“How will your company become a billion-dollar company?” An analyst at a venture capitalist firm, likely a freshly minted MBA, posed this question to me. I tried to keep my temper in check and answered “Never.” You’d think I’d slapped him across the face – “Then I’m afraid there’s no point in talking to us.”
I was a still a relatively new entrepreneur. It seemed like all I heard was NO. Worse yet, people kept telling me why it wasn’t going to work. Not just venture capitalists but prospective partners, friends, and relatives.
That’s when I learned that You’ve gotta Hold Fast To Your Dreams.
Even my father, a man who loved me, inspired me and most importantly lent me a lot of money had the “Talk” with me. “Son, sometimes businesses fail. Just because your business failed doesn’t mean you have failed.”
If you have a wonderful and supportive wife, you are still likely to face questions – “Honey, I want you to pursue your passions. But I hope you realize we have two young kids and no income”
You’ve gotta Hold Fast To Your Dreams.
In my case, there was a happy ending – my company first survived, then it thrived – okay mildly thrived and then we got lucky and we were able to sell the company for a tidy sum. Now you might think, “Nah Sri, you are just a lucky fellah.” And I’ll tell you I’m a lucky fella – but only because I held fast to my dreams.
It was film producer Samuel Goldwyn who said: “The harder I worked the luckier I got.”
Is holding on to your dreams easy? No.
There will always be naysayers. People will put you down.
You will doubt yourself. “How do you know that you are not being just plain pig-headed?” You don’t.
Here are three things I’ve learned:
Dream BIG. And write your dreams down. Ask yourself why this is your dream.
Read biographies – read other’s life stories – those who have achieved amazing things. Most importantly,
Surround yourself with people who love you and care about you. But who will speak the truth and keep you honest
Two weeks ago I spoke and wrote about the inspiring story of my grandfather, who epitomized what holding on to your dreams can help you achieve. You can read it here.