How To Build A Million-Dollar Business

Six hall-of-fame entrepreneurs tell how they did it--and how you can, too.

You don't have to be the first or the biggest. You don't need the brains of Einstein or the cure for cancer. You don't have to be bombastic or even egomaniacal.

Nor is attaining success a question of doing everything right. Rather, turning your business into a winner is a matter of vision, intuition, charisma, leadership and character. To build a million-dollar business, you need the evangelical spark of Southwest Airlines Co. CEO Herb Kelleher, the bull's-eye delivery of Jamba Juice Co. founder Kirk Perron, the innovative eye of Barnes & Noble Inc. chairman Leonard Riggio, the gracious stamina of Ruth's Chris Steak House founder Ruth Fertel, and the pioneering spirit of Yahoo! Inc. founders David Filo and Jerry Yang. Here's how six seemingly ordinary people turned good ideas, real commitment, and perhaps just a touch of irrational optimism into real-life tales of fortune.

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This article was originally published in the September 1997 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: How To Build A Million-Dollar Business.

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