In one of Jack Ma’s speeches in 2017, he mentioned that a successful entrepreneur must be an expert knowing what the people want and what he and his company can do for them. Jack ma said that the bigger the problems you have solved for the community, the bigger your chances are, and more successful you would be. This article is a translation of Jack Ma’s speech in early 2017.
“I often hear that young businessmen and young entrepreneurs complain that they don’t have the same opportunities as Li Ka-shing and Guo Henian. To which I would like to say the following: they didn’t have the opportunities you have today when they were entrepreneurs. What is an entrepreneur? My understanding is that entrepreneurs are a combination of social scientists and artists. You have to be a social scientist because you must understand people, human behaviour and human needs, and you have to be willing to change yourself. Entrepreneurs must also be very artistic as this is necessary when organising a team. My success is not the result of my smartness but I know some great people and know how to work with others. Those great people and I understand the needs of society and people. So if you want your company to be more successful, you have to show society what problems you can solve for the community. The bigger the problems you have solved for the community, the bigger your chances are, and the more successful you will be.
If you solve the problems for your village, you’ll have a village-based company. If you solve the problems for your state, it is a state company. If you solve the problems for the country, you are a national business. The responsibility depends on your problems. How will entrepreneurs change? Entrepreneurs will be internetized and become Internet entrepreneurs. I believe that at least 90% of business will be done online in the next two or three decades. If you do not know how to do business online, you will stay a small business and maybe be confined to a local village as your business scale will depend on how far you can reach. But today you can easily cross countries and states and reach almost every corner of the world. You will get to know and respect other cultures and create value for others.
The world will not belong to Internet companies but to those companies who can better utilise the Internet in the next three decades. This is our chance. You don't need to understand the technology, but you have to know how to use it, and how to use it better. I will not try to be an engineer. Until now I still don't understand how a computer works, but that is not going to be a problem as long as you and I know how to use it, where to find people who know it and who will help us if we have difficulties.
I used to be a product tester in a small company and I learned that most of the world's small companies fear high-tech, they even run away when hearing the word “high tech”. I don’t know high-tech, but I can be a product tester. When the tech team completes a product, I’ll try it. If I don’t know how to use it - I guess 80% of people may have the same problem - I will just throw it away as rubbish. If I can use it, I believe it is a good product, where I don't need to manually adjust anything. I just want things to be simple so that you can easily get what you want.”
To read Jack Ma’s thoughts in another six topics of his speech, you can click the titles below:
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