Entrepreneurial Lessons Learned from Louis Bloom in ‘Nightcrawler’


Jake Gyllenhaal did a great job portraying a creepster and delinquent as Louis Bloom in Nightcrawler, but he also provided us with an example of what successful entrepreneur looks like in 2015.

Just from an entertainment standpoint, writer and director Dan Gilroy provides us with one of the best streaming movies on Netflix at this very moment. You’ll be mortified at Bloom’s antics but you can’t turn away. I can see why this film wouldn’t be for everyone, but go along for the ride and see where it takes you. Make sure you watch this movie with a friend. You will definitely want to talk about it after the credits.

Some viewers will focus on the psychotic nature of Louis, but I think this movie is a prime example of what it takes to be an entrepreneur in today’s world. Granted, you wouldn’t to replicate Bloom’s devious actions like his sex negotiations, but there are still plenty of valuable lessons and characteristics he presented with the audience.

Here are a few I picked up on.


1. Apply Your Skills to Something You Love

screen-shot-2014-10-27-at-8-28-52-am-nightcrawler-stars-jake-gyllenhaal-and-rene-russo-get-real-with-moviepilotLouis quickly makes a job pitch to a shady construction owner in the first few minutes of the movie. We see how demented Louis is because he just sold stolen merchandise to the owner, but he doesn’t necessarily see that as something that will hurt his request for employment. The boss wants nothing to do with Louis, even though he does have a nice speech about how he is a hard worker.

Right out of college, recent graduates have a tendency to apply their drive and hustle to careers they will quickly hate. The sad truth is that most grads know they will hate their jobs within the first week of employment. Louis may have used his drive and passion at the beginning of his job at the construction site, but he would not have found it challenging or fulfilling. He was turned down but that offered new opportunities.

He found out what he liked to do and went after it.


2. You Have to Start Somewhere 

Night-crawlerWe all would love to live in an aspiring city or have the perfect computer to write a novel. The reality of entrepreneurship is that you need to start somewhere. It doesn’t matter if you don’t have the best equipment. It doesn’t matter if you don’t feel inspired by the city you live in. You have to get out there and work.

Louis bartered his way from a stolen bike to a basic video recorder and police scanner. He didn’t wait until he had enough money to be the perfect camcorder. He learned the ropes with basic equipment, and then he upgraded his gear as he made more and more money. He only made the money for new equipment by learning the ropes. It will never be perfect, so you need to just start and earn your dues.


3. Build Your Education

Louis admits that he spends most of his time on the computer. While he’s probably into creepy stuff he also is learning. There is more information than we can possibly handle on the internet, and sometimes we forget what kind of knowledge we can gain from a free YouTube video.

Having a formal education is great, but you aren’t allowed to stop learning new things after you’ve completed college. You need to constantly build on your current knowledge and become an expert in your industry. We see Louis spend time learning police codes, and he also embarks that knowledge to his employee. Without this preparation Louis would waste his time. He wouldn’t know what were the best accidents to drive to, and he would not have made as much money without that knowledge.


4. Buying in to the Goal

One of the trademarks of a great entrepreneur is the ability to  get people to buy into what you are doing.

Louis utterly repulses the news director Nina, but by the end of the movie she becomes his biggest advocate. Despite his psychotic behavior Louis provided value to the news staff. Nina realized she couldn’t replace him and became enthralled by his talent. People start buying into those who are staying busy. Anyone can run their mouth about how great they are, but Louis became indispensable with his actions.

You should be working towards your dreams instead of watching movies, but I’ll give you a hall pass to see this amazing mix of dark humor and psychosis.