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Sir Isaac Newton – Insights for Entrepreneurs

Posted November 2nd, 2012 by bbsadmin & filed under General Business, Motivation.

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Sir Isaac Newton was a creative thinker and a brilliant scientist, but he can also provide some great insights for entrepreneurs:

1. Combined his own ideas with the ideas of the great thinkers of the time

Sir Isaac Newton was interested in the recent works of Galileo. Galileo had proven that the planets revolved around the sun. Sir Isaac Newton expanded upon the current knowledge of the time and published, along with his friend Edmond Halley, the ‘Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica’ which explained the effects of gravity in the universe. His contributions to math and physics added to the foundation of those who came before him. Any good business person should follow this example and utilize the expertise of our predecessors and colleagues. It is very important to learn from your own mistakes as a business person, but intelligent business people learn from the mistakes of others as well. They find people who have been successful and learn what those people did to reach success. Intelligent business people don’t just stop there, they go a step beyond the last stepping stone.

2. Pursue your own ambitions with the direction of those who went before him

Though Sir Isaac Newton was raised in farming. He wanted to find explanations of how the universe operated. He realized he needed to study mathematics in order to support his findings. Had he decided not to pursue his interests and remained on the farm, things would have turned out differently. Entrepreneurs need to pursue their own passions and ambitions and not feel pressured to follow the crowd. Because you will be spending a good portion of your life working, it important to have a personal passion for what you do.

3. Be Patient but Persistent.

Newton once said, “If I have done the public any service, it is due to my patient thought.” Newton is one of the first scientists that come to mind when we think of those who have given the greatest contributions to science. What if he didn’t have the patience to really think things through? Similarly, how much more substantial things could we accomplish if we had the patience to let our thoughts form completely. Many say that inspiration comes on the go. However, inspiration needs time in order to fully develop into a solid idea. Newton’s laws have withstood the tests of time and are still used today. For a business to withstand the tests of time, it requires quiet moments with which to patiently think of the variables in the business and understand the laws that govern the industry. This will allow for equations of the actions and interaction of the business to form completely.

4. Breaking things down into simple components

The complexity of the universe can be explained by small and simple principles. Newton’s first law of motion is simply that if no net force is exerted upon an object, be it moving in a specific direction at a constant speed or at rest, then its velocity will remain constant. Or in other words, if something is not moving, it will not increase in speed in any direction unless something interacts with it and causes it to do so. Principles, such as this one build on other simple principles to explain the bigger picture of the workings of the universe. Similarly, a business can be broken down into smaller and simpler components. In fact doing so can help discover what is working, what is not working and what is irrelevant to the business.

5. An object remains motionless until acted upon by an outside force

Just as a soccer ball does not move until someone kicks it, a business will not move until it is acted upon. Having the structure, appearance and the million dollar idea are not enough to ensure success. Workers act upon these factors to push the business forward. We also must be very aware that every action we take will create a reaction by our competitors, our customers, our suppliers and others. Newton had it right – for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.

Notable Quotes

“If I have been able to see further, it was only because I stood on the shoulders of giants.”

“I know not what I appear to the world, but to myself I seem to have been only like a boy playing on the sea-shore, and diverting myself in now and then finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell, whilest the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me.”

“Truth is ever to be found in the simplicity, and not in the multiplicity and confusion of things.”