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The Worst Addiction for Entrepreneurs

erase-addictionAddiction comes in many forms – drugs, alcohol, sex and gambling to name a few. But they aren’t the worst addiction for entrepreneurs.

Any of these addictions can destroy your life, to be sure. They can be so destructive that other people see it. They see you screwing it all up. They see you throwing your life away.

If you’re lucky – if they love you enough – they step in. “Faithful are the wounds of a friend,” King David said in Proverbs.

The invisible addiction
The worst addiction makes the top of the list because no one sees it. You may have this addiction and not even realize it.

But it’s there – lurking inside your head. If left unchecked, this addiction grows like a cancer inside you and eventually consumes you.

It drives your thoughts. It runs your life. Yet you’re not even aware of it.

You think you’re being prudent. You’re thinking you’re being wise. But you’re addicted. You’re hooked on your past mistakes!

This addiction manifests itself in one of two ways:

You stop taking risks
Anybody who does anything will make mistakes. As an entrepreneur, you do much more than “anything” – you turn nothing into something. You create value in the process, for yourself and others.

You will fail from time to time. When faced with failure, the average person stops trying. They give up. They get hooked on the mistake and it drives their life from that point forward.

They don’t take any risk. They get stuck in mediocrity. They never reach BIGG success.

The cure
So many people think, “I wish I had …” or “I wish I wouldn’t have …” when things don’t turn out as planned. And things never turn out as planned.

Successful entrepreneurs think, “Next time, I will …”

So forget about your mistakes and remember the lesson. Bring your experience into your next decision. You’re stronger and wiser now. You’re better prepared for BIGG success!

You double down
Some people do the opposite. When faced with a loss, they double down.

They desperately try to “get their money back.” They stop investing and start gambling and scrambling. They’re afraid of failing. They worry they’ll be embarrassed. They will do just about anything to try to “rescue” their investment of time and money.

The funny thing is – in some cases, this turns out to be the best response. You’re not a failure until you give up. However, you may be better off focusing your resources on something else.

The cure

Remove the emotion from the situation. Seek help from people who have been there. It’s tough to know whether to push on or move on. Ultimately, the decision is yours. Let logic rule and, one way or another, you’ll reach BIGG success!

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What It Really Takes to be a Successful Entrepreneur

push to reach bigg successEntrepreneurs are hard-charging people. We push and push and push to reach our goals. Sometimes – most times – things don’t work out like we planned.

It takes longer than we expected. It costs more money than we budgeted. It may have been a forecasting error. We may have miscalculated the opportunity or chose the wrong strategy.

Overcoming setbacks while mere mortals give up
In the face of these setbacks, some entrepreneurs give up. They will never reach BIGG success.

You’re different. You know that you must press on against seemingly insurmountable obstacles if you want to succeed as an entrepreneur. Mere mortals fall by the wayside.

Successful entrepreneurs find a way to get past it. They may climb over it or dig under it. They may get around it on one side or the other. Or they may just find a way to obliterate the obstacle altogether.

Fighting stress that crushes the average human
But you can’t push forward blindly. You have to learn and adapt and learn and adapt – every step of the way.

It requires you to work harder and longer and smarter – consistently, over time – to win the entrepreneurial game. You will get tired, but you’ll draw on reservoirs of energy you didn’t know you had.

You will get frustrated. You will feel stress that would crush the average human. But you’ll deal with it … because you’re an entrepreneur.

Living out the invisible

A friend of ours often reminds us that entrepreneurs “live out the invisible.” You make the intangible tangible. You breathe life into an idea.

Your work is the manifestation of a dream. Your job is to turn that dream into reality. It’s your calling to create value for yourself by creating value for others … because you’re an entrepreneur!

We face some major challenges in our world today. People are hurting. People need help.

Entrepreneurs are the solution. We need more entrepreneurs. We need you. You can change the world – or at least your corner of it. That’s BIGG success!

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Step 4-Find Abundance in a World of Scarcity

abundanceBad news is the news. We hear a lot about the scarcity. We don’t hear so much about the abundance.

That’s why we’re talking about steps you can take to live abundantly. We’re ready for Step 4:

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Eliminate "zero-sum" thinking

One of the reasons we don't feel more abundance is because we've bought into the mindset that everything is a zero-sum game. Somebody has to lose in order for anybody to win.

Hollywood says so.

Our media tells us that it's the case.

Politicians don’t get it.

Successful entrepreneurs get it.

Bigg success is life on your own terms. Implicit in that definition is that you are the entrepreneur of your life.

You own it. You are in charge. There’s something successful entrepreneurs understand that many people – including the elite in our society – just don’t get.

Entrepreneurs know that they win second.

In order for them to win, at least some portion of society must win first. They create fortunes because they understand that there are very few zero-sum games in the world.

Think about it. In most cases, we do business with people because it's mutually beneficial. If it weren't, we would stop doing business together.

So if we take the "zero-sum" attitude, we won't create value. If one party has to lose so the other party can win, nothing is added to society.

Bill Gates got it. He became the richest person in the world because a large number of people felt that Microsoft’s products made their lives and / or their businesses better.

Some argue about his contribution. That will be true of your contribution as well. You will face critics if you do anything of any significance.

But you won’t care.

You will let the market vote. You will know that you have helped people win because they will vote with their dollars. They choose to work with you because you make their lives better in some way.

Warren Buffett got it. Like Bill Gates, he has ascended to the top of the list of the richest people in the world. He did it by delivering returns to his investors that they couldn’t achieve on their own.

To live abundantly, we must first discard the zero-sum game mentality. 

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Create wealth by creating value

The best way to do that is one relationship at a time. We must adopt a win / win attitude in every relationship we have. When we do that we create value.

The value of any relationship is the emotional goodwill you have created in that relationship. The sum of the value of all of your relationships is the value of your network.

