In our quest to achieve our goals, we stumble across an ocean of ideas, suggestions, tactics, principles about how people acquire success. And while some ideas actually help us make healthy progress towards those goals… other ideas slowly sabotage our efforts. Leaving us confused and wondering where we went wrong.
Let’s take a look at some of these ideas.
A Jack Of All Trades Is A Master Of None
Look at the world around you. Observe the people that are high achievers in society today. Pay attention to the rising entrepreneur.
Do not focus on the achievements. Instead, look at the habits or the daily life that lead to those achievements.
What do you see?
Entrepreneurs in today’s world need to be good at persuasion or SELLING. Whether it is an idea, product or service. Not only to customers… but to team members. Which suggests that they need to also be fairly good LEADERS.
Usually the entrepreneur begins small. So getting the word out about his or her business, will require a bit of strategic MARKETING and NETWORKING.
And for those lucky enough to secure a couple of on-going clients, an entrepreneur will have to have a fairly decent plan to sustain or always improve CUSTOMER SATISFACTION.
Sales, leadership, marketing, networking, customer satisfaction are just an example of the many skills and disciplines ONE entrepreneur has to master early. I haven’t even touched the life-blood of the business…. CASH FLOW MANAGEMENT.
If you think that you can skim past any of these or other important skills especially early on… then you risk failure.
You cannot leave college holding a computer science degree and expect to transition into entrepreneurship without considering how these skills affect your success.
Even if you can do one thing, and require someone else to provide some other skill… without additional skills such as good leadership to keep others around you focused and committed, your one degree or skill will not do much to bring you success.
Unless of course, you work for someone else.
This also applies to the job environment. Employers tend to give preference to those with more than just what they graduated with. Playing it safe and not learning new skills may keep you from working long boring hours in some cases… but it also keeps you from significant opportunities and greatly limits your options.
This is why many people don’t dare venture outside the industry which they believe they only have the qualification to work in.
I did computer science and develop software. But I have a friend who has a degree in finance and develops apps. Another one who runs a wholesale store and did computer engineering.
Nothing can hold you back if you are determined to succeed at accomplishing your goals. If all that stands between you and your goal is a skill… then learn it. Or learn how to lead, support and empower others by working with people who can.
Our minds learn a lot more than we actually realize. Unfortunately, we sometimes pick up skills that have very little or nothing to do with what we are out to accomplish.
And this is where the difference lies between intentional success stories and those that are yet-to-be successful.
If you want a head start in the restaurant business… being a good cook isn’t enough to make you rise above your competition.
Always Keep Your Mind Focused On Money
To me, this is empty.
If you want to attract money (and that’s really the game: Attracting Riches), then focus on HOW you will make money.
But that is also vague. Because there are way too many ways to make money. And if you keep focusing on it broadly, you risk falling into the void of never finding financial peace… or you may fail to launch a venture.
How many times have you worked on ideas that never materialized into success? You come up with a plan to become wealthy. Maybe start a business. You get to work but after a couple of months… you stop.
You don’t see the money coming as you had planned or you realize that the time and cost of working on this plan gets larger and larger.
Eventually you weigh your options and go for some other idea.
And the cycle continues till you are tired and give up entirely because to you… the world of business is full of way too many risks and challenges. Plus money doesn’t come to one that easily, right?
The best way, is to focus on providing VALUE.
And depending on your industry, you can get very specific with this. As long as the focus is on the other person. Or on a cause greater than your own.
This applies to both business people and employees seeking to improve their quality of life.
There are two main things people always want that you could provide…. Entertainment. Or a way to help them live better.
Learn ways to keep getting better at providing value and you will surely succeed better than most.
With almost everyone waking up and thinking only of themselves… that one person that wakes up and thinks about making someone else’s life better (e.g. boss, customer, lover, patient etc)… has PART 1 of the formula that will help him acquire wealth.
