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50 Entrepreneurs Worth Over $100 Million Share Their Best Advice

By July 27, 2016Business

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If you could be in a room with a 50 of the best business owners, CEO’s, entrepreneurs, athletes, authors, entertainers and thought leaders, what would you say?

What questions would you ask? What one piece of advice could you take away from each of them?

We have compiled a list of 50 top entrepreneurs worth over $100 million, along with some of their most deeply wise and inspirational advice that you can use in all areas of your business, career and life in general.

1. Bill Gates (Co-Founder of Microsoft)

As one of the richest men in the world, Bill Gates has some poignant advice about learning from your most disgruntled customers-

“Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning….It’s fine to celebrate success, but more important to heed the lessons of failure.”

2. Sara Blakely (Founder of Spanx)

Spanx rose to success almost overnight, which meant Sara Blakely had to very quickly learn how to manage and scale her business-

“Embrace what you don’t know, especially in the beginning because what you don’t know can become your greatest asset.”

3. Steve Jobs (Co-Founder of Apple)

As one of the most visionary entrepreneurs of our time, here is one of his best pearls of wisdom-

“If you don’t really love it, you are going to give up. And that’s what happens to most people actually. If you really look at the ones that ended up, you know, being “successful”, in the eyes of society and the one’s that didn’t, oftentimes it is the ones who were successful that loved what they did so they could persevere when it got really tough.”

4. Michael Dell (Founder of Dell)

Michael Dell states that one of the main reasons he rose to success was because he always kept learning, growing and building his network-

“Never be the smartest person in the room. And if you are, I suggest you find a different room.”

5. J.K Rowling (Author of Harry Potter series)

After struggling with divorce, depression and near poverty, J.K Rowling finally found her success-

“It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all- in which case, you fail by default.”

6. Sean Parker (Founder of Napster)

Sean Parker shares his most valuable advice for entrepreneurs who are just starting out-

“Your biggest challenge as an entrepreneur is not concealing your idea from others or keeping your idea a secret, it is actually convincing people that you are not crazy and that you can pull this off.”

7. Jack Dorsey (Founder of Twitter & Square)

How does Jack Dorsey run two highly successful companies? He follows this strict schedule-

“Mondays at both companies, I focus on management and running the company. Tuesday is focused on product. Wednesday is focused on  marketing, communications and growth. Thursday, development and partnerships. Friday is focused on development and recruiting. Saturday I take off and hike. Sunday is strategy, reflection and getting ready for the rest of the week. There are obviously interruptions all the time, but this I can quickly remember ‘oh, it is Tuesday, today I am doing product’, and get right back into what I was doing.”

8.) Jack Ma (Founder of Alibaba)

Jack Ma has a different and unique way of looking at how he runs his company-

“You cannot unify everyone’s thoughts, but you can unify everyone through a common goal….Do not allow your colleagues and employees to work for you. Instead, let them work for a common goal.”

9.) Chip Wilson (Founder of Lululemon)

Chip Wilson shares his best advice learnt from working with others-

“The best advice I ever received was to ask for help when I need it. People love to help. I don’t have to be insecure and know it all.”

10.) Ben Silbermann (Founder of Pinterest)

Ben Silbermann shares one of the most valuable business lessons he learnt along the way-

“Don’t take too much advice. Most people who have a lot of advice to give- with a few exceptions- generalise whatever they did. Don’t over analyse everything. I myself have been guilty of over-thinking problems, just build things and find out if they work.”

11. Tony Hsieh (Founder of Zappos)

When it comes to making big decisions, here is Tony Hseih’s simple strategy-

“Be true to yourself. If you follow that principle, a lot of decisions are actually pretty easy.”

12. Peter Vesterbacka (Founder of Rovio Games, Angry Birds)

Peter Vesterbacka reminds entrepreneurs of this valuable strategy-

“You have to have more leadership, less management. It’s about getting stuff done, you can sit around and analyse things forever, but while you do that the competition has moved on.”

13. Ray Dalio (Founder of Bridgewater Associates)

Ray Dalio shares what practice helped his business to grow one of the top hedge funds in the world-

“Anyone’s main obstacle to improvement is his own fragile ego. So at our firm, I started to make constant, unvarnished criticism the norm, until critiques weren’t taken personally and no one held back a good idea for fear of being wrong.”

14. Arianna Huffington (Co-Founder of Huffington Post)

Arianna Huffington has had a varied career, but here is what she learnt along the way about failure and success-

“I failed many times in my life, but my mother used to tell me, ‘failure is not the opposite of success, it is a stepping stone to success’. So at some point, I learned not to dread failure. I strongly believe that we are not put on this Earth just to accumulate victories and trophies and avoid failures; but rather to be whittled and sandpapered down until what’s left is who we truly are.”

15. Richard Branson (Founder of Virgin Group)

As one of the most famous entrepreneurs of our time, here is Richard Branson’s most valuable advice for businesses looking to make it in the 21st century-

“The brands that will thrive in the coming years are the one that have a purpose beyond profit.”

