What is Web3 and why should you care?

Cryptocurrencies have undeniably made their breakthrough to the mainstream after the covid-19 pandemic, mostly thanks to the rapidly rising valuation of Bitcoin. While crypto-related news is mostly centered around finance, there is much more happening in the space.

As we have previously written, we think that digital tokens and their underlying blockchain technologies form a new paradigm of building software, called Web3.

As defined by Packy McCormick from Not Boring and referenced by Chris Dixon from a16z, Web3 is the internet owned by the builders and users, orchestrated with tokens. In a technical level, blockchain technology upgrades the internet protocol by embedding native transfers of value – a dimension that has previously been missing. The new toolkit makes any product inherently decentralized and thus uncensorable, natively embeds financial transactions, and removes all single-point-of-failures from the system.

For these reasons, we consider Web3 an upgraded internet protocol that offers tools (i.e tokens) for building massively superior products compared to anything seen before.

Supercharged toolkit offers a multitude of new opportunities for companies building products and applications in Web3. A myriad of new companies and protocols leverage this toolkit already, and rapidly increasing amount of venture capital funding for the space implies that the growth won’t halt soon.

As a result, it’s easy to say a big number of career opportunities await in the world of Web3!

What does Web3 offer for your career?

More and more people are making the jump to Web3 as we speak. It’s estimated that cryptocurrencies already have more than 100 million users globally and that over 1.3 million people hold governance tokens of Web3-native decentralized autonomous organizations (DAO).

However, Web3 is still a highly emergent space. A year ago the first DAOs were just about to be born – now they hold more than $15B worth of assets in their treasuries! Below, we shed some light what it means to work in such rapidly evolving space.

1. An explosively growing number of opportunities

Web3 is a whole new paradigm of building products that can form an industry as large as the whole internet today. The rapid growth of the space means a painful need for new talent across companies and roles. CryptoJobs – one of many job boards – lists almost 3000 open jobs in their site, and most organizations also leverage freelancing talent in their projects.

While Web3 is attracting more talent every day, there’s still time to be one of the first movers and grab new opportunities at hand!

2. Increased freedom

Web3 companies are built on the sub-culture that crypto-related communities have built on the web. It means increased flexibility, privacy, and remoteness.

Most Web3 companies are remote-first, offering working opportunities for both employees and freelancers. DAOs operate on yet another level of freedom, being primarily run by freelancers that gather around a shared mission and treasury. In many DAOs, it’s also acceptable to operate anonymously, presenting a superior layer of privacy protection for the professional context.

3. Shared ownership for all contributors

According to the principles of decentralization, DAOs and many other Web3 organizations strive to distribute their ownership to community members. Employees, freelancers, and other contributors are key parts of each organization’s community, meaning that working in Web3 often offers an opportunity to earn tokens of the respective projects.

While many tokens are listed in decentralized exchanges and can be easily swapped in money (either digital or fiat), holding governance tokens gives exposure to the upside potential of the organization. This aligns incentives between all parties and enables any contributor to earn asymmetrically large economic outcomes that are rarely available for regular contributors.

4. Mission-driven work – for a single or multiple causes

Since working with DAOs is community-driven, it’s organized by freelancers around a shared cause and treasury instead of employees that are tied to organizations with contractual relationships. Flexible work drives only those who deeply care about the mission contributing to the project. In other hand, the permissionless nature of many DAOs means that anyone excited about the mission can freely join – no acceptance from gatekeepers required.

Flexible work offers also an opportunity to work for multiple organizations at the same time. On the contrary to typical employment relationships, that is actually common and even encouraged. Don’t choose only a single mission to drive forward but contribute to any one of them you feel passionate about!

5. A route for more equitable professional world

Crypto-culture and Web3 organizations are laying the path towards possibly more equitable professional world. More remote, flexible and anonymous world means professionals are evaluated primarily based on results – if you don’t know the counter-party, any biases can’t distract decision-making.

It shouldn’t be taken for granted that Web3 offers a more equitable professional world. However, removing gatekeepers, enabling anonymity, and sharing ownership more broadly in an environment in which transparency is enforced by code offers many necessary building blocks for this future.

What working in Web3 doesn’t mean?

While it’s important to understand what working in Web3 means, we feel that there also are some myths and biases about working in such rapidly emerging space. We unpack a couple of them below!

1. Lower income levels

Even though working in Web3 – especially in DAOs – could more fluid and flexible than in some other industries, it doesn’t mean the compensation should be worse. Instead, many jobs are paid (even extremely) well.

In Cryptocurrency Jobs, most jobs are offered six-figure salaries. Yearn Finance has experimented a model for offering steady, competitive compensation for their core contributors, and working with the bounties of many organizations can offer you a much higher income (+ ownership!) than a single full-time employment.

2. No full-time jobs available

Web3 is a diverse space, containing many different types of organizations. There are many companies that are hiring – as mentioned, thousands of jobs available out there…

However, many people choose increased freedom and become freelancers in this new economy. Cooper Turley provides a great practical toolkit for becoming a full-time freelances in the space of DAOs, and platforms like Kleoverse or Gitcoin help you find a constant stream of paid, meaningful work.

3. Forming meaningful personal relationships is hard without meeting in person

Crypto communities tend to be tightly knit together with people interacting actively with each other – no matter whether they are participating with their own names or some pseudonyms!

Furthermore, even though working remotely, Web3 communities gather often together to meet in the real life (luckily the pandemic times start to be over…). This happens both via offsites and blockchain conferences – just look at the pictures from LisCon or NFT NYC to get a better picture!

4. Developers are the only talent needed

Yes, it’s true that many Web3 organizations and crypto protocols are actively looking for developers. Blockchain development talent is needed, and there are exciting programs like Questbook or Buildspace for learning Solidity (Ethereum) or other blockchain development.

However, a broad range of different talent is needed in DAOs and other Web3 organizations. A great example is Bankless DAO which hosts 13 different working groups; 12 of them focusing on something else than development.

Like in the current professional world, all types of talent is and will increasingly be needed in Web3, and now it’s a perfect time to become a frontrunner by starting to build your crypto career!

5. Every organization works in finance

Tokens are often nominated in monetary terms and some of them – like $BTC or $ETH – can be seen as investment assets. Also, decentralized finance (“DeFi”) is an important part of Web3 currently.

Yet, as discussed earlier, tokens are merely a tool for upgrading the internet protocol by enabling native transfers of value. This toolkit is used for many purposes, and the range of different applications is growing constantly. There are many organizations building something completely else than a new financial protocol – you can use tools like Kleoverse for finding them!

In Kleoverse, our goal is to help anyone to start working in Web3. Kleoverse Discovery helps you find all DAOs and open Web3 working opportunities. Based on your conducted projects, we help you to build Web3-native professional profiles.

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