Jack Ma - The Greatest Business Coach, Biography and Rules for Success

Who is Jack Ma?

Jack Ma is a Chinese businessman, billionaire and a true motivator. His company Alibaba is valued for Billions of dollars. Once, he has also been the richest man of China.
It is not easy to become this wealthy. Infact Jack Ma has struggled a lot.

Jack Ma's Failures

  1. Jack Ma failed twice before entrance for admission in city university
  2. After his graduation, Jack Ma applied for different jobs like in police, KFC and even for a professor at Harvard. Every time he got rejected only
These are just a glimpse of Jack Ma's struggles, there is a whole list of his other struggles.
When you are subjected to this amount of failure regularly, you kind of get used to it. You learn to never give up

- Jack Ma

Jack Ma

Early Life of Jack Ma

Jack Ma was born on October 15, 1964, in Hangzhou, China. His parents were local musicians. There were 6 people in his family who shared 7 dollars per month.

It was the time when president Nixon visited China in 1972 and shared his thoughts on tourist opportunities that China have. Hangzhou was one of the capitals to be open for tourist visitors. Young Jack wanted to learn English, so he becomes guide for American visitors.

In 1988, Jack Ma graduated from the Hangzhou Normal University and became a teacher in a local university. Jack remained a teacher for the next 6 years. In 1994, Jack Ma went to America. There he helped a Chinese business to recover their payment. 

Jack Ma came to know about the internet in 1995, when he was around 30 years old. He looked at the vast opportunity that internet posses. So in 1995, Jack Ma found the company chinapages.com, which would help the Chinese people to come online. He went door to door for promoting his new business. But got a little success there.

From 1998 to 1999, Jack Ma worked for the Chinese government, in the organisation of E-commerce and foreign trade.

Now Jack Ma had 2 options. One to continue his job and another to listen to his heart, and start his own business, despite the knowledge of communist regime in China.
Don't keep these 3 things with yourself. Money, power and glory. The more you give it to others, the more you become successful

- Jack Ma

The second option would be very difficult to accomplish. But Jack Ma chose the second option, he quit his job and started alibaba.com with 17 other people in his apartment. Jack Ma did not know how to code. Only 3 people in his group knew something about computers. But Jack's vision was great and that made him the CEO of Alibaba.

What is Alibaba?

Alibaba helps small businesses to become online. How? There are a number of registered wholesalers on Alibaba. And suppose, you are a retailer, and you want to buy products to sell yourself. You would go to alibaba.com and place your order. You will make your payment through Alipay. You will receive your order through AliExpress. Thus Alibaba makes money through some commission at each step.

Alibaba was started with an initial investment from Goldman Sachs (5 million dollars), and SoftBank (20 million dollars). There is an interesting story behind SoftBank's investment.

SoftBank's CEO Masayoshi went for an event where the small business executive would pitch their business idea to get funding. Every CEO was well prepared. After every CEO has presented his/her idea, Jack Ma went on stage. He didn't prepare his pitch. He just told about his business. After listening about Jack's incredible business idea, Masayoshi stood up and instantly offered the investment of 40 million dollars in Alibaba. But Jack Ma refused it and told him "we only need 20 million dollars at this time".

How Alibaba gained the trust of people?

Jack Ma came to know about his business potential when an incident took place with him in a restaurant. A person volunteered to pay Jack Ma's bill by telling him "I know you. You are Jack Ma. I know that you do not make much money. But, through your business, I am able to make more profit. So let me pay your bill"
When you have 1 million dollars, that's your money. When you have 10 million dollars, maybe the problem comes. But, when you have 100 million dollars, that's not your money. That is the trust that people give to you, that they believe you can use their money better

eBay vs TaoBao 

Since 2001, Jack Ma's best team was working  secretly to develop TaoBao. eBay happened to be the major player of e-commerce then. In 2003, Jack Ma launched TaoBao which provided a new feature of free payment gateway system. Till then there was no free payment gateway available. People liked this new feature of TaoBao.

TaoBao grew rapidly and eBay proposed to purchase it. Jack Ma refused the offer. Instead, he took an investment of 1 billion dollars from yahoo, the search engine company. He did this because he wanted diversity in his business and not just eCommerce.
For our company, the customer comes first, employees second and investors in third place
Alibaba and it's joint ventures gained so much trust from the people. When Alibaba went public in New York stack exchange in 2014, people invested a total of 25 billion dollars to buy its shares. This made Jack Ma richer than Mark Zuckerberg, Larry Page etc. At that time Jack Ma remarked, "it is not money that we got today, it is people's trust that we won".

Some facts about Alibaba and Jack Ma

  1. Around 20 million small business are using Alibaba platform today, 60% of these business were kind of never existed before Alibaba
  2. Alibaba recorded sales of worth 1 billion dollars on singles day in 2018. 
  3. Alibaba has its operations in more than 200 countries now.
  4. Jack Ma stepped down from the position of CEO in 2019. 
  5. Jack Ma once came into the news on his statement of 996 work. It means Jack Ma wanted his employees to work from 9 am to 9 pm, 6 days a week.

Jack Ma Rules of Success

  1. When we hire a candidate, we look if the candidate is smarter than us. 
  2. My job as a CEO is to ensure that the smartest people are working together and helping each other
  3. Never complain about the things going wrong. The people who only complain about things can never become great. What should you do? Bring solutions to the table not problems. Accept the problem as a challenge and find the opportunity in every challenge  Instead, you should find an opportunity within complaints and problems. If you can provide solutions to the people's problems then you will become successful
  4. My vision was always to do something that would change China. Initially, when I told people about Alibaba, everyone thought that I was crazy... If you believe what you are doing is right then don't give up doing that
  5. Jack Ma did not act like other CEOs. His way of talking to people and his body never reflected the copy of other CEOs. He always remained himself, talking to people just like that. Jack Ma is the perfect example of simple living and high thinking
  6. You lose only when you give up
  7. If you see a difficulty to accomplish something, go ahead and try yourself. You can never learn swimming until you get into the water yourself
  8. When you are 20-30 years old, work for a good boss for at least 3 years, learn from him. When you are 30-40 years old, if you want to try something of your own, try then. When you are 40-50 years old, do something you are really good at, don't start a new thing now. When you are 50-60 years old, enable young people to be better than you. When you are 60-70 years old, take good care of your grandchildren, enjoy your life.
  9. Education needs to be changed. The way we are teaching our kids is wrong. A machine can do a better job. Education needs to value-based so that a machine can never compete
  10. Keep your employees happy. If employees are happy then your customers will be happy
I expect that the story of Jack Ma has inspired you. And you are going to follow his path, that will lead you towards success.

Thank you
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