The Self-Made Man: A Bunch of Wisdom
We profile a lot of successful individuals here at TSB, but this week I thought I’d take a different approach and compile the business/life advice that helped some self-made men reach their goals, and then reach beyond them.
This is important, because it’s easy to get lost in one person’s biography and feel that, because their life circumstances are so different/more fortunate than yours, you’ll never make something of yourself the way they did. Plus, being a self-starter is a grind—long hours, irregular pay, bad takeout coffee—and it can burn people out if they don’t step away periodically and look for inspiration. Hearing people who’ve already made it talk about what got them there, and realizing how simple and practical their success mantras were, can give us all hope.
Chris Rock, actor/comedian: “If you want help, help yourself—people like to see that.”
Henry Rollins, writer/musician/media personality: “Stick to the reason you got into it in the first place…all the greats played through all kinds of highs and lows and ebbs and tides. If you’re a player, then play!”
Michael White, Aus Identities: “Everything will take about 3 times as long as you expect it to…I seldom get frustrated now as my expectations are suitably adjusted.”
Mark Zuckerberg, some guy: “The biggest risk is not taking any risk…in a world that’s changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks.”
Craig Brown, Founder/CEO of Recruitment Rocket: “The greatest key to small business success is to not hold your cards too close to your chest. Tell people about your great idea. Tell anyone who will listen. Actively seek feedback from the larger community as a whole…you’ll be surprised at how many people will be both willing and able to contribute.”
Chris Runyan, president of GameXChange: “Starting a new business can create a lot of stress and most people fail because of that. So much pressure is created when the business owns you in the beginning. Stress and unknowns create bad decisions. Be on top of your money.”
Vince McMahon, chairman/owner of WWE: “When you’re young and you’re facing a man, you get the s–t beat out of you. That happened to me a lot growing up. I draw upon experiences like that now. You have to learn from everything. It’s like the old expression: If it doesn’t kill you, it makes you stronger. That’s really true — if you work at it.”
Of all these, I’d say Craig Brown’s piece of wisdom is the most important. Communicating your ideas is huge, especially if you know how to surround yourself with people who challenge you as well as support your ambitions.
And if you really need a boost, you can’t go wrong with the sage counsel of Kid President.
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About Dave Kiefaber Dave Kiefaber is a Baltimore-based writer who regularly contributes to Adfreak and the Gettysburg Times. His personal website is at www.beeohdee.blogspot.com.