- I run a website & YouTube channel
- I’ve sold many eBooks & courses
- My channel has 1.7M subscribers & 140M views in total
Do I think I’m successful?
But I’ve also had failures along the way…
I’ve built good relationships with customers…
…and my employees.
I’ve had many different experiences…
…and lessons learned as an entrepreneur.
Now let me share all 25 of them.
Business Lesson #1 – No Man Is An Island
When I first became an entrepreneur 10 years ago, I was on my own. I had all the ideas. I never shared questions or comments. And it wasn’t fun.
I’m much happier now, not just because my business has been making money, but also because of the people I’ve made connections with. Humans are social beings, after all.
An entrepreneur’s journey shouldn’t be a solo one. There are people who’ll want to support you. People who’ve been through it all or are starting off just like you. Find them.
This may sound odd, but reach out to other entrepreneurs in your industry. That’s right, your competitors. Why? They’ll be your best buddies. I enjoy hanging out with Aaron Marino (Alpha M) and Jose Zuniga (Teaching Men’s Fashion) because we all do the same stuff. We understand each other. We push each another to excel but there’s no sense of needing to upstage the other guy. I’m glad to be in the same business as people like them.
How would you react to a guy who approaches you and says “Hi, I’m __. I have this great business idea. Want to work with me?”
Never works. Why not? Because as an entrepreneur, you’re not hard-selling on the street. You have to let other people warm up to you. You only turn them off by clearly showing your agenda before getting to know them.
To build real relationships, you need to connect with everyone on a personal level. Next time you’re at a networking event, start with small talk. Find out common interests. Let your conversation be organic, so the subject of business comes up naturally.
One guy who knows the supreme value of good relationships is my friend Chris Ducker. I was one of his early customers when he created the Youpreneur website. He’s been a fantastic mentor of mine since then. I learned how to best systematize my businesses from him.
Are you an entrepreneur who needs help getting the ball rolling? Then I recommend that you check out Chris’s latest book, Rise Of The Youpreneur. It’s the perfect guide to navigating the modern business world, where things change fast. You’ll learn tips and strategies he’s shared with countless entrepreneurs in recent years. You’ll find out how to run businesses the new way so you never get left behind.
Click HERE to discover Rise Of The Youpreneur by Chris Ducker. Once you get the book, send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and you’ll receive exclusive video footage from Menfluential 2018. Why? Because I like to share. Plus, this gives you more incentive to buy something which can really change your life.
Business Lesson #3 – Spend Your Time On Things You Prioritize
Instead of saying “I don’t have time” for this or that, simply tell yourself to avoid doing what’s NOT important. You must pinpoint right away whether or not a certain task is a priority (meaning it’ll directly affect your business).
Business Lesson #4 – Say NO More Often Than You Say YES
Being a “yes” man is dangerous. If there are more things you commit to instead of reject, you’ll be saying no to the crucial stuff later on.
Your time is finite. Your energy for the day is limited. So outside of family and those you’re obliged to, avoid accepting requests that may compromise your business goals.
Business Lesson #5 – Most Things Don’t Matter
If you’ve never heard of the “80-20 Rule” by economist Vilfredo Pareto, it was formed in 1906 when Pareto discovered that 20% of the Italian people owned 80% of all the wealth in Italy.
That led to the idea that 20% of your efforts in anything yields 80% of your return. It can even be that putting 5% effort = a 65% return. So what’s the point here? To focus on whatever it is that delivers the goods every day. All other tasks in your checklist are secondary and can be pushed for next week or next month.
Business Lesson #6 – Don’t Believe Your Own Lies
“I’ll make that deadline.” “I can have my channel launched according to schedule.” “There’s nothing more about my product to improve.”
You can act super confident making those statements, but if your gut tells you everything isn’t 100% set, chances are you’re lying to yourself. Don’t feel too ambitious and succumb to those lies. Be realistic.
Business Lesson #7 – Listen More Closely To Those You Respect
This is similar to Lesson #4. You can only absorb so much information before you get lost or stuck. While you want to be open to constructive feedback and suggestions, be selective with those you listen to. Hear what different people say and thank them for their input, but learn to block out most of it.
Your mind should already be made up: whose voices really matter? Who has followed their own advice and succeeded? Whom do you really respect? Chances are, this won’t be a long list of people.
Business Lesson #8 – Make Your Own Decisions
Listening is a good thing. Ceding your authority and letting others make decisions for you? Not a good thing.
It’s your life. It’s your business in the making. It’s your vision. If you want to take pride in all your gains in the future, you’ve got to call the shots and be ready to face the consequences of those decisions.
That’s the only way you’ll stay clear of anyone who tries to deceive or manipulate you. Entrepreneurship is like survival in the jungle. You’re either a predator or prey.
Business Lesson #9 – You Reap What You Sow
There’s a reason I maintain good vibes and a drama-free environment at RMRS. I want my company associated with positivity. I want people to know my brand for building others up instead of tearing them down (although I do mention here and there that I prefer certain items or clothing choices). I believe in good karma.
Business Lesson #10 – People Remember How You Made Them Feel
If you recall Lesson #1 (Humans Are Social Beings), there’s obviously a lot of chit-chatting when you run a business. But beyond the words that you’re supposed to say are the feelings you want others to feel. Positive feelings tend to outlast the words accompanying them. Try to treat everyone you work with as if you already like them. Again, good karma.
Business Lesson #11 – Treat Your Customers Really Well…And Your Team Even Better
Every entrepreneur and aspiring entrepreneur has to treat customers like the most important people around. But only the customers? What about employees and colleagues? Those are the unsung heroes.
