The Modern Entrepreneur

 Innovation, Vision, Decisiveness: This is what it takes to flourish in the always changing, world of business. 

Entrepreneurship is an industry like no other. It has the ability to glorify certain risk takers while decimating others. The line between success and failure is almost unnoticeable at times. Because of how volatile this industry can become, measuring entrepreneurs comes from the ability of a business owner to not only attain success but maintain success. Below are three modern entrepreneurs that have been able to propel their careers into long-term success because of innovation, vision, and decisiveness.

Elon Musk

Elon is a South African Entrepreneur, known for his major successes as an explorer, inventor, and engineer. Before his status as CEO of Tesla Motors and SpaceX, Elon was a young engineer, eager to make a name for himself in the fast-growing field of technology. By his late 20’s, he sold his start-up, Zip2, to become a multimillionaire. His rise to fame was not a result of luck, but extreme innovation and dedication to his craft.  Because of both the consumer-first mentality taken on by many businesses and the major advances in technology, this industry is always changing and highly competitive. This has caused entrepreneurs, like Elon, to innovate past the competition.

Elon has quickly become the Henry Ford of the 21st Century. Ford was able to revolutionize the car industry with his method of manufacturing the Model T. Elon Musk is not far behind with the construction of his Giga factories. This factory will create battery cells at a rate never before seen. The factory is expected to produce approximately 500,000 Tesla Model 3s a year. In theory, Tesla Inc. has built a machine that creates more machines. However, even with these major advances, Elon is as much about the creative process than about the products he sells. In his own words, “Starting and growing a business is as much about the innovation, drive, and determination of people behind it as the product they sell.” With no reason to slow down, Elon’s innovation has kept Telsa Inc. at the top of the industry

Daymond John

Coming from a small Queens neighborhood, Daymond built his empire from the ground up. Today, Daymond’s net worth is $300 million, proving his ability to push past his obstacles, and achieve an immense amount of success. Daymond’s childhood, shaped by tough living in New York City, was full of disappointment and shortcomings. However, he saw more for his life than working another nine to five job. While Daymond had no money for higher-education, he envisioned himself as a high-power CEO. The dream was to create his own clothing company directed at young men. While Daymond had an incredible vision for his life, he still credits his mother’s support as a major foundation of his success. As a young man, his mother taught him how to sew and allowed him to expand his business in her home.

Somehow, while giving 100% of his creative pursuits to his business, Daymond also worked full-time at Red Lobster to help support himself and his family. The obstacles and excuses piled on each other. Although, Daymond did not pull back from his pursuit of success, but continued to expand his business throughout NYC. With some strategic advertising, in one year, Daymond’s company went from a popular NYC brand to an international success. Because of his vision, Daymond took FUBU from a couple of kids sewing hats in a basement to a company worth over $6 billion. Now Daymond continues to run his business, as well as headline the reality TV show Shark Tank.

Howard Schultz

Howard is a Brooklyn-native, Entrepreneur, and CEO of Starbucks. While he is one of the most prestigious CEO’s in the country, he is from humble beginnings. Howard’s father made his career as a truck driver. Even though his mother and father were not wealthy, they taught their three children the importance of hard work and determination.

After a few years of working small odd-jobs as a teenager, Howard received an athletic scholarship to Northern Michigan University. After college, Shultz worked as a sales manager. While his position provided more than enough money for his family, Howard was striving for something greater than a mid-level management position. After hearing about the popularity that a small cafe was receiving in Portland, Howard made a trip out to see what the buzz was about. Shultz trusted his gut and heavily invested in Starbucks, the rest is history. While many attribute Howard’s success to Lady Luck, he never stopped working towards his success. There was an opportunity, and he risked the safety of his sales position to pursue what he saw as his destiny. Some will call it fearlessness, and other foolishness. At the end of the day, Howard’s ability to be a decisive leader made him an international success.

Abraham Moreno-Riano is the Senior Editor of The Daily Runner.