Tag Archives: business

5 Traits Millionaires Who Started From The Bottom Have

To become a self-made millionaire, a lot of self improvement and sacrifice has to take place. You have to be willing to go the extra mile that others aren’t willing to do. Take a peak at these qualities below, that millionaires who started from the bottom like many of us have:

Be fearless.

People will tell you what you can’t do, where you can’t go, and who you can’t be. Forget these people. When I was in college, I failed a class because of my writing ability. Because of this, I dropped out and wrote my book in 10 days. I sold thousands of them and destroyed numerous obstacles along the way. Be fearless and erase all limitations.

Be forceful.

People don’t know what they want until you give it to them. Sometimes you have to be forceful with your offerings. Move people to action by creating demand for their needs. Henry Ford was known for saying, “If I asked the people what they wanted, they would have said ‘Faster Horses’” If you keep supplying and proving the need, people will buy what you’re selling.

Be unpredictable.

Most people act so routinely that you can predict their every move. To be more strategic, you must meander your way into different thought patterns, languages, and activities. By consciously creating opportunities for yourself and doing the unthinkable, you’ll be able to exceed your own expectations. Eventually, predictable people will ask you how you did it and you’ll have to give them your unpredictable answers.

Be unduplicatable.

No one can copy you if you create a signature style for yourself. Whether you’re wearing bushy bowties or carrying Birkin bags, you need your style to work in your favor. Always say to yourself, “There is no one doing what I’m doing in the way that I’m doing it.” Eventually, your uniqueness will attract the kind of reputation that you’ve been looking for. All millionaires are completely unduplicatable.

Be controversial.

To become a millionaire, you have to push the limits. You’ve got to ask for things that no one has dared to ask for. Controversy means that you are willing to walk and talk about the subjects that people avoid. Sometimes, you’ll be unpopular for being controversial, but do it anyways. Always push your agenda and help people understand what you’re trying accomplish. If they understand and want to help, bring them on your team.

5 Must Haves For A Successful Business

Starting a business can be a daunting and complicated adventure with a lot of unknowns. Especially if this is your first go-around with starting your own company, it is always nice to to be able to bank on the facts  you know will certainly help you succeed. Take a look at the list below to make sure your new beginning has what it takes to succeed:

1. Genuine need

True business opportunities meet needs or solve pain points people have in their lives. The best way to discover these needs and pain points is by being intimately involved in a particular field or industry. Most successful entrepreneurs have worked in the industry they start their business in, in a related industry, or are very familiar with the products, services, and problems through personal experience. They discover a need and verify it through firsthand observation. You generally don’t discover pressing needs by joining a think tank, learning how to brainstorm, or sitting in a university class.

2. Credible experience

Knowing the products, services, and problems in an industry not only helps you avoid the pitfalls of trial-and-error learning, but it also gives interested parties the confidence that you’re the right person to build this business. Your experience and credibility are very important to potential team members, investors, customers, suppliers, and strategic partners. If you don’t have the skills and experience to build your business, you’ll be fighting an uphill battle. When this is the case, it’s best to find advisors, partners, and team members who can fill in the gaps in your skill set. In the end, you and your team will need to have the experience and credibility necessary to build your business.

3. Adequate Resources

Many would-be entrepreneurs think they need money to start their new venture — no money, no business. Actually, successful entrepreneurs use a host of other resources to get started; they work from home, find mentors and advisors, use free software, acquire used equipment, barter and trade, partner with their first customers, obtain credit from suppliers, and borrow before they rent or buy. The important thing is to determine what your new venture requires, then go out and find the resources you need to get started. You don’t necessarily need funding, but you do need resources.

4. Buying Customers

Smart entrepreneurs have customers committed to buying their products or services as soon as they launch their ventures. For instance, Dave Twombly had customers waiting for him to launch his garbage company. Patrick Hayden already had customers buying his firearms and accessories. And Joanne McCall sold her first contract to her employer prior to launching her marketing agency. When you have specific customers who are willing to buy your product as soon as you launch your venture, you have the ultimate validation of your solution, immediate sales, and early cash flow from which to grow. Selling your products or services prior to your launch is always a great strategy. If you can’t do it, you may not be ready to go.

5. Sound Business Model

Your business model is the way you’ll make money in your venture. It includes your sources of revenue, pricing, costs of goods sold, gross margin, operating costs, and profit margin — essentially the elements of an income statement.

The best businesses have multiple sources of revenue, competitive pricing, a 50 percent or better gross margin, and a 10 to 20 percent profit margin. If your numbers aren’t this attractive, it will be difficult to survive. So make sure all the numbers work before launching your venture.


