While trying to find successful businesses that were built upon passion, I stumbled upon this rather interesting article. It talked about Steve Jobs and how he did not become successful because he followed his passion. He rather was very pragmatic about money making, which lead him into a business, that eventually became his passion.

Thinking about it, I must admit that this might be true. So far, I was convinced that passion is the one and only key to success. This article has changed my mind. I believe that the passion hypothesis is a myth, that successful people have created making statements looking back at their careers. Let’s be honest! Anything you become good at, and which makes you a ton of money, is prone to becoming your passion. I hate abstract painting, but if I knew that I would sell one painting for $10,000 every day, I am pretty sure that it would turn into my passion very fast. So the key is not doing something you are passionate about. No, it’s becoming good at something, which other people find is useful, and then become passionate about it through the success you’re experiencing.

Thus, we need an indicator for what people find is useful. What do people care about? At this point we will make use of technology, by applying principles used in SEO (Search Engine Optimization). We will assume that popular terms in the internet, reflect people’s interests in real life. A great way to find out about that is through Google Trends. By clicking on the hot search link, Google tells you what people were most interested in on a given day. For Saturday, December 1, 2012, it was an article titled Jovan Belcher of Kansas City Chiefs dead in suspected murder-suicide. As a European, I have no idea who Jovan Belcher or the Kansas City Chiefs are. I understand it is a four-year NFL veteran of the NFL, who shot and killed his girlfriend, then drove to the team’s practice facility and killed himself in front of team officials.

So what is so special about that guy? Thousands of people are shot and commit suicide every hour. Why don’t people give a f*** about that? Well, because Jovan Belcher represents what most Americans want - fame and fortune.

So let’s stop that bullshit of people wanting to be humble and simple. I don’t buy it. Everybody wants fame and fortune in a certain way. We sure don’t all want to be NFL stars, but we do want to be good at what we’re doing for a living, and we want that particular activity to make the biggest amount of cash possible, so that we can enjoy life to the fullest. To me, the key to success is admitting that and to stop feeling bad about it. It’s very human!

Google Trends ScreenShot