The best-kept secrets of successful business people:

From the people that I’ve encountered, and from what I’ve read; here is what I’ve discovered:

Upon ‘headstarts’

  • Anyone really CAN do it but ‘right place, right time’ matters a HELL OF A LOT
  • If Bill Gates was born a potato farmer…
  • Success begets success. If you come from a successful family it is MUCH MUCH easier to become successful
  • Donald Trump son of Mary Anne and Fred Trump successful real estate developers
  • You can start build the ‘next instagram’; but coming from Silicon Valley and not having to worry about ‘making rent’ makes a significant difference
  • Going to the U of Alberta and having to worry about moving out after Uni to get a ‘grad job’ isn’t the best grounds for building a tech startup

(Please note if you’re not from ‘THIS’ kind of background. Who cares. There are no ‘reasons’ in life. Just actions or excuses)

Upon their actual lives

  • The average age of a founder is 40
  • The famous 10 year rule really does apply then
  • Most have families than those that do not
  • There are MORE entrepreneurs outside of tech than in tech. Tech is just what everyone talks about
  • The average number of businesses they try/start before they become successful is 2.3
  • This excludes all the ‘half baked/started ideas’ that don’t make the 2.3
  • Most entrepreneurs we’ll never even read about

Upon their character

  • Most of them are obsessive. And persistent. Most who don’t make it. Aren’t.
  • Fire and crazy ambition in their 20s. More groundedness in their 30s. Humility in the 40s
  • Monumental appetite for learning
  • From books, people, business and life
  • Probably don’t spend too much time reading Quora posts
  • Explains why I haven’t made it
  • They never, ever give up
  • Perhaps upon their business they do. But never upon their dream

For some of my musings upon business see here

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I’m 30. I’ve lived in 9 Countries. Travelled to 50+. Raised money 2x for Tech Companies. I’ve worked for Deloitte. Been homeless. Run 20 marathons. Am a trained British Soldier.

Here are the: ‘Things I Wish I Knew When I Was Younger’: