When would be able to tell your honey that I want to take you to the moon?
Entrepreneurs never feel their ideas may or may not work and you know what entrepreneurs do? They pivot!
In a business it’s like a war. You have to be completely prepared.
It’s not about the great vision it’s always about the great execution.
– Naveen Jain
Evan: He’s a business executive entrepreneur and founder and former CEO of InfoSpace.
He’s the cofounder of Moon Express, a company that is making machine-operated spacecraft to try to go to the moon and harvest it for its raw materials.
He’s on track to potentially become the world’s first trillionaire.
He’s Naveen Jain and here’s my take on his top 10 rules for success.
Rule number one is my personal favorite, and make sure to stick around all the way to the end for some special bonus clips.
Also, as Naveen is talking if he says something that really, really resonates with you please leave it in the comments below and put quotes around it so other people can be inspired as well, enjoy.
Rule #1. Think Big
Narrator: At a compound in Mountain View California internet billionaire Naveen Jain is hatching a plan that could make him the world’s first trillionaire.
Bob: Naveen, good to see you my friend.
Bob: So Naveen, the team is working hard as it usually is.
Naveen: Of course.
Bob: So we’re going to land on the moon somewhere around here close to where the Apollo spacecraft landed at the equator.
Naveen: How did you pick that area?
Bob: Well it’s, first of all it’s on the near side so it’s easily accessible from Earth. The dark area are actually regions of lava plains so they’re not mountainous.
Narrator: Not so long ago it was the Soviet and America superpowers that were locked in a race to land on the moon. Now it’s Bob and Naveen who are leading the competition to mine precious metals from its surface.
Naveen: Are we still on track to land on the moon by 2015?
Bob: We’re still on track Naveen.
Naveen: Initially we thought the mission was going to cost us about $100,000,000. Do you think we can bring the cost down to say 50,000,000 to $60,000,000?
Bob: Yeah, even less.
Naveen: Even less?
Bob: I think the first mission will be under 50 and subsequent missions may be under 40.
Naveen: When would we be able to tell your honey that I want to take you to the moon?
Bob: 10 years.
Naveen: 10 years.
Bob: Not only will it be a honeymoon but I can take my honey to the moon, and I think that’ll be the killer.
If you can do that, that’s real business. If we can go to the moon for $50,000,000 the cost comes down to 20 and we’re able to bring back the things worth $500,000,000,000 I don’t care what anybody says, that’s a great business. Somebody is going to create a trillion dollar industry in space and we sure hope it’s us. When you tell somebody what you’re doing and they don’t think it’s a crazy idea then you’re thinking too small. So when you walk up to a party and people say “What do you do? “Well, I mine the moon. “Well that’s crazy. “Well, I’m thinking big.”
Rule #2. Trust Your Gut
As a young entrepreneur I learned several valuable lessons but I think the most valuable lesson I learned was trusting your own gut instinct. It’s not about the spreadsheets, it’s not about the numbers, it is about what you feel in your heart.
Just remember there’s so many valuables in the real life, especially you can never capture them. The brain only works on the logic of zeros and one and it doesn’t know how to deal with a lot of the gray areas. Your gut, your heart is a chemical computer. It computes things on a fuzzy, fuzzy magic, fuzzy logic.
“The most valuable lesson I learned was trusting your own gut instinct. It’s not about the spreadsheets, it’s not about the numbers, it is about what you feel in your heart.” – Naveen Jain
That means a lot of the times you start to feel that something doesn’t feel right even though the numbers do add up.
Rule #3. Never Be Afraid To Fail
Never be afraid to fail. Entrepreneurs never fail. Their ideas may or may not work and you know what entrepreneurs do? They pivot! Pivot is a way of saying I have found a stepping stone to even bigger success.
“Never be afraid to fail. Entrepreneurs never fail.” – Naveen Jain
So the way you do that is always never let the ideas that has not worked become the failure of a person. You are the person becomes better every time and the more have you feel the more arrows in your back so after a third time you can go to anyone and say, “Sir, I am the right CEO “because I know exactly what not do to three times over.”
Rule #4. Be Prepared
I wake up about 4:30 and five and between five and 5:15. I am working on email, catching up on news, looking at the blogs, looking at the different opinions because people just don’t sleep. I mean they’re working 24/7.
