It Takes Money To Make Money - 10 Billionaires Who Disprove This!
By Jatinder Singh, Associate Partner & Mentorship Coach, Lighthouse International
There are many common misconceptions we hold in our lives. One of these for a lot of people, is the notion that "it takes money to make money." Now, while having money of your own at the start of any venture is unlikely to make things harder, it certainly isn't a requirement as these 10 billionaires below show. Forbes magazine estimates that out of the 565 billionaires in the US (Jan 2016) only 20% inherited their wealth and 62% of them made it during their own lifetime.
Ultimately the legends who have achieved a great deal of success, at least materially, have known that the circumstances that they were born into were not going to define the rest of their lives. Let's have a look at some examples of these legends who grew up in poor households amid very challenging circumstances.
1. John Paul Dejoria: Net-worth $2.9 Billion: Founder of The Paul Mitchell Systems haircare products and founder of Patron Tequila was homeless for a while and set up his company with a $700 loan.
2. Roman Abramovich: Net-worth $8.2 Billion: The owner of Chelsea Football Club. He was orphaned at 2 and ran a small company making plastic toys before moving into the oil industry where he made his fortune.
3. Larry Ellison: Net-worth $49.8 Billion: After being born to a single mother, he was raised by his aunt and uncle. When his aunt died, he dropped out of college and did a variety of odd jobs for eight years, before founding technology giant Oracle.
4. Howard Schultz: Net-worth $2.9 Billion: CEO of Starbucks. He grew up in government housing in New York.
5. Oprah Winfrey: Net-worth $2.9 Billion: The media entrepreneur was born into a poor family in Mississippi and was abused as a child.
6. Shahid Khan: Net-worth $4.4 Billion: Businessman and owner of the NFL team Jacksonville Jaguars and the Premier League team Fulham. An immigrant to the USA from Pakistan, he once washed dishes for $1.20 an hour.
7. Ralph Lauren: Net-worth $6.8 Billion: Dropped out of college and was a clothing salesperson before launching his own clothing label.
8. Francois Pinault: Net-worth $14.2 Billion: His company owns high-end fashion labels such as Gucci and Yves Saint Laurent. He was bullied at school so badly for being poor that he had to leave.
9. George Soros: Net-worth $24.2 Billion: The trader famous for betting against the British Pound in 1992 and making billions in the process, worked as a waiter and rail porter to put himself through his degree in London. He also had to flee the Nazi's from his native Hungary.
10. Sheldon Adelson :Net-worth: $29.5 Billion: Owns one of the largest casino companies in the world. Was the son of a cab driver and began selling newspapers at 12.
Why Did These People Succeed?
1 - They Created Value - They learnt to solve people's problems and provide solutions.
Author and speaker Tony Robbins, who is himself worth $480 Million and grew up in a very poor family said:
"The secret to success is... is no secret. It's called work your Ass off and find a way to add more value to people's lives than anyone else does!"
All of these people knew, that they were able to offer something worth a lot more than the money they were asking for in return. They saw that creating value for others was a lot more than a simple transaction. They saw it as a key part of the long-term future they were building. That's why someone like Howard Schultz for example, was able to charge $5 for a product that had previously been seen as an undifferentiated commodity. He saw there was an unmet need. People wanted an alternative place to relax in, that wasn't their office or home! He saw that unmet need, and created Starbucks - to not only meet the need, but additionally, to exceed the expectations of his customers.
2 - They absolutely made sure to build the right relationships
Every successful legend has known that they need to offer, and have support from others. Many of the examples given here, often because of their challenging life situations, understood quickly that they needed the assistance of others. Hence, they learnt about the behaviours and attitudes of other people a lot more than most. They understood too, that they needed to help others in their relationships, and how to develop a win/win mindset. They recognised that if they did this, they would be able to obtain the resources they needed for their ventures, including money. Indeed taking Howard Schultz as an example again, he set up Starbucks with money from his previous employers because they loved his vision and he maintained good connections with them.
These inspiring examples show us that we do not need to have lots of money to make a lot of money. While some of these examples are extreme, the majority of the world's most successful people, such as Bill Gates or Warren Buffett, grew up in some form of middle-class household. They were not born into exceptional amounts of money. Hence the phrase "it takes money to make money" is a myth. It prevents people from taking opportunities and succeeding.