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And so hold on when there is nothing in you Except the Will which says to them: "Hold on";

Determination and courage are vital qualities to have as you embark on the unknown. The will to hold on is important. And the courage to change and follow through on the transition are equally vital.

If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew To serve your turn long after they are gone,

Use all the available resources to the maximum extent. When things are impossible, stop. But if you are sure that real success is available

make a path towards it, and don't falter simply because things get a little rough.


And lose, and start again at your beginnings And never breath a word about your loss;

Restarting is a continual event with serial entrepreneurs. Some successes and some losses. The important element is learning a lesson from the losses and not repeating the same mistakes. But once you've learned the lesson, little is gained by whining over your loss.

If you can make one heap of all your winnings And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,

Do you have the stomach to follow your convictions? Take everything
you have and put it down on one shot? Your reputation, savings,
assets and resources and put them on the line? There is no secure
safety net. Entreprenuers and their companies live and die on their
own merits. If you can't survive without a subsidy or a support
structure, then when it disappears so will you.

There is risk in every stage of startups. There is risk in everything you do.

Or watch the things you gave your life to broken, And stoop and build 'em up with wornout tools;

Sometimes other people will break your toys. Rarely is it malicious.
However it is always done in a way you never would have allowed. The
reality is you would have broken your toy in a different way.

Relationships, contracts, contacts and companies all are at risk.
Sometimes you will need to play cleanup. Other times you will rebuild.
It can become wearying to constantly build and rebuild infrastructure.
But the organization always needs it.

Be prepared to go over ground again. It's all part of the game.

If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,

The facts can be dangerous. The vision or truth you have, will be spun
in many ways. Others will always take you words and add their own
interpretation.

The press and media will be culpable in this. The folks running those
organizations will have their own agenda and goals. How your words
best fit their needs will be what you see in print.

Anyone who puts too much faith and trust in those press clippings
without doing their own research will be challeneged.

If you can think - and not make thoughts your aim;

There is no such thing as an "idea man." You need to execute, you need to make sure that you are doing more than mental exercises. No investor wants you to just sit around and think. No one will pay you to be "smart." They want you to do something.

If you can meet with triumph and disaster And treat those two imposters just the same;

The highs and lows of entrepreneurship will be magnified as you go on your course. Every step forward will bring cascades of elation. Every setback will foretell the doom of the company.

The imposters of triumph and disaster convey the idea of finality. Rarely will that be true. Only a few events can or should stop a true entrepreneur. Keep going and persevere for the long haul. Not letting temporary conditions trick you into letting up or letting go.

If you can dream - and not make dreams your master;

There is no such thing as the "idea guy". Everyone can have their own
vision. But the future belongs to those who have the energy, ability,
and will to make their projection a reality.

There is nothing to dreaming, there is everything to creating.
But planning and replanning do nothing to move your business forward.
Getting the product "just right" is nothing more than delaying contact
with reality.

Dream big, but make those dreams come true. Dreaming to dream is a
waste of time, talent and resources.

And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise;

This is not school. Being smart or being right is not enough. No business exists in a vacuum. You, your employees, your company all exist In a community. Everyone has an opportunity to occupy a niche in the ecosystem.

Just as no one wishes to deal with a know-it-all, no in wishes to compete with an ideal. Fit in and adjust to your customers needs. Be a good customer and good supplier. Remind them that they are working with people.

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