Monday, August 15, 2022

How Entrepreneur Elon Musk Changed How We Define Success

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Ian Feldman
Ian Feldman
Ian Feldman is the lead editor for Business News Ledger. Ian has been working as a freelance journalist for nearly a decade having published stories in the New York Times, The Plain Dealer, The Daily Mail and many others. Ian is based in Detroit and covers issues related to entrepreneurs and businesses.

There are fewer examples of exemplified excellence than Elon Musk, the entrepreneur who is daring to go higher and farther than any human being has ever gone before – quite literally in fact. The tech billionaire has had his fair share of shake ups and disappointments over the years, and like so many before him, was on the verge of throwing in the towel and signing up for a safe and secure position in an anonymous company.

Challenges Along The Way

Elon Musk would not always have been considered a success by any means, after being fired from the wildly successful company PayPal (for which he was paid handsomely), he was not after a challenge that would be simple and straightforward.

“Going from PayPal, I thought well, what are some of the other problems that are likely to most affect the future of humanity?” – Interview from 2015 with Business Insider

His compass led him in the direction of space, where he spent almost his entire pay packet from PayPal (and then some) and at one point was within weeks of absolute bankruptcy. He persevered and is now the head of multiple successful businesses that have a collective goal of betterment, rather than profit (although that’s a natural side effect).

A Renewed Success

Elon Musk

We once defined success as the amount of money one had in the bank, or the number of houses that had their name on the dotted line – this is not quite the case anymore. The zeitgeist seems to be describing success as something more ephemeral, something with a little more pizzaz and as something without the need for excess.

In the case of Elon Musk, the founder of The Boring Company, Tesla, and SpaceX – his measured focus and determination on creating a better world for humanity and for the future (despite the challenges therein) has been received astoundingly positively.

You could say we now define success by the measurement of positive impact on the world, and on the all-too-close horizon of humanity.

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