It is refreshing to know that Bill Gates once started out like most budding entrepreneurs of today. He dropped out of Harvard in 1974 to launch his software company. On the way, he encountered a series of challenges but never gave up until he established his tech empire, Microsoft. Today his success in revolutionizing the tech world has earned him a spot as one of the richest men in the world.
There are just so many business lessons young entrepreneurs can learn from Bill Gates.That’s why we’ve compiled a list of lessons from him that are still applicable in 2019.
He is one of the world’s richest men, so you would want to pay attention!
1. Be Full Of Energy
Bill Gates is of the opinion that if you must pursue an entrepreneurship venture then you must be excited about it. Speaking at a seminar organised by The Floyd & Delores Jones Foundation, Bill Gates notes how he started Microsoft with enthusiasm: “When I started Microsoft, I didn’t think of it as all that risky.” He further explains: “I mean, I was so excited about what we were doing. It’s true (that) I could have gone bankrupt. Uh, but, I had a set of skills that were highly employable.”
In order to be succeed at that business venture you have to be filled with kind of passion that outweighs the risks. One way to test if you’re enthusiastic about your job is if you you’re willing to invest the time and effort into building the skills that will make you good at what you do. There’s a lot to learn and experience when starting a business and if you have no problem gaining all this knowledge then you’re on the right track.
2.Time Waits For Nobody
One of Bill Gates insightful quotes read: “No matter how much money you have, you can’t buy more time.” Time is one element Bill Gates never fails to hammer on when advising budding entrepreneurs. He advise that you should be mindful of what you give priority to so as to avoid whiling away precious work hours.
3. Work Hard
To give you an idea of what the world’s second richest man’s work schedule is like, here is a short excerpt of what he said while speaking to students of the University of Nebraska School of Business Administration: “I’m in meetings a lot. My calendar gets very full with those and then at night after the kids have gone to bed, I’m on email a great deal. I get messages during the day, that’s my chance to give long responses.”
He continued: “Then over the weekend, I send a lot of mail as well. I take 2 weeks a year to just go off and read and think. Where I’m not interrupted by work or anything else. I’m just solidly trying to think about the future and, people get to send me things to read as part of that so-called “think week”. So it’s a nice mix of things. About 25% of the time that I’m out, travelling around, meeting with customers: Europe, Asia. That sort of helps me think, do we have the right priorities? What are people responding well to? What will they like to see us do better?”
If the world’s second richest man works this hard, then what are you waiting for. It’s time to get to work!
4. Be Ahead Of Your Times
Bill Gates is one entrepreneur that is known to make accurate predictions especially when it comes to his field, technology. This is because he is always thinking way ahead of his times. In his book “Business @ the Speed of Thought”, which he wrote in 1999, he predicted the emergence of personal assistants and Internet of Things (IoT), smart houses, social media, and more. Look how far we’ve come since then!
In order to thrive as an entrepreneur and even stay ahead of your competitors, you need to constantly keep abreast with the latest trends not only in your industry but in other relevant ones as well.
5. You Need Sound Advice To Keep Going
If you always want to be on the right track in your entrepreneurship endeavor, then you need to surround yourself with like-minded individuals who will always give you solid advice. On this, Bill Gates says: “I’ve talked to my dad. I’ve talked to Warren. I’ve talked to my wife Melinda so, I have enough people that know me and actually know where my judgement is not it’s strongest. Where I get over excited about something or forget to think about something and so. They’re good at correcting, particularly Melinda, good at correcting whatever those blind spots are. I think it’s good to encourage your friends and advisors to really give them that license.”
6. Pick The Best Hands
You might have all the skills, talent, and credentials to run a business but if you don’t have the right team around you, you will have a hard time elevating your business to success. Bill Gates explains that his best decisions till date have a lot to do with picking the right people. This comes into play whether you want go into partnership or employ new staff. These people must share your vision and also have something to bring to the table.
7. Learn From Unhappy Customers
According to Bill Gates, “Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning”. Rather than shutting down or ignoring angry customers, give them a listening ear and you may just gain insights on what you can tweak and improve upon.
8. Perseverance Is Key
Prior to founding Microsoft, Bill Gates, alongside his partner Paul Allen, started Traf-O-Data, a company that analyzed roadway traffic data. Unfortunately, the business failed and Gates ran into a lot of debts.
He picked himself up and went on to launch Microsoft. At first, he also faced challenges with Microsoft but his resolve to persevere helped him push on. The rest, they say, is history.
In your quest to build a successful business, there’s no better person to emulate than Bill Gates himself. The lessons we can learn from him are practical enough to implement in our endeavours. Just ensure that you keep on working hard, reinventing yourself, meeting the right people, and persevering.
If you liked these lessons, we’d like you to suggest more successful people we can write about. Drop suggestions in the comment section below.