Jan. 31, 2022

Gary Vaynerchuk Won’t Bet Against Technology

Plus: Why NFTs aren’t going anywhere.


Nora and Scott sit down with the one and only Gary Vaynerchuk, serial entrepreneur, investor and friend of the pod. Topics include: The Great Resignation, NFTs and the gift of self-awareness. He also has a new book called Twelve and a Half: Leveraging the Emotional Ingredients Necessary for Business Success.

Hosts: Nora Ali & Scott Rogowsky
Producer: Bella Hutchins
Production, Mixing & Sound Design: Daniel Markus
Music: Daniel Markus & Breakmaster Cylinder
Senior Producer: Katherine Milsop
Director of Audio: Alan Haburchak
VP, Head of Multimedia: Sarah Singer

Full transcript for this episode below. 

Transcript

Gary Vaynerchuk: Don't bet against technology. How many people on this call said they were never going to get a TikTok account, and have one? How many people that are watching this right now said they would never have Facebook or Instagram, and have one? All I watched for 25 years of my career is people tell me they're not going to do something, only to do that thing four months, six months, three years later. There is an ungodly amount of people to every post I put out about NFTs that say, "Scam, money laundering. I'll never do this." And I'm saving all of them because I'm going to make a piece of content with all of them when they tweet out that they bought an NFT. And you know, here's why, not because everyone's going to be into collectibles because not everyone's going to be into collectibles. It's because if you're going to want to go see your favorite artist perform a concert in six years, you're going to buy an NFT because that's what the ticket's going to be.

Nora Ali: From Morning Brew, this is Business Casual, the podcast that reveals the unexpected business story behind everything. I'm Nora Ali.

Scott Rogowsky: And I'm Scott Rogowsky. Nora and I are here for your ears, bringing you conversations with creators, thinkers, and innovators who can tell us what it all means, and why we should care. Now let's get down to business.

Nora Ali: You go way back with our guest, with Gary Vee. 

Scott Rogowsky: Way back.

Nora Ali: Can we reflect back on that, when you first met him?

Scott Rogowsky: I sure can. I first met Gary when he appeared as a guest on my live sports comedy talk show called 12 Angry Mascots. This was March of 2010, back when he had a Gary@winelibrary.com address because that was what he was doing. He was known for being the wine guy on YouTube. Do you remember that, Nora? Do you remember early Gary Vee?

Nora Ali: I, of course, remember early Gary. Yes. I do want to say, for our listeners who might have some skepticism around Gary Vaynerchuk, which I think is a sentiment these days, he's very charismatic. He's a unique type of person. I think your eyes and my eyes were definitely opened with this convo.

Scott Rogowsky: I mean, look, I'm one of those skeptics who, I like Gary. And there are certain times when you look at sort of maybe it's not just what he puts out there, but the industry he's given birth to, the hustle entrepreneur. There's a whole vertical now of this kind of on your grind, entrepreneurship thing, which he really helped usher in. And there's a lot of garbage out there in that. And there's just a lot of hucksters. And there's a lot of, oh, this guy's telling me what to do. And a lot of people just get rubbed the wrong way. But if you actually listen to the man, listen to the man on our podcast, our conversation we just had, you will absolutely be sold on Gary Vee.

Nora Ali: And I would go as far as to say, he had a great time talking to us. So I think our listeners will enjoy this. So today, the man himself, Gary Vaynerchuk has joined us to talk about emotional intelligence, why it's so essential for successful career and business. Gary recently published a new book titled Twelve and A Half: Leveraging the Emotional Ingredients Necessary for Business Success, where he discusses the importance of soft skills over hard skills for success in business. We obviously also got into NFTs. We got into what it means to be happy. We got deep, philosophical. So here it is, our conversation with Gary Vaynerchuk.

Scott Rogowsky: Gary, I just showed you a photo from 2010. That's March 2010, when you were a guest on my sports talk show, 12 Angry Mascots. Back then, Gary, you were promoting your very first book, Crush It. It was supposed to be the first in a 10-book deal.

Nora Ali: Yes.

