As previously posted on BreakingBayStreet.com
It was about 45 minutes into our coffee when I asked, “well, what if they get mad?” He looked at me and said:
“It’s not your job to care if they’re mad. Your only job is to make things work. So stop worrying about others. If you want to be successful, pissing people off is just part of the journey. If you haven’t pissed anyone off and you want to be a successful entrepreneur, then you just aren’t doing a good enough job.”
It took me a while to fully understand what he was talking about, but it ended up being some of the realest advice I had ever received.
I was sitting with an extremely successful entrepreneur for coffee and was asking him about the strategies and methods that led to his success. He said that becoming successful was much harder than he had imagined it.
When you are pushing hard to do something, you are always going to get in the way of other people regardless. If you’re too busy worrying about pleasing everyone, you won’t ever be able to win and those are just the rules of business.
As your business becomes more successful, it will disrupt other businesses. You’ll make money and it will create envy. He told me that he measures success by the number of people that are mad at him. The more people are angry with his business, the more he knows his business is making an impact.
Being an entrepreneur, you hope that every impact of your business will be positive, but in reality some negative outcomes are unavoidable. It’s not that you are trying to be malicious, but any change leads to some winners and some losers. As an entrepreneur with a conscience, you do your best to maximize the former and minimize the latter.
He said that if you want to be successful you can’t get hung up on the people that are angry, you have to focus on the people you are helping. Unfortunately, the ones that are hurt will always be the loudest. As an entrepreneur you have to take it all in and see the bigger picture through the fog.
Being successful isn’t always about making the decision that will be easiest; it’s about making the decision that’s right, and the decision that is right doesn’t always make everyone happy.