The Power of Scrappiness and the Ownership Economy: Driving Success in Innovation


Hatched by Glasp

Sep 03, 2023

4 min read


The Power of Scrappiness and the Ownership Economy: Driving Success in Innovation


In the world of entrepreneurship and new ventures, two key concepts have emerged as driving forces for success: scrappiness and the ownership economy. Both of these philosophies and cultures play a crucial role in achieving goals, staying focused, identifying opportunities, and navigating setbacks. While seemingly different, these two concepts share common points that can be harnessed to drive innovation and growth. In this article, we will explore the significance of staying scrappy and the potential of the ownership economy in shaping the future of consumer software.

Staying Scrappy:

"Stay scrappy." These words of advice from Marvin encapsulate the essence of being adaptable and focused on impact. Cambridge Dictionary defines scrappy as having a strong, determined character and a willingness to fight for what you want. Being scrappy means facing challenges head-on, being resourceful, and not letting the fear of failure hinder progress. When building something new, the process of iterating and testing becomes crucial in finding the right ground for your idea to take root. This can be referred to as "scrappy A/B testing," where experimentation helps in finding the product-market fit. By staying scrappy, entrepreneurs and teams can navigate roadblocks, push through obstacles, and make things happen, even when they seem daunting. It is a philosophy that fosters a culture of testing, learning, and iterating, allowing for risk-taking and innovation.

The Ownership Economy:

The ownership economy represents a paradigm shift in the way software platforms are built and gain adoption. It is a model where individual users not only build, operate, and fund software but also own it. The protocol innovation of tokens has enabled the creation of platforms that leverage ownership to accelerate network effects. Ownership serves as a powerful motivator for users to contribute to products in deeper ways, be it with ideas, computing resources, code, or community building. This cooperative economic model ensures better alignment with users, resulting in larger, more resilient, and more innovative platforms. The success of Bitcoin and Ethereum, the first user-owned and operated networks at scale, exemplifies the potential of user ownership. Users earn the majority of the value generated from their collective contributions, shifting away from the traditional model where value is primarily captured by founders and investors.

Connecting Scrappiness and the Ownership Economy:

Both scrappiness and the ownership economy share a common goal: driving innovation and achieving success. Scrappiness allows entrepreneurs and teams to adapt quickly, learn from mistakes, and celebrate small successes along the way. It is about rolling with the punches, testing, and adapting. The ownership economy, on the other hand, empowers users to contribute to products in meaningful ways and be rewarded for their efforts. It aligns incentives, fosters user engagement, and drives network effects.

Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Embrace scrappiness: Encourage a culture of testing, learning, and iterating within your team or organization. Foster an environment where challenges are viewed as opportunities, mistakes are seen as learning experiences, and small successes are celebrated. Emphasize the importance of adaptability and resourcefulness in achieving goals.
  • 2. Explore the ownership economy: Consider how the principles of the ownership economy can be applied to your product or service. Look for ways to involve users in the creation, operation, and ownership of the software. Explore the potential of tokenization and incentives to drive user engagement and network effects.
  • 3. Learn from past failures, but don't be paralyzed by them: Strike a balance between learning from past mistakes and being open to taking risks. Avoid the trap of perfectionism, which can stifle both scrappiness and innovation. Embrace the idea of failing well as a stepping stone towards success.


Staying scrappy and embracing the ownership economy are powerful strategies for driving success in innovation. By being adaptable, resourceful, and focused on impact, entrepreneurs and teams can overcome challenges and achieve their goals. The ownership economy, with its emphasis on user involvement, incentives, and network effects, offers a new frontier in consumer software. By incorporating these concepts into our approaches, we can create a culture of testing, learning, and iterating, where risk-taking and innovation thrive. So, stay scrappy, explore the ownership economy, and embrace the power of adaptability and user ownership in driving success.

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