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The Magic of Ten-Percenters

You know those people. You know, those people you meet that immediately show a lot of interest in what you’re doing. Those people who truly listen, are quick to support your efforts, and follow through on what they said they would do. If you’re like me, you initially see those people as a little crazy and a little special. After all, there’s a little bit of crazy in all 10-percenters. Okay – perhaps a lot of crazy.


It’s not logical for someone to stay up until 4:00 AM to ideate on your next business idea. It’s not logical for someone to find a way to connect you with senior leaders without your prompting. It’s not always immediately rational for a 10-percenter to send you the hand-written note or invite you along for a key networking dinner, but that’s exactly what they do. Time and time again.


10-percenters are the straw that stirs the drink of the entrepreneurial ecosystem. Ninety percent of the people you meet will say nice things and choose to wish you well. Thank goodness for the 90%. They are the ones that allow the 10-percenters to stand out and who make it easy for you to figure out whom you should invest your time with.


Linda Rosenfeld, CEO of Endeavor, one of the largest and most influential entrepreneurial organizations in the world, recently wrote a book titled Crazy is a Compliment. It’s a very appropriate title. You see, being a successful entrepreneur starts with a heartfelt desire to help people. To be able to successfully execute on that desire requires that you do things that may not always be rational. The desire to be rich fades over time, but the desire to solve for someone refuses to wilt under pressure. Crazy is the belief that you can drive change and solve problems that are disproportionally bigger than what you should be able to solve. 10-percenters allow us to do that.


People that care about helping others are the most successful.


Think about that for a minute.