Habits of Highly Successful Entrepreneurs (Part 2)
World Teacher's Message No.280



The Question:

Being an entrepreneur is a dream for many young people, but they often hold themselves back from achieving this dream because they are unsure whether they can take such an unsecure route in a highly competitive society. When considering about Japan’s prosperity, however, I think we should encourage people to “dream big.” How should I be thinking about this?

Jan. 13th, 2012 Happy Science Headquarters
From the Q & A of a lecture titled “Getting Out of Corporate Deficits”


Even if you feel your abilities have reached a limit, it’s important to make effort within the range of your ability if you feel capable of doing so.

Take a look at the news. If you see people swarming toward one “thing” and jumping on the bandwagon, then it is too late to make a profit from that “thing”. The only people who make profit are the ones who noticed the trend five to ten years ago.

This is the psychology of bargain shopping. If you see all the large media forums picking up a certain topic, then by the time you hop on the trend, the peak will have passed.

Thus, the truly “hot” field is one that no one has picked up on. It may have been touched on in recent news; your opportunity lies in these unnoticed fields. Once you predict how much potential growth it has, you can make a living off of it. Most people won’t be able to compete if it starts becoming the “new thing.”

At this point, those with greater talent, money or organization will lean in. An industry or a niche field with a potentially large market share will allow large businesses to step in. On the other hand, large businesses don’t normally enter markets covered by SMEs because there’s not much gain for them.

A long time ago, Sony Corporation was called a “guinea pig.” It was said that Sony first creates a product, and then Panasonic enters — it is the opposite of today. It’s important to understand “your market share” at different times.

Businesses will not grow unless they have successful experiences, big or small, that stack up one after another. Please value your first successful experience, nurture it and prepare for the next success.


Feel Your Fate

If things aren’t going the way you intended to, your talent could be a problem. You should definitely have talent in the things you love, but if you’re not having any success doing what you love, there are times you have to consider your “destiny.”

In ancient China, Confucius traveled to various countries to preach what an ideal government and politics should look like. He became a minister for a short period, but not for long. Confucius kept preaching in many places, but his ideals weren’t adopted.

Even Confucius himself may not have expected that his philosophy would last over 2,000 years — this isn’t uncommon for a pioneer’s mission.

A pioneer creates something new, but it is often later generations that expand, organize and systematize it. Who would’ve thought that Confucius’s Analects would create a system of civil servant examinations that would last for thousands of years? This kind of system is created by later generations.

If Confucius was alive, he would probably demand money from China for basing the civil servant examination system on his book. This is the fate of pioneers.

Jesus Christ was also the son of a carpenter born on the shores of the Sea of Galilee. He died in Jerusalem, but he probably only thought of himself as a “Jewish prophet,” and not the founder of Christianity.

As explained, there are things that can be destroyed by “ventures,” but it can also make a mark over a long time. Please consider it a win if you can create something that didn’t exist before.


Enjoy Your Destiny

The power to invent new things and the power to expand those inventions are different skills. If you want to market something new, you need an organization or activists. This requires a different ability from inventing a new idea. Remember, it’s not so easy for one person to rebuild genes on their own.

There’s a story regarding Apple founder Steve Jobs. There was another “Steve” who was five years older than Jobs, and built the first computer. He was a computer genius, but he must’ve given up early and left the company after receiving money. In some ways, that may have been a wise decision.

He must’ve thought, “I can never become the CEO of such a fast-growing company,” and left before the company could go bankrupt.

This is the reality of business ventures. A waterfall or a rapid stream is a good depiction — you don’t know where you’ll be thrown out or hit an obstacle, but you stay in to enjoy the thrill.

If you succeed, you can earn much more money than a nine-to-five office worker; you can hire a large number of people to grow your business.

The reality is that there are a lot of people with aspirations, and only one in one hundred people will be left standing. For greater success, it is about one in ten thousand.

This ratio is the same for baseball batters and pitchers alike; professional baseball players with multi-million-dollar contracts are the “one” of tens of thousands of baseball players around the country.

The same goes for professional musicians, singers and painters. Even painters rarely make artwork that can be sold for hundreds of thousands of dollars. So the same thing can be said for any industry.

This happens because your fate doesn’t become clear until you’re buried under a tombstone. In that sense, it is important to cherish and enjoy your own destiny.


Know When to Switch to Defense

If you are motivated, you can keep going up to the point that you don’t burn out. However, you should know that there are times you have to “switch to defense.” Things may not go so smoothly, depending on the environment.

One example is the so-called bubble period. China has started to collapse, but before their collapse during the Beijing Olympics and Shanghai Expo, everyone invested in real estate because they thought the value would appreciate. Those who quickly sold it and cut off their greed made profit, while those who kept waiting for the value to appreciate lost property value. When to cut-off is a hard decision point.

Everyone will make something new if they can, so it’s not so easy.

Another thing you should do is to add more sophistication and skills as you age and continue the same job. Keep acquiring skills or knowledge that go unnoticed and build up what can’t be imitated.

You can’t let people down too much, so please challenge yourselves if you want to. But know that there are times when you should take a step back.

Business ventures will become difficult once it becomes harder to borrow money. Please start by building a basic foundation.

Habits of Highly Successful Entrepreneurs (Part 2)
Copyright © IRH Press Co.Ltd. All Right Reserved.