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Economy , Investing , Personal Development

Three Things I Learned In SF That Challenged My Thinking

December 18, 2017


Over the weekend, we had a meet up in San Francisco.

Truthfully, I’m always a little bit nervous about who will show up to trips and dinners that I put on.

Many of the guests are Explorer Partnership members, who I know well. It’s great to reconnect with E/P members to see what they are up to professionally and personally.

But there are also other guests that attend who I have never met.

I always think, “Uh oh… I hope no one shows up that is going to ruin the dinner. I hope no one drinks too much and becomes obnoxious…”

I’ve had this feeling every time.

We’ve done gatherings in Cali, Colombia; Kiev, Ukraine; London, England; Los Angeles, California; New York, New York; and now San Francisco, California.

But, guess what?

I am blown away by the caliber of people who show up each time. Seriously, I am not exaggerating, every single trip or dinner has consisted of highly intelligent people who have insanely interesting stories.

I’ll be arranging (a lot) more dinners and trips for 2018. So join us, if you can.

One of the most interesting things about meeting new people is that they give me new ideas and information that challenge my thinking.

Saturday night’s dinner was no different.

I want to share with you the three things that really stood out to me.

I’ve left out the names of people (and I’ve left some of the details a bit vague) for reasons you’ll see below.

But, I can tell you that for those who actually showed up to the dinner, we heard all of the details. Much of which you will NEVER hear anywhere else.

Here are three things I learned that made me challenge my current opinions:

1. Google operating system.

Guest name: XXXX XXXXX

His/her title: Something fancy at Google.

What I learned: Google is working on a new operating system. Actually, there is some news out about this, but most of the details are unknown to the public. We were able to talk to someone who knows a lot about what is going there. I’ll just leave it at that.

2. Tesla has a lot going on.

Guest name: XXX XXXXXXXX

His/her title: Engineer at Tesla.

What I learned: Well, you probably know that I am a big fan of Tesla, but NOT as an investor. In fact, I think that Tesla is a house of cards that is waiting to fall down. However, if Tesla can pull of some of the things it’s working on (that the general public doesn’t know about), then I may be proven wrong. I didn’t change my mind about investing in Tesla… but I definitely have a different view.

3. There are some great opportunities in US real estate.


His/her title: Engineer at a stealth startup (he didn’t want to talk about it) and real estate investor on the side.

What I learned: Truthfully, I can’t say I ‘learned’ anything in particular. Just, I had some of my assumptions confirmed. This guest has been on the ground in hurricane hit Houston and South Florida to check out real estate investing opportunities. And there are a lot! However, there were some key things he learned, like how there is very nice area of Houston that actually has the best opportunities.

There were, of course, a lot of other things I learned and had some of my opinions changed.

Equally as important, I made some new friends who I know I can reach out to in the future. Like one guy who will be going to China for the next six months to specifically research what is really going on in the real estate market.

As a side note, I can confirm how expensive San Francisco is. Our dinner and bar tab was… ummm… shocking.

At the hotel I stayed at, valet parking was $79 per night!

But, San Francisco is impressive and there is a lot of exciting things going on in that city. I just wonder how long it can stay at that pace…?

Oh, and I almost forgot, we had two special guests that flew in from Hong Kong just for the weekend. They’re doing some really cool stuff. One of which we’ll be investing next year.

I hope you can join us on the next on.

I’m currently scheduling a dinner in Europe, which many Explorer Partnership members have already confirmed attendance for. I’ll have details about that in a couple of weeks.