After Elon Musk was first informed of his official “world’s richest person” status (currently having a net worth of more than $185 billion), he reportedly simply responded with “Well, back to work…”
If you don’t already know, Elon Reeve Musk FRS is a business magnate, industrial designer and engineer. He is the founder, CEO, CTO and chief designer of SpaceX; early investor, CEO and product architect of Tesla Inc.; founder of The Boring Company; co-founder of Neuralink; and co-founder and initial co-chairman of Open AI. This South African-born American entrepreneur also co-founded the electronic payment firm PayPal.
But, apart from his impressive CV…
What can we learn from Elon Musk‘s journey thus far?
- Success doesn’t have a set finish line. Success means different things to different people at different stages. If being the richest person in the world was Elon Musk‘s ultimate and only goal, what would he do with the rest of his life? Let’s start viewing every personal goal reached as success, no matter how big or small and never stop growing, aspiring and succeeding.
- The journey to success is a game. Like Elon‘s response above suggests, it would seem that he perceives wealth creation a game and like many others at similar successful levels as him, love the game itself and money is merely a way of keeping score. When you are starting out and have a small business, this might be difficult to comprehend. At the start of your journey, your goal is to increase your income and better your financial situation i.e. earn more money. Next, you focus on creating the lifestyle of your dreams i.e. wealth creation. But for for multi-millionaires and billionaires who have surpassed this level, money loses its value in a sense. What do you do if you have and can afford anything your heart desires? At this point it’s all about the game, the adrenaline rush, the power and there is more room for raking risks.
- Laser focus and environment. Elon left his first high school where he was bullied and after high school, his home country, in pursuit of his dreams. Recently, he moved his companies to Texas when the state of California’s policies negatively impacted the growth of his companies. Very often, success rate is directly proportional to the environment in which it grows. If you find yourself in a negative environment not conducive for growth or success, change your environment instead of allowing it to change you.
- Solve a problem before it exists. Sounds impossible? Elon Musk has shown the ability to foresee future problems and create solutions for these before his customers recognize it as such. This will make it more difficult for your company to reach success and gain momentum early on as you first have to create the need for your product. However, once you do, you will have very few, if any, competitors.
- Persistence and Commitment to your vision. With Elon Musk‘s futuristic ideas, he has had more than his fair share of resistance and ridicule from people who didn’t believe in him or his concepts. However, it did not deter him. He invested almost all of his own money into his own companies many times and at one stage when Tesla was struggling to make deadlines and make ends meet, he slept in the factory. Can you say that you are as committed to your dreams and ideas or do others opinions leave you in doubt?
- Legacy. It would seem that Elon Musk is no longer concerned with his personal wealth but rather the legacy he will leave behind. Not just for his own family but for future generations of the world. This should also be our ultimate goal: to impact and leave the world better than you found it.