Jeff Skoll’s dream. And mine.

Wow, this guy is amazing. He wanted to write stories when he was young. Then he became practical and decided to get a day-job so he could write without being hard up for cash. Then, a personal family tragedy taught him that we never know how much time we have, and we gotta make the best of whatever time we’ve got. So he started mugging. Set up a business of computer rentals. Failed cos the computers kept getting stolen. So he figured, maybe he should know more about business first; and goes to Stanford Business School. There he meets a friend who describes a novel way to buy and sell online. He says it won’t work, in all his infinite wisdom. BUT a coupla years later, they set up eBay.

Then he decides to give back to the community, and asks the great American economist, John Gardner, what one man can do, to which he gets the cryptic line: “Bet on good people doing good things.”

So he does. He sets up Skoll foundation, which tracks social entrepreneurs: people like Mohammed Yunus of Grameen fame, Ann Cotton of CAMFED, and Victoria Hale from Institute of OneWorld Health, among others. The plan is in place. The three ideals he tries to follow: invest, connect and celebrate. Invest in good people doing good things, connect these people and their ideas, and celebrate humanity at its finest. The third point got him thinking about his dream once again, the young’un’s dream to be a writer. But now he’s thinking big. Why not media? And he moves to Hollywood.

Despite encouragement [actually lack thereof], he sets up Participant Productions, a social films company that tries to emulate the great non-fiction movies of relative antiquity: like Gandhi or even Schindler’s List. They’ve made a coupla movies, and you might have even seen them. Syriana, North Country and An Inconvenient Truth, among others.

This is all about precession, and I’m not getting things done 😥 I gotta stop mucking around!!!!
Maaaaaan, when I get my act together, I wanna be in his place at TED, by 2030. I’m gonna change the world; I must.


About this entry