Whether you love the Beatles or don’t, the first thought that probably pops from your mind when you hear this group’s name is a famous band and one where you know all the members – Paul, John, George, and Ringo. I’m assuming you never think of the terms economics, entrepreneurship, human capital, innovation, venture capital, and management. In this episode, we hear from Sam Staley as he talks about the big ideas from his book, The Beatles and Economics.
Episode Highlights with Sam Staley
- Sam is not a big Beatles fan
- Sam view of the Beatles through an economic and entrepreneurial lens
- A defition of human capital and how the band members fostered and invested in it
- Not just the Liverpool years, but growth through the Hamburg time period
- Friendships, respect, and staying together for the time they did
- Innovation the Beatles way – “does it sound good and is it different?”
- Seargent Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band – the penultimate in art and innovation
- The manager and VC who never got into the way of great art
- Comparions to the Bee Gees and two other iconic bands
- The reason the Beatles quit touring and a significant inflection point
- Economics and entrepreurship are complimentary
For a firm to survive in the long run, good management is helpful but successful entreprenurship is essential.Sam Staley from his book, The Beatles and Economics
Images From Mark’s Journal – The Beatles and Economics
When I first met Sam, I told him during our interview that I liked his book so much that I immediately listened to the Audible version. I wasn’t done. I liked the material enough to listen to The Beatles: The Biography as a rebound book.
Below are just a few of my notes from one of my book journals repurposed in the images below. Oh yes, I recommend the book – five stars all the way.
Regarding human capital –
- The Beatles were not musically-gifted in the beginning – lacked formal training
- Their talent was cultivated through hard work, dedication to their craft, and grit
The thresholds for new music –
- new and different?
- sound good?
Regarding economics –
- The science of choice under constraints
- Economics as a discipline has put more emphasis on entreperneurship and the role innovation plays on competitiveness
Regarding Entrepreneurship (this is great) –
- Entreprenuers are looking for new opportunities that the market has left unexploited
- Opportunities – they exploit them
- Entrepreneurship about creating something new – not maximizing the use of conventional inputs
- It’s a creative process as well as a commercial one
- “The work of the entrepreneur is to innovate and to successfully manage innovation.”
- “It means doing different things that create more value than the prvious way of doing things.”