tend to do… even today!) is a fools errand. You cannot predict or calculate the risk of failure, the world was not build that way. What is the property that can enable systems to flourish and grow under uncertainty and risk?
We live in a world that we don’t understand, but we act like we do and that causes the fragility of our systems. I could not agree more to the main theme of the book. I see a lot of lessons for Entrepreneurs, I think as an Entrepreneur one needs to be Antifragile which is an opposite of Fragile. The definition of Antifragile is a quality that I believe every entrepreneur needs to build just like building muscle or fitness or endurance. So what is Antifragile you ask?
Antifragility is beyond resilience or robustness. The resilient resists shocks and stays the same; the antifragile gets better. This property is behind everything that has changed with time: evolution, culture, ideas, revolutions, political systems, technological innovation, cultural and economic success, corporate survival, good recipes (say, chicken soup or steak tartare with a drop of cognac), the rise of cities, cultures, legal systems, equatorial forests, bacterial resistance… even our own existence as a species on this planet. And antifragility determines the boundary between what is living and organic (or complex), say, the human body, and what is inert, say, a physical object like the stapler n your desk.
I am halfway through the book but had to write this post. Do yourself a favor and go get the book and read it. Here is the man himself describing the Antifragile:
- Is Antifragility the Secret to Success in a World Full of Uncertainty? [Lucas Wyrsch] (ecademy.com)
- Nassim Nicholas Taleb, The Incredible Hulk (readingbyeugene.com)
- Antifragile: How to Live in a World We Don’t Understand by Nassim Nicholas Taleb – review (guardian.co.uk)
- Taleb Pegs Greenspan, Stiglitz as Economy-Hurting ‘Fragilistas’ – Bloomberg (bloomberg.com)
- Whatever the Weather (3quarksdaily.com)