How Do You Measure Success?

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What is success? How do you measure success for your business?

The number of people who work for you?
The number of people who buy from you?
The number of people you impacted?

I remember this story from Bob Proctor’s book “You Were Born Rich”.

In 1923, nine of the richest men in the world met at the Edgewater Beach Hotel in Chicago including:

  • Charles Schwab, President of the world’s largest independent steel company
  • Samuel Insull, President of the world’s largest utility company
  • Howard Hopson, President of the largest gas firm
  • Arthur Cutten, the greatest wheat speculator
  • Richard Whitney, President of the New York Stock Exchange
  • Albert Fall, member of the President’s Cabinet
  • Leon Frazier, President of the Bank of International Settlements
  • Jessie Livermore, the greatest speculator in the Stock Market
  • Ivar Kreuger, head of the company with the most widely distributed securities in the world

Fast forward twenty-five years later…

  • Charles Schwab had died in bankruptcy, having lived on borrowed money for five years before his death.
  • Samuel Insull had died virtually penniless after spending some time as a fugitive from justice.
  • Howard Hopson was insane.
  • Arthur Cutten died overseas, broke.
  • Richard Whitney had spent time in Sing-Sing.
  • Albert Fall was released from prison so he could die at home.
  • Leon Fraizer, Jessie Livermore, and Ivar Kreuger each took their own life

Were these men successful? Absolutely yes if you measure it by their wealth and power (at one point…)

They made a fortune with great revenue and profit. They had many people who worked for them and many people who were their customers. While they were alive they have probably impacted many peoples’ lives.

Was their success?

Or is success something more elusive that can never be measured?

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6 Responses to “How Do You Measure Success?”

  1. […] presents How Do You Measure Success? posted at Edith Yeung.Com: Dream. Think. […]

  2. on 29 Mar 2008 at 9:55 am

    […] presents How Do You Measure Success? posted at Edith Yeung.Com: Dream. Think. […]

  3. on 29 Mar 2008 at 12:27 pm

    Great post! I think most people measure success by their job title or more directly their paycheck. I personally prefer to measure my success by the quality of my life and the relationships I develop. I’m not saying I don’t want to make a lot of money… far from it! I have just found it far easier to grow myself by growing others…

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  6. […] presents How Do You Measure Success? posted at Edith Yeung.Com: Dream. Think. […]


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