Scott Rogowsky: It was a million dollar, 10-book deal. This made a lot of splashy headlines when this was announced, Wine Library guy gets book deal. And that book sold so well that there was a clause in your contract, effectively, you fulfilled the entire 10-book deal with that one book. You didn't have to write nine more books for Harper, right?

Gary Vaynerchuk: That is correct. And I didn't realize at that age that there are certain things that you are thinking about almost in your subconscious, that at some point, some way, somehow, will get to the front of your head. And so, it's been really, really fun writing these business books. For me, they really come at the right time. The latest one, especially, I think, 46, my business thing is different. It's back to our shared love of sports. I want to win every single time. I want to build the biggest business in the world. I want to be the most known entrepreneur. I do want to do those things, but I'm not willing to compromise my values as a human being to get them. And I think that for too long, there's been confusion around how good business is done. And it's almost been an acceptance that you have to have sharp elbows or this and that. Here's a good example. I still haven't found the human that's been able to explain to me why a boss should yell aggressively and meanly at somebody in front of other employees. I have not found it. Accountability matters. We can't create entitlement. There are ramifications for mistakes. These are all true things, but why can't they be done in a humane, civil way? And so the latest book really means a lot to me because I feel like I've been able to capture my essence of, hey, there's a kind way to do business. And you can still build an empire, but you can be a nice person. And I don't think a lot of people think that. And so it's been fun to write it.

Nora Ali: What do you think has changed to allow for that, to allow for soft skills, for kind bosses? Scott and I had a conversation recently with a guest about the Great Resignation and how that's forcing bosses to just be better people. So what do you think allows for that now?

Gary Vaynerchuk: But I don't believe anything's happened. I don't think anything's changed. I think there have been thousands, tens of thousands of people who've built very substantial, very nice, and substantial comes in all forms, a million dollar company, an $8 trillion company. There have been an ungodly amount of successful people who've done it the nice way. I don't think mainstream media and even social media, as blossomed in the last decade, has really gone out of its way to go there. It's almost like rubber necking. We're more interested that Steve Jobs yells at people and gets the best out of them or a head coach yells at people. We care more about Bobby Knight and are fascinated by that than the alternative. And so I don't think we've really gone there and cared about that. And as far as the Great Resignation forcing people to be nicer, I call that foosball tables. Let me tell you what I mean by that. When the whole internet 2.0 thing happened, and progressive companies, and new companies, I would go into these companies that were a little bit older, trying to get cooler, younger. And they would literally put out free food and a foosball table. And they would kind of tell me, because usually I'd come in to give a speech or do business, like, "Gary, look, the foosball table." I'm like, "Do you fucking think that a foosball table is going to trick people to thinking that you're cool? You guys are not cool."

Scott Rogowsky: And the handles are electrified so if any employee is actually caught playing foosball, they'll be shocked to go back to their seats.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah, there's a camera over it so they can analyze the data. Ricky played too much. And so, the Great Resignation leading to bosses being nicer is a Band-Aid, not a surgery. I think that people will try. But I think humans are animals and they sense. And I think all the bullshit managers or CEOs that try to be nicer for six months, two years while we go through this, I don't think it's going to trick people. And I think the Great Resignation is about options, not about nice or not nice. There's just a lot of people that realize they can make 63,000 a year doing sponsored ads on TikTok or pre-roll YouTube or selling some hoodies. This is Crush It, by the way. Every day that goes by with Crush It, one of the great things for me, self-satisfaction, is reading the Amazon reviews of Crush It. You go to the oldest, it starts with, "Okay. People are really going to make 50K making YouTube videos. You fucking asshole. You're a charlatan." "Oh, okay, snake oil salesman. Yeah, right." And then it systematically, as the years go by, like, "Huh? Gary might have been on to..." And to the point where, even now with the Great Resignation, I think in 10 years, people are like, "How the fuck did you know that?" And really it wasn't like, I'm no genius. Life's about options. And the internet had matured to a new place. It's why I'm so bullish on NFTs. I know that NFTs and the consumer blockchain is life changing, game changing the way the internet was. I also know that right now we're in the greed part, just like we were with internet stocks in '98. And 99% of these NFT projects are going to collapse. And people are going to buy a $13,000 snail with a cigar in its mouth and it's going to be worth zero. But I also know, hopefully VeeFriends is one of them, there will be really strong companies that come out of this. There was 800 cartoons that came out in the '80s to sell toys. There was only a couple of Transformers in My Little Ponies. That's what I see happening now. But when the crash comes, everyone's going to be like, "Fuck you, Gary Vee. See, it was a fad. It was a fad." I'm like, "No, Beanie Babies was a fad. But stuffed animals have been around since the 1850s. NFTs as a whole is going nowhere. And it's only going to gain as utilities starts to understand what to do with it." And so that's where I'm at on that.

