While I am optimistic, I am somewhat distressed by the state part of our world is in today. I am distressed by two simple facts…
First, while we have prosperity and opulence in many parts of our world–49,000 humans, people just like you and me, die each and every day from starvation and preventable diseases like malaria, tuberculosis, AIDS, and diarrhea. Second, while we live in comfort, 2.7 billion humans live on under $2 per day.
These numbers are Purchase Power Parity (PPP) adjusted–meaning that 42% of the humans in our world must live a full day on the same $2 that you and I would use to buy half a latte at Starbucks. These facts come from the World Bank and the World Health Organization, respectively.
When I learned these facts in Economics class at Manatee High School at age 17 from an inspirational teacher Robert Fletcher, I couldn’t ever afterwards pretend as if “I didn’t know.”
I’ve read a lot over the past six years about the topic of human poverty, global politics, and economics–inspirational books like The End of Poverty, The White Man’s Burden, How to Change the World, The Bottom Billion, Globalization and Its Discontents, The Lexus & The Olive Tree, The Road to Serfdom, Atlas Shrugged, Confessions of an Economic Hitman, The Secret History of The American Empire, The Fortune at The Bottom of the Pyramid, and The Mystery of Capital.
I’ve come to a conclusion…
I want to dedicate the rest of my life to reduce poverty and hunger and increase access to education, healthcare, technology, and entrepreneurial opportunity here at home in North Carolina and the U.S. as well as in developing countries. This is not charity–this is humanity. We will never have a secure world when half of our brothers and sisters do not have access to basic human needs like shelter, food, primary education, and preventative medicine.
Personally, I believe entrepreneurship is an essential part of the solution–commercial entrepreneurship, public sector entrepreneurship, and social entrepreneurship.
But being an entrepreneur is NOT easy. The knowledge of how to build a successful organization isn’t easily learned.
Building a new ’start-up’ of any type whether a non-profit or for-profit is definitely not simple. I’m only 23 and I feel sometimes like I have developed the scar tissue of a 45 year-old building iContact to $10 million in annual sales.
It’s truly been an absolute bliss to come in every morning and know that I’ve played a big role in creating 85 jobs. I get so much energy from being around our team. Being an entrepreneur is truly my passion. I love it, but the experience is what I can only imagine raising a real child would be like. What one has to sacrifice, to give, to devote to the effort is immense. I never thought it would be THIS hard when I started six years ago.
What I can say is that I’ve learned so much more than I could have ever imagined.
I want to share everything I’ve learned about business, about opportunity evaluation, about raising venture capital, about product development, about marketing, about sales, about finance, about managing people, about creating systems with as many entrepreneurs and aspiring entrepreneurs as I possibly can–and not just commercial entrepreneurs, but social entrepreneurs, corporate entrepreneurs, and public service entrepreneurs in every part of our world.
Writing Zero to One Million for me is part of spreading a message of entrepreneurial possibility and global social change.
I believe that every person in this world should have access to the knowledge of how to be an entrepreneur.
I believe that anyone in this world should be able to become a successful business, social, or public service entrepreneur–if they set their mind to it and have the right tools.
I also believe that IF the knowledge was spread far enough and the financial structures existed in our global society for anyone regardless of location or class to become a successful entrepreneur–our world would have the entrepreneurial talent at the grassroots level to address the biggest challenges of our generation–how to eliminate extreme poverty, get food to the hungry, medicines to the sick, and microcredit financial resources to the ambitious youth of our generation–so that they can productively solve the needs of humanity with their talents, not fight in political or religious wars driven by a lack of hope.Thank you very, very much for your help and assistance. I sincerely appreciate your help and look forward to working with you for many decades to change the world together.
Please let me know if you have any questions or if I can be of any assistance whatsoever to you now or in the future.
Love, hope, peace, prosperity…
“Great things are not done by impulse, but by a series of small things brought together.” – Vincent Van Gogh
February 4th 2008 | Posted by admin
This entry was posted on Monday, February 4th, 2008 at 2:45 pm and is filed under Our Blog, Social Entrepreneurship. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.