Stepping Back. US MicroLending with Kiva: Raising Capital + Raising You

Ruth Binger

By Ruth Binger

When the usual suspects are rounded up to determine the reason for the decrease in start-ups and/or business failures in 2009/2010, in this author’s view, some blame must be placed on the business owner’s own failure to have introduced himself to his “better self” in the words of Napoleon Hill.

Bob Calcaterra recently noted this problem in the August 2010 Missouri Venture Forum Newsletter.

In Ralph Waldo Emerson’s essay “Experience,” he posits that all of us have an iron wire which he calls “Temperament” upon which the seeds of the individual are strung. He further argues in his essay “Compensation” that “strength grows out of our weakness and that indignation which arms itself with secret forces does not awaken until we are pricked and stung and sorely assailed.”

This veto or limitation power of adversity is the theme in the Summer 2010 Wilson Quarterly article “What Next for the Start- Up Nation” where the author speculates as to what attributes Israel start-up founders have that create so many successful start ups (persistence, mission critical focus, etc.) .

In twenty-seven years of counseling small businesses, I have found that the business owners who are the most successful are self disciplined, incredibly focused, hungry and have an iron will.

When one reviews the evidence of successful start-ups, one sees so many first and second generation Americans who will not give up. So, for those of you with the iron will or who want to develop that iron will by apprenticing at the bottom or “start where you are and build”, please check out the Microlending article in the New York Times. You will be introduced to, who has just started a pilot program lending to business owners in the United States. Remember, Microsoft was created in 1975, at the end of the first great recession since the Depression.

Who knows what will happen, you may become a Bill Gates.

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