Nora Ali: And to that point, Gary, you say NFTs are life changing, for example, and it's game changing. And we hear that term everywhere now. There's all these other buzzwords associated with it like the metaverse and Web3 and all of that. And some people might feel intimidated by this big sea change that we're seeing. But at the same time, feel FOMO because you do want to be one of those people who get in early. So to any of our listeners who might feel both intimidated and feel FOMO, where should they start? What are some resources? What are some easy ways to get into it without feeling super overwhelmed?

Gary Vaynerchuk: Education. I, 13 months ago, am Googling what is an NFT? I am watching, on YouTube, NFT 101s, not trying to make a quick dollar, this is all the same game.

Nora Ali: That's what it feels though on the outside for some people. It feels like a quick way to make money. It feels like a trick.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Nora, because that's what a lot of people are doing. The skeptics are right. This is a nuanced conversation. I keep saying it over and over. This is stuffed animals. I can't speak to all the Beanie Babies that are out there. This is the internet. We have become so blue, red, so extreme in the way we judge, we just say, "All NFTs are good. All NFTs are bad." It's not. Everything is nuanced. The West Coast of our country is a very beautiful society. But guess what, they were once the Gold Rush. Everybody was moving there to get the gold. And then things evolved. Right now you have too many people that see quick money, quick dollars, and are incredibly incentivized to make a quick 10,000 bucks. Will there be 5%, 2%, 1% that get out at the right time? Yes. But most of the people that are trying to make a quick buck, when the crash happens, are going to be sitting with all these bears and snails and what have you. Even VeeFriends, what I know is going to be a great project, because I'm going to work on it the rest of my life, that project will get dragged down with all the other projects, just like Amazon did. Bezos knew he was building one of the great companies in the world. It didn't mean his stock didn't go down by 80% when it got dragged down with internet. So for everybody that's on the outside, do 50 hours of homework, understand that this is a huge change where we can digitalize ownership, prove it, and put utility behind it. Every ticket, every lease, every contract, it's a game changing technology the way the internet was.

Scott Rogowsky: And the truth is, there is no easy way. I mean, Gary, what you're saying is, you got to do the work.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So, all the same rules apply of supply and demand. Here's the big part. Don't bet against technology. How many people on this call said they were never going to get a TikTok account, and have one? How many people that are watching this right now said they would never have Facebook or Instagram, and have one? All I watched for 25 years of my career is people tell me they're not going to do something only to do that thing, four months, six months, three years later. There's an ungodly amount of people to every post I put out about NFTs that say, "Scam, money laundering. I'll never do this." And I'm saving all of them because I'm going to make a piece of content with all of them when they tweet out that they bought an NFT. And you know, here's why, not because everyone's going to be into collectibles, because not everyone's going to be into collectibles. It's because if you're going to want to go see your favorite artist perform a concert in six years, you're going to buy an NFT because that's what the ticket's going to be.

