“Success is like a giant iceberg” writes the author and motivational speaker Alex Altman. “What people see is only on the surface.” Wise words! And especially at a time when anyone can look like a winner with a carefully crafted Instagram post.
But as Alex points out, behind the image of a billionaire leaning back on a private yacht there is an underwater mountain of early morning hours, late finishings, rejection and some mistakes. In other words, real success is not easy. It’s up to us to go out there and build it.
So what do you do in times when everything seems stacked against you, like now? Starting a new business in the middle of a global recession can’t be a good idea, right? Many would argue otherwise, and that includes some of today’s top entrepreneurs and CEOs. Indeed, as BusinessFinancing.co.uk found out about a Hundreds of the Fortune 500 companies were founded during a massive economic downturn.
And instead of seeing a recession as an obstacle to success, the best business people see in it an opportunity to offer something new. Former schoolmates Brian Chesky and Joe Gebbia introduced Airbnb in 2008. At that time, the world was embroiled in a global credit crunch. Airbnb cut prices for customers and created a market where homeowners in need of money could earn an income.
Groupon had the perfect business model for a global recession – saving people money. The e-commerce and voucher code provider was also founded in 2008 and attracted 35 million users in the first two years.
And remember, even the most incredible journeys often begin with humble beginnings. Back in the US Depression of 1960, Tom Monaghan borrowed $ 900 to open a pizza place to feed hungry university students. He called it Dominos, and this little pizza place is now a global brand that makes $ 400 million a year.
Here’s a look at some of the other companies that didn’t let anything block their path to success.