Michael Dell – The man that helped make PC Affordable and Available.
Michael Saul Dell was born in 1965 in Houston, Texas. Michael Dell helped launch the personal computer revolution in the 1980s with the creation of Dell Computer, which began in the founder’s dorm room at the University of Texas and quickly blossomed into a megawatt computer company. By 1992, just eight years after Dell was founded, Michael Dell was the youngest CEO of a Fortune 500 company.
Dell’s mother, a stockbroker, and his father, an orthodontist, pushed their son to consider medicine. However, Dell showed an early interest in technology and business.
When he was 12 years old, he operated a mail-order trading business for stamps and baseball cards, earning $2,000. At the age of 14, Dell got his first computer, an Apple II and soon realized that he had a ability for taking computers apart and putting them back together.
In examining the personal computer, or PC, industry, he noticed an opportunity to sell PCs for less, as he explained to Richard Murphy of Success magazine :
I saw that you’d buy a PC for about $3,000, and inside that PC was about $600 worth of parts. IBM would buy most of these parts from other companies, assemble them, and sell the computer to a dealer for $2,000. Then the dealer, who knew very little about selling or supporting computers, would sell it for $3,000, which was even more outrageous.
Dell realized that he could assemble computer parts, skip the step of selling to a dealer, and go directly to the consumer. That way the consumer could buy the product for less, and Dell held on to every penny of the profits. Dell thus combined his knowledge of computers with his well-developed business sense and began his own business, assembling upgrade kits for personal computers.
Bypassing the middleman and the markups, Dell tapped his savings account for $1,000 and started building and selling computers for people he knew at college. His emphasis, however, wasn’t just on good machines, but strong customer support and cheaper prices. Soon, he had accounts outside of school and it wasn’t long before Dell dropped out and focused all his efforts on his business.
In 1984, Dell’s first full year in business, he had $6 million in sales. By 2000, Dell was a billionaire and his company had offices in 34 countries and employee count of more than 35,000. The following year, Dell Computer surpassed Compaq Computer as the world’s largest PC maker. Dell’s first 20 years proved to be one of the most successful businesses on the planet, surprising such titans as Wal-Mart and General Electric.
The key is to *listen to your heart and let it carry you in the direction of your dreams. I’ve learned that it’s possible to set your sights high and achieve your dreams and do it with integrity, character, and love. And each day that you’re moving toward your dreams without compromising who you are; You’re winning.