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3 Ways You Can Gain Startup Capital

There are many exciting and new adventures that come along with starting a business, but  one aspect that may not be as exciting or may even be taunting, is finding ways to fund your company. Below are three ways to jumpstart your thinking on how you can fund your business:

1) Angel and seed investors.

Sometimes you find these people via the Internet, your personal network, or maybe you cornered Chris Sacca at his favorite coffee shop to pitch your idea. Regardless, your angel or seed investor is your go-to advisor whom you may compensate with equity in the company. Their network is always as rich as their net-worth, so take advantage of it. Angel investors can be found at websites such as Angel.co.

2) Crowdfunding websites.

Kickstarter, Indigogo, Gofundme, etc. We’ve all heard of these. Crowdfunding is a centralized way for startups to reach out to a large audience in their niche to make their prototypes or ideas a reality. In return, you not only create a community around your product, but you acquire your first users to test, utilize, and help innovate what you are working toward.

3) Private Lenders.

Music to an entrepreneur’s ears. Through private lenders, founders can gain access to funds without any involvement from the government. It is the most convenient way for most businesses to begin operations. One of the key players in this space is My Business Funded. They have a remarkable reputation for funding startups quickly and efficiently, even they’ve only been operational for 6 months. In turn, a ministration like this allows founders to worry less about operational costs, and focus on selling. Remember, as Shark Tank has shown, a startup doesn’t have to be a tech company; it’s any company on its way up! MyBusinessFunded is one of the quickest growing business funding websites today.

 


 

Read more from the original source:

https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/270373

How To Hold An Effective Meeting

I think we can all say, we have been in meetings that felt like a complete waste of our time. Either the meeting was disorganized, people were distracted by other devices, or there were no goals set for accomplishment; any of these types are ineffective. Take a look at the infographic below for the next time you conduct or organize a meeting, whether it be professional or for friend group matters:

meeting info

 

Original Source:

http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/253821

8 Traits That Will Make People Trust You As A Leader

What exactly makes a great leader, great? Scientifically, people will listen and follow someone who portrays specific traits; and if it is your goal to become a better leader or begin your journey of leading, pay close attention to the qualities below to see where you could improve:

1. Focus

“It’s been said that leadership is making important but unpopular decisions. That’s certainly a partial truth, but I think it underscores the importance of focus. To be a good leader, you cannot major in minor things, and you must be less distracted than your competition. To get the few critical things done, you must develop incredible selective ignorance. Otherwise, the trivial will drown you.”

—Tim Ferriss, bestselling author, host of The Tim Ferriss Show 

2. Confidence

“A leader instills confidence and ‘followership’ by having a clear vision, showing empathy and being a strong coach. As a female leader, to be recognized I feel I have to show up with swagger and assertiveness, yet always try to maintain my Southern upbringing, which underscores kindness and generosity. The two work well together in gaining respect.”

—Barri Rafferty, CEO, Ketchum North America

3. Transparency

“I’ve never bought into the concept of ‘wearing the mask.’ As a leader, the only way I know how to engender trust and buy-in from my team and with my colleagues is to be 100 percent authentically me—open, sometimes flawed, but always passionate about our work. It has allowed me the freedom to be fully present and consistent. They know what they’re getting at all times. No surprises.”

—Keri Potts, senior director of public relations, ESPN

4. Integrity

“Our employees are a direct reflection of the values we embody as leaders. If we’re playing from a reactive and obsolete playbook of needing to be right instead of doing what’s right, then we limit the full potential of our business and lose quality talent. If you focus on becoming authentic in all your interactions, that will rub off on your business and your culture, and the rest takes care of itself.”

—Gunnar Lovelace, co-CEO and cofounder, Thrive Market

5. Inspiration

“People always say I’m a self-made man. But there is no such thing. Leaders aren’t self-made; they are driven. I arrived in America with no money or any belongings besides my gym bag, but I can’t say I came with nothing: Others gave me great inspiration and fantastic advice, and I was fueled by my beliefs and an internal drive and passion. That’s why I’m always willing to  offer motivation—to friends or strangers on Reddit. I know the power of inspiration, and if someone can stand on my shoulders to achieve greatness, I’m more than willing to help them up.”

—Arnold Schwarzenegger, former governor of California

6. Passion

“You must love what you do. In order to be truly successful at something, you must obsess over it and let it consume you. No matter how successful your business might become, you are never satisfied and constantly push to do something bigger, better and greater. You lead by example not because you feel like it’s what you should do, but because it is your way of life.”

