In the spirit of old school hip hop we are going to take it back to my high school days. I am in a garage with 5 friends and my buddy Mike has a drill gun in his hand while he is ducked inside the driver side door of my 1990's Vinyl Top Mercury Cougar. He is in the process of drilling a large hole through the engine compartment's firewall located under the front dashboard. He finishes and we push the new wires through. Shortly after we hook up those wires up to the refurbished head unit we installed in the dashboard, power up the amplifier in the trunk, and finally startup the car to hear some beats pour out of the just set up Alpine R subwoofers in the trunk.
One of the first things you want to do when you install a new system in your car is hear how it sounds. We immediately put in a mixtape we made up consisting of some Led Zeppelin, Beastie Boys, and of course it included some N.W.A.
The group N.W.A. has influenced me since I was younger, which is why I was excited when recently I saw the new movie Straight Outta Compton. While watching it my startup focused mind couldn't help but connect the parallels between the story and the startup world.
One of the reasons I love early stage startups so much is the idea of the come up. Starting with just a little come something and making it so much more through hard work and creativity.
Thats what startups do and that's what N.W.A. did. They used creativity and their existing environment to open up a new level of authenticity in music that prior to them didn't exist.
When you look at it you can see that N.W.A. stumbled upon a market with large potential that hadn't been changed in awhile. This meant the timing was ripe for disruption, which is important. They applied a unique solution, which they assembled a credible team around based on their upbringing. The perseverance and hard work was put in by all the founding members overcoming numerous obstacles in their way. The revenue model was clear and established as viable with the potential to scale.
If you haven't seen the movie yet, I highly recommend you check it out. Meanwhile you can watch Kendrick Lamar sit down the Dr. Dre, Ice Cube, MC Ren, and DJ Yella of N.W.A. to hear first hand how they view the way they changed the game.