How to find the most powerful position in any market

Also, a guest appearance from Byrne Hobart of The Diff!

Happy Sunday, everyone!

This week we published 5 new articles totaling ~10,000 words, including a special guest appearance from one of the most respected business writers on the internet: Byrne Hobart!

Byrne’s newsletter, The Diff, is in the top 25 highest grossing publications on Substack. And for good reason. He’s the rare first-rate thinker that’s also an accessible and entertaining writer. We couldn’t be more excited to share a piece from behind his paywall with you.

Enjoy!


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(If for any reason, COVID or otherwise, you want a bundle subscription but can’t afford one — get in touch and we’ll work something out.)


ESSAYS

🔮 Finding Power

Clay Christensen, who sadly passed away earlier this year, was one of the most original and influential thinkers in the history of business strategy. You might already know about “disruptive innovation” and “jobs to be done,” but, in this essay, Nathan explores his most underrated idea: “the law of conservation of modularity.” It’s a powerful framework to predict where in a value chain power will accrue.

⚡️ Stop Trying to Make Hard Work Easy

Nir Eyal isn’t pulling any punches. “When most people talk about habits, what they’re saying is, ‘I want something that’s difficult to become effortless. I want the benefits but I don’t want it to be hard,’” he said to Dan in this week’s Superorganizers interview. Instead, Nir suggests we learn to surf the discomfort. In order to do this, Nir gives us a four-step framework to overcoming distraction: 1) master internal triggers, 2) make time for traction, 3) hack back external triggers, and 4) prevent distraction with pacts.


SHORTS

🔮 How creators can go “on tour” on the internet

Touring has always been a great way to grow a fanbase, but now that artists can’t do physical tours, it’s natural to wonder what digital equivalents may replace them. The answer is “internet tours,” which are becoming more important every day. This piece explores how and why they work — from Travis Scott’s Fortnite show to Mayor Pete’s podcast blitz.

⚡️ Review: Centered.app

Centered is a todo list app that pitches itself as “mindfulness meets productivity.” It helps you maintain focus by watching your computer usage and gently nudging you if you seem distracted. Dan has mixed feelings. Centered has a lot of genuinely great ideas, but since the “distraction detection” algorithm is not good enough, it can feel annoying and intrusive at times.


FROM OUR NETWORK

💥 High Modernist Investors and Postmodern Investors

by Byrne Hobart

In the world of hedge funds and public equities, every trade has a winner and a loser. This means there are two parties that have different beliefs and frameworks for understanding the world. In this thought-provoking short article, Byrne uses two rival 20th century intellectual movements — the “high modernists” and “postmodernists” — to help us better understand the two main opposing investment philosophies that most investors adhere to today.


BEST OF THE BUNDLE

⚡️ Seth Godin Hates Being Organized

This interview with the iconic marketer and author Seth Godin is a perfect complement to Nir Eyal’s advice this week. Both Seth and Nir emphasize the importance of doing the actual work, and warn against the dangers of letting your productivity systems become a distraction from your actual work.

🔮 Strategy Drunk

Why do companies so often do dumb things? One reason is that they’re strategy drunk. They get focused on creating a valuable business rather than on solving their customers’ problems, and so they come up with ideas that are built on questionable assumptions. The solution? Reality-test your ideas, and recognize that just because something would be great if it works doesn’t mean it will work.


DISCUSSIONS

⚡️ What have you learned recently?

Dan hosted a fun discussion on Superorganizers this past week, asking readers what they’ve learned recently. One great answer from Jack Cohen was the word “hyperopic,” which is the opposite of myopic, and means “far-sighted.”


That’s it for this week! 

What did you think of the format? Do you want more of Byrne’s articles in the bundle? Like and comment below to let us know! 

Thanks, and see you next Sunday :)

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