Nora Ali: Never bet against technology. There you go. This feels like a good time to take a very quick break, more with Gary Vee when we return. All right, Gary. I want to go back to these ingredients from your book, Twelve and A Half, of emotional intelligence, soft skills. The one that resonated with me a lot was self-awareness.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Self-awareness, man. I've always thought about this movie script where the world mapped injecting and extracting human traits out of humans. And I have this crazy movie idea. And I've always said self-awareness would be the thing I would inject into everybody, because it leads to so much good. For example, my personality. Jesus Christ, if I didn't have self-awareness, I would be the worst. The small group of people that hate me up front, and then over time I win them over once they actually get a little more, they'd be right. And so, when you have that self-awareness, you then start chipping away and trying to tone down the things you know hurt people, and you try to up the things you know that help people even on first reactions, because you don't want to always be, who likes being disliked? So there's that. The other one lately that has become my new calling card, that I'm doing it here and I'm going to be doing it a lot. Boy, do we need to get back to civility. I cannot believe the way we talk to each other. I can't believe what politicians are doing. Politicians today talk to each other, and normal people on Twitter and other places, worse than the worst acting kids in my high school did in 1994. I am dumbfounded where we're at. People call me a fraud, with no data supporting it whatsoever. And I reply to them with compassion and empathy when they are questioning the one thing I'm proud of. I just can't believe how everyone's got sucked into high school. I'm stunned that everyone thinks that the answer to negativity is more negativity. I'm just dumbfounded. The problem is, I just can't believe that nobody acts on things we've always known, which is, I don't care how upset you are, not having composure to have a conversation, you're only feeding the beast.

Scott Rogowsky: And there used to be guardrails. You could say how great it is to democratize media and have YouTube and TikTok, Instagram and social media. But the truth is, when there were three networks, when there were guardrails and watchdogs, and Walter Cronkite and Peter Jennings, certain respected voices giving you the news and shaping the median culture, it was easier to kind of control and corral behavior.

Gary Vaynerchuk: That's all fine and dandy. But I don't think anyone's ecstatic about everything we did in 1965, 1969, 1970. So I look at this as one step backwards, two steps forward. My optimism for 2070 is actually high. Because I actually think when you go to more transparency, you got to get through the muck. It's like therapy.

Scott Rogowsky: Growing pains.

Gary Vaynerchuk: You got to go through the poison. You know, I wish I was a little younger to really kind of enjoy that. Maybe I'll be a little old man. But anyway. Nonetheless, I think that if we were actually in a place where we could redefine success, we could have such an awesome society. If we said, actually hold up, it's not about millions or how much money you have or X, Y, and Z. If you genuinely wake up and you smile like a motherfucker, you have won. We do need to understand that we are a massively insecure society that needs to buy things, to show people things, thus getting us into this crazy circle of devastation around outside affirmation and keeping up with the Joneses, which is the trigger to all of this. For me, for example, I wish my whole life was documented and public domain. My mother did such a good job. My circumstance of immigration, humble beginnings, it all worked so well for me that when I made 44,000 a year working in my dad's liquor store versus what I make today, which is a lot more money, it was the same fucking smile because I just enjoyed it. Every day of my life, I enjoyed working and building my dad's business for him. I enjoyed Vayner. I enjoyed being the wine guy. I enjoy what I'm doing now. And it's just been enjoyment. And I have a lot of friends in my life, which is very telling, that do not have the financial life that I have, who are exactly the same person because teacher, public servant, stay-at-home father, stay-at-home mother, whatever it may be. I'm my mom. My mom stayed at home. If you knew both of us inside out, we're just the same person. Her destiny was to be a fucking all-time stay-at-home mother. And she smiled every day. And the day my brother AJ went to college, she went into depression for a little while because empty nest hit her so hard, because it was her life's calling. No different than an athlete that has to retire because the body gave out, and now what? I got even luckier because as an entrepreneur, from the day I figured it out at five, to the day I take my last breath. I get to do my art in perpetuity.

Nora Ali: When I think about success and what has defined success for me until recently, is that the positive affirmations, the external validation. And I, myself, am a child of immigrants. And you've spoken about your experience as an immigrant and child of immigrants. And that is kind of the mentality that we hear about a lot is, we want to prove things to other people, to strangers because we grew up trying to prove things to our own families who struggled to bring us here.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yes.

Nora Ali: How do you get around that? How do you change that mindset? And specifically even using those soft skills, those ingredients from your book, how do you combat these feelings? Because I'm frankly working on that with my therapist right now.

