A young student asked his Mentor the secret to success. Mentor told the young Student to meet him near the river the next morning. They met. Mentor asked the young Student to follow him toward the river. When the water got up to their neck, Mentor took the Student by surprise and ducked him into the water. The boy struggled to get out but Mentor was strong and kept him there until the boy started turning blue. Mentor pulled his head out of the water and the first thing the young Student did was to gasp and take a deep breath. Mentor asked, ‘What did you want the most when you were Under water?” The boy replied, “Air.” Mentor said, “That is the secret to success. When you want success as badly as you wanted the air, then you will get it.” There is no other secret.
A burning desire is the starting point of all accomplishment.
Just like a small fire cannot give much heat, a weak desire cannot produce great results…
One day a partially deaf four year old kid came home with a note in his pocket from his teacher, “Your Tommy is too stupid to learn, get him out of the school.” His mother read the note and answered, “My Tommy is not stupid to learn, I will teach him myself.” And that Tommy grew up to be the great Thomas Edison. Thomas Edison had only three months of formal schooling and he was partially deaf.
Thomas Edison failed approximately 10,000 times while he was working on the light bulb.
Henry Ford forgot to put the reverse gear in the first car he made.
Colonel Sanders ( Founder of KFC)
At 65 years of age, Colonel Sanders received his first social security cheque of $99. He was broke, owned a small house and a beat up car.He made a decision that things had to change. His friends used to like his chicken recipe very much. The fact that this was the only novel idea he had, he decided to act upon it.
He left Kentucky and started his travels to different US states to sell his idea. He would tell restaurant owners that he had a chicken recipe which people liked and he was ready to give it to them for free, in return for a small percentage on the items sold. He got rejections after rejections, but did not give up. In fact, he got over 1000 rejections.
He got 1009 NO’s before he got his first Yes. With that one success Colonel Hartland Sanders changed the eating habits of the whole world with Kentucky Fried Chicken, popularly known as KFC.
Fred Smith ( Founder of FedEx)
Fred Smith was an undergraduate in 1965 wrote an economics paper exploring the process of transportation of goods in the United States. He found that the shippers relied on transporting large packages across the United States by means of truck or passenger airplanes. Smith thought of a more efficient transportation idea. He wrote a last minute paper on how a company carrying small, essential items by plane could be a much better business. He, however, did not go into details about how to actually run such a company. His paper was graded “C”. But Smith did not give up on the idea and launched the company in 1971.
But within three years of the founding of the company, Federal Express was on the verge of bankruptcy. It was losing over $1 million a month, due to the rising fuel costs. At its zenith, the company had just $5000 to its name. Smith made a final pitch to General Dynamics for more funding. The request was turned down.
Most ordinary people would have quit at this point and shut down the company. Not Fred Smith. What he did next is easily the boldest move by the founder of a company. Smith flew to Las Vegas and played Black Jack that weekend with the remaining company funds. Yes, all of the $5000. On Monday, the management of the company had a pleasant surprise lined up. FedEx had $32,000 in its bank account, which was just enough to cover the fuel for their planes and to continue operating a few days more.
Soon after, the company was able to raise significant amounts in funding. Today FedEx is a global giant with operations in more than 220 countries and territories and an annual revenue of US $45 billion.
Story of Two brothers
This is a story of two brothers. One was a drug addict and a drunker who frequently beat up his family. The other one was a very successful businessman who was respected in society and had a wonderful family. Some people wanted to find out why two brothers from the same parents, brought up in the same environment, could be so different. The first one was asked, “How come you do what you do? You are a drug addict, a drunk, and you beat your family. What motivates you?” He said, “My father.” They asked, “What about your father?” The reply was, “My father was a drug addict, a drunk and he beat his family. What do you expect me to be? That is what I am.” They went to the brother who was doing everything right and asked him the same question. “How come you are doing everything right? What is your source of motivation?” And guess what he said? “My father. When I was a little boy, I used to see my dad drunk and doing all the wrong things. I made up my mind that that is not what I wanted to be.”
Both were deriving their strength and motivation from the same source, but one was using it positively and the other negatively.
A little boy got angry with his mother and shouted at her, “I hate you, I hate you.” Because of fear of reprimand, he ran out of the house. He went up to the valley and shouted, “I hate you, I hate you,” and back came the echo, “I hate you, I hate you.” This was the first time in his life he had heard an echo. He got scared, went to his mother for protection and said there was a bad boy in the valley who shouted “I hate you, I hate you.” The mother understood and she asked her son to go back and shout, “I love you, I love you.” The little boy went and shouted, “I love you, I love you,” and back came the echo.
That taught the little boy a lesson that our life is like an echo: We get back what we give. Benjamin Franklin said, “When you are good to others, you are best to yourself.”
All success stories are stories of great failures. The only difference is that every time they failed, they bounced back. This is called failing forward, rather than backward. You learn and move forward. Learn from your failure and keep moving.