Always New Mistakes

February 10, 2008

The one thing every entrepreneur needs to have: HOPE

Filed under: Business — Tags: , , , , , — Alex Barrera @ 6:07 pm

I was listening to last night’s Sen. Obama’s speech from Virginia and I was very impressed by the defense he gave for the use of hope in his campaign. It got me thinking that the most crucial thing an entrepreneur must have is hope. It’s not the only characteristic you need, that’s obvious, hope without hard work is pretty useless. But it’s true that hope really makes the difference between two persons.

Hope is the fuel of practically all the successful startups we currently see but most of the times people just underestimate it. I remember when I told my friends I was about to quit everything and start my own company that all that I kept hearing was: “man, return to reality“, “Alex be real, it’s very tough and you won’t make it“. Obama said something tonight that really tickled inside me. It’s because people have hope that they can achieve great things. Realistic people don’t achieve anything because they are bounded to their own personal restrictions. They don’t try to break current conceptions or ideas because they feel it’s impossible. And that’s the problem, they don’t even try!

That’s why even though most entrepreneurs fail at some point, the ones that have hope on their success will eventually succeed. Take the example of Larry Page. When he was working at Stanford, his only hope was to crawl all the Internet into his computer. That seemed rather ridiculous at the time and I’m very sure that many people told him that he was an idealistic, that he was crazy and that he should be more realistic. Nevertheless that dream, that hope took him to start Google and to change the face of the Internet as we knew it.

Google is just the most notorious example, but you can find many other small scale projects that have succeededhope.jpg thanks to hope. Again, hope is not magical all by it self. It usually comes hand in hand with hard work, probably because hard work is driven by it. But don’t fool yourselves, it doesn’t works the other way round, hard work by it self doesn’t gets you success. Specially because even if you work hard for many hours, days, weeks or years, it’s hope what keeps you going, it’s hope what makes you go to work every day, it’s hope what makes you stand up again when something went really wrong. What really strikes me is that many people perceive hope as the characteristic of fools, disregarding its real value and power. I truly think that fools are the ones that can’t make change happen, that are unable to pursue their dreams, that can’t wake up and say to themselves, I can make this work, I can push the limits of innovation, I have the power to change the lives of thousands of persons. Of course it’s easier to give up against reality. That’s the easy path, just blame society, the market, the global industry leaders. Thinking about doing something new is tough and requires a great deal of courage. So people, next time someone tells you that you are a fool or an idealistic, don’t be ashamed, hope is the fuel of our dreams, and dreams are the vehicle of innovation, change and success.

As Mahatma Gandhi once said:

We must be the change we wish to see in the world

Image credit: http://quidam.wordpress.com

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13 Comments »

  1. Your o so right! It take guts to take risk and strength of conviction not knowing where you will end up. In the past 30 years we’ve had a lot of entrepreneurs who’ve taken the plunge without being a part of Stanford and the Sand Hill Road constituency – they are the true hero’s. They could not depend on the in-crowd of angles, VCs, and mentors. While I think great people have come out of Stanford forming great companies, I feel they had support knowing that if they failed it would be ok – ego aside. It’s the other frontrunners who I cherish.

    Comment by askbusinesscoach — February 10, 2008 @ 6:42 pm

  2. I love what you say. Sometimes hope is everything. I want to add one more great quote (although I forget who said it?) – it goes something like: “A wish is a dream without action.”

    Comment by amg1 — February 11, 2008 @ 5:43 pm

  3. Great post. Loved listening to it. Reminded me of the famous quote by Emily Dickenson.

    “Hope” is the thing with feathers– That perches in the soul– And sings the tune without the words– And never stops–at all

    http://blogbard.com/blodio/blogmainpage?type=blogbard&playurl=http%3A%2F%2Falwaysnewmistakes.wordpress.com%2Ffeed%2F

    Comment by blogbard — February 11, 2008 @ 10:41 pm

  4. Absolutely! Hope drives perseverance, and the ability to ignore “realistic” people.

    Comment by cafelady — February 12, 2008 @ 12:28 am

    • I coordinate a world affairs conference at the University of Nebraska at Kearney each year.

      When a committee member was searching for a suitable brochure cover for this years’ conference, entitled Creating Hope: Positive Responses to Global Challenges, he came across a photo at this website (the boy catching a bubble).

      The university would like to alter the photo slightly (make the bubble into a globe) and use for this educational event.

      I don’t want to infringe upon any copyright laws so am wondering from who should I ask permission to use this photo?

      If someone could respond with an answer,advise, or a simple “I have no idea…”, it would appreciated.

      Thanks!

      Comment by Parkam — January 14, 2010 @ 2:54 pm

  5. Wow, thank you all for the cool comments! I’m so glad to see so many “hope powered” people :)

    Funny that out of 4 comments, 3 of them are from women ;) Maybe men are ashamed to talk about hope?

    @blogbard cool site! A friend of mine is working on something similar :)

    Again, thank you all for the comments!

    Comment by Alex Barrera — February 12, 2008 @ 1:24 am

    • I coordinate a world affairs conference at the University of Nebraska at Kearney each year.

      When a committee member was searching for a suitable brochure cover for this years’ conference, entitled Creating Hope: Positive Responses to Global Challenges, he came across a photo at this website (the boy catching a bubble).

      The university would like to alter the photo slightly (make the bubble into a globe) and use for this educational event.

      I don’t want to infringe upon any copyright laws so am wondering from who should I ask permission to use this photo?

      If someone could respond with an answer,advise, or a simple “I have no idea…”, it would appreciated.

      Thanks!

      Comment by Parkam — January 14, 2010 @ 2:55 pm

      • Hey Parkman, I took the image from the http://quidam.wordpress.com blog (which I just checked and seems to be deleted).

        So, the image isn’t mine and I can’t remember where the other blog took it from :(

        Personally I have no problem with you modifing the picture, but again, I’m not the author of it. I’ve had some issues with images before and my advice is: if you’re going to use it on a website or something similar, go ahead and use it, if you have problems just take it down. If you’re going to print big posters with it then definitely don’t do it.

        Comment by abarrera — January 14, 2010 @ 4:05 pm

  6. alhamdulillah bagus banget..terima kasih ya atas tuliasannya..anda membuat harapan saya kembali hidup setelah sekian lama..terbenam.thank you

    Comment by aannuraeni — February 12, 2008 @ 4:02 am

  7. Interesting that you mention this… I’ve been reading The Black Swan and it says just about the same thing about hope.

    Comment by cdog — February 12, 2008 @ 6:58 am

  8. Well put! Sometimes it is only our continuous and stubborn belief in the positive outcome of something that will bring about this result.

    Comment by amyrovig — February 12, 2008 @ 9:35 am

  9. I also believe in hope and before I rudely take over your colunmn, I’ll flick over to my blog and give you a link!

    For your readers who pop by, contrast the movie Shawshank Redemption with Polyanna and then add in The Legend of Bagger Vance. All of them are about hope but in context of superior knowledge and staying power, optimism and cheerfulness, and then social support and trust.

    I’m leaving now before you think I am staying forever!

    Comment by scotchcart — February 12, 2008 @ 1:17 pm

  10. [...] Shawshank Redemption, The Legend of Bagger Vance I’ve just spotted this brilliantly titled blog on the WordPress Dash and landed on a post about hope, made topical by the man-of-the-hour, Barack [...]

    Pingback by What does hope have to do with a positive attitude towards error? « flowing motion — February 12, 2008 @ 2:28 pm


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