Einstein Failed at Business

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Albert EinsteinEinstein, as brilliant as he was, wouldn’t have been able to start a business or even manage a business successfully.

He proved that to his disappointed father, an entrepreneur who built two successful businesses and wanted his son to follow in his footsteps. Einstein tried, and was miserable at it. He ended up packing his things and leaving in frustration. Yet Einstein had a lot in common with today’s new breed of entrepreneur. He envisioned the experiments to prove the world’s greatest scientific theories, as entrepreneurs today envision businesses never before imagined, or possible, in the history of mercantilism.

There are lots of examples of today’s entrepreneurs envisioning businesses that never existed before, like eBay, Google, and many others.  Even Microsoft, when it first started, was a one-of-a-kind business. Bill Gates, Pierre Omidyas (founder of eBay), and Larry Page & Sergey Brin (Founders of Google) are well-known modern day Einstein’s who can create as well as envision.  Two of today’s relatively unknown entrepreneurial Einsteins, Evan Williams (co-founder of Twitter) and Woody Norris (inventor) are best understood by viewing their talks on www.TED.com.

Einstein trusted his vision. He relentlessly pursued his vision and in doing so, he actually fulfilled his vision.  On the gut level, this describes today’s new entrepreneur who is primarily a dedicated visionary. In this global marketplace, the entrepreneurial boom has just begun. More new businesses are going to be created in the next 20 years than ever before in the whole history of civilized man. More creative people will take the path of pursuing their dream by forming a company – and more of you will succeed.

The opportunity to form a company and create a business that uniquely sustains your lifestyle, allows you to be creative and helps your customers, all at the same time, is now available to you and a million others. ALL of you can be successful beyond your wildest dreams. To attain success you must have a vision, be dedicated to your vision and take the RISK of actually doing it. Many of you have already taken the plunge and many of you are just now considering it. At Harvard, we form more than 5,000 companies per year for people like you, and we’ve been doing it for 28 years. Communication among us, the entrepreneurs, is what this blog is all about.

Illustration by Josh Lowe

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