Last Tuesday, I was a keynote speaker at the Digital East 2012 conference, where I presented “CEO or Ironman: Driving Success at the Bottom Line and Finish line.”
Here are my 7 Rules for Successful Entrepreneurship:
1. Fear: The odds are against you; most start-ups will fail. However, passion will prevail. Pain is inevitable, but suffering is optional. If you are passionate about your endeavors, you are more likely to succeed.
2. Dream: Dreams become goals; goals become projects. If you don’t first have a vision, your plans are less likely to succeed.
3. Commit: Commit first plan second. Quit your day job now!
4. Resilience: Decide to finish what you start. Stick with it. Get up again…and again. Expect that things will go wrong, but persevere in the face of adversity.
5. Aim High: If you aim low, you’ll land low. Aiming high will not guarantee your success, but it increases its likelihood.
6. Hours: Expect to put in the time to succeed. If you want to work a 40-hour week, being an entrepreneur may not be for you.
7. Leadership: The vision -- the idea -- is yours. Only you can convince others to join your effort, and only your vision and leadership will attract top talent to your cause. Colin Powell said, “Leadership is the art of accomplishing more than the science of management says is possible.”
Either/Or versus And: The Either/Or paradigm involves the mindset of “constraints” – time, funding, workforce, etc. How do you manage to find 20 additional hours per week to train for the Ironman when you are a husband, father, and business executive? Learn to say the most powerful word in the world: AND.
Ironman and Entrepreneurship reveal your DNA. After completing my first Ironman competition, I understood that I really can do anything. Going from “Either/Or” to “And” involves a mind-shift. As I said in the presentation, I am Alex Douzet. I am a husband, and a father, and a COO, and an entrepreneur…and an Ironman.
Alex Douzet is Co-Founder and COO of TheLadders. In this role, Alex is responsible for the company strategy, global business operations, and product development.