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The greatest entrepreneurs of all time understood the key to success was spending a few years of their lives doing what others were unwilling to do so they could spend the rest of their lives doing what others cannot. To them, success was more than just hard work, but an inner drive that leads to personal achievement. Most successful entrepreneurs agree that their success goes far beyond money. Here are a few of the most influential entrepreneurs of all time.


Henry Ford

Many people believe Ford invented the automobile. The truth is he was part of a collective group working on building motorized vehicles. However, the cars were built for the ultra-rich, and Ford decided to build cars that every American could afford through mass production. What made Ford great was his drive (pun intended) to make sure his company could produce the best cars at the lowest cost.


Sam Walton

Walton is the founder of Wal-Mart. He chose a market that was out of favor at the time. Using an untested retail distribution system, Walton could deliver goods to his customers faster and at a lower cost than his retail competitors. Using just-in-time inventory control, Walton saved big on his cost margins. However, instead of saving all his profits, Walton passed those savings on to the consumer, which was unheard of at the time.


Bill Gates

There is no mistaking who this man is and what he created. Often referred to as a college “dropout,” Gates chose to leave Harvard for his own computing visions. Gates competitive drive led him to win the internet browser wars of the 90s. Gates also refused to cash out on his browser success and chose instead to spend the money on research and development. Gates vision formed the outline of one of the most powerful computer software companies in existence today.


Ray Kroc

Although everyone in the developed world knows the name McDonald’s, most people do not know who founded the fast-food chain. Ray Kroc is the founder of McDonald’s. During his endless business travels as a kitchen equipment salesman, Kroc ran across a small restaurant owned by two McDonald’s brothers. Kroc envisioned a restaurant with a smaller menu that provided consumers with good food fast. What made Kroc a great entrepreneur was his perseverance and his tireless work ethic. Kroc found the small restaurant at the age of fifty-two, and he worked the rest of his days building the McDonald’s empire.