Running head: THE MAN CONNECTING THE WORLD1 The Man Connecting the World Rachel Ritchey West Virginia Wesleyan College THE MAN CONNECTING THE WORLD2 My definition of success is achieving a desirable outcome or goal in life and to achieve success one must illustrate the qualities Coplin states. Throughout his life Mark Zuckerberg has developed the skills Coplin says in his list of ten things and Mark has efficiently demonstrated these qualities. Through his success Mark Zuckerberg has connected more than half a billion people with the company Facebook.
Even though there are many different definitions of success, it should be obvious that successful people share common qualities such as those found in Bill Coplin’s list of 10 Things Employers Want Students to Learn in College. Reaching success was not easy but, Zuckerberg took the necessary steps to get there. These steps include influencing people, solving problems, and using quantitative skills. Mark Elliot Zuckerberg was born on May 14, 1984 in Dobbs Ferry, New York. His father ran a dental practice, and his mother was a psychiatrist up until the birth of Randi, his oldest sister.
At a very early age Mark started to become interested in computers. He developed his first software at age 12. He created Zucknet, a messaging system from an Atari BASIC, and his father actually put it to use in his dental office. His parents soon hired a tutor to keep up with his budding interest in computers. Mark first attended high school at Ardsley High School, and around the same time started taking some graduate courses at nearby Mercy College (Grossman, 2010). Soon, Zuckerberg transferred to Phillips Exeter Academy, a private school in New Hampshire.
There he excelled in academics, THE MAN CONNECTING THE WORLD3 but also discovered another talent of which was, fencing. He was captain of the fencing team but also, excelled more with computers as he developed a name for himself as a “Programming Prodigy. ” His next step in developing software was described as an early version of Pandora, named Synapse. Companies like Microsoft and AOL actually offered to buy it off of him, and hire him before he had even graduated high school. He declined both offers and decided to continue his quest for knowledge. (bio. 2011) Zuckerberg enrolled at Harvard in 2002 after graduating from Phillips Exeter Academy. By the time he began his sophomore year he already had a reputation as the go-to software developer on campus. It was around this time he developed something called CourseMatch, a way for students to choose their classes based on what courses were popular with other users. Next he invented Facemash, a way to compare two student’s pictures and vote on who is more attractive. Immediately Facemash became extremely popular, but was shut down because administration deemed it inappropriate.
With the popularity of Mark’s other projects, three of his fellow students Divya Narendra, Camron Winklevoss, and Tyler Winklevoss, approached him one day about an idea called Harvard connection. They wanted to use Harvard’s student networks to create a dating site. Mark agreed to help, but soon moved on with his own ideas. (bio. , 2011) Zuckerberg’s new idea was to create his own network with various features for users. So, along with another three friends Dustin Moskovitz, Chris Hughes, THE MAN CONNECTING THE WORLD4 nd Eduardo Saverin they worked together to create their own social network. They developed a site users could create their own profiles, upload photos, and talk to other users. They called this site, The Facebook, and ran it out of their Harvard dorm room from February 2004 to June 2004. Mark then took a huge risk, dropped out of Harvard, and moved to Palo Alto, California to devote his time solely on “The Facebook. ” At this time users were strictly students at Harvard, but the site then opened to Ivy League schools only.
The Facebook was shortened to just Facebook, and by the end of 2004 the site had one million users. (bio. , 2011) This brings me to an inevitable quality Mark shares with Coplin’s ten things, Using Quantitative Skills. He has been creating software since he was about twelve years old, which had brought him to where he is today, as a software programmer and developer. He attended one of the most accredited schools of all-time, Harvard University. This serves as an example of how well educated he is just in all areas of academics.
Another thing Coplin states is, “Performance will be measured in numbers just as the performance of your company or agency is measured in the number of sales, the amount of income, or number of people served. ” (Coplin, 2003) Zuckerberg is well aware of applying this to his company as CEO and founder of Facebook. He must constantly pay attention to these parts of business because of the number of people he is serving. THE MAN CONNECTING THE WORLD5 Facebook’s next boost came from the venture capital firm Accel Partners, with an investment of $12. 7 million dollars in their network (Kirkpatrick, 2010).
This led to the expansion of Facebook, which then opened to other colleges, high schools, and international schools. By December 2005 they reached 5. 5 million members. With Facebook’s popularity, other companies wanted to advertise on the site, but Zuckerberg turned down their offers. (bio. , 2010) Common with all big companies, at some point they face problems. Unfortunately in 2006 the three students that Mark helped make Harvard connection with forced him into a lawsuit. They claimed that he stole their idea and after lawyers found incriminating messages from Zuckerberg, they came to a settlement.
