100 years ago today Roald Dahl was born, and here is one quote from one of his characters that you entrepreneurs may want to take to bed, and think about, and maybe even act upon.
The quote is from Matilda:
"Never do anything by halves if you want to get away with it. Be outrageous. Go the whole hog. Make sure everything you do is so completely crazy it's unbelievable...”
It often seems that the really successful people are those who throw caution to the wind, they stick their necks out and are bold.
It’s the old story of how you can get two people saying the same thing. One gets ignored, the other elicits cries of ‘brilliant’. It depends on how bold they are when they speak.
But was Matilda really right?
Surely you need to back up boldness with substance.
Maybe one of the boldest businessmen today is Elon Musk. Not for him, cautious business models, and modest promises; the success of Tesla depends on Musk being able to raise money to fund his ambitions for the company. If investors decide they don’t like what they hear, it is difficult to imagine how the company can survive. But if he can pull it off, he may change the world. One thing is for sure, it won’t happen unless Musk continues to be bold, both in his statements and in his plans.
Besides, for all the talk, Musk seems to know a thing or two. When he started talking about Hyperloop, a pod that travel in a partial vacuum and can reach speeds of around 700 miles per hour, it seemed like an idea out of a science fiction book, but at least some serious people think it can be done, and transforming public transport in the process.
Boldness can take you so far, but beyond that, you need substance too.
Matilda’s father once told her “I'm right and you're wrong, I'm big and you're small, and there's nothing you can do about it.” In reality, you need evidence, facts and research, without that you are nothing but a blusterer.