In his remarkable book on the demise of Elizabeth Holmes titled Bad Blood, John Carreyrou, makes an interesting point in the paragraph below:
“A sociopath is often described as someone with little or no conscience. I’ll leave it to the psychologists to decide whether Holmes fits the clinical profile, but there’s no question that her moral compass was badly askew. I’m fairly certain she didn’t initially set out to defraud investors and put patients in harm’s way when she dropped out of Stanford fifteen years ago. By all accounts, she had a vision that she genuinely believed in and threw herself into realizing. But in her all-consuming quest to be the second coming of Steve Jobs amid the gold rush of the “unicorn” boom, there came a point when she stopped listening to sound advice and began to cut corners. Her ambition was voracious and it brooked no interference. If there was collateral damage on her way to riches and fame, so be it.”
There’s a thin line between being ambitious and working hard to reach your dreams and violating laws, lying, being deceptive, and being dishonest to achieve your dreams.
Dreams may be built on solid ground or on the shifting sands of delusion and deception.
Ms Holmes started on solid ground and slowly shifted to sands of deception and deceit.
She had a big dream, but she built it on a weak foundation of deception and falsehoods.
She would have been one of the most successful business people in the world if Theranos had operated the way it was supposed to, but unfortunately, in her haste to become a billionaire at any cost, she sacrificed her integrity in the process.
Lies, it is said, have short legs.
Strive for greatness, but don’t lie, it always backfires.
It’s a thin line between ambition and delusion.