Although it was a $65 million dollar settlement, the dispute still continues today. (bio. , 2011) The next controversy Zuckerberg faced took more of a toll on his reputation. In 2009, Ben Mezrich wrote a book called The Accidental Billionaires. Mezrich retold the story of Zuckerberg’s life, but heavily fabricated it. He included invented scenes, imagined dialogue and fictional characters. Not only did he manage to cause controversy with his book, but also he actually sold the rights of the story to screenwriter Aaron Sorkin.
Sorkin’s portrayal of Mark’s life was called The Social Network, which went on to be nominated for eight Academy Awards, and take home an Oscar for best picture. Mark strongly opposed the film’s storyline and went on to say, “It’s interesting what stuff they focused on THE MAN CONNECTING THE WORLD 6 getting right; like, every single shirt and fleece that I had in that movie is actually a shirt or fleece that I own, so there’s all this stuff that they got wrong and a bunch of random details that they got right. ” (bio. , 2011) Developing such an influential company makes him somewhat of a target.
He is constantly facing problems, and coming up with new solutions. Therefore another skill he possesses is Solving Problems. He has always under the pressure of creating something pleasing for Facebook users. The web page regularly changes formats, and introduces new features. One thing Coplin directly says is, “Problem solvers are into continuous improvement. ” (Coplin, 2003) Mark’s problem solving skills were also useful when it came to problems in his personal life. He has encountered lawsuits and found a way to settle and move past.
Along with lawsuits, the public criticism he’s faced was handled maturely and with integrity. In spite of all the criticism, and negative publicity he still received recognition for his accomplishments. In 2010, Time Magazine named him Person of the year. (Grossman, 2010) Vanity Fair placed him at the top of their New Establishment list and named him number one on its 2010 list of the Top 100 “most influential people of the Information Age. ” Forbes ranked Zuckerberg at No. 35—beating out Apple CEO Steve Jobs on the Forbes 400 list. Mark’s net worth was is an estimated $6. billion dollars. (bio. , 2011) Mark’s wealth has made him a billionaire six times over (Grossman, 2010). THE MAN CONNECTING THE WORLD 7 With the money he’s earned through his hard work, he’s decided to involve himself in philanthropic causes. He donated 100 million dollars to save the failing Newark Public Schools system in New Jersey. On December 9, 2010, Zuckerberg, Bill Gates, and investor Warren Buffett signed the “Giving Pledge”, promising to donate at least 50 percent of their wealth to charity over the course of their lifetimes. bio. , 2011) He not only wants to help people connect with the social network he’s created but he wants to help charitable causes with the money he worked so hard for. With the company make has created, he has wired about a twelfth of humanity into a single network (Grossman, 2010). When relating Zuckerberg to Coplin’s list of ten things, virtually any of them can be applied but the most obvious one in my opinion is Influencing People. He not only influences people through charities but clearly through the social network he has created.
Nearly half of all Americans have a Facebook account, and 70% of Facebook users live outside the U. S. (Grossman, 2010). This just goes to show the number of people he reaches and has an impact on. Facebook has 800 million active users and is currently growing at a rate of about 700,000 people a day (Duff, 2010). Like Coplin says find the basic need, or the main point of interest and stick to it (Coplin, 2003). Mark undoubtedly found a point of interest for the world. Mark Zuckerberg is someone that has the qualities Coplin says that employer’s value and he has demonstrated them throughout his life.
Bill Coplin’s THE MAN CONNECTING THE WORLD 8 list of 10 Things Employers Want Students to Learn in College serves as an example of the qualities of successful people. When applying the ten things to a successful person Zuckerberg’s life serves as the perfect example. His success story shows the way to develop yourself to reach success by using the same things Coplin states in his list of ten things. He has basically created the social network that has taken over the world. The accomplishments he has made are something that we witness, and we are impacted by his success in our own lives everyday.
THE MAN CONNECTING THE WORLD9 References Coplin, B. (2003). 10 things employers want you to learn in college. Berkeley, California: Ten Speed Press. Cooper, C. (2011). The future according to Zuckerberg: All Facebook, all the time. Retrieved September 23, 2011, from http://www. cbsnews. com/stories/2011/09/22/scitech/main20110419. shtml Kirkpatrick, D. (2010). The Facebook effect: The inside story of the company that is connecting the world (1st Simon & Schuster hardcover ed. ed. ). New York: Simon & Schuster.
Grossman L. (2010). Person of the year. Retrieved Dec/15, 2010, from http://www. time. com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,2036683_2037183,00. html Mark Zuckerberg. (2011). Biography. com. Retrieved 07:45, Nov 13, 2011 from http://www. biography. com/people/mark-zuckerberg-507402 Duff, C. (Producer), &. (2010). One minute on Facebook. [Video/DVD] Retrieved from THE MAN CONNECTING THE WORLD10 http://www. time. com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,2036683_2037109_2037113,00. html