What's Luck Got to Do With It: Twelve Entrepreneurs Reveal the Secrets Behind Their Success

Overview

Jim McCann started with a flower shop on the side and ended up with 1-800-FLOWERS, the world's largest florist.

Joanna Lau transformed a money-losing $7-million company into a profitable, diversified business with $56 million in annual revenues.

Ted Waitt started Gateway 2000 on his family's cattle farm in Iowa and in less than ten years is running a billion-dollar company.

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Overview

Jim McCann started with a flower shop on the side and ended up with 1-800-FLOWERS, the world's largest florist.

Joanna Lau transformed a money-losing $7-million company into a profitable, diversified business with $56 million in annual revenues.

Ted Waitt started Gateway 2000 on his family's cattle farm in Iowa and in less than ten years is running a billion-dollar company.

What do they know that you don't know?

What's Luck Got To Do With It? gives you an inside look at how renowned entrepreneurs turned ideas into breakthrough successes. The twelve men and women profiled are pacesetters in industries as diverse as retailing, high tech, manufacturing, flowers, and golf clubs. Each is a compelling personality with an unusual success story. Each provides candid accounts in his or her own words of what it took —how, when, where —to overcome the odds.

You'll read revealing stories about their ups and downs, turning points, key decisions, and wrong turns, as well as the part played by coincidence, serendipity, and just plain luck. You'll learn how they dared to be different—whether it's a new way to market computers or make yogurt, deliver high-tech solutions or sell flowers, merchandise microelectronics or counsel employees. You'll read about Ely Callaway, the epitome of the lifelong entrepreneur, who's succeeded in textiles, wine, and, most recently, golf clubs, and refuses to stop having "fun" working. He's come out of retirement twice to score against-the-odds successes each time. "It's a challenge and a lot of fun to develop a conviction about something you think you can do that everyone thinks you can't," says Callaway. "That's what makes it more fun."

For Pleasant T. Rowland, it was a determination to provide quality products for little girls that propelled her from ground zero to a quarter-billion-dollar business. "No one, especially an entrepreneur, should ever underestimate the importance of luck in a successful career. I believe that luck and strength go together. You must have the strength to wait for luck and when you get lucky, you must have the strength to follow through."

What do these twelve risk takers have in common besides their inspiring success stories? Carefully selected by a distinguished panel of judges, they have received the prestigious Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the YearR? Award and were chosen as representatives of the more than 3,000 entrepreneurs who have received the award since its creation in 1986. What's Luck Got To Do With It? is a compelling, eye-opening look into how these twelve people captured a piece of the American Dream.

The Entrepreneurial Services practice of Ernst & Young is dedicated to owner-managed and middle-market businesses. It consults in the areas of finance, taxes, accounting, business planning, information systems, and international expansion.

"This powerful, fascinating book reveals a microcosm of our country —past, present, and future. These remarkable people are truly proactive visionaries who create concepts, not just problem solve." — Dr. Stephen R. Covey, author of the bestseller The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.

"These twelve stories are so important because they demonstrate what one person can achieve with a simple idea, an opportunity, and the uncommon passion that transforms inspiration into a winning enterprise." —Debbi Fields, founder, Mrs. Fields Cookies

Featuring the secrets behind the success of . . .

Ely R. Callaway —Callaway Golf Company

  • Steven J. Hamerslag —MTI Technology Corporation
  • Gary Hirshberg —Stonyfield Farm
  • Jim Koch — The Boston Beer Company
  • Joanna Lau — LAU Technologies
  • Jim McCann — 1-800-FLOWERS
  • Fran Sussner Rodgers — Work/Family Directions
  • Pleasant T. Rowland — Pleasant Company
  • Richard M. Schulze— Best Buy Company, Inc.
  • Jack Stack — Springfield ReManufacturing Corporation
  • William Ungar — National Envelope Corporation
  • Ted Waitt — Gateway 2000
  • Gregory K. Ericksen is the firm's National Director of Entrepreneurial Services, and is chairman of the Entrepreneur of the YearR? Institute.

Profiling the winners of the Ernst & Young "Entrepreneur of the Year" award, this book offers a behind-the-scenes look at such personalities as Jim Koch, founder of Boston Beer Company, as well as some entrepreneurs who may not be so well known. 256 pp. 12,000 print.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780471179986
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 4/9/1997
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 231
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.25 (h) x 0.91 (d)

Meet the Author

GREGORY K. ERICKSEN is the firm's National Director of Entrepreneurial Services, and is chairman of the Entrepreneur of the Year Institute.

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Table of Contents

Ted Waitt: Gateway 2000.

Jim McCann: 1-800-FLOWERS.

Jim Koch: The Boston Beer Company.

Joanna Lau: LAU Technologies.

Ely R. Callaway: Callaway Golf Co.

Jack Stack: Springfield ReManufacturing Corp.

Fran Sussner Rodgers: Work/Family Directions.

Gary Hirschberg: Stonyfield Farm.

Pleasant T. Rowland: Pleasant Company.

Steven J. Hamerslag: MTI Technology Corp.

Richard M. Schulze: Best Buy Co., Inc.

William Ungar: National Envelope Corp.

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