Born: October 7, 1959, London, UK | Successful For: TV Producer, Entrepreneur | Zodiac Sign: Libra
“Good is not enough, you’ve got to be great”
– Simon Cowell
Inner Keys to Success:
- THE GREAT ABILITY OF PERSEVERANCE: Simon Cowell had the great ability of perseverance, never giving up, no matter what obstacles came his way! He dropped out of school at 15 because he didn’t believe it was benefitting him in any way; “Every time I sat in a chemistry lesson, I thought, ‘What am I doing this for? I don’t ever want to be in a job that involves a Bunsen burner.”‘ And initially had a few unsuccessful jobs before working for his father. Later, his own company (Fanfare) went bankrupt because the mother company folded, forcing Cowell to go deeply in debt. This allowed him to make fearless decisions “Money brings you security and choice. You can make decisions in a different way if you have a lot of money. But when you have nothing, you have a naivety, and a more fearless attitude because you have nothing to lose.” He then went on to produce a ‘talent’ show called Pop Idol where the idea of the public decides who wins was thought of. This type of never ending drive to persevere is what pushed him to ultimately succeed.
- DETACH YOURSELF & WELCOME CRITICISM: As a judge, and in his life, Simon understands that you need to be detached and that often requires cutting down to the chase. On American Idol, he was extremely blunt and straight forward with contestants because the show is looking for the most talented musicians and often there are just too many people that don’t have what it takes, instead of wasting time, he cuts to the chase as Cowell states “The object of this competition is not to be mean to the losers but to find a winner.” This is a valuable trait to have, being able to give and take rejection to better the person makes you stronger. Often it’s the ego, not you, who is being too emotionally attached to wanting to be known as “the best.” The most successful people are willing to take constructive criticism even if it hurts them. Cowells states “my attitude is, if someone’s going to criticize me, tell me to my face.”
- BOLDLY CONQUOR YOUR DREAMS: Simon Cowell is a bold individual who does not care what others think of him. This allows him to never stray off his path, or make decisions he doesn’t believe in. Many people think he is arrogant (nicknamed Mr. Nasty), but in the end, he is a strong individual who does not get thrown off easily; “I think you have to judge everything based on your personal taste. And if that means being critical, so be it. I hate political correctness. I absolutely loathe it.” The world can be a mean place, and Cowell understands that you need to clear out the voices of others and be bold in your opinions if you want to accomplish your dreams.
“The secret of my success is that I make other people money. And, never ever, ever, ever be ashamed about trying to earn as much as possible for yourself, if the person you’re working with is also making money. That’s life!”
– Simon Cowell