Assuming the Risk and Reaping the Reward

Frequently when starting a new business, the proprietor will usually experience a certain amount of criticism and skepticism from others.

If the business fails, the proprietor will get a million “I-told-ya-so’s”….but if it succeeds, everyone wants to be your friend.

Here is a quick illustration of this phenomenon.

If the proprietor is serious about their idea, they will follow through….

Notice the rapid change of opinion once success has been tasted. The reason is because most people are afraid to take the risk of failing (which pretty much every entrepreneur will do at some point).

Once the original proprietor has got through all the initial risk, it is very easy to find people who all of a sudden think the business was a great idea.

Lesson Learned: While you should take comments to heart, you should not let doubters discourage you from trying a new business idea. Business ideas are only good as their jockey’s.

Blog posted on: May 2, 2005

10 comments on “Assuming the Risk and Reaping the Reward

  1. Smarty

    Good point. To your critics you’re always a failure until you make money. Once you make money, you’re famous and there’s a reason to know more about you.

    For example, when you win the lottery, you suddenly have a lot more friends. And everyone wants to know more about you and why you picked those numbers. The day before you won, nobody would even care where you’re from and those birthdate numbers.

    How sad, but true. =)

    Neville, I like your energy and enthusiasm. You can be so focused on what you do you don’t give a damn what people say about you. The best example… the water experiment. =)

  2. Anonymous

    Great point. Unless you are rolling in money, there will always be doubters.

    And even when you are rolling in money, there are still doubters.

  3. Canadian Capitalist

    “I think there is a world market for maybe five computers” — Thomas Watson, Chairman of IBM.

    “Heavier than air flying machine are impossible” — Lord Kelvin

    If Fred Smith has listened to detractors (including a prof who marked his hub-and-spoke delivery model paper a “C”) FedEx wouldn’t have started.

    Canadian Capitalist

  4. Neville


    Great quotes! I’ve heard them all before, not sure why I didn’t include these famous examples.

    Glad you brought those to the table.

  5. Anonymous

    What you said about every entrepreneur failing at least once is almost always true. If you’re able to get over the fear the first time and try it, it becomes very very hard to try again.

    I started a business during my freshman year of college. It did roughly half a million in sales by the end of my sophomore year – I’m thinking it’s a pretty solid business – and then it all went to hell. I’m just now getting the courage to start again (over a year later, the end of my junior year).

    I think it’s really good you’ve realized that almost all entrepreneurs fail before they succeed. Do you have any personal (or not) examples of this case? Us entrepreneurs could always use encouragement. =)

  6. jim

    Nev, getting a little carried away with that pen buddy. :)

    Everyone hates a pioneer, especially when it’s with something simple they could’ve done themselves, because when you succeed the “it’ll never works” turn into “i could’ve done thats.”



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