If we’re being honest I think many of us would say that, when we hear the latest about what billionaire has done in the news, we are a bit jealous and we think that there must have been some ‘short cut’ that they took to becoming so wealthy. Indeed it seems impossible to many that anyone could start from nothing and acquire such enormous wealth, and many think that, like Donald Trump, all of the money was given to said person by his rich parents (it was in Trump’s case).
For billionaire John Paul DeJoria however the fact is that he came from a poor family in Echo Park, California and nothing was ever given to him. The co-founder of Paul Mitchell Systems, DeJoria started working when he was only a boy of 9 years old.
Indeed DeJoria started the company that made him a billionaire with just $700.00 in 1980, living out of his car while he and co-founder Paul Mitchell traveled around Los Angeles every single day presenting their new products to salons all over the city. The financial climate was quite chilly back then too with inflation at 12.5% and interest rates at 17%. Unemployment was over 10% at the time as well but DeJoria remained positive and, in time, his company as well as others he founded began to pay off and pay off handsomely.
The lesson that Mr. DeJoria would like to impart on Americans today is that there is no job that should be too low that someone refuses it. He once worked as a janitor and knows that, no matter the work, getting a real paycheck for honest work is the key to success, today or at any time.
Now while many are thinking ‘sure, this guy can say that because he has more money than G-d’, but the truth is that DeJoria worked his freaking butt off to get where he is today. Because his family had no money he wasn’t able to go to college and, in the beginning of his work life, he was fired from several jobs. But he persevered and today is one of the wealthiest men on the planet because of it.
That’s a really good lesson for all of us. The simple fact is that today many people feel a sense of entitlement, they somehow deserve more than what they have actually worked for. For billionaire business owner John Paul DeJoria there never was that feeling, only a deep-seated desire to succeed no matter what. I think he made his point.