From Apple to Twitter, some of the most successful businesses are not what their inventors originally envisioned.
Nearly every aspiring entrepreneur or innovator has a business plan, and virtually all of these individuals believe that their business plan–what we call Plan A–will work. They can probably even imagine how they’ll look on the cover of Fortune or Inc. And they are usually wrong. But what separates the ultimate successes from the rest is what they do when their first plan sputters. Do they lick their wounds, get back on their feet and morph their new insights into great businesses, or do they stick to their original plan? If the founders of Google, Starbucks or PayPal had stuck to their original business plans, we’d likely never have heard of them. Instead, they made radical changes to their initial models, became household names and delivered huge returns for themselves and their investors. How did they get from their Plan A to a business model that worked? Why did they succeed when most new ventures crash and burn?