Recently I attended an incredible five-day Guerilla Business School in Los Angeles, put on by a training organization called Peak Potentials. The schools are taught by real hands on successful business men and woman who have made millions or even billions, doing what they love. Their goal in teaching this school is to educate others to do the same, so that collectively we all make lots of money so we can help improve the world!
Here are nine key tips.
Spend 60 percent of your time on marketing and sales, not administration or operations. Most people spend less than 20 percent of their time on new business and sales and 60 percent of their time on administrative items. If you aren’t growing, you won’t have anything to administrate, correct? Have the growth you need and the rest will fall into place when you need it.
Owners should work “on” their business, not “in” their business. Most entrepreneurs come from the trenches and then stay there when they open their own business. They do not start with management skills initially and have to learn from the school of hard knocks. People open up their firm when they think they can do it better than their bosses, and then continue to work “in” and not “on” their business. Unfortunately, they are not able to grow and manage their firms, as they don’t have the pieces in place to delegate the working “in” their business to others. Read Michael Gerber’s book the “E Myth” for more great information on the subject.
Surround yourself with successful people and mentors. You are who you associate with. Be a part of a great mastermind group for your own learning and support. Thomas Edison and Harry Firestone were part of Henry Ford’s mastermind group.
Invest in your business versus spending your profits on yourself. Owners need to set their firm up for maximum sales price for their retirement, making their firm more valuable. This can be a sale internally to others or a third party sale. If profits are not invested back in, to make the firm bigger and better, the owners are selling the firm to themselves now, and won’t command a higher price tag later.
Inspire people in your firm by knowing and communicating the firm’s purpose/mission. Employees need to know what you want to do, and they can help you get there. High-performing firms often even share their financial statements monthly and the budget, so everyone knows how the firm is doing. If bonuses are based on individual’s efforts, there will more likely be more growth and happier people working towards the firm’s purpose and mission.
Be a good listener, especially to what your customers want and need. Do the firm’s products meet the needs of the customers, then why? Most firms sell what they have to others versus listening to what the customers need and desire and creating that product.
Build the right team so you can grow and add more new business. High-performing firms have owners who work hard on bringing in the best people and essentially replace themselves long before retirement. That shows confidence and working smart.
Outsource what you can so you don’t have a large amount of fixed payroll. Then if the business revenues go up or down, owners have flexibility and don’t get into financial trouble. Today there are so many good people looking for work that commissioned sales and outsourcing is working well for many growing firms.
Do not be afraid to take risk by taking action. We learn much more from our mistakes in life and in our business. Look at how many times many of the greats in business started and failed, for example Charles Schwab of US Steel, Donald Trump and Steve Jobs. A great strategy is to consider being ready, firing and then aiming. Too many people strategize down to the last detail on what they might do with their lives or business and miss the opportunities and learning, because they never take the action.
These tips when successfully implemented will change the face of your business and make you a formidable force to compete with.