Successful Entrepreneurship: You Won't Get There Overnight

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The average entrepreneur gives up because s/he hasn't seen quick results. It's a typical mistake because magazines, newspapers, and the media bombard us with "overnight" success stories. If we look underneath those successes, we'd see companies that slowly but surely built its foundation first. The foundation drove its gradual momentum, and finally to its "overnight" success. Jim Collins calls that steady momentum the flywheel effect:
Right now, the flywheel is at a standstill. To get it moving, you make a tremendous effort. You push with all your might, and finally you get the flywheel to inch forward. After two or three days of sustained effort, you get the flywheel to complete one entire turn. You keep pushing, and the flywheel begins to move a bit faster. It takes a lot of work, but at last the flywheel makes a second rotation. You keep pushing steadily. It makes three turns, four turns, five, six. With each turn, it moves faster, and then -- at some point, you can''t say exactly when -- you break through. The momentum of the heavy wheel kicks in your favor. It spins faster and faster, with its own weight propelling it. You aren't pushing any harder, but the flywheel is accelerating, its momentum building, its speed increasing.
If you're not seeing quick financial results, take heed: the most successful companies started out the same way.

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Posted on April 12

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