With businesses moving towards automation, outsourcing, or even A.I. it is becoming easier to become a serial Entrepreneur. A serial entrepreneur is an entrepreneur who continually comes up with business ideas and starts different companies. As they begin to increase revenue in one company, it becomes relatively easier to start another.
What I would like to discuss with you today are 10 famous serial entrepreneurs. However, not just discuss them, but also discuss the skills they used to reach such heights. Success leaves clues and if there is anything to be learned and implemented by our rich peers, it can be their skillset.
Why are skillsets so important for a serial entrepreneur? Because there are many facets to being an entrepreneur and the biggest part of that is you. By improving your own abilities it will allow you to be better at whatever venture you decide to focus on.
1. Elon Musk – Goal Setting
Goal Setting felt like the right place to start because it is the foundation for any business that you want. Doesn’t matter if you plan on opening a brick & motor store or creating multiple online business ventures. Each entity you want will have a goal. Be hard on the goal, but soft on the path. Meaning, allow yourself the chance to change the course if need be. But firm on what the main goal is. How did Elon Musk apply this skill for his serial entrepreneurship journey?
As the CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, some of the biggest- innovative companies to date, Musk has some pretty lofty goals that match his level of ambition.
For SpaceX, the mission is to have the human race colonize on Mars. Why? Because he believes that it will help us be better prepared from extinction.
Tesla’s mission? To transition the world to sustainable energy. And to prove that people didn’t need to be compromised by driving electric.
Do you see a common theme with these goals that make them so big? They have taken their mission and put it on a world level to bring about positive change. With these types of ambitions, it’s hard not to have support. Having a strong why like these companies is what makes your business enjoyable and keeps the focus on the goal.
2. Sir Richard Branson – Leverage
Leverage is the secret of the wealthy. I speak quite a bit about leverage and how to benefit from it on my podcast Self Educated Entrepreneur. The reason that this is so key is that leverage is how you can give yourself the opportunity to focus on the important money-making task within your business.
Richard Branson is well known for being the founder of Virgin records. Our second serial entrepreneur business ventures don’t stop there. He has expanded his business into hotels, healthcare, and other charitable ventures to list a few. It may be hard to imagine how one person can achieve all of this and amass a 5.6 billion dollar fortune in a lifetime. While it has taken him years to reach these levels of serial entrepreneurship, he did it with a simple process.
Leverage is the key component to expanding a serial entrepreneur career. By focusing, growing, and delegating certain task within his first business, it allowed him to push for even greater desires and goals. You don’t have to become a serial entrepreneur alone. Become familiar with delegating or outsourcing tasks when you can so that your focus can be very intent on the business growth.
3. Oprah Winfrey – Communication
Getting her start in 1976 at a Baltimore local station was a launchpad for Oprah’s now great career. From their between 1986 to 2011 she had the highest-rated television program of its kind in history. I am sure you may be thinking, of course, she is so rich and famous. With her being on TV her path to serial entrepreneurship was pretty easy. While a lot of that does hold weight to her success, she did use one very important skill to achieve such heights.
This actually might be one of the most important skills on this list. She is a great communicator. If you look at some of her earlier work to now, I know you can see the growth and expertise that she has developed when it comes to communication.
Communication does not only have to be in the form of you speaking to others. Effective communication includes listening as well. Having empathy and being able to show people that they are heard and understood will put lots of people lining up to work with you. The point here is, focus on building good communication skills to excel at telling people the benefits they get by doing business with you.
4. Mark Cuban – Sales Skills
When we talk about sales nowadays it gets such a negative connotation. People may feel like selling is pressuring, manipulating, or misleading someone to get inside their wallet. If you’re afraid to sell then expect your account to remain at zero. Having sales skills is a real art form and there are techniques to get better at it. This skill is one that should always be within your framework to improve. Doesn’t matter if it is reading articles, books, or newsletters.
Keeping yourself up to date on great sales habits will help you among all your business ventures.
Mark Cuban, the Billionaire, NBA team owner, and Investor has said himself that sales skill is key to success. Losing his billions doesn’t even phase him because he has the belief that he could reach such success again through his sales abilities. No wonder he has reached the top of the mountain within any field he decides to do.
His ability to sell himself or his business is how he continues to be one of the top business leaders today. With that level of confidence, it is hard not to trust whatever he is selling won’t work for you. Can you add this level of trust to your business?
I don’t know about you, but to me, having the confidence to lose it all and still know I can make it all back with my sales experience is something that I want to include in my skill tool belt.
5. Gary Vaynerchuck – Ambition
I don’t remember where I saw the video, but I saw an interview with Gary V where he said that he is working on something to transcribe everything that he says online in his videos. The mission of this is to have searchable content online that people can connect with easily. For example, someone could say, “Alexa, what did Gary V say about entrepreneurship?” Then Alexa can pull up that result and read what he said.
He said he wants to do this so his legacy can live past his lifetime. As in his kids, or grandkids and generations after him can listen to him and know him still on a deeper level. Isn’t that crazy ambition? To be so forward-thinking in that you want your future family members to be able to ask questions about- how you felt on certain subjects, any advice you can provide on life or anything else you could think of to be programmed into online software.
This level of ambition has greatly added to the serial entrepreneur success that Gary V has obtained. Again, this does not mean you have to reach these heights or put pressure on yourself to do so. Just be ambitious enough to keep the momentum going to grow your business.
6. Steve Jobs – Innovation
Having been adopted and thinking of his birth parents as a sperm and egg bank did not stop Jobs from reaching highs of success. Being the other head along with Steve Wozniak to found Apple in 1976, Jobs used innovation to change the world together. Besides Apple, he was a part of Pixar and Walt Disney Company’s board. All massive companies with even bigger fan bases.