Being recognized as a person that provides value is very powerful. It can help you achieve a lot more than you think. Being a person focused only on making money tends to not give the same opportunities.
It may initially seem as though the people focusing on value won’t get very far financially compared to their counterparts. But that is not true. Especially because those that intend to help others first, are sought out more than those who tend to help themselves first.
The part of making money strategically while providing value… is more about having a solid business plan.
Associate Early With Financially Wealthy People
This idea isn’t too bad. But I feel like it is not specific enough.
Associate Early With People Who Aren’t Afraid Of Hard Work, Have Dreams Of Their Own, Care For You… And It Helps If They Are Financially Wealthy.
But the world isn’t perfect. People who have all these qualities are very rare.
So I would suggest forming associations with people who are self-motivated and are different from you.
We see the world through our own eyes. It will be great to understand the world from other people’s perspective every now and then. This is a significant contribution in any association. Especially because, in a well formed association… any weakness you have… could be someone else’s strength.
When they are down, you are up. When they are up, you are down.
Imagine the conversation 5 people from 5 different industries in an association would have. One in farming. Another in processing (like a miller). Another in computer software. Another in marketing. Another in finance. Probably the 5th in video and animation.
And none of these guys need to already be successful. They could be as ordinary as the everyday person earning just the same or less in wages. As long as each one is self-motivated and is ambitious… imagine the potential that association would have.
One of the problems we face, when looking for people to inspire us to take action on pursuing our dreams… we look for the people that are celebrated, “after the fact”. Meaning after they have been nominated for awards. When they have suddenly acquired billions.
We don’t always look for inspiration in what lead to those achievements. We don’t look for the person behind the success.
If we did, we would not only find inspiration in those that made it to the top, but also in the heroes and heroines fighting daily to become successful… refusing to quit.
If you form an alliance of people who put in work daily and refuse to quit, you can achieve anything you want.
Good Guys Finish Last
To me, this is a dangerous idea. Context is usually key with phrases like this and when applied to the work place or business environment… it tends to suggest that stepping over the weak and clueless is part of the process of succeeding.
Which to me is sick. And it doesn’t work as a long term strategy.
If you are a business… for every clueless customer you scam, there is another business waiting to improve their lives.
If this wasn’t true… then we would have less companies than we already have.
What determines whether a newly established service store will succeed in an already saturated market?
Is he or she happy or frustrated with the other service stores?
In business, if your focus is more on acquiring new customers than in retaining on-going ones… You won’t survive for long.
In the work place for every person you “step on”, you are destroying opportunity. Not just friendship (which I hope you care about).
Our brains are good at convincing us that people don’t grow and don’t change. So stepping on an intern won’t mean much. Especially because that intern will always be an intern for the rest of his/her life.
I strongly believe that those who screw people over… are extremely short-sighted.
Short-sighted being the fact that one is unable to see value beyond what is obvious in plain sight. Meaning, you see an intern for being an intern now and not seeing that intern as a potential head of department in significant company 5 to 6 years from now.
In this case, I’m also not saying that I believe in karma. But I believe in destroying opportunities.
Oh yes. You have heard that people can create opportunities, right?
Well, just the same, they can destroy them.
Investing your time and effort in helping someone learn, grow or succeed… can be compared to planting a seed.
Whether soon or late… that seed will grow into a tree. You or someone close to you (or both), will benefit from that seed.
Every interaction we have with other human beings is an exchange. What you leave the other person with will either contribute to making your society better or worse. I strongly believe this.
Anyway, success comes AND REMAINS with those that have good intentions towards the people they serve and work alongside. Even if it may take time to come.
Success cannot be maintained by those who have ill intentions towards the people they serve and work alongside. No one can be around people like this for long. Not customers… not team members.
As dreamers, we have to be cautious about what we subscribe to. There are so many ideas in the world about success, but not all of them make sense… especially in the long term.
And long term, to me, is the only way to play this game successfully.
But these are just my views. :)