The end of the year is a time to sit, relax with family and be happy for what you’ve accomplished over the last 12 months.
It’s also a time to give thanks for all of the advantages we enjoy.
For me, a lot of that turns back to innovation and the amazing work being done every day by entrepreneurs working on projects big and small. Because it’s never easy.
Every big company was once a small company. Every small company was once a tiny company. Every tiny company was once a single person, alone in a room, with a phone and an idea. Jobs, Zuckerberg, Musk, Ford, Edison … it always starts the same way.
Looking back, of course, the growth of these entrepreneurs was obvious. The personal computer became an integral part of modern life, transforming every industry. Tesla and Uber are changing our notion of automobiles. Immunotherapy is transforming cancer treatment. Genetics is changing food and nutrition.
But it’s never a straight line. It’s a mountain — or better yet, a minefield — to climb, complete with dead ends, false flags, storms, obstacles and, of course, cliffs.
But those that persevere come out on the other side with a story to tell.
Only a few people ever really understand what this is like. It’s something you can only experience personally. It takes skin in the game. But that’s OK. Not everyone needs to understand. Because that is not why you are an entrepreneur. You hear something different than others. You see problems that need to be solved, and you set out to solve them.
Today I’m celebrating the individual’s ability to convert uncertain odds into things that change the world. That is what truly changes the future, and that is the source of true inspiration.
My new year’s resolution is to thank entrepreneurs, to help them overcome risks, to help them fund their efforts, and help them find customers.