Entrepreneurship is all about calculated risk. We can create strategic plans, implement repeatable processes, hire the top people, and engage with the best customers. However, the only way to grow to the next level is to bite off more than you can chew, and pray you don’t choke.
I know the feeling of biting off more than you can chew. Four years ago, Information Experts made the strategic decision to invest in a newly formed Joint Venture (JV) to pursue a multi-billion dollar Department of State program. The risk was ridiculously high but the possible reward was astronomical.
I wanted to build a company. I had no money, I had no business experience and I had no business idea. So I was perfectly qualified. I didn’t want to build a bank. I wanted to build a technology company. Many days I went to work wondering if it would be my last day. There were many near-death experiences over the first 5 years. Our idea involved doing the business differently and that was hard to sell.”
This is the transparency that Capital One CEO Rich Fairbank shared with 300 entrepreneurs and Capital One customers as he kicked off his 90-minute talk. He reminded us that regardless of industry or size of company, there are many universal truths that apply to all organizations and entrepreneurs.