You never know what the future holds. But to get better at your outcomes you have to play the game and play it right. What does that mean?
• Samsung started as a fish trader
• Colgate started as a candle maker
• Nintendo started as a playing cards company
• Nokia started as a paper mill
• BMW started as an aircraft manufacturer
• 3M started as a mining venture
Be opportunistic in your approach but sincere in your actions. You do not know where the path leads. But you must be on a path, any path, with sincerity and the will to execute. The difference between success and not is positive opportunism. Stay flexible and see the opportunities unfold. I started thinking about positive opportunism when I read You’re Better Than They Think You Are.
A fantastic book The author reveals his journey to success. His account of overcoming all obstacles is one that demonstrates that with an inner determination to succeed combined with positive opportunism, anything is possible. Wishing to support young people from struggling communities much like his own childhood neighborhood, Rod’s journey led him to help address ineffective education in this country. His story ends with his going back to the beginning, using his skills and experience to create the Aldridge Foundation and, through his academy schools, help 10,000 students nationwide to reach their full entrepreneurial potential.
Many entrepreneurs have, with hindsight, a galvanising moment; something that motivates them to build and sustain a business. For Sir Rod Aldridge, founder of FTSE 100 outsourcing group Capita, it was failing his 11-plus. Packed off to a low-ambition secondary modern, the school sought to ‘mark time’ rather than develop him as an individual.
This early rejection, and the fact that he didn’t seem to fit in either at school or in the workplace, defined his thinking. In short, don’t give up. Be open but be committed.
“The best way to learn is to have crack people around you. Entrepreneurs believe they are the centre of everything and that’s a massive weakness. A lot of it is about honesty.” He says that established rivals generally underestimated them, which helped. A brilliant read.