Gary Vaynerchuk: You are so amazing. And let me tell you why.

Nora Ali: Is that my positive affirmation?

Gary Vaynerchuk: Well, it is, based on how I think I was built, which is my mom reinforced positivity on good actions. I am the byproduct of positive affirmations. The world told me I was a good entrepreneur because from lemonade to shoveling snow, to baseball cards, the world showed me, you're good at this. And so that kept feeding it. And I'm nice because it's the only thing my mom cheered for. Opened the door for a lady, fucking, she threw me a party. Everything I did that was nice, she made a big deal. Everything else she didn't give a shit about. Here I am a 46-year-old man. I'm a nice, good businessman. It's so obvious to me. Nora, you just did something very powerful. The reason I said you're so incredible. You know why? The vulnerability and comfort to communicate is everything. You just helped somebody. You just having the courage to say, "I'm doing this with my therapist," just made somebody on the other line hear that. Somebody just heard this. And in three weeks, with their best friend, even though they've never said it, they'll say it out loud because you just said it out loud. I believe one of the greatest things that anybody can do is to put practical optimism into their ears and eyes 24 hours a day. So one thing I've been thinking a ton about is, why have I seen so many people move around me? And I'm like, right. I'm a fucking hurricane of practical optimism just like my mom was. I'm not delusional. The reason I'm a successful businessman is I'm practical. It's genuinely the thing that I think got me here. I don't know, here it is, Scott. Don't ever compromise your values for a short term check.

Scott Rogowsky: Yeah, well, I haven't done that.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I'm aware, which is why I like you. I'm being serious. I don't know a lot about you, but I'm so me and I'm watching everything, I actually know that. You want to go a little further?

Scott Rogowsky: Yeah. 

Gary Vaynerchuk: I'm curious if that's even the reason I'm doing this right now. I'm really trying not to do press right now. I'm busy as fuck. And this is the point. And so, I think that to answer your question, Nora, I think that we have to champion people that are happy. Another thing, and this is very important to me, and I hope inspires just one person listening. People that are happy are not taking on the accountability to spread it. I am misunderstood, misjudged, have my feelings hurt often because I have the sense of responsibility that I'm in a good place, and I must out communicate what's clearly happened in society, which is negativity is dramatically louder than positivity. It needs the outlet to get the poison out. And most actually happy, positive people are so easily capable of navigating around it and saying, "Who gives a shit? Doesn't matter," that they don't do the next part, which is no, no, no. You actually have some level of civil responsibility to the masses to share your positivity to offset a fucking echo chamber of nothing but negativity. And oh, by the way, for Scott's favorite fucking Walter Cronkite, Peter Jennings, Tom Brokaw, when those fucking companies, the news, became business and realized that people react more to negativity than positivity.

Scott Rogowsky: That's what changed.

Gary Vaynerchuk: That's when it changed our society. Everyone's like, politicians. Fuck you. What about news succumbed to the business of realizing the unfortunate thing, that humans are more attracted to the negative than the positive? And so I feel a huge, huge sense of responsibility that looks like the following. Holy fuck, I have DNA that gives me a communication style for whatever reason that clicks with a lot of fucking people, holy fuck, I've been blessed with the greatest mother of all time with very, very adverse beginnings to my life, which is a fucking formula for pure happy. You know why? I lived with little, and we were so happy in the house that I know that that means it could be done. I was so happy with so little at 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 that I know that that is life. So between those two things, I'm putting myself out there. And let me promise you this, putting yourself out there every day has so much baggage. People talking about you behind your back, trying to tear you down, making assumptions. They're not in a good place. They see you happy, so they want to shit on you. It's not fun. People think I'm a joke, a lot of people out there, where I'm like a really successful actual businessman. You have pride in that. I'm proud of what I've done. People tweet all the time, "What does Gary Vee actually do?" I'm like, "What the fuck? What do you mean what do I actually do? VaynerMedia does 300 million a year, and 1500 people globally. I built my dad's business. I'm a big time investor, veefriends. I created Resy, co-created it and sold it. I created Empathy Wines, sold it. I have a real career.