—Joe Perez, cofounder, Tastemade

7. Innovation

“In any system with finite resources and infinite expansion of population—like your business, or like all of humanity—innovation is essential for not only success  but also survival. The innovators are our leaders. You cannot separate the two. Whether it is by thought, technology or organization, innovation is our only hope to solve our challenges.”

—Aubrey Marcus, founder, Onnit

8. Patience

“Patience is really courage that’s meant to test your commitment to your cause. The path to great things is always tough, but the best leaders understand when to abandon the cause and when to stay the course. If your vision is bold enough, there will be hundreds of reasons why it ‘can’t be done’ and plenty of doubters. A lot of things have to come together—external markets, competition, financing, consumer demand and always a little luck—to pull off something big.”

—Dan Brian, COO, WhipClip

 


 

Learn more traits from the original source:

http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/270486

How To Start A Business Despite Your Lack Of Money

One of the biggest concerns with accomplishing a dream a lot of times, is money. But money doesn’t have to be a barrier when it comes to your dream of starting your own business, you just have to know how to work around it. Below is advice from Jayson Demers, CEO and Founder of AudienceBloom, on how to start a business despite your lack of money:

You have two main paths of starting a business with less money: lowering your costs or increasing your available capital from outside sources. You have three options here:

Option one: Reduce your needs

Your first option is to change your business model to demand fewer needs as listed above. For example, if you were planning on starting a company of personal trainers, you could reduce your “employee” expenses by being the sole employee at the start. Unless you need office space, you can work from home. You can even do your homework to find cheaper sources of supplies, or cut out entire product lines that are too expensive to produce at the outset.

There are a few expenses that you won’t be able to avoid, however. Licensing and legal fees will set you back even if you cut back on everything else. According to the SBA, many microbusinesses get started on less than $3,000, and home-based franchises can be started for as little as $1,000.

Option two: Bootstrap

Your second option invokes the idea of a “warmup” period for your business. Instead of going straight into full-fledged business mode, you’ll start with just the basics. You might launch a blog and one niche service, reducing your scope, your audience and your profit, in order to get a head-start. If you can start as a self-employed individual, you’ll avoid some of the biggest initial costs (and enjoy a simpler tax situation, too).

Once you start realizing some revenue, you can invest in yourself, and build the business you imagined piece by piece, rather than all at once.

Option three: Outsource

Your third option is all about getting funding from outside sources. I’ve covered the world of startup funding in a number of different pieces, so I won’t get into much detail, but know there are dozens of potential ways to raise capital — even if you don’t have much yourself. Here are just a few potential sources for you:

  • Friends and family. Don’t rule out the possibility of getting help from friends and family, even if you have to piece the capital together from multiple sources.

  • Angel investors. Angel investors are wealthy individuals who back business ideas early in their generation. They typically invest in exchange for partial ownership of the company, which is a sacrifice worth considering.

  • Venture capitalists. Venture capitalists are like angel investors, but are typically partnerships or organizations and tend to scout businesses that are already in existence.

  • Crowdfunding. It’s popular for a reason: with a good idea and enough work, you can attract funding for anything.

  • Government grants and loans. The Small Business Administration (and a number of state and local government agencies) exist solely to help small businesses grow. Many offer loans and grants to help you get started.

  • Bank loans. You can always open a line of credit with the bank if your credit is in good standing.


 

Learn more from the original source here:

http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/271446

Tips To Growing Your Leadership Skills While You Grow Your Company

It is such an accomplishment to grow a successful business from the ground up with your own two hands and to see the progress of each department. However, while every other aspect of the company has grown, entrepreneurs must keep in mind their leadership skills have to expand as well. Going from leading yourself, to one other person to a team of skilled employers takes different types of leadership skills. Below are a few tips to help make those adjustments:

1. Learn to manage managers.

The most important parts of this transition are clarity and training. Be clear with your new managers about what their personal and team responsibilities are and how you expect the level of effort to be split between responsibilities. Secondly, make sure they have the learning resources and support to become effective managers.

2. Transition from presence to process.

When a startup is young, leaders tend to be hands-on and physically present every day. Once a company scales, however, a leader’s physical and mental presence needs to be devoted elsewhere. One study shows managers waste up to 80 percent of their time on things that have little to no impact on their companies’ long-term value — and micromanaging employees falls squarely into that category.

Thus, it’s key to transition your leadership skills from presence to process. Do this by applying organizational processes that ensure clear communication — communication effectiveness is the key ingredient of successful leadership, especially when founders aren’t able to bump into everyone on a daily basis.

