What to get the entrepreneur in your life?
For my birthday (which is today) or Christmas, loving family and friends sometimes ask what they should “get” me. Last year, I asked for support in digging a well for a village in Africa. This year I’m asking for something closer to home.
I get to work with some of the most talented video artists on the planet. There are even more waiting eagerly in the wings, demo reels in hand. It’s my job to keep them busy and it’s never easy.
For my birthday, I’m asking my friends and family for their help.
Below are three ways you can help me and other entrepreneurs chase their dreams:
1) Seek to understand their chase
Just like it’s nice to understand that a farmer needs rain or an athlete needs to win, entrepreneurs appreciate being understood too.
Leadership can be lonely.
Many of them are risking their retirement, friendships, and health to follow their dreams. If you care about them, join them on the journey. Follow their business on Facebook. Subscribe to their blog. Have discussions with them more than once a year on their birthday.
(Personal note: this is my life goal if you want to understand what drives me every day)
2) Share their story
In the Attention Era, even well funded marketing campaigns get lost in the shuffle. Small business owners don’t have a prayer without help from their family, friends, and happy customers.
If you see a friend of yours doing remarkable stuff, share it. We all lose when we let great work go unnoticed.
(Personal note: for my friends looking to help, it will make my day if you share one of our videos with your network)
3) Refer people to them
In the “old days”, it would have been unheard of to travel to another town’s general store if your own town had what you needed. We have to stick together and referrals are one way to do it.
Since I don’t sell to consumers, I personally don’t ask my friends or family to buy our video production services. However, I do love when my friends tell their marketing friends about me.
Many people prefer to buy from people they know and trust. Help your friends know and trust your other friends.
- Make introductions
- Write Linkedin recommendations
- Encourage people to shop locally
The entrepreneur in your life doesn’t need more sweaters, ties, or birthday cards.
They need you…to care more…not just on their birthday.
Give a great gift tonight,
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Chasing dreams and pushing limits is not without sacrifice.
When you choose to do things that no one has done before, you’ll often find no one next to you while doing it. That’s the nature of trailblazing.
8pm Warriors will have lonesome nights.
Unfortunately, I have no clever solution to this problem. I see fellow 8pm Warriors suffering and I thought I would put this out there for you to discuss.
What can be done? Can anything be done? Is there a limit before someone burns out?
Personally, I enjoy connecting with other 8pm Warriors who are up and at ‘em at night when I’m chasing my life goal by myself. Luckily I also have a supportive spouse and that helps too. Finding a life partner was my first mission.
Others adopt pets, Skype a ton, or bring a Google+ hangout with them all over the house.
What do you recommend?
Let’s battle loneliness tonight,
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2012 is here. We made it!
Does it feel like New Year’s Day keeps coming faster and faster each year?
What is changing?
Every year I can’t help but think of the people I know that had big plans, huge hopes, and daring dreams for the last year. I’m always pulling for my fellow warriors, so I hate when it’s all talk, no action.
Warriors go to war, they don’t just talk about it.
I’ll never understand how some folks act like there’s an unlimited supply of days like today. Fresh starts. New years.
Here we go…again?
The problem is we only have so many new years before we run out. This is a sobering thought for sure, but true nevertheless. What would you do if this was your last New Year’s Day?
Would you still keep dreaming or would you start doing?
If you need a calendar to push yourself, take it. But please don’t keep putting off what matters.
You might push it right out of reach.
Have a great year,
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, New Year's Day
, New Year's Eve
This won’t apply to everyone. If you have trouble staying motivated, my blog isn’t for you. Try the thousands of CD’s, DVD’s, or books out there designed to motivate you. (Or try a motivational speaker instead)
For 8pm Warriors, motivation is the easy part.
By nature, we’re motivated people. We have goals. We have bright visions. We have big dreams.
Assuming that we also have brains, some level of success is a foregone conclusion.
Unless we get demotivated.
When you find and lead motivated people, remember that the key to success isn’t motivation. It’s avoiding demotivation.
- Eliminate distractions
- Be sensitive to their needs
- Act respectfully
- Operate in an open and honest manner
- Share information
- Maintain stability
Chances are you already know these suggestions. Now it’s time to focus on them.
Have a focused night,
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It’s May and that means graduation season. Right now millions of college graduates are chasing a limited number of jobs. It’s a war out there and the time has come for students to turn into warriors.
Every year, I write a commencement address and here are my notes for 2011. Please add your tips in the comment section or on the 8pm Warriors Discussion Forum on Facebook.
Here is just one 8pm Warrior’s simplified plan to succeed in the “New World” we all face:
1) Commit to something bigger than yourself.
It’s harder to quit on something more important than yourself. Have a goal. Be on a mission. Change the world. Save a life.
If you want to succeed, you must commit yourself to doing something big. Go big or go home.
2) Figure out what you love to do.
I guarantee you will not succeed doing anything you don’t love. It’s just too hard these days to conquer the challenges you will face if you don’t love your work.
