Posted by: Academy of Achievement | 03/11/2015

white_500Alex White, Class of 2012
Co-Founder and President, The Next Big Sound, Inc.

I participated in the 2012 International Achievement Summit in Washington DC as a delegate. My company was just named to Fast Company’s “Most Innovative Company” list for 2015 alongside Apple, Tesla, Google and others, and I thought it would be a good time to send a sincere thank you for including me in 2012. I still think about it often, and I keep in close touch with many folks I met that weekend. I’d like to share these notes I wrote on the train back from D.C. while the experience was still fresh in my mind:

“I just came back from the four most amazing days of my life. As the public face of Next Big Sound, I attend a lot of conferences. We’ve been recognized as the best music tech company at places from Cannes, France to Toronto, Canada. But this conference was different. I’d been to D.C. dozens of times before — I almost went to Georgetown and my sister and cousins both went to college in the District and live there now — but this trip was different.

“If I had to abstract the short talks from dozens of the highest achievers of our time, from Nobel Prize winners to poets laureate, from the largest hedge fund and private equity managers in the world to preeminent scientists, it would be the following: Every single one of them is in relentless pursuit of Truth. Not “the truth.” Not that which it true, but pure objective Truth. Whether it is seeking alpha and beating the market in the world of finance, describing Truth via poetry, or finding a cure for cancer and HIV-AIDS that works reliably in the lab and real world, all are after Truth. The other abstraction is that even the folks being honored as the top in their field feel like they have not gone nearly far enough, and are not accelerating towards Truth as fast as they could be. They are frustrated with their progress, even though they have made more progress than anyone else in their entire field.

“If I had to encapsulate it in one sentence it would be: Seek Truth in whatever field resonates with you personally, and never be satisfied with what progress you’ve made, because until you find Truth there is still more work to be done.”

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