CEO and entrepreneur Elon Musk has been making news headlines with advancements in his three successful companies: Tesla Motors, SpaceX and Solar City. He is one of many innovators and creators that are paving the way towards new technological progress in various areas of study yet he is not without his hardships and challenges.

The experiences that these CEOs and pioneers have gone through contain various lessons in leadership and work ethic, which have the ability to motivate others in their work and academic lives. Their thoughts about failure, success and life can guide curious students to explore parts of our lives that we have not yet seen or thought about. In addition, learning about them may help unguided students in learning about many different areas of study, such as engineering and computer science.

Students often lack insight as to why they may even be pursuing their education and schoolwork. While school may present others with boring and mundane tasks, learning more about the lessons these CEO’s and entrepreneurs have to offer will incite encouragement within ourselves.

Steve Jobs and Musk, arguably the two most inventive minds of the past two decades, present three main lessons and ideas that are applicable to student’s lives:

1. Attract great people.

Inventor and engineer, Musk, explores the various causes for his companies’ success in his commencement speech to the undergraduates of USC Marshall’s School of Business. He believes that in order to be successful, one needs to surround his or herself with people that are hard-working, talented and respected.

By joining a group that one respects and admires, he or she can be inspired; surrounding oneself with positive people will create an environment that incites creativity within its members. When one participates in a club or organization, he or she is surrounded with others with similar interests. As a result, one will thrive as one is placed in a setting that demands innovation, change and leadership.

2. “If something is important enough, even if the odds are against you, you should still do it.”

Another piece of advice that comes from Musk is concerned with risk and following one’s dreams. As a businessman in a highly influential position, Musk devoted money, time and energy into creating products that might not have been successful. However, in the face of adversity, Musk continued with his various plans. Although some plans have failed miserably, he is undoubtedly successful with is endeavors of making successful rockets and creating aesthetically electric cars that.

The same mentality can be applied to students’ passions and aspirations. Students are often limited in their choices of classes or interests within school, however, that limitation should not stop others in following their aspirations and dreams. If there is something that incites creativity or interest, one should follow that path as it may lead to successful ventures later on.

3. “Stay hungry, stay foolish”

The last piece of advice comes from the late Steve Jobs’ Stanford Commencement Speech. In the conclusion of his speech, Jobs recalls a quote from the final issue of a magazine in which four simple words were written under a photograph of a country road: “Stay hungry, stay foolish.” Despite various failures and success in Steve Jobs’ life, he prompts the Stanford undergraduates to keep on learning and taking risks.

The three lessons outlined above are only a small amount of the knowledge that many have gained by researching and learning about various role models. Other students should learn from these role models; in doing so, they may find unconventional lessons that may impact them.

Students who are in need of guidance or advice may take interest in researching and learning about other entrepreneurs or innovators. Whether the role model is Steve Wozniak or Jeff Bezos, these impressive CEOs and magnates can teach students about the various experiences that may lead them to success in life.