On March 30th, 2017, SpaceX sent a re-used orbital rocket into space to deliver a payload and successfully recovered the rocket. This represented yet another first for the dynamic company owned by Elon Musk. SpaceX was also the first private company to send a liquid fueled rocket into space, recover a spacecraft, send a craft to the ISS, and send a satellite into geosynchronous orbit. At the same time shares in Musk’s other major brand, Tesla, continue to “rocket” up the stock market, and the cache of his sleek eletric cars hasn’t dimmed since the first one hit the market.
These are all stunning achievements in their own right, but are even more impressive considering that in 2008, Musk looked to be on the verge of being one of Silicon Valley’s poster children for hubris and failure. After successfully selling Paypal, Musk’s first three launch attempts with SpaceX all failed. At the same time, Tesla was draining money and hadn’t delivered a single car yet. Musk was on the brink of insolvency. He had just enough in the bank to push for one more SpaceX rocket launch. The fourth try was a charm, and the rest was history.
If you are a tech dreamer worried that your product won’t work, running behind on your launch, or burning through cash more quickly than you thought possible, remember the story of Musk and so many other entrepreneurs who faced stark odds and overcame them. Musk literally aimed for the stars and made it, and so can you!