What is the one thing we are eager to know?
Today, in the business world, the hardest and most-anticipated question that haunts millions of entrepreneurs-to-be is the one that has no single and simple approach, or understanding, yet offers multiple answers.
What does it take to be successful?
Is successful being the best? Is personal success necessarily success in professional life? Is failure the opposite of success? Why certain people are more successful than others are? Is it knowledge that matters or one needs special business-like skills and experience? Is success hard work and determination?
Do you wish to know the answer?
To quote Swami Vivekananda: Take up one idea. Make that one idea your life - think of it, dream of it, live on that idea. Let the brain, muscles, nerves, every part of your body, be full of that idea, and just leave every other idea alone. This is the way to success,
or perhaps Henry Ford,
The whole secret of a successful life is to find out what is one's destiny to do, and then do it,
and famous author Maya Angelou: Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it, it becomes evident that hard work, devotion to an idea, determination and appetite for risks are allies on one’s way to success.
These quotes and similar thoughts only confirm that success in life and business is neither passive nor definite or unilateral. Although understood differently by many successful people in our history, for every person this is still one of the most pivotal questions to be asked, and answered.
Many questions and answers rise on this topic, yet the answers are in accordance to ones’ life philosophy and approach. However, perhaps we are more focused on the steps we need to take to achieve success while underestimating what lies beneath every successful story – sacrifice, and judging by the fruitful business market in Australia where significant number of people run successful businesses, it is good to reach to those who could shed more light on what does it take to reach the top.
Zachary Rook, the managing director of Your Local Movers, a Brisbane-based removalist company that now operates internationally, was just nineteen when he started. He sacrificed his twenties and gained years of life and business experience that got him praised and acknowledged by many. While he wasn’t able to party all night or even go out every night like others of his age, his teen years are not the only sacrifice he had made.
“Owning a business is most humbling thing. There reaches a point in every business owner's career where you have cash flow problems and you need to rely on help wherever you can find it. You have to sacrifice your entire ego at some point to keep going but the more you talk to people the more you realize its normal”, Rook underlines.
Then, what is success for Zachary Rook?
“I used to think it was money related, but in my old age (27) balance is a much bigger point for me. Working because I enjoy what I’m doing and being able to choose to spend time with people I am close to is my success”, he explains for Profitalist.
The road to success for Yvone King, company director at Australia's largest independent licensing agency, Haven Licensing, was a hard one, marked with constant proving and self assessment given she was 16 when she joined the company. She proved her values with successful projects, such as best-selling children’s brand Hello Kitty, yet she sacrificed her other wishes, needs and sometimes friendships given constant overseas travel.
“I can't commit to anything on a regular basis such as personal training or the gym. I tried to learn Spanish but only made it to two out of 13 classes. I’m the world's worst friend and girlfriend”, she explains.
And this is where one should be cautious:
“I see a plague of single women that devote so much time to their jobs that they don't develop a personal life. It's an easy trap to fall into but work will never love you back.”
However, she pointed out that all sacrifices she had made paid off with the benefits she gained.
To reach the top, success and sacrifice go hand in hand for many who decide to embrace this journey. There is no single answer we can find; however, once we know it, we are already on our way up to fulfill our dreams. In the meantime, any experience from those who achieved their goals is as valuable as the answers themselves.