Build it and They Will Come – Lessons for an Entrepreneur

I was recently the guest speaker at a class on Entrepreneurship at Seattle Central Community College.  As it was, I also happened to have just seen the movie Field of Dreams with my son (remember that classic?). As I was trying to communicate to this young class the elements of a successful venture, I related to Kevin Costner’s struggle and ultimate success.

There were three things that Kevin Costner did well that ultimately resulted in a successful baseball endeavor.

  1. Great Product.  Kevin Costner and his family built a dynamite baseball field – it would have served any major league team well.  You absolutely have to have a good product or service.  That is a given – without it, you won’t get out of the gate.
  2. Trust in the Process.  Kevin Costner executed beautifully and then trusted that “they will come”.  He believed in the process, however mysterious it may have been.  In your business, you have to understand those key elements that will drive success. Execute them flawlessly and then trust that your efforts will bear fruit.
  3. Time to Germinate.  And, lastly he gave himself time.  The baseball field was not a success overnight.  It took almost a year for long-ago baseball players to arrive, and still longer for others to see and appreciate the field.  Success will not come overnight.  You need to have the fortitude and capital to weather the trough before the bounty.