Not all entrepreneurs wait until they have years of experience to start out on their own. Many have the confidence in their abilities and ideas to get an early start. The seven entrepreneurs below did just that. They either dropped out of school and found success quickly, or did so shortly after graduation.
1. Matt Mullenweg – WordPress
In 2003 Matt Mullenweg was a 19 year old freshman at the University of Houston. This was also the year he co founded WordPress. He’s also the cofounder of the Global Multimedia Protocols Group. That’s only the beginning. He also spent time at C-Net.
Thanks to these and other ventures, Mullenweg is now worth over 40 million dollars. He supports several charitable foundations including The Innocence Project and efforts to provide clean and safe drinking water to emerging nations.
2. Jen Rubio And Steph Korey – Away
Steph Korey was busy working on her advanced degree at Columbia university when her friend Jen Rubio approached her with an idea for a travel business. Rubio had been traveling when her suitcase failed in the middle of a Zurich airport. She reached out to friends via social media for recommendations on replacements. What she found was that nobody really had any. Apparently there simply weren’t suitcases that millennials found to be functional and affordable.
Jen got Steph on board and they launched Away, a luggage company dedicated to selling suitcases and other items directly to consumers. Since it was formed in 2015, they’ve raised 31 million dollars in capital and hired 66 employees. According to Rubio, “We were very lucky. My background is in branding and creative. Steph’s background is in product and supply chain and operations. Between us, we had a lot of things covered. We didn’t have to go outside for a lot of those things for a long time.”
3. Mark Zuckerberg – Facebook
Likely the most well known name on this list, Zuckerberg is still worth mentioning as an example of someone who decided to stop procrastinating and pursue their goals. Mark Zuckerberg started Facebook in 2004 while he was a student at Harvard. He and his friends created the social media platform to help other Harvard students connect with one another. Then, they began distributing the platform to other colleges and universities.
Zuckerberg left Harvard as a sophomore to continue building his enterprise. By the time he was 22, he became a millionaire. Since then, in spite of having many challengers, Facebook remains the premier social media platform. That, along with other platforms also owned by Facebook, including Instagram, show no sign of slowed growth.
“Don’t let anyone tell you to change who you are.” – Mark Zuckerberg
4. Isa Watson – Envested
Isa Watson was working at Pfizer and well-entrenched in an MBA program at MIT Sloan when her father was tragically killed in a car accident. When she returned to her home city of Chapel Hill, her life began to take a definitive turn. Instead of following her dreams to head to Silicon Valley, she decided to stay in Chapel Hill and start a business with the goal of getting millennials to invest in local charitable initiatives.
To accomplish her goal, Watson along with other collaborators created Envested. This is, in essence a platform for local charities. Not for profits post profiles, hold fundraising challenges, and tell their stories. At the same time, givers can sign up, learn more about local charities, and donate. Envested has even gamified charitable giving a bit with friends being able to see what one another is donating. Envested has raised 760K in funding.
5. Kyle Smitley – Barley And Birch
Kyle Smitley founded Barley and Birch in 2008. By 2009, the company had $400K in projected revenue. Her business, which produces an organic clothing line for children, quickly became popular with celebrities. In fact, both Jessica Alba and Sheryl Crow dressed their children in Barley And Birch. In addition to earning a sizeable profit early on, Smitley also committed to charitable giving.
After covering payroll and paying down a business loan, over half of Barley And Birch’s profits went to charity. What may be most impressive of all is that she launched this successful clothing company while she was a full time law student.
6. Lisa Q Fetterman – Nomiku
Fetterman graduated from journalism school at NYU, and immediately started a series of jobs in fine dining restaurants. She also worked as a journalist for several publications. However, it was a trend she witnessed in fine dining that would inspire her to start her own business. Fetterman noticed that several restaurants were using sous vide, a technique involving cooking meat and vegetables in a relatively low temperature water bath while vacuum sealed with herbs and marinades. Customers loved the result.
She and her future husband built a home sous vide unit on their first date. Then, they began assembling DIY kits for friends. This eventually grew into a business. Lisa Fetterman was only 26 when her business launched. Eventually, they raised $600K to launch Nomiku. The company now produces smart units that can be monitored and controlled via app. Their venture was also funded even further when Fetterman made an appearance on the show ‘Shark Tank’.
