When I was in Berlin last month, I had the pleasure of sitting down with Tim O’Reilly in our pitchcar. I have to say that I enjoyed that time. After hearing his keynote on how the future will be for startups, it was only natural to see our conversation drift that way. And we agreed that the key element for anyone to become successful in the current market would be passion. A passion to work on something that you would work on anyway regardless of whether you would get funded. Regardless of the interest it gets from the media, regardless of whether it will be a quick way to earn lots of money. It comes down to the passion of the people behind it. Their enthusiasm for the question they want to answer and their joy when users benefit from using the service. This is something we both feel very strongly about.

For me personally passion is important in what I do. I have a passion for people. And my passion for people only naturally became a passion for social media, because that is full of them. And that is why I loved spending time with Tim O’Reilly. Because besides all that he has talked about and all that he has done in the past, in the end he is a man of passion. When talking to him, he will lean forward, he will use his gestures and his eyes will light up. He is passionate about what he does. And even though he has a pretty big organisation behind him, I believe that he would be doing exactly the same thing if he wouldn’t. A great demonstration that passion is the key to succes, if it is genuine and for no other reason than the subject you are working on.