Scott Rogowsky: What more must you do?

Nora Ali: And what do I have to prove?

Gary Vaynerchuk: But it's how the world works. Because I'm so effective at social media, and all you're getting is a clip from a podcast and a keynote. They're like, "Oh, this guy's a fucking motivational speaker." I hear it all the time. Walk into a restaurant, I can hear people whispering. I'm always paying attention to you. "Oh, that's Gary Vee, he's the motivational speaker." I literally want to take the fork and poke my eye out. I'm like, "No."

Scott Rogowsky: I'm not Tony Robbins.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I'm proud of my steak. I'm aware of my sizzle, but that's not what I'm proud of. That's just kind of a, I can't control that shit just like Scott can't control being strikingly handsome. That just comes along with your DNA. Because I reference it. Sometimes I think, I'm like, man, if I just could poke my veins and take a little of my hyper-ness and excitement out. When I make a video and people are like, "Cocaine. Ritalin." And I'm the byproduct of a mother that was so Nancy Reaganed out that I've never even smoked a cigarette, let alone all that shit. And you sit there and you're like, man, that guy or gal that left that comment now underminded me, and another person's going to come and see this content and actually believe it, thus not taking what I'm saying serious. Oh, by the way, I'm very proud of what I'm talking about. And I think I can have a positive impact. You think about these things and complexities.

Scott Rogowsky: I mean, Gary, my issue is, if I can take something out of my veins, it would be the self-awareness. Because I think I'm too self-aware to the point where, and look, I've been out following you for a dozen years now. I like you. I'm a fan. But I'm like one of your friends who will make fun of you because when I see, not just you, you see it everywhere on the internet. Even just like, get my hustle on, get my grind on. I'm walking to the office. I think to myself, I don't need to post that. Well, why do I need to see? Even if someone posting a selfie I think is deranged. I think it's deranged to post a selfie. Who cares?

Gary Vaynerchuk: I totally understand. I totally understand.

Scott Rogowsky: But to your credit, you are aware of that, and you still are like, you know what, to support what I'm doing, building my businesses, building my empire, getting the book deals, getting the speaking deal.

Gary Vaynerchuk: It's actually different, Scott. You'll appreciate this.

Scott Rogowsky: It's not part of that?

Gary Vaynerchuk: I am the most aware that if I have a ton of attention, I can deploy that against things. I got lucky. I don't know how else to say it. Luck of timing. I have so many friends who get mad when I use lucky. They're like, "Gary." I'm like, "No, no, no. No, no, no. I was traded for wheat. I'm a Soviet Jew that if there wasn't a hostage crisis of eight humans that tried to hijack a plane and go to Sweden, which got Golda Meir involved and fucking Spain involved. There is no international crisis that has attention from America media. And my ass is in the Soviet Union until 1991 where I'm 16. And with my DNA, I probably would've got killed by Russian mobs four minutes in, and would've been done." So luck is life. Scott, you know what happens with me? Because I was happy, so happy, the happiest with nothing. I never valued money. Next thing happens. Because I built such a big business from 22 to 30 for my dad without any internet, without any Gary Vee. I was 34 years old when I wrote Crush It. I was a grown boy. I'd lived life without anybody knowing who the fuck I was, full life.

Scott Rogowsky: And no aspirations to be known.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Correct. There was no I'm going to Hollywood and I'm going to be this. I was not Brad Pitt. I didn't want it. A lot of people tried to make me the poster child of hustlehood. What sucks for me is, the word hustle was the slang term for work ethic in 2008 when there was such a big opportunity and so much trouble with jobs. I don't utter the word hustle anymore because I know it triggers, and I'm very empathetic to burnout, and because I know people don't read. In Crush It, I talk about making 60,000 a year talking about Star Trek and working 40 hours a week. And that's the beauty of this. Not, you're going to be big. I've never talked about trillions. I've never worn the watches. You don't see a single private jet photo. That has never been me. But people are headline readers. I will go to the grave believing that work ethic is important. Listen, I also think a lack of work ethic is a right if you have self-awareness that you're going to live a slightly different life that may value leisure and peace of mind. Which, oh, by the way, I think is kind of pretty cool. I just happen to love business.

