What the Force? How to rule a social media empire

By Cheryl Koo | Education

May 30
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Building an empire takes time – time that unfortunately doesn’t usually get fast-forwarded in between movies like in Star Wars. However, Gary Vaynerchuk (AKA Gary Vee) had taken that first step more than 10 years ago, when he started up Wine Library TV on YouTube. According to the man himself, he had no results for a year until people started becoming interested in his wine-tasting videos.

(Hard work and) Patience, young Padawan

“Just because it’s cool to be a start-up founder now doesn’t mean it’s what you have to become.”
Gary Vee says in his 2-year-old podcast on SoundCloud, a social media platform featuring only audio clips that he had experimented with in 2014 and still keeps up with to this day (the most recent is only 22 hours old).

“In early 2006, I started Wine Library TV. For 19 months I did that show 5 days a week and nobody gave a sh*t.” He mentions how many younger entrepreneurs come to him for advice and say that their business is not working out because they’ve tried it for only 4 months.

“You know why I’m sitting here right now? Because I outworked you!” Gary Vee has consistently attributed his success to hard work and patience. There is no shortcut to becoming an entrepreneurial giant – just as it took forever to conquer a galaxy far, far away.

A self-confessed workaholic who works “18-hour days”, Gary Vee is proof that determination and grit will get you far.

Self-Awareness, you need

“Self-awareness isn’t just betting on your strengths, it’s accepting all your shortcomings.”

One of the biggest factors of his success, Gary Vee says, is that he plays to his strengths. Even without a Yoda to tell him to find himself, he plays to his strengths and doesn’t care about what others say about his weaknesses. He finds others who are better in places he is bad in (like managing details) and lets them shore up his weaknesses.

“Too many people try to be like me because it’s sizzly and sexy, because people wanna be charismatic and on stage – so many of you can do so many things better than I do.”

Hustle, nerfherder

“Your hustle. Your work ethic. Your drive.”

It’s different for everybody. A lot of people say that there’s no time…because they’re too busy watching Keeping Up with the Calrissians. Or playing Sabacc. Or smoking your Sisha. Or doing whatever else that takes up time that they keep saying there isn’t enough of.

Nobody says that you can’t do all these things if that’s what you want in life (just as nobody stops Jar Jar Binks from talking). But if you want more – if you want to be right there talking on stage, giving speeches and appearing on the news because of how successful you are and how much you’re worth – you need to put in the time.

You are the Chosen One (when you choose to be)

Keeping these lessons in mind will keep you on the right path to succeed in your business…
… and away from the Dark Side (even though they have cookies).

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