16. George Soros (Founder Soros Fund Management)

According to George Soros, when you recognise your mistakes, that is when you will truly succeed-

“I am only rich because I know when I am wrong…basically I have survived by recognising my mistakes.”

17. David Rubenstein (CEO of The Carlyle Group)

The CEO has some excellent advice if you are looking to make some changes in your career-

“Persist- don’t take no for an answer. If you are happy to sit at your desk and not take any risk, you will be sitting at your desk for the next 20 years.”

18. Mark Cuban (Serial Entrepreneur)

Serial entrepreneur and owner of the Dallas Mavericks, Mark Cuban shares this valuable advice about how he succeeded-

“It doesn’t matter how many times you fail. It doesn’t matter how many times you almost get it right. No one is going to know or care about your failures, and neither should you. All you have to do is learn from them and those around you because all that matters in business is that you get it right once. Then everyone can tell you how lucky you are.”

19. Sheryl Sandberg (COO at Facebook)

Sheryl Sandberg has has a very successful career, but her greatest claim to fame is being COO of Facebook. Here is what she has learnt along the way-

“Jungle gyms offer more creative exploration. There are many ways to get to the top of a jungle gym. The ability to forge a unique path with occasional dips, detours and even dead ends presents a better change for fulfilment.”

20. Walt Disney (Founder of Walt Disney Pictures)

Walt Disney is a true visionary and started from very humble beginnings, his best advice is this-

“All the adversity I’ve had in my life, all the troubles and obstacles, have strengthened me…You may not realise it when it happens, but a kick in the teeth may be the best thing in the world for you.”

21. Warren Buffet (CEO of Berkshire Hathaway)

Billionaire, Warren Buffet is an expert when it comes to building a solid brand-

“It takes about 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.”

22. Tiger Woods (Professional Golfer)

As one of the most famous golfers in the world, Tiger Woods has realised this-

“There is no perfect way to play the game. All the greatest golfers all have different swings. We all have our own unique fingerprint. Find the system that works best for you. There is no correct way to play the game.”

23. Oprah Winfrey (Founder of OWN Network)

As one of the most powerful thought leaders in the world, Oprah shares this inspirational advice-

“I have come to believe that each of us has a personal calling that is unique as a fingerprint- and the best way to succeed is to discover what you love and then find a way to offer it to others in the form of service, working hard and also allowing the energy of the Universe to lead you.”

24. Elon Musk (Founder of Tesla Motors)

The ambitious Elon Musk offers this valuable advice on how he made it-

“I think that’s the single best piece of advice: constantly think about how you could be doing things better and questioning yourself.”

25. Mary Kay Ash (Founder of Mary Kay Cosmetics)

One of the best ways to empower yourself in business is this according to Mary Kay Ash-

“When you reach an obstacle, turn it into an opportunity. You have the choice, You can overcome and be a winner, or you can allow it to overcome you and be a loser. The choice is yours and yours alone.”

26. Jeff Bezos (Founder of Amazon)

When it comes to branding Jeff Bezos has this to say-

“Your brand is what other people say about you when you are not in the room.”

27. Jeff Weiner (CEO of LinkedIn)

Inundated with emails? Here is Jeff Weiner’s smart productivity solution-

“I decided to conduct an experiment where I wouldn’t write an email unless absolutely necessary. End result: materially fewer emails and a far more navigable inbox. I’ve tried to stick to the same rule ever since.”

28. Kevin O’Leary (Founder of SoftKey)

When it comes to making money and finding success, here is what Kevin O’Leary has discovered-

“My partners taught me that in order to create wealth, I needed to pair up with people whose strengths compensated for my weaknesses.”

29. Marissa Mayer (CEO Yahoo)

As CEO of Yahoo, here is what Marissa Mayer believes is the most valuable way to make a difference-

“If you really want to create something transformational- if you really want to make a difference in your life and other people’s lives- yes, it is always easy to take the safer incremental choice and to iterate…but remember to be bold.”

30. Howard Shultz (CEO of Starbucks)

According to Howard Shultz, it is all about surrounding yourself with the right people-

“You can’t build any kind of organisation if you’re not going to surround yourself with people who have experience and skill base beyond your own — only as if those people have like-minded values. That’s the key to starting anything. If you discover people who don’t share your values, perhaps it’s best to part ways.”

31. Ross Perot (Founder of EDS and Perot Systems)

Ross Perot has some unconventional but extremely wise advice, especially for those just starting out in the world of business-

“I encourage you to travel and explore the world. Get to know and respect the citizens of this planet. Have some adventure and learn about yourself and discover your true passions. And then hope you bring it all back.”

32. Drew Houston (C0-Founder of Dropbox)

Here is the one thing Drew Houston believes you need to succeed-

“You need that hunger no matter what, because eventually the honeymoon period wears off. Somewhere between printing your business cards that say ‘founder’ on them and everything else you have to do, you realise, ‘Oh, actually this is a ton of work’.”

33. Amancio Ortega Gaona (Founder of Zara)

The biggest pitfall you can make in business according to Amancio Ortego Gaona-

“When you live for others’ opinions, you are dead. I don’t want to live thinking about how I will be remembered.”

