Blog >
Military Backgrounds Make Great Founders and Operators


Military Backgrounds Make Great Founders and Operators

Tony Zheng shares a post on why military backgrounds make great founders and operators.

This past weekend’s Navy vs. Army game (congrats, Army!) got me thinking about the unique qualities that make military veterans successful in the world of entrepreneurship and business. Some notable leaders: Fred Smith (founder of FedEx, former Marines), Sam Walton (founder of Walmart, former Army), Phil Knight (founder of Nike, former Army), Blake Hall (founder of, former Army), Bill Draper (pioneered venture capital investing in 1960s, former Air Force).

Here’s why I think they’re game-changers:

🚀 Leadership Under Pressure: Military training instills a strong sense of leadership, the ability to motivate teams under pressure, and make decisive decisions. These are all crucial skills when it comes to hiring and company strategy.

💪🏼 Determination and Grit: As Sam Altman says, “the most underrated quality of being a founder is being really determined”. In the military, you go home when the job is done.

💡 **Adaptability:** Adaptability is a survival skill. Veterans understand the importance of adjusting to changing environments, pivoting strategies, and staying resilient, all traits essential in business.

🤝 Teamwork Works: Collaboration and teamwork are at the core of military operations. Building a company requires hiring players from various backgrounds and getting everyone to row in the same direction.

⚙️ Focused execution: Ideas only go so far, it’s all about execution. Military training emphasizes precision and planning, so veterans learn to execute strategies with laser-sharp focus and minimize distractions.

 ⏰ Time management mastery: Operating in high-pressure situations breeds exceptional time management. Veterans learn to prioritize tasks effectively and meet tight deadlines.

👉 Share your thoughts on how military experience shapes entrepreneurial success!

Read the post on LinkedIn.