Elon Musk is among the top entrepreneurs who are in the news almost every day and have a vast impact on the latest technology trends. One day you will see Elon Musk in the news for Tesla motors and the other day you will be watching him celebrating the achievements of SpaceX.
As an entrepreneur, Elon did not achieve the success that easily. In the biography book of Elon Musk by Ashlee Vance you get to learn of the inner workings into the mind of a billionaire mastermind, It was only some years ago when Elon was struggling in his personal and professional lives and was almost with empty hands having nothing in his bank accounts.
There are a lot of lessons in the success of Elon Musk especially for young entrepreneurs.
1. Trust in your ideas.
Elon Musk’s first startup was about Web listings similar to Yelp back in the days. No one was convinced to share their shops listings on the internet when Musk and his brother approached store owners to list their shops on the web. They believed in their idea, built it and ultimately sold it to Compaq for $407 Million.
Elon was so obsessed with his idea that he used to sleep next to the desk in the office and the other engineers used to wake him in the next morning.
2. Start early and be aggressive.
Like the Web listings startup Zip2, Elon Musk started thinking about Internet banking. He actually wanted to open an online bank which would eventually “rule them all.” With the money he had after Zip2’s acquisition by Compaq, he created an online payment transaction company called X.com. But because of his lack of knowledge in the financial sector he brought on guys who had good knowledge of finance such as Peter Thiel, and they all became the co-founders of the X.com which later transformed into PayPal.
3. Always do your homework.
Elon Musk has that vast impacts in different industries and sectors. You will find all kinds of different ventures in his portfolio like Zip2, PayPal, Tesla and SpaceX. What is one of his ways to staying successful? He is always prepared and always comes prepared.
When Musk entered the space industry, many industry giants and government exes considered him a millionaires who would spend some good money ultimately only to fail. But Elon Musk was different. He not only entered the industry with full preparations but with clear goals and targets. He would read over space journals, hire tutors, attend conferences and fully immerse himself into the space. He learnt everything that he could. What is so cool about Elon is his abilty to research a subject and you can easily tell how knowledgeable he is of every business he runs. In his Recode interview it is fascinating to see how he can quickly almost switch his brain to a different sector and explain it in detail without a hiccup.
4. Change the conventional ways of working.
Space and aeronautics industry was following (and still following) the old conventions of working. When Elon Musk entered the Space industry, one of the main challenges for the SpaceX was to challenge the giant companies like Boeing.
SpaceX brought the idea of reusable rockets and their latest successful landing of the rocket is the big step in this regards. These cost-cutting strategies have now become the plus point for SpaceX to compete against the giants in the industry and for the first time, it is looking possible for the low-cost passenger flights in the space.
5. Fight, fight and fight more.
Elon Musk is a fighter and strikes back very quickly. When X.com was going through rough times, the board of directors to remove Elon Musk as CEO. Musk got the news while on his honeymoon (after nine months of his marriage.) and he came back on the very next flight to face the situation and was ultimately re-instated.
Similarly, when Tesla Motors failed to achieve production deadline for the Tesla Roadster and the company was near bankruptcy, one of the directors refused to fund the project in order to make Elon Musk fail and take his position. But Elon fought back, put all his stakes on the mortgage to avoid the bankruptcy and survived. the person that tried to stagnate Musk went on to create Fisker motors, an all electric car that ended up being a lesser knockoff of Tesla.
6. Keep enjoying life and celebrate success.
Elon has always managed to find time to enjoy his life. When he got his share from the sale of his first startup, he immediately bought an 1800 square-foot condo and moved there from his apartment which he used to share with three other people.
He also bought a McLaren F1 for $1 million (Only 62 in the world at that time) and CNN made a documentary on the delivery of the car to his home.
Elon Musk isn’t an entrepreneur or a business mogul. He is a mad scientist, an alien, a cyborg, a person living life as if he was creating his own game and he has a lot of value and tips that we should follow on our path to success.