Successful Entrepreneurs who started with nothing

Fear of failure can be a crippling obstacle on the road to entrepreneurial success, but it can also be a powerful motivational tool when used correctly.

The ability to deal with your own fear is essential in overcoming the many challenges that every entrepreneur will doubtless face along the way.

The good news is thatyou can start a business online with minimal initial investment. It’s also important to remember that youhave the same number of hours at your disposable each dayas anyone else does. The difference comes fromknowing how to use that timewisely.

But the focus of this article is not on the best practices and processes for success, but rather the inspiration that drives it all. Take a lookat some of the success stories below, and be inspired by the entrepreneurswho started with nothing, and yet went on to become some of the wealthiest people in the world. Individuals who never let their humble origins or a fear of failure hold them back, but persisted in the face of every obstacle.

That’s what it takes to be a world-class entrepreneur.A lot has been written about entrepreneurs who made a spectacular comeback after failing in their initial ventures.

Successful entrepreneurs who went from poor to rich thanks to their businesses:

Zhang Xin – SOHO China

Owner of the construction company SOHO China, Xin is considered by Forbes magazineto be one of the 50 most powerful women in the world, with a fortune of over 3,800 million dollars.

When she was very young, her family was sent to the re-education following the Cultural Revolution of Mao Zedong.

She returned to Beijing a couple of years later, and shortly afterwards, her parents divorced and Xin moved to Hong Kong with her mother. They had so little money, they both slept in the office where her mother worked as translator.

At the age 14, Xin started working at a toy factory where she spent 5 years on the assembly line.

Despite her meager earnings, she managed to save for a plane ticket to London and pay for an English language course. Whilst working in a fish & chip shop, she got a scholarship to study in Sussex.

Her excellent grades soon gave her the chance to take a master’s degree at Cambridge University, which in turn led to a job at Goldman Sachs in New York.

In 1995, she returned to Beijing, and founded SOHO with her husband. The company went on to shape the aesthetics of cities such as Shanghai and Beijing, and made Xin one of the most successful entrepreneurs in the world.

Jan Koum – Co-founder of WhatsApp

At age 16, Koumand his family immigrated to the west coast of the United States from the Ukraine in order to start a new life.

Working hard at networking, Koum soon began to rub shoulders with entrepreneurs like the creators of Napster, who helped him to secure a place at the University of San Jose.

He then found a position in the security department of Ernst & Young, before leaving in 1997 following a job offer from Yahoo.

After 10 years with the company, and following the death of his parents, Koum took went on sabbatical for a year, during which he toured South America with his friend and future business partner Brian Acton.

Once back in the United Sates,Koumapplied for a position at Facebook, but his application was rejected.

Jan Koum and Brian Acton instead began working on an instant messaging system, and in February 2009, ‘WhatsApp’ was born.

Only a year later, Facebook – the company that had rejected Koum’s job application –bought WhatsApp for 19 million dollars

These two astonishing examples of outstanding entrepreneurship demonstrate exactly what can be accomplished if we work tirelessly and refuse to give up on our dreams.

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