One entrepreneurial blogger was both scarred and stamped early by his witness to the daily struggles of living in a war-torn, Beirut, Lebanon. Though he was a witness to frightening events, such as in-city fighting that resulted in bullets levied against his family’s car, he was also a witness to his father’s quiet heroism, as he continued to build and maintain his construction firm throughout those difficult years, often trusting the wrong people and learning many important life lessons the hard way, while doing everything to keep bread on the table at home. To his son, his father was a heroic figure, one he was to remember to his credit in his later years, whilst struggling to start his own business. He remembered the lessons that were evident in his father’s life. It was these lessons that gave him courage to propel his own entrepreneurial dreams forward, reminded the while that a fancy degree is no substitute for perseverance, resilience and creativity. What he learned specifically was that the lack of a formal education needn’t stop one from starting a business. A willingness to work hard, learn and keep trying can make up for the lack of hours of classroom time. One has to be willing to veer and shift with the often-tumultuous sways of fate. Be aware of trusting the wrong people. Currency choices matter. Not all money is good. It’s wise to be kind. But it pays to be cautious. Know the business laws of your country and that not all of them are wise or in your corner.

Key Takeaways:

  • My father worked in Abu Dhabi and then in Libya, where he was thrown in jail by Gaddafi.
  • When he brought family members into his business, my father trusted them too much.
  • My father’s struggles helped me learn from his mistakes and succeed in my own endeavors.

“He worked his way up from being the laborer who just did the texturing on the walls to drawing and designing the buildings.”

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