Michael started the Dell empire with $1000.00 and an innovative business idea: to sell directly to the customer, rather than going through a third party to sell his products. Executing this dream led him to becoming one of the wealthiest in the world and a huge helping hand to world causes too.
Born: February 23, 1965 Houston, Texas, United States
Zodiac Sign: Libra
Net Worth: $14 Billion (estimated)
Successful For: Business Magnate, Investor, CEO
“A bunch of guys sitting around trying to decide what we want to have done with our money after we’re dead, that’s not a very good idea. Forget all that. We’re going to do this while we’re still here and get it right.”
Keys to Success:
- FOLLOW YOUR DREAMS ONLY: Michael Dell put his time into what he knew he loved, not what others wanted him to do. His parents even tried to force him into med school; however he kept at his dream as he would eventually drop out of school to run the business of his dreams. “So they were, they were very, very upset with me. You know, “Michael, you’ve got to get your priorities straight.” Looking back hindsight, it was probably a very tough decision to make, but going after what interested him and gave him a burning desire was the right decision nonetheless. And it was very apparent this was his passion as he bought the Apple 2, just to take it apart and see how it worked.
- EXPAND OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONES: He has learned that in order to succeed you need to come out of your comfort zones. Michael Dell was apparently a very shy person that stayed to himself; however he adjusted and grew far out of his shell. It is the willingness to grow and change that contributes to his huge success. Risk is not always comfortable or easy either, and Michael really had to push past the norms of being in his young 20′s and pursuing business while his peers were studying for school and going to parties. “I had to give it a full go and see what happened.”
- WITHOUT EXECUTION YOUR DREAMS WILL NOT MOVE: Michael had a great idea, but unlike many people, he made it happen. When he had his grand idea of selling cheaper computers directly to the customers, he did not use a lack of resources as an excuse to not get started; rather he began with $1000 in his pocket and he didn’t stall for a minute, he pursued and acted quickly when he felt intuition knocking at his door. He also applied the fact that people don’t have enough money to his business model, as Dell was blowing away competition by offering much cheaper prices.
“It’s through curiosity and looking at opportunities in new ways that we’ve always mapped our path at Dell. There’s always an opportunity to make a difference.”
Did You Know?
While attending high school, Michael, being a keener at saving and making money, had earned about $18,000 in one year by investing his money in stocks. His government economics teacher was particularly upset with him because during an in class assignment to fill out tax returns, she was rather shocked with what his figures showed saying “Well this can’t be right. You made more money than I did!”
Road to Success:
This multi billionaire claims he was not a very high achieving student but rather a kid who did well in what he enjoyed. He found science and business very interesting, being his mother was a stock broker and his father was a doctor.
Born To Be An Entrepreneur:
He states there was always interesting conversations around the household in which he learned a lot from, whether it was about the economy or the stock market. He even enjoyed reading business books quite often and learning the stock market. Michael Dell was known to be very private and shy as he has come out of his shell over the years. In a bid to enter business early, he applied to take a high school equivalency exam at age 8. In his early teens he invested his money from part-time jobs such as washing dishes at a restaurant and finding new customers for newspaper subscriptions for the Houston Post and put it in to stocks and investing in precious metals. “And then I got a kind of interesting job. I was working at a stamp and coin store. And one of my jobs was — when people would come and they wanted to sell their rings or silver — I would assess the metal and calculate what it was really worth and then try to negotiate with them, to buy it at a good price.”
Dell The Company Is Found:
As just a high school student Michael made an impressive $18,000 in only a year. His parents wanted him to pursue a career in medicine but Dell took special interest in the rise of computers and had a passion for gadgetry. Michael Dell purchased an Apple computer at the age of 15 and enjoyed taking it apart to see how it worked. He found his fascinating idea of selling computers directly to his customers while attending college. Michael claims he had every intention of going to school and he just considered it a really fun hobby that served as extra income to buy stereo’s and fun 18/19 year old stuff. He initially made this extra money from enhancing computers and selling upgrade kits. However, Michael’s parents were adamant that he focus on his college studies “My father’s a doctor, my brother’s a doctor, lots of doctors in the family, so I was going to be a doctor. So they were, they were very, very upset with me. You know, “Michael, you’ve got to get your priorities straight.” Dell first began building and selling computers for people he knew at college, although he said he had to hide this whole growing operation from his parents, even when they would come visit. Until eventually the hiding was over when too many computer parts were laying all around his dorm room, and he had a very long talk with his parents.
Taking Dell Globally:
Michael would eventually drop out as he progressed into selling outside of school and needed to put his full attention into his business. He made very quick decisions that helped expand the in-demand business at light speed, whether it was hiring engineers while the company was just progressing, or expanding to the United Kingdom after just 3 years of being launched and having very little capital. These crucial and risky moves served huge in the long run, and short for that matter. He made $6 million in sales in just his first year which would be invested right back into the business which helped the Dell company become a global empire. Michael, who was the CEO and of course owner, became a billionaire 16 years later through his massive contribution to his niche of the revolution of computers.
“You don’t have to be a genius or a visionary or even a college graduate to be successful. You just need a framework and a dream.”
Michael Dell is a very successful entrepreneur being the chairman of the board of directors, CEO, and the man responsible for creating the innovative company called Dell. He was the youngest CEO ever to make the fortune 500 at the young age of only 27. He is also the author of his own book Direct from Dell where he explains his rise to success with Dell and how his strategies are a backbone for other companies. Michael became one of the wealthiest people in the world with a 4th place listing on the Forbes rich Americans list in 2005. It has also been reported that his family home is the 15th largest house in the world.
Charities & Good Deeds:
Michael Dell, along with his great wealth has done a lot of philanthropic work and activities where he has started the Michael and Susan Dell foundation. The organization is dedicated to changing the lives of children in the United States of America and internationally. The foundation gives out millions to causes and people like the tsunami victims in southern Asia. In 2006, the foundation donated $50 million to the University of Texas.
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