What Gary Vaynerchuk Taught Me

Once Gary Vaynerchuk’s ideas take root in your brain, they start to take a life of their own. Gary’s philosophy is often simple, but very subtle.

Here are some of the big takeaways I got from this week’s conversation with Gary Vaynerchuk:

  1. Don’t complain
  2. Invest in the long-term
  3. Bet on the young
  4. Listen to your elders


  1. Don’t complain

Gary told me that his Belarussian parents “suffocated complaining” when he was growing up. This fits with my theory that immigrants don’t complain, they just get on with it.

Not complaining puts you at an advantage. While everyone else is feeling sorry for themselves, you get to move on, charge forward and adapt. It’s that simple.

  1. Invest in the long-term

The materialistic world we live in has somehow warped people’s idea of success. Gary paradoxically keeps telling young entrepreneurs to be patient.

How can he command his followers to hustle and be patient at the same time? It’s only a problem because assume success means instant gratification. It doesn’t. In fact, studying the greats shows they worked hard, and avoided the distractions, the bling, the “stuff” that so often throws creative innovation off track.

  1. Bet on the young

Gary is always keeping one eye on what platforms young people are using online, what their patterns are. We talked a lot about SnapChat and Music.ly.

For Gary it’s not really about the platform. It is about investing in the creators and innovators of tomorrow. By doing this, Gary has increased his value as a brand incredibly, because he has the respect and attention of a demographic most companies would kill for.

  1. Listen to your elders

Bet on the young, but listen to the old. Gary told me he spent a large part of his twenties speaking to old people, finding out what’s important in life.

The sad fact is most people told him about their regrets. And those regrets had nothing to do with “stuff”. People regret what they didn’t do, the risks they avoided, the potential they never realised.


Like I said before, the great paradox of Gary Vaynerchuk is that he teaches you to think long term in a world of instantaneous platforms.

Let me know what your big takeaway was from this amazing conversation.

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