3. Prepare to address administrative duties.

As your team grows, so will your administrative burden. At some point, you’ll have to decide whether you’re going to continue handling all this paperwork yourself of if you want to hire an administrative assistant to handle it. Doing neither will leave your employees out in the cold.

Tasks such as expense reports and payroll can be taken off your plate by a full-time (or virtual) administrative assistant. Consider the time and effort you’re currently spending on these things; then consider all the things you could be doing.


 

Read more from the original Source here:

http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/269588

7 Books You Should Be Reading if You’re an Entrepreneur

If you’re aspiring to be a wildly successful entrepreneur (or even if you already are one) you should always stay on top of tools that will help boost you to the next level in your career… These book recommendations have inspired and shaped some of the most successful entrepreneurs out there (think Mark Cuban) and are a great way to get into the right mindset to rock your business:

 

“The Fountainhead” by Ayn Rand

Self-made billionaire Mark Cuban tells Business Insider that this book is required reading for every entrepreneur.

It’s also a favorite of Charlie O’Donnell, a partner at Brooklyn Bridge Ventures. He says:

I don’t know any book that sums up the entrepreneurial passion and spirit better than “The Fountainhead” by Ayn Rand: “The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.”

“The Effective Executive” by Peter Drucker

This is one of the three books that Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos had his senior managers read for a series of all-day book clubs. Drucker helped popularize now commonplace ideas about management. For example, managers and employees should work toward a common set of goals.

The Effective Executive” explores the time-management and decision-making habits that best equip an executive to be productive and valuable in an organization.

Disclosure: Jeff Bezos is an investor in Business Insider through his personal investment company Bezos Expeditions.

 

“The Innovator’s Dilemma” by Clayton Christensen

"The Innovator's Dilemma" by Clayton Christensen

Amazon

Bezos also had his executives read “The Innovator’s Dilemma,” one of the all-time most influential business books and a top pick of several other founders and VCs, whose reviews are below.

Steve Blank, a former serial entrepreneur who now teaches at UC Berkeley and other schools, says of the book:

Why do large companies seem and act like dinosaurs? Christensen finally was able to diagnose why and propose solutions. Entrepreneurs should read these books as “how to books” to beat large companies in their own markets.

Chris Dixon, an investor at Andreessen Horowitz and a former cofounder and CEO of Hunch, notes:

“The Innovator’s Dilemma” popularized the (often misused) phrase “disruptive technology,” but there’s a lot more than that one big idea. Great insights into the “dynamics” (changes over time) of markets.

“Business Adventures” by John Brooks

"Business Adventures" by John Brooks

Amazon

This collection of New Yorker stories by John Brooks became Bill Gates’ all-time favorite business book after Warren Buffett recommended it to him in 1991.

Gates says of the book:

“Business Adventures” is as much about the strengths and weaknesses of leaders in challenging circumstances as it is about the particulars of one business or another. In that sense, it is still relevant not despite its age but because of it.

“Benjamin Franklin” by Walter Isaacson

"Benjamin Franklin" by Walter Isaacson

Amazon

Elon Musk, the billionaire CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, says this book is one of his all-time favorites.

“You can see how [Franklin] was an entrepreneur,” Musk says in an interview with Foundation. “He was an entrepreneur. He started from nothing. He was just a runaway kid.”

Musk has read other books by biographer Walter Isaacson, and he also recommends “Einstein: His Life and Universe.”

“Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill

"Think and Grow Rich" by Napoleon Hill

Wilder Publications

Daymond John, cofounder of clothing business FUBU and investor on ABC’s hit pitch show “Shark Tank,” tells Business Insider that Napoleon Hill’s classic business book, “Think and Grow Rich,” changed his life.

“The main takeaway from that was goal-setting,” John says. “It was the fact that if you don’t set a specific goal, then how can you expect to hit it?”

“Conscious Capitalism” by John Mackey and Raj Sisodia

Kip Tindell, cofounder and CEO of The Container Store, tells Business Insider that this is a must-read for entrepreneurs and business leaders.

Tindell is close friends with John Mackey, cofounder and co-CEO of Whole Foods Market, and says that they both believe inConscious Capitalism, “that a win-win is what’s most profitable, and that no one has to lose. Business schools have discovered it, studied it, and found that companies that practice it are more successful.”

This book is a great primer.

 


 

Original Source:

http://www.businessinsider.com/best-books-for-entrepreneurs-to-read-2016-1