You desire the benefits and freedom of being an entrepreneur. You envision the treasure trove of success. You long to quit your job, move to paradise, and get paid to change the world. You crave the time-tested tips of successful billionaire entrepreneurs to inspire and spur you on your journey.
Good news. We have an inspiring case study for you.
The journey of this famous entrepreneur was long and arduous. He was not born with a silver spoon in his mouth. He suffered multiple rejections in his life journey that would have sunk most folks into depression.
This man persevered, maintain a sense of optimism throughout his ordeal, and went on to almost single-handedly creating the entire Chinese internet industry.
That’s is the story of Jack Ma, a story of how he envisioned success in a business nobody was interested in, a story of how he assembled a die-hard team, raised the initial funds, and pulled through an extraordinary feat.
As promised, here are Jack’s 5 authoritative tips as a successful billionaire entrepreneur:
Graft Optimism Into Your Mindset
The first advice Jack gave was: “Be optimistic, always”.
Let’s be honest about this supposedly golden advice: Be optimistic, always?
Interestingly enough, Jack remarked that when you are successful, every advice you give will become legendary. When you are a failure, nobody cares.
We know life is not easy and problems are always just around the corner. Being an entrepreneur with a heavy load of responsibilities for your team and the business can be daunting. Yet, many still take the entrepreneurship route from the allure of being the boss, to go wherever they want, whenever they want with the possibility of making it big someday.
I research the life journey of Jack Ma to see if his first golden advice is just a passing statement or from gems of wisdom gleaned from his years of experience. I conclude that he has earned the right to give advice to entrepreneurs to “be optimistic, always”.
Don’t trust me, listen to his story to draw your conclusions:
Reference: Biggest challenges that every entrepreneur faced.
Choose Your Crew Wisely
His second advice is for you to find a group of people who share your vision to work together with you. This group of people must not be just looking for a job. They must believe the dream, they must believe the mission, they must believe the vision, they must believe in you.
Train the team, and the team will also train you.
I fully agree with this approach. Some of my biggest failures in business came about from the wrong selection of partners with objectives very different from mine. Avoid money-grubbing egomaniacs. They can wreak your life at the worst possible moment in your entrepreneur journey.
Always go for talents with ethics and moral backbones. Great people make a great company. You need to spend the time to choose people who fit your culture and share your values. You need to learn how to delegate tasks and let go. You must not expect people to be your clones. You need to be open to fresh perspectives on old ways of working.
References on talent management:
Prepare for Sacrifices
Do not ask what you would get, but what you can give. Always prepare for the unexpected and factor in more time and resources than you envisaged.
Research confirms that running out of cash is one of the top reasons why entrepreneurs fail. You need to be frugal as an entrepreneur and Jack’s advice is well-placed as other successful billionaire entrepreneurs such as Jeff Bezos and Warren Buffett share similar traits and sentiments.
One of Jack’s gems of wisdom is:
“Today is hard. Tomorrow will be worse. But the day after tomorrow will be sunshine.” Jack Ma
The best entrepreneurs don’t seek risk, they seek to mitigate risk.
Sacrifice today. Persevere tomorrow. Celebrate the day after tomorrow.
Reference: 5 Sacrifices Every Entrepreneur Must Make
Avoid Well-Trodden Entrepreneur Paths
Jack attributed Alibaba’s success to focusing on the technology that no one was focusing on some 20 years ago. In his own words, “e-commerce was so cold” that nobody believed in it except Jack and his team.
Jack strongly advised entrepreneurs to think hard on how to be unique, how to stand out from competitors, how to do better than them, and how to last for 10 years at the business when others could only last for one year.
You need to prophetically project trends into the future to be successful and avoid the business fashion of the day. During my management consultancy some years ago, I was taken aback at the rapid pace of innovation especially in the areas of AI and IT. I had to take a sabbatical to upgrade my knowledge and skills to stay relevant in the marketplace.
Similarly, I see the future of work in remote working. I have done my research but that is a topic for another article I will publish in the near future. If you want to be alerted, please drop me an email given in my profile at the top right-hand corner above.
As promised, I leave you with another good reference here on invaluable entrepreneur tips.
Create The Environment For Your Success
Jack strongly urged entrepreneurs to move ahead of the market and government policies.
His advice makes perfect sense for entrepreneurs as you won’t stand a chance against the big boys and government-backed entities when the environment is ready for the business. Alibaba was well poised to lead the market in online commerce, including mobile e-commerce through TaoBao, payment gateway through Ali-pay, and a host of related businesses like Lazada and Intime Department Store.
Jack did not taste the fruit of success until many years after he started the venture with his team. He suffered during the initial years of drought but the business field eventually blossomed with succulent fruits of success for him.
From The Horse’s Mouth
You have crossed the desert of hardship into the oasis of success.
You have successfully quit your job, moved to paradise, and got very well paid to change the world.
You are a successful, wealthy, and happy entrepreneur.
Budding entrepreneurs crowd to you at events for your tips and advice.
Make your dream a reality by following the legendary tips of Jack Ma.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. I am going to close my thousand words post with a moving picture of Jack Ma delivering his top 5 tips for entrepreneurs:
To your success!