8 Business Lessons From Bill Gates

Bill Gates dropped out of Harvard in 1974.

In I975, he co founded Microsoft – a computer software company which would ultimately make Gates the world’s wealthiest male. He earned the money by masterfully guiding the world into the era of networked personal computers.

These days, Gates is no longer the world’s wealthiest, but he is still well worth more than $100 billion.

He has retired from the role of his as Microsoft’s CEO and instead devotes himself full time to philanthropy through the Melinda and Bill Gates Foundation. Below, you will find ten business lessons from the life of Bill Gates.

#1 Get Lucky

Bill Gates Mug Shot

Gates is an extremely smart male, but he has benefitted from more than the fair share of his of dumb luck.

In 1968, Gates was an eighth grader, attending a private middle school in Seattle called Lakeside. The year, the school invested $3,000 in a state-of-the-art computer.

13-year-old Bill joined computer club and was instantly hooked. He and a handful of other enthusiastic pupils racked up hours and hours on the machine, learning how to program through error and trial. It was the start of a journey which would propel Gates to astronomical success.

Here is where the dumb luck comes in: in the 1960s, very few colleges had computer labs and a middle school with a computer was unheard of. The risks of a 13-year-old having access to a computer were pretty much one-in-a-million.

If Lakeside had not purchased a computer, then young Bill might not have discovered the love of his for computer programming and he never would’ve started Microsoft.


#2 Make probably the Most of the Luck You are Given

Bill could have been ridiculously lucky, but most of the computer time in the planet would not have meant anything in case he had not dedicated himself so completely to master it.

Ultimately, it was the thousands of hours of focused labor that made Gates into the kind of computer genius who may begin a successful software company.

We do not always recognize it, but each of us is uniquely lucky. Whether through the natural talents of ours, the circumstances of ours, or perhaps the interactions of ours with others, we are all fortunate to have many paths to success in front of us.

Take in the luck of yours for a moment – and then capitalize on it.


#3 Bite Off More than You Can Chew

Altair Microcomputer

Microsoft’s big break came from Bill Gates telling a fib.

Gates called up a computer company called MITS and told them they’d developed a BASIC interpreter for their microcomputer, the Altair 8800.In 1975, Gates and his childhood programming buddy, Paul Allen, were searching for a way to turn their shared computer hobby into a career.

MITS was interested in watching a demonstration of the program. This presented a problem, since the software Bill had promised did not really exist.

Gates and Allen developed it in a hurry, presented it to MITS, and made the sale. They officially founded Microsoft one month later, in April 1975.

“An entrepreneur tends to bite off a bit more than he is able to chew hoping he will quickly find out how to chew it.”

– Roy Ash, co founder of Litton Industries

By always pushing yourself to deliver a little bit more than you have proven yourself capable of, you will go further, faster in the business ventures of yours.

said, I do not recommend that you follow Bill’s lead and actually lie to the prospective clients of yours.


#4 Quality Control is Crucial

Microsoft’s First Logo

As Microsoft grew, it began hiring more and more programmers.

Gates had taken on the job of CEO and his work did not call for any programming. But that did not stop him from reviewing – and often rewriting – each and every line of code that the company released.

Bill’s keen eye for detail ensured that Microsoft always shipped quality software. It also made sure he never lost track of the staff of his and that he was always intimately familiar with Microsoft’s products.

As your business grows, you will probably have to hire a group of workers. It might be tempting to simply let them work and trust they are doing an excellent job. But your organization has a reputation to protect, so take a page from Gates’ book and keep a close watch on your team’s output.


#5 Groundbreaking Ideas are actually Shown, Not Told

Computer screens once displayed just text.

In the early 80’s, Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer will travel around the country delivering seminars about how graphic interfaces were the operating systems of the future – but nobody believed them.

Computer companies told the Microsoft boys that graphic interfaces will be way too slow and that it will be tough to create the software program for them. They were much less than enthusiastic when Microsoft announced in 1983 it was developing Windows.

Apple Macintosh (1984)

Attitudes changed rapidly in 1984, when Apple launched the Macintosh. It grew to become the first commercially successful computer with a graphical user interface (GUI).

All of a sudden, it was apparent to everyone that the trend of the future involved windows, menus, icons, along with a pointing device. Within a couple of years, the market was flooded with graphical OS software. Notable examples include Deskmate, Workbench, and – of course – Microsoft Windows.

Microsoft manage to release Windows 1.0 in 1985, just a year after the Mac’s success, since they’d really started developing the software 2 years earlier.

whether you have got a groundbreaking idea, do not worry if some other folks do not get it. Start building it now so that you will be prepared when the time is actually perfect.


#6 Persevere

There’s nothing that was overnight.

– Bill Gates

Microsoft Windows three

income diary windows 3Windows 1.0 actually was not much of a success.Windows three

Microsoft released Windows 2.0 2 years later, in 1987, but it did not fare much better. It found moderate success because of software – in particular, Word, Excel, and Aldus Pagemaker.

It was not until 1990, when Microsoft launched Windows 3.0, they found significant success with a graphical operating system. It was a huge moneymaker for the company and it sold more than ten million units in only 2 years.

Microsoft had found the model which would change them into a computer software giant.


#7 Share The Vision of yours with The Team of yours

Just as Gates has seen the creation of the graphical interface years in advance, he predicted the preeminence of the Internet long before the average Joe had a dial up connection.

By May 1995, Gates was so convinced the Internet was Microsoft’s future, that he felt compelled to create a very, very long memo to the business of his. It concluded:

“The Internet is actually a tidal wave. It changes the rules. It’s an amazing opportunity as well as incredible challenge. I’m looking forward to the input of yours on how we are able to enhance the strategy of ours to continue our track record of incredible success.”

Gates took the time to write the memo since he recognized how important it was for his entire team to be on board with Microsoft’s mission. The result: Windows ninety five came bundled with Internet Explorer.


#8 Marketing is Simple

Individuals do not buy a product since it has got a great logo or perhaps a low value. They buy since they have got a problem and they are convinced that the product will solve it.

Probably the most difficult thing about marketing, then, is not coming up with the right tagline. It is providing an excellent answer to an actual issue. When you are able to do that and then demonstrate it, then marketing your solution is actually very simple.

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