So this weekend is Wrestlemania, and it got me thinking about a wrestler by the name of Bret “The Hitman” Hart. You see, Bret Hart was a wrestler in the WWF (now WWE) for a very long time, originally with the tag team partner of Jim “The Anvil” Neidhart, they were known as The Hart Foundation. And he and a very nice career back in the early-to-mid 80s through into the early 90s when he broke out into an individual star. He’s now widely considered probably one of the best 10-15 wrestlers of all time.
Why am I talking about Bret “The Hitman” Hart in a video that is probably going to be predicated on thoughts around business? It’s because of this:
Bret’s nickname was The Excellence of Execution.
I’ve been giving a lot of thought lately to where the world’s at right now and the people’s lack of understanding of how much execution matters. I’ve realized that I’m not investing in as many startups lately because a lot of the people have very nice ideas, but I’ve watched so many – SO MANY – bright, brilliant, hungry, ambitious, talented 22-26 year olds in the last couple years just completely fail because they didn’t have the gut/experience/nuances to navigate through the execution of what it took to build a business, or, more importantly, the ability to adjust half-way through, as this world moves so quickly that they’re not able to change their business model when the world changes the premise on which they based their company.
See, I get a lot of emails from friends on Facebook going “omg you’re so lucky! It all happened so fast!” It didn’t happen fast! I’ve been fucking executing since I was 14. In a Malcolm Gladwell world of “10,000 hours and you’re an expert”, I put in 50,000 hours. The reason I failed every class was because I’ve been running businesses since I was 14 years old.
Everybody’s like “Oh Wine Library TV was such a phenomenon!” I ran Wine Library (a wine retail and ecommerce business) from 1998 until early 2006 every single day for 17 hours a day before I started WLTV to get “internet famous.” See, execution matters, and putting in the work matters. Bret Hart grew up in a wrestling family. He was 8 and 9 when he was in the square circle every day when he was getting thrown around by his older brothers and his dad like a rag doll.
Put in the work. Execute, and then you’ve got a shot. Your ideas are cute and all, but without execution, most of you will fail. It’s time in 2013 for us to start getting dramatically more practical and start looking at people that are 28/29/42/49/50/57 and understand “yeah, maybe they don’t know what Snapchat is, but their execution value is high.”