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Entrepreneurs employ the barbell strategy

  • By Alan Knott-Craig
  • May 5, 2016

entrepreneur barbell


Nassim Taleb talks about the “Barbell Strategy” for investments. Put 95% of your savings into the lowest-risk form of investment, ie: fixed deposit or Treasury notes. Invest the remaining 5% in high risk options.


That way you can never lose all your money, but if one of your options pays off the upside is vastly disproportional to your exposure.


You can apply this theory to work. Either follow the norm and work 50 hour weeks, every week, all year, regardless of pressure.


Or, you work a 20-hour week when there’s no pressure, and a 80 hour week when the chips are down. Spend three weeks chilling, one week working like a maniac.


The Barbell Strategy.


Better that than feeling like you have to work 10 hours every day, Monday to Sunday, simply so you can impress your colleagues and bosses.


An entrepreneur doesn’t need to impress anyone. She just needs to deliver the goods.


When times are good, chill. When times are tough, work hard.