How to Make the Right Decisions in the Business World

When David Leuschen ( came to Dartmouth to talk about his life in the business world, he offered sage advice. The pointers below highlight how Mr. Leuschen believes people can get ahead in the business world, and keeping to each axiom is helpful for the budding businessperson.

Show Up

Mr. Leuschen says that 90% of life is showing up. If people just go to the next meeting, that next conference or one more informational talk, they will be able to learn what they need to know. People can make connection in these settings, and they can change their life without wondering when their next big break will come because they have been showing up.

Take Risks

There is nothing wrong with staying in the lines, but people cannot stay in the lines for the rest of their lives. It is wise to take informed risks when they will benefit the business. A business that takes carefully considered risks will perform better than a business that has never strayed outside the lines.


Mr. Leuschen noted that the majority of companies he has bought out were not completely bought out. The old school idea of breaking companies into pieces like Gordon Gekko is lost on today’s world. A business can perform much better if it is willing to build up the businesses it buys. Each business that is built up will become a profitable venture, and the fund performs better overall.

Commit Your Own Money

When people are putting money into ventures, they need to make sure they are using their own money. People who use loans for their investments often feel they can walk away from the deal because they can just write off the loss and get another loan somewhere else. When people invest their own money, they are more likely to make wise decisions.

The Final Step

The biggest final step for businesspeople is having a low political risk. Mr. Leuschen advises people to make sure they avoid political minefields. No one wants to testify before congress when they could have invested their money in something that is less political.