“In a business is like a war you have to be completely prepared and unless you have mind, body, and soul really all ready for it you just can’t fight that battle.” – Naveen Jain
Somewhere around the world people are awake and working so you’re always constantly being bombarded with request information or just sometimes news. And so in the morning I wake up and I take care of my mind. And then after that I workout and that’s taking care of my body.
And then I do meditate before I go to work so that takes care of my soul. In a business is like a war you have to be completely prepared and unless you have mind, body, and soul really all ready for it you just can’t fight that battle.
Rule #6. Don’t limit yourself
Don’t limit yourself. Go out and pursue your dreams even if you know nothing about what you’re going to do, go out and do that. Every time you have a self doubt just remember that every single successful company goes through a near-death experience before they go out and become successful. It is the mindset.
And also people talk about people are optimistic or pessimistic so they look at whether the glass is half empty or half full. To me that’s really the wrong question to ask. The only thing you as an entrepreneur should think about is do I want to fill this glass?
“Don’t limit yourself. Go out and pursue your dreams even if you know nothing about what you’re going to do, go out and do that.” – Naveen Jain
And the next question you ask what do I want to fill it with? It doesn’t matter what it looks like. Your job is to imagine and dream about what you want it to be. The biggest problems are really the social problems and if you can solve them it’s a massive opportunity.
Dream so big that people think you’re crazy and never be afraid to fail. If you want to make a billion dollars all you have to do is solve a $10,000,000,000 problem. So go out and find a way to provide the fresh water to the humanity. Go out and find a clean solution for energy.
Go out and find a solution to agriculture. Find a solution to poverty. All of these $100,000,000,000 problem. So don’t them as a problem think of them as a great entrepreneur opportunity and solving any of these problems will make you a billionaire.
Rule #6: Be Persistent But Flexible
Another valuable lesson I learned was being persistent while being flexible. A lot of entrepreneurs spend way too much time writing a business plan rather than really doing things. As you’re continue doing execute you’ll find new things. You will learn new valuables.
“Don’t try to stick to your business plan or spend too much time writing a business plan but learn as you’re executing on a business plan and you will find yourself to be successful.” – Naveen Jain
The trick is to have your business plan which only provides you the guidelines but not the roadmap because as you’re going out and doing things in real world you will find things will never ever turn out to be the way you expected them when you started a business. Don’t try to stick to your business plan or spend too much time writing a business plan but learn as you’re executing on a business plan and you will find yourself to be successful.
Rule #7. Solve Big Problems
Narrator: For Naveen the billionaire formula is simple.
What makes a successful person? They go out and solve big problems. So you know how to make a billion dollars? You solve a $10,000,000,000 problem.
Narrator: Having already made his billions he now unashamedly wants to use his business brain to change our world.
Let’s focus on education, healthcare, energy, shortage of water, shortage of food and I’m going to tell you how innovation and entrepreneurship can solve each of these problems. Let’s look at education. Imagine if you are able to use a $25 tablet and build some type of a game that’s more effective than a private tutor and is more addictive than the most addictive video game. Think about it, one day a child is going to come to the mother and say, “Mom, can I just play one more hour of math? “Because I enjoy it so much.”
Narrator: Naveen has a knack of putting people under his spell. Making his mission to solve some of mankind’s biggest problems seem plausible in space and on Earth.
“What makes a successful person? They go out and solve big problems. So you know how to make a billion dollars? You solve a $10,000,000,000 problem.” – Naveen Jain
What if we can build an artificial intelligence system that can be used by a village girl? She will be able to go door and able to diagnose a disease. There are no healthcare, there’s no hospitals, there are no doctors.
Narrator: These are big ideas that could turn a big profit but some of them seem a bit farfetched.
What if you take a 3D printer on the moon? And somebody can go out and send the DNA of a bacteria or a virus and we print it right there and leave it on the moon and watch it grow.
Interviewer: These ideas, they’re a bit out there aren’t they, Naveen? Don’t people think you’re just a bit mad?
The point is, the reason they think it’s mad because it’s already, they don’t know it’s already happening. The things that used to be science fiction are now becoming science reality.
Rule #8. Connect With People
So I think a lot of the times, and this is just, it’s totally off the topic, but people come to the conferences with agenda. They have a hidden agenda. They want to get something done. They want to be politically correct. They cannot be themselves and they are told never be vulnerable. Imagine what you do not build the deep relationship with a person unless you can be vulnerable, unless you can share your emotional connection with a person you can never build deep connection.