I am convinced that no matter what, if you do what you love, you will find a way to make money. The internet allows passionate people to make money on niches.
3) Start doing it. Now.
If you don’t love what you’re doing, make a change. Don’t put it into your 5 year plan. Start today. Even if you have to get/keep your day job, get an 8pm Warrior job and then listen, learn, and begin tonight.
4) Meet others who love what you love.
Few people can win alone anymore. The world is too complex and we need people to pick us up when we’re tired, broken, and failing. It’s a war out there, and you will fail, fall, and need help. Find others, learn from them and win. Together you are stronger.
5) Be different.
There is too much in this world: too much information, too many things, too many messages, and too many people. If you’re a “One in a Million” type of person, that isn’t good enough anymore. That means there are 6,800 other people just like you out there, and they are all connected on the internet.
You need to stand out, find a niche, and be unique. You need to be the lone zebra in a stable of horses at the dude ranch. Guess which one everyone will want to ride. Be the zebra.
6) Make long-term plans, not short-term ones.
If you’ve committed yourself to something special, keep your eye on it. Make short-term adjustments, but focus on the big picture. It’s too easy to get distracted these days, so you need to be working towards long-term goals. Don’t waste energy on achieving short term goals. Everything should lead toward the end goal.
7) Work until you drop.
Once you’ve got a focus, a method, and a plan, you need to work it until you pass out. Don’t forget about your family, but do forget about long vacations, spa days, and “hanging around the house”. Tick, tock, tick, tock. You are getting older, the world is moving forward. Rest when you make it or you die.
8 ) Don’t be selfish.
You will need to give things, thoughts, and time away before you get anything in return. I’m not sure exactly why, other than people like nice people and are willing to help them in return.
Give, give, give.
9) Take your magic step.
If you will succeed, there will be one magic step only you will discover. The very nature of our world is that we cannot all have the same path, the same steps towards our dreams. You will need to take a unique step along the way, and it will be something that only you will find.
Call it magic or whatever you’d like, but you’ll need it and I can’t tell you what to look for.
It might be like the moment Bill Gates quit college to start Microsoft or when Mark Zuckerberg pushed send to share Facebook for the first time. We all have a step in life that we will need to take to achieve our dreams.
When you see yours. Take it!
Let me know if I can help.
Have a great life,
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, High School
Have you ever tried “half pushing” something heavy?
It doesn’t work.
There is no such thing as a “half push” or semi-push. We’re either pushing something or not.
Pushing is an “On” or “Off” activity.
The same goes for our work, our dreams, and our personal limits. We won’t reach our full potential by “sort of pushing” or sometimes pushing. The more we push, the more we move towards our goals.
We’ve got to keep the dial turned “on.”
On a side note, it’s important to push big things. If something is too easy to move, then we can’t call it pushing. It’s just sliding.
Big dreams need big pushes, and big pushes should have big dreams to push.
Push it tonight!
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, Your Limits
It’s all around us in so many forms.
- 55,000,000+ people worldwide
- 550,000+ US businesses that employ people
- 10,000,000+ dogs and cats
…just this year.
That’s a lot of heartache, countless broken dreams…so many memories.
Just this weekend, my friend Mr. Trey Cochran lost two friends to a tragic car crash in Bay City, Michigan.
Then why am I writing about this sensitive topic?
Because death reminds us of the timer. It forces us to remember that the people and dreams we have now will come to an end. This is the day to honor them. Your work tonight must make a difference.
Not tomorrow. Not next year.
Do work that matters, and do it with passion.
Have a great night,
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, Broken Dreams
Do you ever use this saying?
“If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.”
An Unlikely Creation
I’ve used this phrase many times to offer “sage advice” to others. However, after thinking about it, I will never, ever use it again. It’s a cheap, easy, misguided way to make a decision if you’re looking to make something big happen with your life.
It’s a mindset problem and is one reason why most people set their goals so low or don’t believe in chasing the dreams of their youth anymore.
The key question is: Who or what defines “too good to be true?” Our own past experiences? Others?
If using either of those options, most people might as well give up their 8pm Warrior ways. The opportunities we work so hard for are not supposed to be like anything we (or others) have seen before.
Isn’t unimaginable success the whole point?
Here’s a better idea. Instead of teaching cheap sayings that breed fear and rule out most life changing opportunities (joining a startup, leaving your long-time employer, etc.), let’s teach our kids, friends, students, or employees HOW to look at each opportunity with an educated eye.
There are many bad opportunities out there (see my MLM post last week), but there are also good ones too.
Some are so good; they just couldn’t possibly be true…like helping start Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Zimmerman Advertising, <insert your favorite 8pm Warrior startup success here>, or Clear Medical Solutions.
8pm Warriors have to use a better way to judge opportunities.
Have a Great Night!
Clear Medical Solutions
, Goal Setting
, Start up
, Zimmerman Advertising