The effect and cause trap

Celebrities lead lavish lives. Their fans sometimes also try and lead lavish lives to be celebrated and admired.

Yet, the reason they admired those celebrities are because they are great actors, entrepreneurs, sportspersons etc., and not because of their lifestyle.

Startups that need to scale often hire a bunch of talented people, hoping that all those people will help them grow at a rapid rate. If it helped Twitter and Uber scale, the same might work for them?

Yet, they often forget how Twitter and Uber scaled mainly because they had a great product – not because of how large their headcount was.

Athletes often endorse the high-end models of certain sporting brands. This tempts their young fans to also splurge on this equipment, in the hope that it will elevate their own game.

Yet, replacing standard sporting equipment with a high-end variant doesn’t really boost sporting performance.

The effect of celebrity is living it up. The effect of building a successful product is the need to hire a large team. The effect of being a world-class athlete is the privilege to endorse certain brands. Only too often, we mistake these effects for causes.

Cause and effect. In that order.

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