In an interview, Jon Favreau, the director of Iron Man 1 and 2 said, “Elon Musk makes no sense — and that’s the reason I know him. When I was trying to bring the character of genius billionaire Tony Stark to the big screen in Iron Man, I had no idea how to make him seem real and Robert Downey Jr. said that they need to sit down with Elon Musk“.
Robert Downey Jr., who plays Tony Stark a.k.a. Iron Man in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, met Elon Musk in 2007. He considers Elon as a contemporary; someone Tony Stark would probably hang out with. He was awestruck by the SpaceX and Tesla infrastructure and facilities. After a personal tour with Musk, he said, “My mind is not easily blown, but this place and this guy were amazing“.
Both Musk and Stark were the types of men, according to Downey, who “had seized an idea to live by and something to dedicate themselves to” and they were not going to waste a moment.
Simply do a Google search of him and I’m sure it will blow your mind. He is the founder, CEO, and lead designer of SpaceX; co-founder, CEO, and product architect of Tesla Inc.; co-founder and CEO of Neuralink; and co-founder of Paypal; co-founder of OpenAI; chairman of SolarCity; and founder of The Boring company (yeah that’s a real company). In December 2016, he was ranked 21st on the Forbes list of The World’s Most Powerful People. As of October 2018, he has a net worth of $22.3 billion and is listed by Forbes as the 54th Richest Person in the World.
Both Tesla and SpaceX are celebrated ventures now and are backed by public and investor support. But there was a time when neither the Wall street nor the social dogma validated the absurd ideas behind these companies. When you start something new, there will be people who give you negative feedback. Elon didn’t pay heed to them. Instead, he was persistent and took the helm to turn the tide. But how?
First of all, one thing that differentiates an ordinary person from an exceptional leader like Elon Musk is his vision. Turning humans into interplanetary species is his stated life’s purpose. These are not some absurd big words. His work on SpaceX, Tesla, and other futuristic enterprises prove that he is a man of action.
And this vision is not just about him but it has a worldview. For Elon, the only thing that makes sense to do is to strive for greater collective enlightenment. He likes to make technologies real that he thinks are important for the future and useful in some sort of way for the whole of mankind. Since it benefits all, people follow him.
During the World Government Summit 2017, Elon said, “There need to be reasons to get up in the morning. There’s got to be things that people find inspiring and make life worth living”. Yes, he envisions to be part of something far deep and meaningful than the regular mundane life. And he is able to paint this picture for others to a point that they are hypnotized to believe in his vision.
For instance, Musk had set out to make an electric car without compromises. He did that. Then he upended the decades of criticisms against electric cars.
Even Larry Page, co-founder, and CEO of Google is a fan of the overarching vision of Musk. According to Page, “Good ideas are always crazy until they’re not. Solve cars, global warming, and make humans multi-planetary are compelling goals, and now Musk has businesses to do that.
This is a big reason why young geniuses from big-shot universities are eager to join his companies. When RDJ visited Tesla and SpaceX plants, he was impressed by the vigor and excitement of the employees. The workers at all of Musk’s companies are aware that they’re trying to achieve monumental things day in and day out, and it keeps them going. Musk wants to conquer the solar system, and, as it stands, there’s just one company where you can work if that sort of mission gets you out of the bed in the morning.
I belive his quotes are enough to boost your morale. Here are some of my favorite quotes of him:
- When something is important enough, you do it even if the odds are not in your favor.
- The first step is to establish that something is possible; then probability will occur.
- I think it is possible for ordinary people to choose to be extraordinary.
- Life is too short for long-term grudges.
- Constantly think about how you could be doing things better and questioning yourself. He calls it Feedback Loop
- People should pursue what they’re passionate about. That will make them happier than pretty much anything else.
- When I was in college, I wanted to be involved in things that would change the world.
- Failure is an option here. If things are not failing, you are not innovating enough.
- Some people don’t like change, but you need to embrace change if the alternative is disaster.
- Really pay attention to negative feedback and solicit it, particularly from friends. … Hardly anyone does that, and it’s incredibly helpful.
- No, Never! I don’t give up, I’d have to be dead or completely incapacitated.
As a Tech Enthusiast, I patronize him and wish he achieves the milestones and beyond. For years, I’ve been following his contributions in the realm of technology. I wrote this article so that you also get to know about the most influential person in this century.
Let me know in the comments whether this article was beneficial to you.