Leadership Edge with Blockchain Influencer Warren Whitlock
Warren Whitlock– Director at CoinAgenda (Bitcoin/Cryptocurrency Investing Conference) Block Chain Influencer and Social Media Early Adopter. Warren Whitlock helps brands and startups disrupt industries and refine growth strategies. He advises startups on e-commerce, social media, and the future of blockchain. Warren is the author of Twitter Revolution.
These are the technologies that I believe are going to completely change the world.
First, 5G internet. 5G networks are the next generation of internet connection and will provide the infrastructure necessary to carry large amounts of data. Blockchain is the next big thing built on the internet of trust.
Blockchain uses smart contracts, it’s interconnected, and it’s a permanent type of database.
I know that right now, I could walk into any Walmart or Kroger, or Target, and I would be identified, and as I pick up my prescription, it will show my medication history. Paperwork and pre-approvals will be simplified and stored in Blockchain. Telemedicine will become more popular. One day, we might be able to take a picture of the mole on an app and determine if it is at risk of cancer. Cryptocurrency may be a way we can pay our doctors. For example, our Fitbits will earn us tokens, and when we see a doctor, the doctor will take the tokens as payments.
The internet of things and blockchain will disrupt how we collect data today and how those data are protected. The data is recorded, it may be encrypted so that only those with permission can access the data, and it is permanent and saved in a thousand places. This is going to fundamentally change how we do things and how we trust each other.
Q&A with Warren Whitlock
What brought you to this career path?
I truly believe that if you want more, you give more. Growing up, I remember going to church and learning that we must live our religion every day, not just on Sundays. I always thought that it sounds like a good idea, but it didn’t make complete sense. I’m the same person when I go to school; I’m the same person all the time. So, what is this theory all about?
Then I was trained in business, and business teaches you that it’s a dog-eat-dog world. It’s every man for himself. The best man wins. Rah, Rah, sports metaphors, and so on. I never really liked this, and I didn’t think this was all there was in life.
Then I heard about a guy named Zig Ziglar. I saw him speak, followed what he did, read his books, and right before he died, I was able to be on stage with him and speak at the same event. It’s an amazing memory. Zig Ziglar’s philosophy is that you can get anything you want out of life if you help enough people get what they want. It’s similar to many religions and the Golden Rule, where you should ‘do unto others as you’d want them to do unto you.’
As a salesman, I found out that I could do so much better by helping people buy instead of trying to sell them something. Think about it, you don’t like being sold to, but you love to go shopping. It’s the same transaction; the difference is whether someone is pushing you or trying to help you. And really, the salespeople do want to help you buy. They just have the wrong frame of mind.
Over time, I became a sales manager and then started my own company. Then the internet came along, and the most significant thing about the internet is that there are four billion people connected to it. There is somebody who will want what you are selling, so treat them decently.
My next venture was a company that fixed laser printers. We had thousands of customers in Southern California, and we shipped all over the country. When the internet came, I study advertising and marketing, and I sent out newsletters via email at a time when most people didn’t have emails yet. But, by the time everyone has emails, I was pretty good at this stuff. Then social media came along, and I was on social media before LinkedIn and MySpace. I’ve always been an early adopter, I worked hard at it.
I wrote the Twitter Revolution. Then bitcoin came out, and I learned about bitcoin mining machines, and now I’m an influencer in Blockchain. Looking back, I see two common themes. The first is to always give and help others. The second is to be an early adopter of technology.
What is the most exciting story that happened to you?
I’m not sure if this is the most interesting story, but I am about the same age as Bill Gates and Steve Jobs. There is a theory that there are certain years that are better to be born to take advantage of technology jumps, and one of those years is the year I was born. I was in college when the internet first came out, and I almost met Bill Gates one time before Microsoft went public.
I decided not to go to the meeting. And what happened was I watched microcomputers zoom up, and there was a boom, and then a lot of the investors went broke. Then IBM PC came out, and many investors chose the wrong platform. For me, I chose Commodore. And what I’ve learned is that people who go through these things will have insights and experiences to help them with the next thing.
What do you believe in?
1. You always get a choice. As I get older, I realize that there is a lot of stuff that just doesn’t matter. And at the same time, there are a lot of things that happen, and we just go along with it. I’m not a non-conformist, I conform all the time, but I try to look at everything and know that I have a choice. And the choice I’ve always tried to make, and fortunately is one that I’d made correctly, is happiness.
For example, If someone slapped me in the face, what should my response be? I don’t have to slap him in the face back. I could, but I don’t. That’s what I mean by we have a choice. Of course, sometimes, if someone slaps you in the face, you slap them back because that what they need. But you decide what is best. You choose how you will react. Am I going to cower and run away? Am I going to leave this person? Am I going to say something back to them? What are we going to do? Knowing that you get to make that decision is critical.
2. There is a quote I often share on Twitter, and it is, “ You never know what battles people are struggling with.” Most people do not have bad intentions toward you. They are too busy worrying about themselves to care about you. It’s never an “Oh, I said something wrong at work; they will hate me.”
3. Read the book Think and Grow Rich. The first step is to be definite about what you want. The second step is to figure out what you are willing to sacrifice. The third step (and of course, this is more condensed than the book) is to set a plan. Have the deadline. Write out the statement. The four-step is implementing that plan and keeping the plan in mind. Read your statement out loud. The second half of that formula is key. Writing out that plan, having that set plan, and implementing it.
4. I live my life in the future. It’s impossible to go back and live in the past. You have to be in the now and accept what is going on. If you have a negative emotion, be open, experience it, and then get over it.
How do you become an influencer?
Become interested in something, and then post about it a lot. Talk about it a lot, and produce a lot of content. And over time, you become an expert on that topic.