Now and in the foreseeable future, the greatest wealth will be created by people with the best networks. Create value – and therefore abundance – for other people and you'll find abundance in your own life.

Now, please understand that it doesn't happen instantly. In the economy of a previous generation, you had to plant in the spring if you wanted to harvest in the fall. It may take days, weeks, months, or even years for you to see the result.

However, if all you see when you look at people is dollar signs, you won't harvest the opportunities presented in the years ahead. You won't create wealth. You won't feel abundance.

Put other people first. Look for a win for them with all the fervor you look for a win for you. That’s a mindset that leads to bigg success.

We’re thrilled that you checked in with us today. Thanks so much.

Please join us next time as we wrap up this series on abundance. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

 

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00507-102109.mp3

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3 Reasons Entrepreneurs Fail

targetMany people are surprised at how hard it is to get a new idea off the ground. It takes planning, persistence and patience along with constant action.

There are a number of reasons why entrepreneurs miss the mark. We’ll talk about three of them today.

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RAS – Ready Aim Syndrome

A lot of people spend a lot of time looking for that perfect idea. As soon as they find it, fortune will be theirs.

But the perfect idea never comes. So they find themselves aiming and aiming and aiming.

We have an acquaintance who is always telling us about his latest greatest idea. The problem is he never pulls the trigger. He never does anything because no idea will stand the test of time. By the time he is finally ready for his bigg idea, the opportunity has passed.

RFS – Ready Fire Syndrome

These people have an affliction that is opposite our first group. They don’t have the patience to test their idea slowly and inexpensively.

They think that every idea is a bullseye. All they have to do is get started.

Most ideas are garbage. They won’t stand up to the scrutiny that should be done before launching.

Walking the tight rope
So the challenge in launching a new endeavor is walking that tight rope between analysis paralysis and banning planning. You have to find the balance.

Most successful entrepreneurs probably fire quicker than most people would be comfortable doing. However, the ones who reach bigg success understand that there is tremendous value in the planning process as well.

FTS – Fixed Target Syndrome

Once you launch, you have to understand the need to be fluid. The situation on the ground will change. You will learn things you didn’t know before.

Here’s a very important point – the only way you learn these things is by launching. Those who are still on the sidelines will never catch up. You’re trying to hit a moving target, not a fixed one.

Our miss

Unfortunately, this subject is close to us. We launched a new business late last year. We help financial institutions communicate better with small business owners.

Now you know what’s been going on with financial institutions in the last twelve months. We saw the free fall happen right before our eyes.

But we had been working on this thing for a while. We had surveyed a number of potential customers. Our product was a good fit. So we launched.

But when the economy took a tumble, so did our customers’ budgets.

We kept listening. We responded. We tweaked our product offerings. We certainly can’t report that we’re a bigg success yet with this venture, but it seems to be gaining traction.

Along the way, we’ve learned a lot about our customers and about business. We certainly can look back and see things we would do differently. But that will always be the case.

The important thing is to get an idea, test it to see if it’s a good opportunity and then get started and adapt. That leads to bigg success. At least we hope so!

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Thanks so much for checking in with us today. Please join us next time when we’ll talk about when to shut up. Guess that’s our cue. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

 

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00487-092309.mp3

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a chess game which has similarities to having to think like an entrepreneur

Think Like an Entrepreneur

a chess game which has similarities to having to think like an entrepreneur

“Failing to plan is planning to fail.” ~ Ancient Proverb.

“Begin with the end in mind. Then put first things first.” Stephen Covey, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People*.

In business school, we’re taught to define our goals, given our available resources, and then find the critical path to reach them. This is called causal or predictive reasoning, according to Saras Sarasvathy.

She teaches entrepreneurship at the University of Virginia and is the author of Effectuation: Elements of Entrepreneurial Expertise* and recently released an updated version of this book in paperback.

She says that successful entrepreneurs don’t think like MBAs. In fact, they do the opposite. They use effectual reasoning. Entrepreneurs who reach bigg success use the resources available to them. They let goals manifest themselves over time given their creativity, direction and connections.

Entrepreneurs think differently than MBAs

There’s a great article on Harvard Business  site about Dr. Sarasvathy’s research. It asks if MBAs or entrepreneurs are better suited for today’s business realities. Bill Taylor, the author, says it simply:

  • MBAs focus on the upside; entrepreneurs focus on the downside.
  • MBAs assume it’s a zero-sum game; entrepreneurs think win – win.
  • MBAs thrive on certainty; entrepreneurs thrive on uncertainty.

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george I’m even more confused than usual. I just don’t know what to think since I sort of fit into both categories!

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marylynn
Do you feel like you’re getting pulled in both directions at once, George?

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george
I feel like I’m getting stretched like Stretch Armstrong!

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marylynnWell, there is an answer. You just have to know when to use causal reasoning and when to think effectually.

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We define bigg success as life on your own terms. You are the entrepreneur of an incredible enterprise – your life – whether or not you’re an entrepreneur in the traditional definition of the word.

That’s why we think this research is so fitting not just for business owners, but for everyone:

When things are uncertain, think like an entrepreneur.

It appears that, in the years ahead, we need to expect more of the unexpected. Entrepreneurs don’t bother trying to predict the future; they create it.

How do they do that?

They act and adapt.

They use the resources they have to try something. If it doesn’t work, they take the knowledge they gained and try something else.

If it does work, they keep pushing it. As their enterprise grows, when there is more at stake, they may switch to more causal reasoning. Or they may jump ship and start the whole thing over!

Because to many entrepreneurs, the journey is the reward. That mindset often leads to bigg success.

Thanks so much for reading our post today. Please join us next time as we discuss when the dream becomes a nightmare. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00447-072809.mp3

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