Just prior to his execution, he was asked if he had any last words.
“Let’s Do It,” he said.
A decade later, advertising guru Dan Wieden was sitting in on creative meeting, brainstorming ideas for one of his clients. For reasons only known to Wieden, Gilmore’s famous last words came to mind. Though being the creative type, he just had to tweak the wording a tad, to “Just Do It.”
“Just Do It,” not only became the legendary new slogan for sports clothing giant Nike, but also increased the brand’s popularity so much, it’s footprint in the American domestic shoe business jumped from $877 million to $9.2 billion in just under a decade.
Ever since, the popular catch phrase has been popularized by entrepreneurs, executives and business leaders to inspire and invigorate action.
Either we live in very interesting times, or most don’t know that the catch phrase they love to quote originated from a convicted criminal’s mind, just prior to his execution.
Playboy billionaire Richard Branson has used the phrase “Let’s Do It,” when faced with a potential business opportunity.
And just about every entrepreneur has either read or heard the spine-chilling last words of a killer ringing in their heads, as “Just Do It,” has become the ultimate idea every business textbook, how-to be an entrepreneur self-help book, business professor, business coach, business mentor and successful entrepreneur attempts to plant in those seeking out information about starting their own business.
Eerie. Creepy. Spooky.
“Just Do It.”
Originally, a macho mantra instructing the firing squad to just get it over with, has become the inspiration igniting the fires of those sitting at their desks with amazing ideas, to “Just Do It” and start their business.
Ironic, how the famous last words of a murder, have come to stand for so much to so many.
“Just Do It,” symbolizes the mental madness that entrepreneurs face so well. Most entrepreneurs are perfectionists, we want to get everything just right.
We plan, we mind map, we do GAP analysis, we conduct market and customer research. Then we plan some more.
The hardest thing – the one thing really – that separates entrepreneurs from those just with a great idea – is action.
Inaction keeps many people from becoming entrepreneurs, because they just want everything to be perfect. They get stuck in the planning phase, and never “Just Do It.”
“Just Do It,” has become the mental kick in the pants that moves wantrapraneurs to entrepreneurs. It’s what separates the entrepreneurs, from everyone else.
Because to “Just Do It,” you have to take a leap of faith.
You have to be bold.
You have to be brave.
You have to “Just Do It,” otherwise all you’ll ever have is just a great idea.
And great ideas don’t make money.
Taking action does.
So, to paraphrase a convicted criminal: “Just Do It.”