Some people know what they want to do from an early age and focus on it relentlessly.
Others are driven enough to reinvent themselves, changing careers and industries, and continuously push until they find the thing that works.
Billionaire Mark Cuban, for example, faced hardship when he first started, writing in “How To Win At The Sport Of Business” that “when I got to Dallas, I was struggling — sleeping on the floor with six guys in a three-bedroom apartment.” On the other hand, Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz was a Xerox salesman dreaming of good coffee.
As a reminder that the path to success is not always linear, we’ve highlighted what Richard Branson, Arianna Huffington, and 19 other fascinating and successful people were doing at age 25.
Martha Stewart was a stockbroker for the firm of Monness, Williams, and Sidel, the original Oppenheimer & Co.
Before her name was known in every American household, Martha Stewart worked on Wall Street for five years as a stockbroker. Before that, she was a model, booking clients from Unilever to Chanel.
“There were very few women at the time on Wall Street … and people talked about this glass ceiling, which I never even thought about,” Stewart said in an interview for PBS’s MAKERS series. "I never considered myself unequal, and I think I got a very good education being a stockbroker.“
In 1972, Stewart left Wall Street to be a stay-at-home mom. A year later, she started a catering business.
Mark Cuban was a bartender in Dallas.
At age 25, Cuban had graduated from Indiana University and had moved to Dallas. He started out as a bartender, then a salesperson for a PC software retailer. He actually got fired because he wanted to go close a deal rather than open a store in the morning. That helped inspire him to open his first business, MicroSolutions.
“When I got to Dallas, I was struggling — sleeping on the floor with six guys in a three-bedroom apartment,” Cuban writes in his book “How to Win at the Sport of Business.” “I used to drive around, look at the big houses, and imagine what it would be like to live there and use that as motivation.”
Arianna Huffington was traveling to music festivals around the world for the BBC with her boyfriend at the time.
Before she was Arianna Huffington, she was Arianna Stassinopolous and at the age of 21, she met the famed British Journalist Henry Bernard Levin while on a panel for a quiz show.
The two entered into a relationship and he became her mentor while she wrote the book "The Female Woman” attacking the women’s liberation movement. The book was published when she was 23.
For the next few years, Huffington traveled to music festivals around the world with Levin as he wrote for the BBC. Her relationship with Levin eventually ended because he did not want to marry or have children. Huffington moved to New York City at the age of 30. That year, her biography of Maria Callas was published, which she dedicated to Levin.
She told William Skidelsky at The Observer:
“[Levin] was my mentor. Our second date was to see ‘The Mastersingers' at Covent Garden. Our first trip abroad was to Bayreuth to see 'Wagner's Ring.’” See the rest of the story at Business Insider
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