Your life is short and you can only work on so many things within it. Furthermore, there are only a limited number of industries that are truly interesting at a certain point in time.
What do I mean by interesting? You can optimise for many things, but I’d say interesting work should be ambitious, fun and fast paced. Very few workplaces can offer you a high score on all of these aspects.
In many industries you’d either be too late for it to be ambitious to work there (e.g. FAANG) or it’s too established or full of friction to be fast (e.g. banks, real estate, government etc.). For a ton of professional jobs, fun is “have a party with colleagues every now and then” but otherwise distill your character, ideas and expression to what can be posted on Linkedin without raising any eyebrows - in other words the inverse of fun.
Many startups are arguably fun, but unfortunately they often sell their products to established non-fun enterprises and therefore have to adhere to those cultural norms or live with their slowness. You could mitigate this issue by being in startups that are truly breaking new ground (e.g. social media in ~2005). However, this means you really need to get the timing right, otherwise things might be too late and slow.
Working in crypto can give you that precious combination of maximal ambition, fun and fast pace all at once. It's the opportunity of a lifetime.
Crypto is ambitious
Here’s an idea for you: Let’s rebuild the world's financial system from the ground up. This is what we’re up to. It’s absurdly ambitious, but it is also much needed since our current financial system is messed up in so many ways. Today’s system is undoubtedly a pre-internet 20th century experience. Transactions take days to process and everything is bound by geography, legacy technology and a ton of other highly arbitrary limitations.
Probably the most under appreciated problem with the legacy financial system is that it is straight up hostile to entrepreneurs: the whole system is based on rent seeking incumbents that have every incentive (and the power) to stop innovations from happening.
Crypto is on a mission to fix this and bring internet style properties to finance: developer friendly, global, open and composable by default. Just a few short years ago it was all a dream (...I used to read The Economist magazine), but now it’s pretty clear that:
Crypto is now significantly de-risked as an opportunity. Various credible solutions to solve scaling issues are going live these days. Products that were merely prototypes or didn’t even exist just a couple of years ago now see usage growing like crazy:
However, we’re still so early that anyone that’s getting in now will have a tremendous impact and will be seeing charts like the one above for many years to come.
Crypto is fun
Most folks work in an industry. Crypto is not an industry, crypto is a community. Both in the sense that people across the world come together to make a better financial system, but also as a cultural phenomenon. The community is composed of everything from anonymous monikers and bedroom heros from India, to high profile Silicon Valley veterans.
The other day I was taking feature requests about which business intelligence features we should have in Dune Analytics. These dialogues do not happen over email, they happen in our Discord chat where users have quirky profile pictures and fun names. So for this discussion there was an Ali G on the other end. I can assure you that business intelligence discussions on a Monday morning are more fun when there’s an Ali G on the other end.
A few months ago a horse named 0xboxer became very active in our Discord chat. I had a wonderful epiphany when I discovered the clever yield farming and Animal Farm reference going on:
We liked him so much that we ended up hiring him as our Community Manager. If you swing by our Discord or want to learn how to use Dune you’ll now get world class help from our favorite work horse.
Crypto is not just disrupting finance as a product or infrastructure, but also as a culture. Working in crypto means out with the Linkedin content marketing posts and suit infused “life is very serious and I’m very professional” soullessness. In with Twitter, Telegram and Discord chats, dank memes, hackathons and all the colors and quirkiness that make life fun and interesting.
Here’s one of the conclusions from Bloomberg’s (brilliant) journalist Joe Weisedahl’s recent trip down the crypto rabbit hole:
Crypto is fast
Practically all industries have some legacy heritage that shapes and limits their workings. Born in 2008, crypto is 100% internet native and free of any restraining legacy. This has profound implications for how you build but also how the players operate and interact with each other.
It’s not only the open building blocks that unlock the high velocity in crypto. The communication channels and engagement is also open. That means that location no longer matters. At Dune Analytics, we have users and customers across the entire globe and we’ve never even thought about it. We’ve never said: “Should we launch in the US?”. We’re in crypto so GROUP BY country is not really a thing.
Furthermore, everybody’s on Twitter, Telegram and Discord. Given the open nature of the technology and the community, the barrier to communicate and collaborate is extremely low. Most folks are simply a Telegram DM away. Many times over I’ve been blown away by how fast and easily you can do integrations and collaborations with folks that were complete strangers just hours or days ago. The pace of crypto is simply unrivaled and frankly, you probably won’t understand before you experience it for yourself.
What are you waiting for?
Crypto is a bunch of friends on the internet that share a passion for making a better financial system a reality. This community consists of some of the world's brightest minds constantly pushing the boundaries of technology, economics and finance. All the while not taking themselves too seriously and having a ton of fun along the way. The collaborative and open nature of the space means it’s moving at the speed of light compared to existing industries full of legacy roadblocks. So if you want to do something ambitious, have fun and like to see things move fast you should start working in crypto now.
At Dune Analytics we are on a mission to make crypto data accessible and are currently hiring for a range of roles. In addition to all the things mentioned above we can offer competitive salary+equity, flexible work as a remote team in Europe and enormous impact as part of a small team building one of the most beloved tools in the crypto space.
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