Scott Rogowsky: Good time for a quick break. More with Gary Vee when we return. Bringing it back to the book, Gary, you talk about the importance of finding the right balance in all these traits, these twelve and a half.

Gary Vaynerchuk: It's why I call them ingredients, right, because you use these three, you make a good meal. If you leave out.

Scott Rogowsky: No, you're right. If you have too much of one ingredient, it throws off the balance of the dish. And you use the example of your own life, when you discuss your goal of buying the Jets, which is becoming an albatross perhaps for you. But tell us about this goal. And I'm rocking my Shonn Greene jersey. 

Gary Vaynerchuk: I love you for that.

Scott Rogowsky: This goal specifically of buying the Jets. You've been talking about this for maybe the decade now. But I'm sure it's been a childhood dream and a fantasy. We all have a fantasy. I want to run the Mets.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Since fourth grade, I wanted it. Somewhere at about 28 I realized, oh, I just love the game of entrepreneurship. I created this goal almost as an unachievable goal that will let me keep playing my game. It's almost like you enjoy being the hamster on the wheel in this game. It's been a childhood goal. I really hate when people are like, "Yeah, we're going to listen to this guy. His life's fucking goal is to buy the Jets. Piece of shit." And I'm like, "Ah, fuck. They don't see the nuance." I don't give a shit if I buy the Jets or not. I love the fact that I'm playing a game that I'm trying to. It's so enjoyable. I think I'm more like an athlete. I love my game so much that if the game that I played within the game to myself was, let me go buy this football team that's given me so much misery, and I'm going to fix it. It's become a fairy tale in my own self. But what it does, it makes my entrepreneurship more enjoyable. VeeFriends crushes, and I get to play the role in my own head of, hmm, could have this just sped it up for five years? What do I need to do? Da da, da. It makes the game more fun.

Scott Rogowsky: I think it's time now, before this evolves into a Jets podcast, it's time for the Business Casual quiz, Gary, Quizness Casual. And today's contestants, of course, are going to be my dearly beloved, Nora Ali, my co-host, and our guest, Gary Vaynerchuk. So Gary, we do this quiz with our guests themed around their specialty. Of course, yours is just business, being successful in business. So we're talking about big successful names in business. Are you ready for this one, Gary? Nora, how do you feel about going head to head with Mr. Gary Vee here?

Nora Ali: I think Gary and I should agree on answers and go for it as a team. What do you think, Gary? No competition here. 

Gary Vaynerchuk: Let's win. Let's do this Nora.

Scott Rogowsky: Okay, here we go. Question one, qumero numero uno. The founder of this company saved it by taking its last $5,000 and turned into 27,000 in a Vegas casino. Was that company FedEx, Costco, Home Depot or Walmart?

Gary Vaynerchuk: I know the answer, Nora.

Nora Ali: Oh, you do know the answer. All right.

Gary Vaynerchuk: The answer is FedEx.

Nora Ali: There you go. I feel like I had heard that story before. Now, let's hear the history. What is it?

Scott Rogowsky: FedEx was growing so quickly in the '70s, struggling to keep up with the rising fuel cost.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Hold on, Scott, Hold on. Before you go into the answer, can we get some clapping and music for the conviction? On a quiz show, we fucking nailed it. I said, "Nora, I know this." I said it. You're being very nonchalant on a very awesome execution of the answer.

Scott Rogowsky: You're right.

Nora Ali: I had the self-awareness to just let Gary have this one because he knows. I think we really nailed it.

Gary Vaynerchuk: That's right. What was amazing there, she intuitively felt that I wasn't bolstering. 

Scott Rogowsky: Yep. And look, I'm using the soft skill of just being, I'm trying to treat this whole thing with some humility. Yes you are correct, Gary. FedEx. Fred Smith, CEO, put his last 5,000 on I guess a roulette wheel in Vegas. Crazy. Okay. Number two. What is Twitter's bird name, the official name of the Twitter bird? Is it Larry, Tweety, Jasper or Birdie?

