Archive for the ‘Entrepreneur’s Lessons’ Category
People keep asking me about starting their own businesses. They have an idea, see its potential, but don’t know how to get started.
It takes four skills to be successful in business. Every successful entrepreneur has them, and I have personally applied them in my own businesses with great success. Nobody taught them to me when I started out 12 years ago. But I am going to show them to you. Today, I am going to reveal these four essential skills for business success. And I am even going to share practical actions you can take to master these skills.
Click on the video still below to watch the video, download the transcript and participate in the conversation!
Daily ripples of excellence – over time – become a tsunami of success. The space shuttle uses more fuel during its first three minutes after liftoff than during its entire voyage around the earth.
The first step truly is always the hardest. Because you are fighting the forces of gravity of your old thinking and habits. No human being likes change. We do love predictability. So anything new scares us and sets our internal systems into varying degrees of confusion and chaos. But you can’t reach mastery unless you are always willing to take action to move things forward.
A practical tool to use is “The Daily 5″. Imagine doing five little yet important focused acts every day to get you closer to your most important goals.
(From Robin Sharma’s The Leader Who Had No Title)
Got an email this morning from HubSpot about The Influencer Project – 60 Ways to Increase Your Online Influence – In 60 Minutes. HubSpot generally comes up with good content, so I went ahead and downloaded the report.
The Influencer Project got 60 thought leaders together, gave them one minute each to speak about what you can do to increase your online influence in the next sixty days. You can download the audio recording and transcript from here, but here are my notes (and what I found most valuable).
- People are not interested in your product / service. They are passionate about solving their problem.
- Use targeted Facebook ads to reach your audience. You can even target people from a specific company!
- Grow your circle. Look outside.
- Talk to people. Social media is about interaction.
- Give good information on how people can solve their problems.
- Be consistent.
- Get offline. Call and meet people in physical world!
- Create 2 minute videos with insights / solutions. (and invite them to subscribe to your list)
- Defy conventions.
- Talk about people you want to influence.
- Set up a Facebook fan page.
- Create a video interview of yourself – either by a professional reporter or a friend.
- Share your expertize. Share whatever you know.
- Be clear about your online persona from the beginning.
- Repeat your tweets / blog posts.
- Answer people’s questions on your landing page before selling them something.
- Use large buttons before the fold on your landing page.
- Get out of your head and get into other people’s spaces.
- Share about your different businesses / passions. It’s not necessary to talk only about one thing. Make more connections.
- What are the challenges your influencers have? Provide some solution for that. And then you influence your influencers.
- Stories – Human Psychology – Great Content
- Product value of your content gets you attention.
- Ask questions that start a conversation on social media
- Follow 5/10 people that you admire over next 60 days. Comment on their blog, retweet them. Then ask them for a 15 minute interview with you.
- And finally, the most important: Don’t just feel good about this advice, get into action!
What would you do to increase your online influence?
If you are coming here after my talk at Prerna – Entrepreneurship Seminar at SFIMAR today, welcome to a budding entrepreneur! What follows is a collection of my best articles on entrepreneurship from last 4 years.
My Best Blogs Posts for Entrepreneurs and Startups
- How to pick a co-founder?
- Are you a ‘scale-first’ or ‘money-first’ entrepreneur?
- Entrepreneur’s Lesson: Be Frugal, Avoid Temptations
- 5 Things That Changed My Life, and Could Change Yours
- Avoid these customers – five warning signs to say no to customers, plus three signs to die for
- 8 Traits To Be Great
- What’s the formula for Genius?
- Apple’s Marketing Secrets
- Life is about personal leadership
- Startup School 2008: Key Takeaways, from OnStartups
- The Art of Speed
- 10 Resolutions to boost your business
- Seven ways to avoid the growth traps
- Personal Brand – steps in creating a powerful personal brand
- Deliver Authentic Leadership – Robin Sharma
- HP’s Rules of Garage
Remember, there is equal risk in jobs and business
You will be concerned about four things when you consider starting on your own:
- Entrepreneurship is too risky
- It takes too much time
- Business requires significant skills and confidence
- (and best of all) Starting your own business needs lot of money
Consider that first three concerns apply to doing a job as well. As for money, it’s really about cashflows – both for individuals and businesses. If you have an urge, don’t wait, start something of your own. You can do it over weekends, you can do it on a small scale, but just do it!
And yes, you don’t need to be the poster boy of entrepreneurs, you don’t need huge successes
Most people talk about dreaming big and huge successes and the glamor around entrepreneurship. The truth is, you don’t need to be hugely successful. What matters is whether you are happier being on your own and making more than what you would have made in a job. You don’t need to grow to be the biggest company. You just need to follow your passion.
Go out, start something!
My school’s motto was “Better Everyday“. I kept screaming “Better Everyday, Better Everyday” during Friday morning school assemblies for over six years, but did not really understand what it meant.
I have been overwhelmed with work (happens every 3 months, it’s been a pattern, but more about it some other day). And while I was reflecting on this pile of work, I realized I did get at least one solid item off my list almost every day. But I was stressed as that list kept getting longer.
What if I focused on my successes, rather than failures? What if I could succeed in just one thing everyday?
I reviewed the work I did get done last week and felt very happy. That’s when I twitted:
Nothing motivates more than success. Where will you succeed today?
I wrote it, was proud and went to sleep. But when I booted up my MacBook this morning, I noticed it again.
And I stopped. Thought about where do I want to succeed today. Made a mental note of it. And began working.
This is how my day went:
- By 10.30, I had one client happy. Work was moving slowly on that project, but today we nailed it.
- Around 11.30, I had another client happy. Solved an annoying bug within minutes and the client said “Wahoo! That’s brilliant!”
- One major customer called before noon, complaining about a mail server issue. I talked to my team and gave an update in an hour. By the end of our day, we had a good enough solution in place.
- Shown stick to a project team in our standup meeting at noon. They completed pending work before signing out.
- Worked on cleaning up some malformed XML files in afternoon. This project was facing lot of technical challenges. But I had a working prototype ready at 6.45pm when I left work.
- And I even fixed an annoying bug in PlannerX just before I started this post.
Amazing how much happened by focusing on where I want to succeed today.
And I could say:
Satisfying day. Progress on projects. Made 5 customers happy!
Incremental improvements carried out daily can make transform your life in three months. Focusing on small successes can bring you big victories. I understand that’s what our school wanted us to learn from “Better Everyday”.
Did you get better today?
What are you going to succeed at tomorrow?