Whenever I felt frustrated, and felt there were so many balls falling and so little time, my friend just smiled and told me: “Welcome to the world of a CEO”.
Yes. That is the experience to be a CEO. As an entrepreneur, you are facing the challenge that only the people who were in that position can understand – the loneliness, and the excitement – oh, boy, nothing in this world is comparable to that. I show my full respect to every CEO in this world – even my competitors, even former Apple CEO, former Yahoo! CEO, and former whatever company CEO who ended their career in a way of public failure – they have all the due respects, not to mention the greatest CEOs of this century – Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, and Jack Welch. We are just the same kind.
Few weeks ago, I had breakfast with Sun Cheng-Yaw, and Jack Gao (one was the former HP Greater China GM, and the other was former Microsoft China GM). They shared their experience of running a company as the real CEO and a big country subsidiary. Basically the difference is, you know you can screw up a company single-handedly while screwing up China does not kill HP or Microsoft. Pressure really comes from responsibility.
I am just trying to be a better CEO – a journey that needs a lot of work, and needs a lot help. The most important thing is to surround yourself with the right group of people, and share the same dream. That is so important, and I will name it as the third learning in my startup, besides the two I already shared with Stanford students few weeks ago (focus and cost).