Gutsy Genius Thinker

Engineer, Artist, Architect, Anatomist, Polymath

Leonardo di ser Piero Da Vinci

Anchiano, Vinci, Republic of Florence

Leonardo is a GGT who embodies the notion of “have-a-go,” and before you know it, you’ve invented the flying machine (on paper). As he said, “I have always felt it is my destiny to build a machine that would allow man to fly.”

It’s not unusual for a GGT to envision a product ahead of its time, or in Leonardo’s case, before the material and manufacturing process were available or even in existence. According to sources at Wikipedia, “Some of his smaller inventions, however, entered the world of manufacturing unheralded, such as an automated bobbin winder and a machine for testing the tensile strength of wire. He is also sometimes credited with planning the inventions of the parachute, helicopter, and tank. He made substantial discoveries in anatomy, civil engineering, geology, optics, and hydrodynamics, but he sadly did not publish his findings, and they had little to no direct influence on subsequent science.” Lesson to all GGTs—write and publish your ideas and stories!

Although Leonardo had no formal education, he’s regarded as The Renaissance Man or a universal genius. It is said that he may well have been the last man that knew all there was to know in the world until Google appeared. He was not known for staying still and moved from patron to patron (Venture and Private equity) as he sought funding for his ideas. No easy feat to secure Series A funding in those days. Leo (to his friends) was unorthodox and deeply curious. In 1472, at the age of 20, this GGT qualified as a master in the Guild of Saint Luke—the guild of artists and doctors of medicine. He went on to have a colorful personal life and gained fame as one of the greatest doers (Get Stuff Done—GSD) of all time. He died at Château d’Amboise, France, on the 12th August 1519, aged 67.

Although Leonardo was not available for a video interview with Glenn and me, we improvised.

Leonardo’s Adapters Tips

  • Learning never exhausts the mind
  • There are three classes of people: those who see, those who see when they are shown, those who do not see.
  • In rivers, the water that you touch is the last of what has passed and the first of that which comes, so with present time.
  • He who wishes to be rich in a day will be hanged in a year
  • Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication