The magic path to the future sometimes becomes visible
When you want to start a venture company, you must have not only a business idea, but also a sponsor or angel for the seed money to start. The best scenario is to have the seed money from your savings, but in most cases, as a normal worker, your savings are somewhat limited.
In my case, I went to talk with many potential investors with my passion and my business plan, but no one took it seriously. I couldn't get an angel. It made me feel so weak; as if my capabilities as an entrepreneur were rejected. So, what did I do? There are occasions when you can see a path to the future.
In 1997, Toray, the company that I had been with for 13 years, started a system to support employees who had ambition and wanted to start a venture company. I wanted to start my company by taking advantage of the system. The requirements were to come up with a good business plan, get the plan thoroughly reviewed by a committee, raise the plan at the board of directors' meeting, and get approval from the president. Toray was a gigantic company, so as a 36-year-old who was working at one of the hundred subsidiaries, I hardly knew any of the board members at the headquarters.
At work, the project I was leading in the Kevlar department was progressing quite successfully. We had a new printing-wiring-board for cellular phones developed using Kevlar and it was ready to go on the market. The project was not straight forward; we had many difficult technical breakthroughs. Since the achievement was so significant, I was asked to present the project to the executives at Toray.
A path suddenly became visible to me out of the blue. I instinctively thought that if I made my presentation very successful and impressive, I would gain enough trust and support from the executives and they would eventually support my business plan. So, I put as much effort as possible to make my presentation successful and was very focused on the day of the presentation because it was an opportunity for me to go to the next stage. The presentation went successfully, and the following week, I released my business plan for an IT company which was taken very seriously by Toray's executives.
This indicates a mysterious way in which the future unfolds. Things that you think are independent of each other suddenly turn into something meaningful. In my case, the project I was doing as a leader obviously allowed me to become a real entrepreneur, in an unexpected way. So, whatever that's in front of you might lead you to an unthinkable chance.