The innovation that Jobs used within every venture allowed him to create unique recognizable products that people love. When someone has an Apple product they have no problem letting you know that they use Apple.
Generations of families spend their money on Disney theme parks or products. Can you imagine? From 5 years old into adulthood that you have a client and their family for life. Even way past you being on the planet?!
Apple being a trillion-dollar company has a relative foothold among the business giants. To the point that they are expanding into making Electric cars. How’s that for a company that started out making personal computers? Thus, Jobs being able to innovate has pushed his company into many different aspects of business which is why they get such a large market share.
For your business, within the spectrum of your niche, how can you be innovative? A problem most business owners have is that they try to re-create the wheel. Instead, how can you apply your personality, genius, and touch to make existing methods better to solve a common problem? Answer this, and you will have Clients for generations to come.
7. Jeff Bezos – Perseverance
While the entire world was going into lockdown and adjusting to this new life as we know it, this next serial entrepreneur got even richer. Jeff Bezos is the first centibillionaire on the Forbes wealth index, he was also named the “richest man in modern history.” His perseverance helped him push his company towards growth even though there were many doubters. Something all serial entrepreneurs can relate to. Doubt. By overcoming the naysayers Bezos has a business that gets richer, stronger, and better during a global downturn. Wouldn’t we all like a business that will stand the test of bad times?
Bezos also founded a spaceflight company in Blue Origin in 2000.
Back to what Bezos is known for being the founder of Amazon. The early idea of Amazon started as an online bookstore. However, Bezos always felt that the internet would compete against other major book retailers. As time went on he expanded into offering music and video on Amazon with the idea to continue expanding into other products. Thus we have the Amazon of today. Which allows you to do affiliate marketing, drop shipping, produces TV shows & movies, and now expanding into delivering groceries.
Here is how it all links to you persevering through your business- No matter where you are starting or where you are at in your business, push through the tough times knowing that bigger and better things are on the horizon for your business. You must see the forest through the trees. Wealth gain and business growth take time. If you’re not in it for the long haul, then I suggest you not even get started.
8. Jack Ma – Determination
Ma is considered an influential figure for Chinese business. Having retired from Alibaba in 2018, a business-to-business marketplace site, Ma spends his time now pursuing philanthropy and educational work.
In the early days of the internet, Jack Ma and his friends would spend hours hanging out while trying to build websites. These were the days of dial-up connection. Don’t know what that is? Just imagine a period that you couldn’t use your phone and be on the internet at the same time.
Weird right? Picture you trying to surf the web and you actually have to call a line first to even access the internet. Better yet, web pages would take a few minutes to load. Thus, with this type of determination Jack Ma was able to have billions in his pocket.
Now I ask you this? Is there something that you will complain about that you can’t control? Focus on what you can control and become determined to reach your goals. Like Ma couldn’t control the speed of the internet, there are various things about doing business you can control. Build your businesses how you see best suited and the rest will take care of itself. As in, we don’t have dial-up anymore, right?
9. Wayne Huizenga – Big Picture thinking
“You can’t make money working for someone else.” Wise words said by Huizenga’s father when he was a young boy. Many of the serial entrepreneurs on this list share this skill. This has to be embedded within your mindset for your desires to become more than a thought.
Wayne turned a garbage truck into a billion dollars. How? By doing good service and understanding the big picture of business.
What is unique with Huizenga is that many of the businesses he owned were ones that he bought and not necessarily started from the ground up. By understanding the common needs of people and taking an approach to provide good service, it is no wonder that he earned billions in his lifetime.
Think past your current process to see what is the big picture. What is it that your business does that is better than everybody else? Then go and produce good service to your client base. People want to do business with people they can trust. Building trust is just one key aspect of the big picture thinking for your business. And a really good place to start.
10. Mariam Naficy – Creativity
The author of The Fast Track: The Insider’s Guide to Winning Jobs in Management Consulting, Investment Banking, & Securities Trading, Mariam Naficy, co-founded Eve.com and sold it for a reported $110 million. From her career as an investment banker at Goldman Sachs to creating Eve.com, and being motivated to start Minted.com, Mariam used the skill of Creativity to become one of the most powerful women entrepreneurs.
With Minted.com Mariam wanted to help with institutional issues regarding women in technology. Her strong system of giving power to people of all backgrounds can only come from being one of the most creative influencers that we know today.
Creativity can come in many forms in your business. Can you make creative offers? Creative partnerships? Creative processes that streamline everything making the customer journey enjoyable yet infotainment? Doesn’t matter how you do it, just empower your clients to succeed creatively, and I’m sure you can achieve the success you want.
From all of the listed famous serial entrepreneurs, there is one core concept or idea that you can take from this. In every business venture that you decide on doing, go about the business of helping other people. Creating a culture in your business to put others before yourself may get your name listed on someone else’s blog post as a famous serial entrepreneur one day.
Nothing can happen for you though if you don’t take action today. I suggest you read this blog multiple times to learn, memorize and strategize on how you can implement skills to achieve the life that you dream of.
Fabe Mitchell is a Productivity Coach for Side hustlers and host of the Self Educated Entrepreneur podcast. When he is not working on one of the businesses, he is spending time with his wife of 15 years, playing video games with friends, and furthering his knowledge in the entrepreneurship space. The ultimate mission is to educate entrepreneurs to be leaders with their life, teams, and business industry within their realm.
Join the Awesome
Wallet Squirrel List!
Join our mailing list to get helpful money ideas & encouragement to do cool things!