Famous entrepreneurs will tell you that they prepared themselves to run big companies by developing the right character traits. These are qualities that aren’t always naturally expressed. They take some practice.
That’s why kids start lemonade stands, babysitting services, and lawn mowing operations. The entrepreneurial spirit is honed from simple acts of passion, commitment, and leadership.
Take Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin brand of companies. Since the Virgin Group was founded in 1970, it has spawned more than 200 enterprises. The industries include music, publishing, mobile phones, and – more recently – space travel.
Branson’s passion for business is merely an extension of his zeal for life. He’s well known for having an adventurous character. This has made him admired for the personality he brings to his business interests as well as his private life.
Jeff Bezos founded Amazon with an objective of having the largest bookstore in the world. Realizing that the internet has worldwide reach, that’s where he launched amazon.com in 1995. Within two months, the business had revenue of $20,000 per week.
Bezos raised private capital from investors and venture capital firms. Then Amazon become a publicly owned company during the splash of the dot com era. When the bust of that period arrived, Amazon stock went from $100 to $6 per share. Critics expected that competition from Barnes & Noble would eliminate Amazon from the market.
All the while, Bezos stayed positive. He believed in the future of Amazon. That characteristic propelled him to make his company even more of a phenomenon. Now Amazon annually sells $5.7 billion of books and other items – ranging from software to clothing.
Running a business requires leadership ability. And that was certainly part of the character of Mary Kay Ash, the founder of Mary Kay Cosmetics. The late Ms. Ash embodied the enthusiasm required to keep a corporation going through all types of economic conditions.
Ash built her business by teaching other women how to have their own businesses selling her company’s products. She started in 1963 with $5,000. Eventually half a million women joined her team. Ash was a strong motivator and inspirational speaker. But she always adhered to a well-known sense of ethics and built a company of integrity.
Passion, commitment, and leadership. Three pretty good character traits to possess for starting your own corporation.