3 stories of successful self-made entrepreneurs
Among the most widespread beliefs in the common imagination, there is that most successful entrepreneurs were born rich. In fact, far more people have achieved success from scratch.
Often behind the word “wealth”, there are sacrifices, suffering, resourcefulness and above all determination to overcome failures.
We will see all this through the story of 3 entrepreneurs now billionaires, describing their path, not without obstacles.
What do these people have in common? One could say innate talent, luck, or other factors that did not depend on their choices. Or, determination, perseverance and a lot of hard work, on yourself and in your professional sphere.
So in this article, we will describe the commonalities of these stories, and why they might inspire you to achieve your goals.
Self-made successful entrepreneurs: stories everyone should know
Howard Schultz (Starbucks)
Starbucks is an American chain of coffee shops, known for the Italian style with which they have been furnished.
Initially living in Brooklyn, Howard Schultz immediately found himself in serious financial difficulties due to the injury of his father. In fact, he had lost his job and had no income to support the family’s needs.
However, he obtained a scholarship to the University of Michigan, thanks to his sporting merits as a football player.
To support himself, he carries out various jobs, from bartender to salesman in a printer and copier company.
In a short time, he was able to become General Manager of the Hammarplast company and to lead and coordinate the sellers.
This is where he comes into contact with Starbucks, a small Seattle roastery.
Arrival to success
After a trip to Italy, he is struck by the relationship of confidence between bartenders and customers, and he wanted to replicate the same atmosphere.
He tried to propose the idea to numerous investors, who were not immediately available. However, after numerous rejections, he finally manages to finalize his idea of him and buys Starbucks in 1987.
Today this chain has become the second home of Americans and beyond, with around 28,000 coffee shops distributed in 78 countries.
Schultz himself will later say:
“If you don’t love what you are doing with unbridled passion and enthusiasm, you will not be successful when you encounter obstacles”.
Ingvar Kamprad (Ikea)
Who has never heard of IKEA? Ingvar Kamprad was its founder, who passed away in 2018.
Kamprad was born in a small rural village in Sweden, where he showed his skills as a salesman as a child. In fact, at the age of 7 he began selling matches to neighbors.
At 17, with the money donated by his father as a reward for his achievements in the studio, he built the first IKEA factory. The name IKEA derives from the acronym of his initials, the farm and the village where he grew up (Ingvar Kamprad Elmtaryd Agunnaryd).
IKEA initially engaged in mail-order sales of everyday materials, such as stationery and garden tools. Only in 1950 did the furniture become part of the assortment of the current Swedish multinational.
Gradually IKEA became synonymous with convenience, utility and aesthetics.
Today it invoices tens of billions of dollars a year, with approximately 164,000 employees, distributed in more than 40 countries.
Nonetheless, Kamprad himself remained very attentive to savings, and encouraged employees to have the same attitude.
Here is one of his most famous phrases: “If I practice luxury, I cannot preach savings. It’s a question of good leadership ”.
Jan Koum (Whatsapp)
Even today, Whatsapp is the best known and most used application ever for instant messaging and more. What certainly fewer people know is the story of its founder: Jan Koum.
Born in Kyiv, Ukraine, at the age of 18 he moved with his mother and grandmother to California. Thanks to local social assistance, the family manages to get an apartment to live in.
The entrepreneur studies computer science on his own, while doing various jobs to support himself. Thanks to friends he met at work, he gets to work for Yahoo as an engineer.
Together with Brian Acton, they left the company permanently in 2007 to set up their own business. In fact, Whatsapp was born in 2009, with the aim of offering an instant messaging service, which was still little used at the time.
Below, we will quote one of her sentences:
“Sometimes not getting a dream job leads to bigger things.”
Successful self-made entrepreneurs: common traits
Those listed are 3 stories of similar paths, but of 3 different people, from different countries and cultures.
We can see how three main factors distinguished these successful self-made entrepreneurs from the crowd: determination, resilience and resourcefulness.
These characteristics may be innate, but undoubtedly they can also be developed and trained.
Do not stop in front of obstacles, resist failures, get up and return to the field even more motivated by a bigger project. This was the key that led these 3 people to success.
As you can see, nothing that anyone else cannot reach.
Their greatest skill was not selling products, but solutions to people’s needs.
Feeling at home as in a family, cheap furniture and do it yourself, communicate for free at a distance instantly. As you can see, these are all needs that no one had thought of before, and that have been met.
We have seen how some successful self-made entrepreneurs got started from scratch, their origins and their stories. Now it’s your turn to write yours. Find out how Limitless Success paths can help you.