One of my colleagues had his life completely upended as a result of the Chinese Cultural Revolution in 1966.
At age 13, his parents were relocated to the countryside,
the schools were closed and he was left alone in Beijing to fend for himself until 16, when he got a job in a clothing factory.
But instead of accepting his fate, he made a resolution that he would continue his formal education.
Eleven years later, when the political landscape changed, he heard about a highly selective university admissions test.
He had three months to learn the entire curriculum of middle and high school.
So, every day he came home from the factory, took a nap, studied until 4am,
went back to work and repeated this cycle every day for three months. He did it, he succeeded.
His commitment to his education was unwavering, and he never lost hope.
Today, he holds a master's degree, and his daughters each have degrees from Cornell and Harvard.
Scrappers are propelled by the belief that the only person you have full control over is yourself.
When things don't turn out well, Scrappers ask, "What can I do differently to create a better result?"
Scrappers have a sense of purpose that prevents them from giving up on themselves,
kind of like if you've survived poverty, a crazy father and several muggings, you figure,
"Business challenges? -- Really? Piece of cake. I got this."