How Long It Takes To Build A Successful Business And Why People Freak Out When They Find Out

If you were born in the 1980s, you’re in for a rude awakening. You see, us millennials had it great, we grew up with technology, the internet and now touch screens. Technology will get better every year and we will continually have better tools to communicate, become more creative and touch more people.

We have all this information and technology available to us but yet people still struggle to launch businesses online or make it successful. One of the struggles that millennials may face when building a company is how long it will take to make it successful. The expectation isn’t met people give up and abandon their dreams.

As with baby boomers, this group of people believe in hard and long work. They stay in companies for decades and are incredibly patient. My dad is a baby boomer and I’m continually impressed with his patients when it comes to work. He would work hard at something for a very long time and then eventually it would succeed. My dad has successfully built several businesses from scratch and I really admire him for that.

As for millennials like us, we are accustomed to “instant” results and information. Everything is instant and we tend to confuse this with business success. We think that if we work hard at something, we should get results within a few days or even a few months. We forget that like our baby boomer counter parts, things take time.

How Long Does It Take?

It takes 7 years. It really does. After much study and research, you can check this yourself, the common pattern amongst successful businesses that take off is that it requires at least 7 years. Maybe it’s a weird universal law but that’s just the way it is. You may notice that the real estate market also goes through fluctuations. There’s the boom phase and then there’s the crash and burn phase. Depending on where you are, it usually takes 7 – 12 years for a complete market cycle to occur.

Same goes with business. Day in and day out, many entrepreneurs are working their asses off trying to build their business. They go through challenges and struggle but eventually, something happens and they blow up and all of a sudden success and wealth appear out of nowhere. People then call these people “lucky” or “overnight success” but that isn’t true. They never see the late nights and hard work that went into their business and dreams.


Financial planning

Now if someone tells you that it takes 7 years to build a business, you have a choice of either ignoring it and finding ways to become successful within a few months or just accept it and get to work.

Brian Tracy once said that “If it takes 7 years to build a business, well how old will you be after those 7 years?” That’s the best attitude you can adopt when you discover this truth. If it takes 7 years to build a business, then you might as well get started now because if you start in 7 years, you’ll have to wait another 7 years making it 14 years to get to where you want to be!

Don’t be like that.

Accept that it takes a long time to build your business and when you have that long term expectation, you won’t be susceptible to giving up because you know it takes a while. Of course, this doesn’t mean you simply start a business and wait 7 years. You have to pour it in every single day for 7 years in order to see the fruits of your labour blossom.

For example, far too many people have given up on blogging. They think that by publishing one article, hordes of traffic will come in and people will be commented left right and centre. People will be banging on your door asking to give you money. Of course, this never happens and It doesn’t work like that. People then realise that “blogging isn’t for them” and they give up.

After observing the blogging sphere for over 10 years, the ones who succeed are the ones who blog for a very long time and yes, over 7 years sometimes. Some made it faster depending on market but the same pattern is there. They kept at it for many years until their traffic increased exponentially and they left their 9-5.


Once again, it takes 7 years. Remember that. Whenever you’re going through a rough patch, say to yourself “7 years”. This will help you get over the short time setbacks and stay focused on the long term game.

Stay Strong and Be Relentless.

Khoa Bui

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Author: Khoa Bui

Khoa Bui is an author, trainer and chief editor of YouBeRelentless. He enjoys reading books on self development, success, productivity, money, relationships and leadership. When he's not writing, he likes to enjoy a glass of red wine with a fine cuban cigar while watching the entire season of Entourage. You can check out Khoa's work at

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