“When you’re ready to quit, you are closer than you think.” – Bob Parsons
7. Ryan Williams – Cadre
Williams entrepreneurial drive became clear when he was still a student at Harvard. There, he created technology that could track foreclosures. He and other students then used the information they mined to purchase and flip homes. After graduation, he spent time at Goldman Sachs then Blackstone. However, by the time he was 26 he was ready to strike out on his own again. This time he founded Cadre. This is a platform that allows buyers and sellers to trade in nontraditional assets like they would stocks. He believes that this will create accessibility in areas such as real estate, oil, and energy where it did not previously exist. Currently, real estate is the primary focus of Cadre. Ryan William’s firm has currently earned north of $68 million in funding.
There are so many business ideas that started in college dorm rooms, or emerged shortly after. The entrepreneurs listed here are just a few examples of young people having great ideas and then putting those ideas into action. There are so many more, especially considering that a young entrepreneur can be successful without creating six or seven figures worth of revenue.
What did you learn from the stories of these entrepreneurs? Comment below!
5 Basketball Lessons That Taught Me How To Close Consistent Sales
If you’d like to learn how to close consistent sales in your business so you can make money and be successful, sign up for the free 90-Day Master Class hosted by the founder of Addicted2Success.com, Joel Brown.
Heart pounding. Skin prickling. Unsure of what the outcome will be. Reminding myself to focus and breathe. Sales and competitive basketball have more in common than you’d think. The same tenacity, drive, and commitment that were required for success in my athletic career were the same things I needed to become successful in sales. (more…)
6 Simple but Important Ways for Entrepreneurs to Avoid Burnout
If you’d like to learn how to avoid burning out so you can have a long and successful career, sign up for the free 90-Day Master Class hosted by the founder of Addicted2Success.com, Joel Brown.
Burnout affects professionals in every industry, but it can be particularly problematic being an entrepreneur because when it’s their own business, it can be on their mind all day, every day. It is more than just a sense of being tired. It is the state of being overwhelmed emotionally, mentally and physically, to the point that you need a break in order to keep functioning. (more…)
My Company Went Vegan to Change Our Workplace and the World
At my company, a team lunch involves veggie burgers, coconut curry with tofu, and flavorful vegan falafel. When new employees on-board, we host our welcome lunches at plant-based taquerias and delis. At our off-site gatherings, you might spot employees socializing alongside our pet dogs, cats, or our office chicken, Chickpea. (more…)
How I Helped Businesses Overcome COVID-19 Difficulties Using Facebook Ads And Online Marketing
If you’d like to learn how to maximize your time during the current pandemic so you can improve your productivity, sign up for the free 90-Day Master Class hosted by the founder of Addicted2Success.com, Joel Brown.
By now, it should be clear that COVID-19 has affected businesses worldwide. The global economy has been affected and small to medium sized businesses are really suffering. Beauty salons, retail shops, gyms, and fitness centers are closing down. Business owners are struggling with cash flow issues and have no idea what to do next as most of their walk-in customers stay home. Customers are not allowed to go out due to quarantine in respective countries and some businesses are forced to shut down due to preventive measures set by the government. (more…)
The Four Ps That Influence Effective Negotiation
8 Traits of an Effective Business Leader
Drawing Boundaries is an Essential Skill for Getting What You Want
5 Keys To Success In All Relationships
Why Body and Mind Harmony Are So Necessary for a Successful Life
55 Inspirational Quotes That Will Change Your Life
(Images) 52 Motivational Picture Quotes For An Epic Year Of Success
30 Famous Quotes That Will Inspire Success In You
72 Positive Thinking Quotes For More Inner Strength & Growth
40 Rare Motivational and Inspirational Picture Quotes
3 Prince EA Videos To Change Humanities Path To Greatness
(Video) What Is Success? An Entrepreneurial Story To Inspire You
(Inspirational Video) What If Today You Knew You Were Going To Take Your Last Breath?
How To Make Enough Money From A Blog To Quit Your Job – Kate McKibbin
How Finding Your Passion And Becoming An Entrepreneur Can Lead To Happiness – Chiquita Searle
- Motivation4 weeks ago
11 Success-Boosting Motivational Tips You Need to Hear
- Success Advice3 weeks ago
16 Everyday Habits to Boost Your Creativity
- Life4 weeks ago
5 Stress Management Techniques to Find Bliss in Life
- Life3 weeks ago
5 Essential Tips for Dealing With Uncertainty
- Life3 weeks ago
Read This If You Are Tired Of Finding Excuses For Your Inconsistency
- Life3 weeks ago
8 Ways A Digital Detox Will Increase Your Productivity
- Success Advice4 weeks ago
4 Reasons Why Teachers Make the Best Salespeople
- Success Advice3 weeks ago
How to Plan Your Day for Peak Performance