“You do not build the deep relationship with a person unless you can be vulnerable, unless you can share your emotional connection with a person you can never build deep connection.” – Naveen Jain
People measure their success when they leave the conference how many business card they give and how many business card they collected. Guess what? If you ever think you have more than five people that you met in the conference that you think you have a friendship with, you have a friendship with no one. You have to spend time. You have to connect with people.
You have to give yourself to them and you have to let your heart in their hand and say, “I trust you.” And when you do that that is the time you build the deep relationship when you leave this conference, they become your lifelong friends. So make one, two, three, or four those lifelong friends when you go to a conference, find a like-minded person who is going out, is going to go make the change, who’s going to go out in a journey with you to go out and change the world.
Rule #9. Do Well By Doing Good
To me doing well by doing good is my philosophy. That means you can create a great venture and if the venture can do good that becomes a philanthropic adventure for my perspective. To me you can’t create a $10,000,000,000 by solving a $1,000,000,000 problem.
To me you have to go out and solve a $100,000,000,000 problem and it so happens those $100,000,000,000 problems are massive social problems which are education, the healthcare, the clean water, the energy.
“To me doing well by doing good is my philosophy. That means you can create a great venture and if the venture can do good that becomes a philanthropic adventure for my perspective.” – Naveen Jain
And if you can go provide access to education in healthcare to billions of people around the world and if you happen to make $100,000,000,000 profit, my hat’s off to you. That’s a great venture and that’s what you want people to do is not to separate doing well from doing good because you can do both, and that’s how you create scalable, sustainable change.
Rule #10. Execute
Well the last and the most valuable lesson as an entrepreneur I learned was about the value of execution. Way too many people, way too many people spend too much time thinking about the vision. We are taught that you have to build a better mousetrap.
Every venture capitalist will tell you that to be a successful entrepreneur you need to breakthrough innovation. Well you have to assume none of us or at least most of us are not the smartest people in the world. There are lots and lots of great, great inventors out there.
“It’s not about the great vision it’s always about the great execution.” – Naveen Jain
How are we going to be the person who is going to always build a better mousetrap?
Well, to be successful you don’t have to build a better mousetrap. You just have to build a different mousetrap and as long as you’re executing well the business always comes down to block and tackle. It’s not about the great vision it’s always about the great execution.
And you can always succeed by out executing your competitors not necessarily having the best product in the marketplace and I think Microsoft is a great example where they took a same product that other people may have had but they executed substantially better and today they’re the market leader in the industry.
Evan: Thank you guys so much for watching. I made this video because Ali asked me to and thank you so much ’cause this was one of the most fun and inspiring Top 10s that I think we’ve ever put together. At least I was extremely inspired by it and I love all my Top 10s but this one was especially inspiring. So thank you so much for that ask.
And if you guys have somebody that you’d like to see profiled next, a famous entrepreneur that you want to be inspired by please leave it in the comments below and I’ll see what I can do.
I’d also love to know what rule had the biggest impact on you and why?
What lesson are you going to apply to your life for business immediately?
Leave it in the comments below. I’m going to join in the discussion.
Finally I wanted to give a quick shout-out to Mihovil. Thank you so much for picking up a copy of my book “Your One Word” it really, really, really means a lot to me. So thank you guys again for watching. I believe in you. I hope you continue to believe in yourselves and whatever your one is, much love, I’ll see you soon.
Think differently. It’s not about thinking outside the box it’s about thinking in a different box. If you become an expert in your field you become absolutely useless in your field because the day you become an expert you become incrementalist. You think about incremental evolution. So if you want to disrupt something go out in a completely different industry that you know nothing about because then you’re thinking abstract. So never be afraid to talk about your problem to someone who knows nothing about your industry because they will come up with the ways that you have never thought before.
Enjoy The Process
Making money is a byproduct of doing things that you really enjoy doing, it is never a goal in itself. And it’s like having sex and orgasm, you have to enjoy the process and not focus on the end goal. People actually who focus on end goal like getting an orgasm never get one.
Find Your Passion
As I was in college I learned a couple of valuable lessons one of them was passion. We have a lot of distractions in life but there’s some things that are really important to us. We spend our waking hours and our sleeping time all thinking about that particular thing. Once you find that passion you will find that it’s no longer a work it becomes your life, it consumes you. So find something that you’re really, really excited about and devote your life to it.