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The 5 Rules for Silicon Valley Success That Can Work Anywhere


You need capital to create your business, fund its operations, pay employees and ultimately, you’ll need to generate a profit. However, chasing after money isn’t what’ll help you get it. Your ideas, passion and hard-work will prove to be the main mechanisms to generate revenues. Nowhere else is this more realized than in Silicon Valley.

Many of the young Valley entrepreneurs, including those who have travelled across the globe to get there, are sacrificing large reliable paychecks at prestigious firms just for a chance to go on their own and actualize their dreams. Even if that entails couch surfing, working more than hundred hour workweeks and going months (or even years) with no income. What motivates them to keep on going are their ideas and the hopes of seeing them come to fruition, not just the expansion of their bank accounts.

Sacrifice, hard work and perseverance are qualities you’ll need to achieve your goals. Everyone in Silicon Valley is highly conscious of such a fact, as even the most successful Valley millionaires can trace back to their humble beginnings, working countless hours in their dorm rooms. There are few tales of family connections and bribery.

“People become entrepreneurs for very difference reasons, freedom, independence, leaving a legacy. They want to make a difference in someone’s life. There’s a lot of reasons to be an entrepreneur and money is just one of them.”

The words of Jeff Hoffman further echoes how chasing after wealth isn’t the primary engine that drives Silicon Valley. Rather, it’s making an impact and a positive change that will enhance the consumer experience. As any good entrepreneur will tell you, the joys of managing a growing, dynamic and successful business largely outweighs the economic imperative.

Sadly however, when it comes to the many young adults hoping to do away with the drudgery of 9 to 5 workdays, monovalent bosses and office cubicles, entrepreneurship represents nothing but an escapist dream. Many who aspire to be future moguls conjure up images of themselves in private jets and luxurious yachts before they have even developed a solid business idea. Don’t let that happen to you!

Think of the business, the ideas and the details first and enjoy the rewards once you actually achieve them. After all, being an entrepreneur is going to entail a lot more work, responsibility and pressure than school or an office job could ever impart.

Money is a motivator, but seeing your vision come to life is what should ultimately scratch that entrepreneurial itch. It’s a long haul to millionaire status, and you’ll need more than the scent of money to keep you going.

“You have to love what you’re doing, otherwise you won’t work hard enough,” Kottke.

Build positive relationships

Perhaps the most iconic rivalry of the tech-world is between Silicon Valley’s Apple and Microsoft. Yet despite their seemingly antagonistic nature to one another, Microsoft’s $150 million investment into Apple helped the company stay afloat during 1997. In response, Apple dropped long running lawsuits against Microsoft.

What these juggernauts of industry teach us is that animosity and conflict should never define your relationships in business – even amongst your competitors. Otherwise, you can create barriers to the development of new partnerships and cut off channels of communications.

“Wise businesspeople have the humility to seek out long-term, positive-sum collaborations with others, and are willing to sacrifice some of their immediate self-interest for long-term gain,” says Victor Hwang of Entrepreneur magazine.

No matter what industry you hope to venture in, creating a strong circle of contacts is instrumental to your entrepreneurial success. You need people to exchange thoughts, contribute ideas and amalgamate different skill sets.

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