Now I should take the opportunity to thank everybody in my team – from Jamie my assistant to Yuri who keeps the RMRS site running smoothly, Thomas who edits and publishes the videos on YouTube, Travis who manages content and all the guys in the Content team. Keep up the awesome work, guys!
I’m grateful to have people who’ve stood by me through the highs and lows. I’m their boss – but I’m also their ever-enthusiastic cheerleader. And that fosters the perfect company dynamic.
Business Lesson #12 – Management Is NOT Leadership
The difference between these two is the goal behind each role. A manager focuses on strategic placements of people in the company so as to get everyone working efficiently. Meanwhile, a leader inspires and sets an example. Good leaders never ask people to do something that they wouldn’t do themselves.
Business Lesson #13 – A Successful Company Needs Both Management And Leadership
You always start the road to entrepreneurship being a manager. You create the brand. You plan what you’re going to sell. Then you bring in people to help you with selling, marketing, and customer service. Once you’ve filled all those roles, it’s vital to be a leader as well. Motivation can’t survive on a nice paycheck alone.
Business Lesson #14 – Know Your “Weak” Skills & Get The Right People For Them
You’re not good at everything. It’s hard to admit, but it’s even harder to turn into an all-around expert than to bring in people who are already experts.
Identify where your weaknesses ASAP so you can bring people on to balance them out. Even if it means hiring a sales guy who takes 25% of the loot, it’s the better option if selling isn’t your forte. That way, you’ll be making more progress more quickly. Consider the short-term price for long-term success.
Business Lesson #15 – There Are No Guarantees Of Success
Many people understandably prefer a guaranteed paycheck with a fixed sum of money. No risk. No uncertainty. Part of being an entrepreneur is accepting that what you’re doing is risky. You’ve got to make decisions based on faith, even if there’s little evidence your plan will work.
Business Lesson #16 – Fear Is Normal, But It Can Be Managed
Never let fear stop you from taking action. If you’re scared of the unknown, don’t forget that every entrepreneur has been there and every future one will be. In most cases, you can take a calculated risk (e.g. something you’ve researched and concluded to be worthwhile) instead of a leap of faith. The more realistic you make your goals look, the better you’ll manage your fears.
Business Lesson #17 – Start NOW (Not Later)
Today’s the day. An imperfect action today is almost always better than a perfect action done a year from now. Once the day ends, you never get it back.
Business Lesson #18 – You Will Fail…A Lot
Rejections will come. Disappointments will be felt. Don’t let them prevent you from trying again and again. You decide when to stop.
The best mindset for an entrepreneur: when you fail, fail fast. Pick yourself back up the second you fall. Reassess the situation and search for something else that works. Then keep going forward. Only consider quitting if (A) you feel you’ve tried everything doable or (B) people you care for are negatively affected.
Business Lesson #19 – Own Your Business (Don’t Let It Own You)
Bear in mind that you’re a person first and an entrepreneur second. You must establish barriers between the business and non-business aspects of your life. Otherwise, you’ll end up living the same narrative as those workaholics in Click and The Devil Wears Prada.
Systematize your business so it can eventually run on its own. That means you won’t have to sacrifice so much personal time to constantly check up on things.
Business Lesson #20 – Have Set Working Hours
I start and end work at the same time every day. And the moment I leave the office, I take nothing with me.
You should ideally treat your business like a typical nine-to-five. Don’t take your work home unless it’s absolutely necessary. This forces you to be your most productive self in a fixed span of time, and you’ll get to carry on with normal life after.
Business Lesson #21 – Keep Your Work Week 35 Hours Or Less
Know this: the average entrepreneur works effectively for 35 hours a week (not 40). The problem with more hours is, you tend to expand the time it takes to complete a certain task even though you’d actually need less time if you were laser-focused. Fewer hours will help you cut all the “fat” off your agenda each day. You’ll focus on what really matters to gain the highest possible returns.
Business Lesson #22 – Always Pay Yourself
They say you never put all your eggs in one basket. That’s the universal truth in business. Don’t be tempted to gamble away all your income and personal wealth just because your company’s likely to grow much bigger. You still have a family to feed, bills to pay, and the occasional holiday in order to avoid a burnout.
Business Lesson #23 – Never Stop Learning
Whether you’re fresh out of college or have 20 years’ managerial experience in the bag, learning never ends. No matter how much you think you know, you can always read or listen to new ideas and perspectives. That’s how to stay on top your game as an entrepreneur.
Business Lesson #24 – Take Good Care Of Your Body
I once attended a coaching program in Chicago along with 50 other business owners, most of whom were more successful than I was.
We were all asked what we’d like to improve about ourselves in the next three years. Surprisingly, 75% mentioned their health. If even successful people who presumably have lots of money might have trouble taking care of themselves, what about new entrepreneurs? Your body needs the right nutrition, plus enough rest and exercise if you want to stay sharp or productive.
Business Lesson #25 – Have Fun
You’ve got to love what you do. I cannot overstate this. If you’re genuinely excited about each YouTube video you create, each topic you cover, each time you research and find information that can solve problems or answer people’s questions, it’ll sharpen the quality of the final product. Even I’ve made it a goal this year to make everything I do at RMRS more fun.
That’s it – 25 important lessons I’m passing on to current and future entrepreneurs. I hope you’ve gained a little more wisdom from this post. It’s a privilege for me to be able to share this and inspire others.
Running a business isn’t easy. But with the right preparation and the right people around you, success will eventually come knocking on the door. Just be patient. Stay consistent. And always have fun along the way!