Soichiro Honda; from the job rejection by Toyota to building his own auto industry

Many people believe that success is something that one gets from luck than hard work. But there are many people who have proved that hard work and determination lead toward success. Even majority of us think that the road to success is a straight and easy path but in reality it is actually a crooked path with full of twists and turns that can be only crossed by the willpower of a person. The concept of strength of mind and will is demonstrated in the life of a man Soichiro Honda who had no formal education but successfully put up his business from scratch into a multinational enterprise.

He was born in a small village known as Tenryu, Shizuoka near Mount Fuji in Japan. Soichiro’s father was a blacksmith who also had a business of bicycle repairing while his mother worked as a weaver. The interest of Soichiro was more towards cars repairing and machinery. He used to spend most of the time in his father’s Bicycle shop than earning a traditional education. While working with grease oils Soichiro was often found in full soot and called as a black nose weasel. At the very young age, he made his mind to pursue his life with the tools of cars so he traveled towards Tokyo and worked in a company named Art Shokai, an auto repairing shop. Due to the lack of formal education, he became unable to drive the post of an employee in the organization so he was assigned to cook meals for the workers as well as the task to clean the shop daily.

The company owner observed Soichiro’s fortitude and the passion towards cars, so with his persistence and hard work he got an opportunity to work with other co-workers in the new project of designing a car. This one chance led him toward the way of triumph, he showed his inner capabilities and mind working that even without acquiring high education the power of passion, efforts and determination assist to lift the staircase towards success. The auto repair shop rose to one of the biggest garages in the whole Tokyo with Soichiro’s competence and aptitude. The shop turned into many branches in different provinces and Soichiro was hired as a head in one of the branches and became a successful man in the town of Hamamatsu.

This was not the only success that he wanted to achieve, Soichiro was born with an inventive mind so he spends most of his hours to develop a new type of a piston ring but none of the directors supported his project. Soon he left Art Sokai organization and tirelessly focused on his new project until he reached any conclusion. The selected project granted him a tough time through which days, months and even years passed, Soichiro was unable to attain any fruition. Later, he decided to continue to study and focus on the technological courses. He acquired much knowledge in the school of Hamamatsu and invented a new cooling system for race cars and was able to solve the problem of engine overheating. He participated in a competition as a car racer and competed to achieve gold as a reward. But racing served him damage when his car crashed during the rally and his arm fractured, the shoulder was dislocated due to which he decided to quit racing.

 After recovering, Soichiro became able to develop a piston ring according to his expectation and will. He headed towards Toyota Company in order to sell his invention but was turned back with great disappointment that the organization regarded his piston ring as substandard. The rejection didn’t lead him to a great depression so he began to stay focused on his goal and decided to build his own factory but life alarmed him with another hardship. The war started by the Japanese government and all concrete available was given to the controlling power and there was no material left for Soichiro to construct his own factory. Anyhow, he didn’t let his dream die out or waited for any miracle to happen. With his team members, he applied different innovative ways to create their own concrete, as days passed by they successfully built the factory.

After going through many adversities Soichiro decided to quit his goals and live a simple life in his hometown. But his passion and dedication did not allow Soichiro to leave the work he was doing. So, he powered back his mind and began to invent something different this time. He attached a motor to his bicycle to see what results come through his implementation. The demand rose by several people around him and his project was considered as an invention that would revolutionize the transportation system in the country. He thought of writing a personal letter to 18,000 bicycle shop owners in Japan to convince them about his masterpiece but out of 18,000, he was able to convince 5,000 shop owners. Further, few people bought his bike because it was too big and bulky so he fixed the problem and named his motorbike The Super Cub.

The bike became a best seller and Soichiro exported his motorbikes in Europe and the United States. With this new invention, he became successful and fulfilled his dream to build cars. Later, he became the founder of the multi-billion dollar and multi-national Honda Motor Company that is popular around the globe. However, it only took a vision to establish a business empire and he proved himself by the contribution to the world he has given.

“Success represents the 1% of your work which results from 99% that is called failure”


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