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Success Story of Entrepreneur: Walt Disney - The Man Who Believed in His Road to Success


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Success Story of Entrepreneur: Walt Disney - The Man Who Believed in His Road to Success - Positivity Stories


“It’s kind of fun to do the impossible.”
- Walt Disney -


The success story of entrepreneur from Walt Disney will give us self motivation to get up again despite facing many failures and stay true to follow what we believe is the road to success in our life. In this success story of entrepreneur, he faced some early obstacles in his road to success when doing his job as employee and also when he tried to build his cartoon enterprise of Disney from the ground up. Yet, he kept going in his road to success and eventually he got the achievement he deserved.

This is a story from Walt Disney for our self motivation.

Chronology of Walt Disney’s Success Story of Entrepreneur

Walt Disney was born on December 5, 1901, in Hermosa, Illinois. He was one of the five children from the couple of Elias Disney and Flora Call Disney.

During his teenager days of his road to success, he worked for a summer job at railroad, selling newspapers and snacks to travelers. He attended night courses at Chicago Art Institute to learn about drawing and later on moved to work as a graphic designer in a newspaper publisher, Kansas City Star. In there, his first failure in his road to success as a creative artist happened. In 1919, he was fired from the newspaper publisher company by his editor. The reason was because the editor thought that Walt Disney lacked of imagination and had no good ideas as graphic designer (which surely weird considering Walt Disney’s success story of entrepreneur in his world famous company. Of course it is our benefit of hindsight)



He later acquired a studio named “Laugh-o-Gram”. The studio hired number of employees and it created a series of seven-minute fairy tales that combined both live action and animation. However, despite his best effort, Walt Disney could not steer it out of debt. There begins another hurdle in his road to success. By 1923, the burden of the debt was too heavy and Walt Disney declared bankruptcy.

It was not the end of his success story of entrepreneur however, which serves a lesson as great source of self motivation for us. He later moved to Hollywood and found a new studio which called Disney’s brother studio. The studio later created Walt Disney milestone in his road to success with cartoon character called Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, which became quite popular and highly demanded. However, sometimes later, another hurdle in this success story of entrepreneur came. Disney discovered that his business partner stole the rights to the cartoon along with most of the his studio’s animators. It really made him disappointed, but he still had the self motivation to create another work.

After this event in his road to success, Disney with his animator who did not choose to go with the business partner created the first legendary Disney cartoon character, Mickey Mouse. But to produce it, Disney had to have money that he did not have at the moment. Thus, he went to the bank to get money loan needed. People say that he got rejected over 300 times who thought his idea of Mickey Mouse was absurd, a true testament of self motivation in his road to success. This did not stop him.

Eventually, in this success story of entrepreneur from him, the financing is secured for the Mickey Mouse’s cartoon and it went for a great success. In the later phase of his road to success, Walt Disney created other Disney’s legendary cartoon film: Treasure Island (1950), Alice in Wonderland (1951), Peter Pan (1953), Lady and the Tramp (1955), Sleeping Beauty (1959), 101 Dalmatians (1961), and many other cartoons production. For the excellent work of his studio, Walt Disney won 22 Academy Awards and 7 Emmy Awards during his lifetime. He later founded a famous theme park, Disneyland and Walt Disney World before his death in 1966. Today (and for much later time), it is a true success story of entrepreneur and he is and will be considered as one of the greatest creative legend and folk hero of the 20th century. His works in his road to success in the form of studio he founded are considered legacy and became an industry benchmark for companies in motion-picture production area. All of this will not possible without a strong self motivation and determination from Walt Disney.

Read also: Success Story of Entrepreneur: The Road to Success of Jack Ma

Lessons for Our Self Motivation

Now, as a lesson for our self motivation, let’s take a look more closely at the problems that Walt Disney faced to pursue on his road to success as a cartoonist. The many failures which he faced during his road to success maybe much more than the ones being told in this article. And yet if we look at those being listed, we can tell that some (maybe most) people will not go and do what he has done when overcoming his problem because of lack of self motivation. What if Disney stopped his effort to become a successful cartoonist when he got fired at the newspaper publisher? After he succeed in his road to success, it was said that he even can bought the parent company of the newspaper published and it might not happen if he stopped taking the road of success in which he believed in. What if Disney stopped his pursue for his dream after his first studio went bankrupt? What if he stopped when he got rejected during his effort to get financing for his Mickey Mouse cartoon production project? Well we cannot predict what might happen but we can be sure that there will be no success story of entrepreneur for him, no Disney cartoon company, and probably we will not remember the name and legacy of Walt Disney as we are now. Try to imagine what he felt when he failed hundred of times before he got the loan he needed from the bank as self motivation. It must be a shame for him to even meet his relatives who see him as a failed person and people around him must have at least talked to him to give up his road to success. There should be much temptation during his adversity time to take another road and abandon his road to success for his cartoon company, as it was some years before he found Mickey Mouse, and yet he kept going in this success story of entrepreneur. Why? Because he believed in his dream, had enough self motivation, and made the utmost effort for it.

In his success story of entrepreneur, he eventually reached the end of his road to success and created legacy because he decided to pursue what he thought was important in his life and he managed to have the self motivation needed despite the rejections and failures that he faced during his journey on his road to success. Just as being told by Steve Jobs in his speech in the previous article, we should always have the courage to follow our heart and intuition as who we want to become in our life and keep pursuing our own road to success in life. From there, we can set target keep faith, and push our self motivation to be there whatever the effort it might need. As the title of this article says, Walt Disney’s courage to pursue his road to success is what I believe made him a legend for his success and a name which people keep on remembering years after years even after his death, for his legacy and work results.

For the closure of this success story of entrepreneur, as always, I will leave you with a quote from Walt Disney. This summarizes what his success story of entrepreneur is all about, especially when creating his Disney Company.

“All of our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.”

I hope you as reader of this article will have the self motivation to find, pursue, and achieve in your very own road to success!


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