Stephen Hawking was a wise man. He had a unique point of view towards life. The point of view of someone who was once doomed and thrived in adversity. The point of view of an individual for whom the odds were against, but managed to overcome those odds anyways in spectacular fashion by becoming one of the most relevant physicist of modern history.
Even though he was a physicist, Hawkings was known for giving valuable advice for almost any aspect of life that comes to your mind. Some of them apply to businesses.
1. “Remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet”
Stephen Hawking gave that advice to his three children Lucy, Robert and Tim. That piece of advice tells us about the need to look further, every time, in every way possible. That applies to your own life and your business is part of it. If you have a goal, think big. If you look for inspiration, look at the example of the people who have done best. If you want to conquer your industry, go beyond your boundaries.
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2. “Work gives you meaning and purpose and life is empty without it”
Work hard. Work for your goals, for your dreams. Make sure your work fullfils you. Make sure your work is full of purpose and meaning. Make sure your business was not only created to increase your earnings but to change peoples lives as well by helping others find solutions to their problems.
3. “However bad life may seem, there is always something you can do, and succeed at. While there’s life, there is hope"
There are going to be moments in your business life-cycle in which the outlook will look ominous. No matter how hard the situation is looking, remember that there's always a solution. Sometimes, achieving your goal will take a mix of planning, luck and patience, but never give up. In the end, "While there's life, there is hope".
4. “Life would be tragic if it weren’t funny"
When Hawking was asked on how he kept his spirits up in spite of his disability, that was his answer. So how can you make your business a better place? How can you ensure that working at your place is an experience everybody will find pleasing? How will you keep your employees in happy, productive and efficient, and motivated to do their very best? By smiling, having fun and never taking anything too seriously.
5. "Embrace complexity"
For Hawking, the twenty-first century is going to be the "century of complexity". That remark probably holds more useful advice for businesses: statistics and data visualization are essential for businesses to thrive. If you haven't started, it's time for you to embrace the complexity of a world full of data at your disposal to make the best decisions possible.