34. Mark Zuckerberg (CEO of Facebook):

As one of the youngest billionaires in the world, here is Mark Zuckerberg’s simple yet profound advice-

“I think a simple rule of business is, if you do the things that are easier first, then you can actually make a lot of progress.”

35. Michael Bloomberg (Founder of Bloomberg LP)

Billionaire, Michael Bloomberg offers this solid advice that any business can use-

“The basics of commerce don’t change. You’ve got to have something that people need, something that they can’t get elsewhere, and the more they can’t get it elsewhere, the more they need it.”

36. Larry Page (Co-Founder Google)

As one of the richest men in the world, Larry Page had this to say about Google-

“We have always believed that it is possible to make money without being evil.”

37. Mukesh Ambani (Managing Director Reliance Industries Limited)

Billionaire, Mukesh Ambani sums up his vision when it comes to success-

“I think that our fundamental belief is that for us growth is a way of life and we have to grow at all times.”

38. Dustin Moskovitz (Co-Founder Facebook)

Dustin Moskovitz has some valuable advice on starting your own business and how to guarantee success-

“You should start a business when you’re super passionate about an idea AND you’re the right person to do it. This breaks down into two reasons. One is you’re so passionate about it that you have to do it (and you’re going to do it anyways). The other way to interpret this is the world needs you to do it.”

39. Daymond John (Founder of FUBU)

When it comes to pitching your brand or product to investors, here is some amazing advice from Daymond John-

“Sounding too perfect is the biggest and most common mistake I see entrepreneurs make when pitching their product. With me, you’ll be more likely to get my money, or any potential investor’s money, by sucking it up and talking openly about the mistakes you’ve made. Be real.”

40. John Paul DeJoria (Co-Founder of Paul Mitchell Hair and Patron Tequila)

When setting up your business, John Paul DeJoria highlights how you can overcome this huge hurdle-

“The biggest hurdle is rejection. Any business you start, be ready for it. The difference between successful people and unsuccessful people is the successful people do all the things the unsuccessful people don’t want to do. When 10 doors are slammed in your face, go to door number 11 enthusiastically, with a smile on your face.”

41. Jan Koum (CEO of WhatsApp)

Billionaire, Jan Koum shares what he believes is needed to take a good idea and turn it into a successful business-

“A lot of times, people start out with a lot of good ideas, but then they don’t execute. They lose the purity of their vision. You end up running around in circles.”

42. Pierre Omidyar (Founder eBay)

Pierre Omidyar highlights the importance of learning how to work with others-

“If you can get over this initial distrust that people have of strangers, you can do remarkable things.”

43. Giorgio Armani (Founder of Armani)

Fashion designer, Giorgio Armani shares his secret to success-

“To create something exceptional, your mindset must be relentlessly focused on the smallest detail.”

44. George Lucas (Filmmaker)

After rising to fame with Star Wars, George Lucas shares this inspirational tip-

“The secret is not to give up hope. It’s very hard not to because if you’re really doing something worthwhile I think you will be pushed to the brink of hopelessness before you come through the other side.”

45. Tory Burch (Founder of Tory Burch)

Fashion designer Tory Burch shares this advice when it comes to running a billion dollar company-

“When you have the wrong people in the wrong position it affects the entire company. It’s a hard lesson to learn, but it has a ripple effect.”

46. Evan Spiegal (CEO of SnapChat)

Evan Spiegal on why he turned down $3 billion dollars-

“I’m asked one question most often: ‘Why didn’t you sell your business? It doesn’t even make money. It’s a fad. You could be on a boat right now. Everyone loves boats. What’s wrong with you?’ Someone will always have an opinion about you. Whatever you do won’t ever be enough. So find something important to you. Find something that you love.”

47. Martha Stewart (Founder of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia)

When it comes to long term success that lasts the distance, here is what Martha Stewart has to say-

“Build your business success around something that you love- something that is inherently and endlessly interesting to you.”

48. Travis Kalanik (CEO of Uber)

The CEO of the revolutionary app, Uber shares how he manages his day-

“Basically I have two lists when I go to work in the morning. One is what are all of the crazy f’ed up awesome problems that I can solve? What is all the crazy, awesome shit that I can invent?”

49. Beyonce Knowles (Musician/ Entertainer)

As one of the most famous singers in the world, here is what Beyonce attributes her success to-

“I can never be safe; I always try and go against the grain. As soon as I accomplish one thing, I just set a higher goal. That’s how I’ve gotten to where I am.”

50. Max Levchin (Co-Founder Paypal)

It took Max Levchin five attempts to get it right, here is his story-

“The very first company I started failed with a great bang. The second one failed a little bit less, but still failed. The third one, you know, proper failed, but it was kind of okay. I recovered quickly. Number four almost didn’t fail. It still didn’t really feel great, but it did okay. Number five was PayPal.”

There is so much we can learn from the world around us and the people who have gone on to build revolutionary businesses like the entrepreneurs listed here.

No matter where you are with your business, remember that with hard work, passion and dedication, the only direction your business can go is up.

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