Secrets to Success — 5 Founders Share Advice for the Next Generation

What is the secret to success? Learn more when founders share advice for the next generation in the article below....
Secrets to Success — 5 Founders Share Advice for the Next Generation
Written by Brian Wallace
  • No matter how successful you are in your life and career, it’s likely you have a personal formula to get ahead. Perhaps you can boil it down to a few choice sayings or verses that guide your decision-making and help keep you on the correct course.

    You wouldn’t be alone. Some of history’s most prominent leaders follow their own unique formulas for success. 

    If you’re looking for inspiration as you work toward your next big goal, you’ve come to the right place. Here are five tried-and-true bits of advice from entrepreneurs who know a thing or two about success.

    1. Put Yourself In the Right Place at the Right Time

    Recounting the memorable experience of being told his success was simply a matter of happenstance, serial entrepreneur Sky Dayton adopts a compromise position that everyone should be able to get behind. 

    As he puts it, many entrepreneurs find themselves in the right place at the right time, but that’s often because they find a way to put themselves there in the first place. Another way to say this: When successful people get lucky — and they often do — it tends to be because they’ve made their own luck.

    2. Be Greedy When Others Are Fearful (And the Reverse)

    Famed investor Warren Buffett is famous in part for living by a simple rule: “be greedy when others are fearful and fearful when others are greedy.”

    Both sides of this saying are equally true, and you can’t really have one without the other. Unfortunately, many ambitious people remember the first part and forget the second, which leads to all sorts of problems down the road. As Sky Dayton might say, luck eventually runs out unless you make more of it.

    3. You’re the First to Hear What You Believe

    Oprah Winfrey has enough motivational sayings to her credit to fill a high school gymnasium. To paraphrase one of her most inspiring: “Say what you believe, because you’re the first to hear it.”

    Think of this as an affirmation to believe in yourself when no one else does. A dream is just a dream until you make it a reality, and that won’t happen until you convince yourself it’s possible.

    4. Failure Is the Key to Success (Sort of)

    Thomas Edison famously said that he never failed. He just found 10,000 ways that didn’t work.

    That’s one way to put it. Edison clearly saw his glass as half-full at all times. A more realistic person would say he failed a whole bunch but never admitted defeat. But that’s basically the same thing — and certainly wise words to live by if you’re driven to do hard things.

    5. Find the Solution to a Problem in Your Own Life

    Here’s a final bit of practical advice: Don’t try to solve someone else’s problem. Find something that needs fixing in your own life and work to make it better, because chances are many others have the same issue.

    That’s how Airbnb cofounder Brian Chesky approached his early career, and look where it got him: a place in the history books as the guy who disrupted the hotel industry.

    What’s Your Secret to Success?

    These five bits of wisdom aren’t the sum total of accumulated human wisdom. They’re merely maxims that have served many people well. And even those to whom they’ve shown their value don’t rely on them alone for guidance. 

    One mark of success, after all, is the ability to hold two contradictory thoughts in one’s mind at the same time. (That’s another popular saying. Mark it down.)

    All that’s to say that this advice is helpful, but you’d do well to look elsewhere as you continue your personal journey. Wisdom is often found in unexpected places.

    Get the WebProNews newsletter delivered to your inbox

    Get the free daily newsletter read by decision makers

    Advertise with Us

    Ready to get started?

    Get our media kit