Pioneers everywhere packed up their belongings, along with their loved ones, with one goal in mind. To seek out a metal so rare, it could potentially change their future for generations to come. Some families suffered and died from diseases such as cholera and scurvy on the trip over. Others were killed by Indians or watched their lives pass them by as they froze to death in the rocky mountains.
A new movement was on the way, and everyone wanted a piece of it. The dynamics of the situation were so influential and rewarding, many would risk death to be able to reshape their family trees. Any commoner could do something that they never had the opportunity to do prior. They could potentially join ranks and become equals with the elite.
A handful of families finally arrived to the Golden State. They set up camp, bought pans, picks and shovels, then started mining and panning for gold. A few people struck gold and became rich. Others didn’t. Some died of physical exhaustion. Others died of degenerative disease. However, at the end of the day, one party risked next to nothing yet reaped all the rewards.
While everyone had sought out the opportunity to get rich, much like the members of our current society who attempt to make startup businesses, many had failed. Much like how most of the people who had sought out for the journey to attain wealth died, many lost everything that they had owned.
Sure, there were a handful of people who made it. Success stories were cultivated and they were placed as heroes into the public spotlight. Such as the Mark Zuckerberg’s and Steve Jobs’ of the world. However, there were countless amounts of people who were left penniless, with nowhere to go. Some had fates so grim, they were even left dead from the journey.
Each day, we see a new gold rush occurring in our society. We see people fighting like no tomorrow to make it. We see experts with ten years experience fall short and die in the battlefields, and sometimes we even see a young, inexperienced nobody make it.
However, many questions arise from situations like this. Should we join in and risk our lives? Should we fight until we either lose everything, or potentially even die? Should we sit on the sidelines and watch? Or is there even a way to make it without risking all that we have?
Back in 1848, many people recognized opportunity. However, very few people saw the true potential of the gold rush. Everyone was mining for gold, however what did each of these miners need to succeed? Who was providing them with the tools they needed?
It’s a good question to really ponder over and think about. To think about as much as possible. Because at the end of the day, it isn’t who has the most ambition nor desire who succeeds. It isn’t even the person who has the most skill and technique. Instead, it is the person who we least expect.
That person, or entity, is the one who is able to provide the tools, or the infrastructure that the miners need to perform their tasks.
The best way to make it in America, with the least resistance, is not by becoming a miner yourself. However, it is by providing the tools that the miners need to be properly equipped with to significantly increase their chances of attaining the gold.
What path will you choose? Will you watch on the sidelines? Will you join the playing field and risk everything you have? Or will you be providing the tools that the new age gold miners need to strive?
Originally posted on Quora.
Leonard Kim is Managing Partner at InfluenceTree. At InfluenceTree, Leonard and his team teach you how to build your (personal or business) brand, get featured in publications and growth hack your social media following.