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Are the spirit of revolution and entrepreneurship essentially the same thing? In the Endeavor Entrepreneur Summit session “Revolution and Entrepreneurship,” Alex Asseily and Fadi Ghandour discussed the daring it takes to succeed at enterprise.
Asseily founded Jawbone and served as its CEO. Today, he is its chairman, a job he balances with serving as the founder and chairman of a startup called STATE, a “global opinion network” based in London. Ghandour is the founder, vice chairman, and former CEO of Aramex, a worldwide transportation company. In addition to being an active Endeavor network member, he co-founded and manages an investment company, serves on multiple company boards, and is the founder and chairman of Ruwwad for Development, a company dedicated to empowering disadvantaged communities.
Both stressed that entrepreneurship is making people rethink the way things are done. Said Asseily, “Entrepreneurship is about restlessness and perseverance. We rewrote the rules of the industry.” Asseily also talked about how entrepreneurs start with next to nothing, and they “put their all” into everything they are doing; for this reason, they have to continually find revolutionary ways of pushing forward and making their ideas a reality.
And when you hit a roadblock? “Rejection strengthens us, but it is also feedback that you need to continue to improve.” Take the failure, look at the reasons why there was one, and grow from that. “You remember failure more than you remember anything else,” said Ghandour, stressing the importance of using failure to create success. Ghandour also said, “As a young entrepreneur, there was a sense of innocence and irrationality that allowed us to take big risks,” much like how a revolutionary thinks and acts.
Wouldn’t the world be a better place if we all focused on selling happiness? “The Business of Delivering Happiness” featured speaker Jenn Lim, who strives to help businesses do just that.
Lim started out creating Culture Books for Zappos and launching Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh’s first book Delivering Happiness. She is now co-founder and CEO of Delivering Happiness, a company that devotes itself to helping companies, organizations, and people manage their lives and achieve the ultimate goal: happiness.
How do you sustain that happiness? “Pleasure, passion, and higher purpose,” she said, along with, “Be[ing] true to your weird self.” As far as keeping up the happiness in a business, she urged everyone to remember that “company core values should be more than a plaque on a wall.” You have to actually work to create a culture, and work even hard to create a respectable one. Then, “if you get your company culture right, everything else will flow.” The best piece of advice for getting the best people for that culture? “Hire slowly, fire quickly.”
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