Gary Vaynerchuk: Nora, this is embarrassing because I'm that guy. And everybody would think, it's funny that this is the one. The first one I nailed, and this. Nora, believe it or not, I think it's Larry.

Nora Ali: I do too. Yeah. I said Larry as well.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Okay, good.

Nora Ali: Yeah, okay.

Scott Rogowsky: Gary, you're an early investor in Twitter. Larry the bird. Larry Bird. Yes. It is correct.

Nora Ali: Yes. Yes.

Scott Rogowsky: Biz Stone, one of Twitter's co-founders, a Boston native, during Bird's three NBA championship seasons, three MVP titles, Larry Bird.

Nora Ali: Larry Bird. That makes sense. 

Scott Rogowsky: Tweet, tweet. Final question. You're two for two here.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Okay, Nora. You don't even know what's going through the chemicals in my body. The obsession to go three for three here in public domain. It's so big. Okay. 

Scott Rogowsky: What was Warren Buffett's first business? Warren Buffett's first business, was it Gateway Underwriters Agency, See's Candies, Pop Stop Vending Machines ,or Wilson's Coin Operated Machine Company?

Gary Vaynerchuk: You know, it's funny. The last two are so close. Do you know, Nora?

Nora Ali: I have no idea. I don't know why See's Candies feels good to me. 

Gary Vaynerchuk: The problem is, the last two are very close to each other and speak to the same thing at scale.

Nora Ali: Let's say it on three. C or D? Say C or D on three. Ready? 1, 2, 3. D.

Gary Vaynerchuk: D. Okay. 

Nora Ali: Okay. We agree on D. 

Scott Rogowsky: That's D, as in David, as in Wilson's Coin Operating Machine Company. Before Warren Buffett started making billions, he was 18 hustling to grow his bank account just like Gary Vee, just like a lot of us. He started out in 1946, buying a pinball machine and officially launched his business as Wilson's Coin Operated Machine Company. You are correct. You are correct.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yes. Three for three. I'm so happy right now.

Scott Rogowsky: You guys, you're flawless. Perfect. We could not have wrapped this up a better way, Gary. I'm so excited you're pumped on that. You crushed the quiz.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Thank you.

Scott Rogowsky: No one has been more excited for the Quizness Casual than you are. Gary, this is a phenomenal conversation. 

Gary Vaynerchuk: I don't think I actually realized how deep of a Jets fan you are. That alone makes me want to be your friend forever.

Scott Rogowsky: We'll get into it. We'll get into it, man.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Okay. Nora, thank you so much.

Nora Ali: Thank you, Gary. This is awesome.

Scott Rogowsky: Appreciate you, man. We love hearing from you, BC listeners. So please hit our line. Send us an email at businesscasual@morningbrew.com or DM us on Twitter @bizcasualpod, that's B-I-Zcasualpod, with your thoughts.

Nora Ali: You can also leave a voice memo on our website, businesscasual.fm, or give us a ring and leave us an old fashioned voicemail. Our number is (862) 295-1135. As Business Casual grows, we are excited to get to know our listeners, old and new. Drop us a line. And don't forget to leave your name and where you're calling or writing from so we can hear from you in a future episode.

Scott Rogowsky: Business Casual is crushed by Katherine Milsop and Bella Hutchins. Additional production sound design and mixing by Daniel Markus. Alan Haburchak is the director of audio at Morning Brew. Sarah Singer is our VP of multimedia. And Jessica Coen is our chief content officer. Music. The music in this episode from Daniel Markus and The Mysterious Breakmaster Cylinder. If you like what you heard, please follow Business Casual on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, wherever you go for your Gary Vee content. And we'd love it if you'd give us a great rating and a review.

Nora Ali: Thanks for listening to Business Casual, I'm Nora Ali.

Scott Rogowsky: And I'm Scott Rogowsky.

Nora Ali: Keep it business.

Scott Rogowsky: And keep it casual.