What do the greatest entrepreneurial minds have in common?
Steve Jobs defied what was once thought impossible in the realm of technology and ultimately revolutionised the way we work, communicate, and live our lives. Elon Musk continues to wean us off fossil fuels and colonise Mars, a feat that seemed unfathomable only years ago. Richard Branson is notorious for his love of testing limits, as seen through Virgin Galactic, which is developing the first-ever commercial spacecrafts.
These three entrepreneurs, along with the thousands that have come before and after them, share a particular set of traits; they’re extremely idealistic, they’re independent thinkers and none of them are afraid to reject traditional structure and challenge the status quo.
Here are 5 conventional ideologies you need to REJECT in order to scale your business to 8-figures and beyond.
1. “The harder you work, the faster you will grow”
It’s amazing how many business owners will think that the harder they work, the faster they’ll grow. This may be true in the early stages of business when the only person growing your business is you. However, as your business scales beyond seven figures, everything changes. You’re now generating more revenue, which means you’re doing more sales, which means more customers, more product delivery, more operational complexity, more people in the team, more cash going in, and more cash going out. In simple terms, there is more of everything and the business is now far too large for you to do it all.
For example, The Entourage is a team of 60. Let’s assume each member of the team works for eight hours in a single day, this equates to getting 480 hours of productive output. Meaning as a team we do in one day what would take one person 60 days. This is what you call LEVERAGE. It has become an ecosystem that can produce far more than what is possible to achieve alone.
It’s not that working hard is bad, it’s that working hard on the wrong things keeps you stuck. Working hard “doing” instead of architecting and leading, is preventing you from building a business that can scale beyond you.
For 7 and 8 figure business owners, working harder is not the answer….working smarter is.
2. “You have to learn the hard way through experience and years of trial & error”
When we start out in business we need to go to market, engage with the customer, and iterate. We are learning entirely through trial and error and this is how it should be.
However, as we scale, learning only through trial and error becomes more costly.
Why? Because the problem with learning through trial and error is that the lesson always comes after the mistake. And as we grow, the mistakes get bigger, more costly and significantly more time-consuming.
As we grow, it’s important that we don’t learn solely through trial and error, but that we start to also learn from people with been-there-done-that experience.
The greatest entrepreneurs in the world leverage the experience and wisdom of coaches, advisors, and clever peers. Did you know that Richard Branson has a call every day at 5:00pm with his five advisors? Everyday. Counterintuitively, the more experienced an entrepreneur is, the more they seek guidance and input from experts, the people that have walked the path before them and have a roadmap to share.
It's through harnessing the mistakes, triumphs, and insights from others that will shortcut your learning cycles and accelerate your development. Why not achieve in years what has taken others decades to work out?
3. “The entrepreneur is a lone ranger”
One core misconception people have around entrepreneurs is that of the lone-ranger, the mad scientist, the genius with a thousand helpers.
This couldn't be further from reality.
If you're the only leader in your business, everything and everyone will be grabbing at you constantly. While this is often necessary in the beginning as we don’t have the resources to recruit senior people, as the company grows it needs to become a priority for you to surround yourself with people who have as much, if not more experience than you in their particular field.
A glass ceiling that exists on so many businesses is they never grow out of the “genius with a thousand helpers” phase. This not only caps the growth of your business, it’s also exhausting.
Great entrepreneurs strive to be the dumbest person in the room at all times. Great entrepreneurs build teams of people who are better than them - they may not be a better entrepreneur or CEO, but they should be better in their particular function.
Real leaders create leaders.
4. “You need to stick to a plan”
Many business owners will start a business with the mindset of 'you need a business plan, or you can't possibly plan for anything'. You may have even heard the outdated principle 'if you fail to plan, you plan to fail'.
For 6 figure+ business owners, the perfect harmony is to have your north stars and a road map for where you are going, while understanding that you will change directions along the way. Being fixated on a single cemented plan means having tunnel vision - you can't see and react to the internal and external changes that are occurring around you.
Great entrepreneurs understand the need to have a plan that unites everybody while having the flexibility to adapt as it’s required.
5. “In a high-change and challenging environment it’s harder to grow”
When we’re faced with challenges and adversities, in life and in business, our natural instinct is to retreat and wait for the storm to clear. This is the worst thing you can do. It will only amplify and exaggerate the pain that you will feel. Life is a continual process of growing out of, and into your best self and it’s often the periods of our greatest challenge that also comes our greatest growth.
For entrepreneurs, when these moments arise, it’s an invitation to adapt faster, innovate quicker and find greater depths of strength to rise to the challenge. This is what will give you a distinct advantage that separates you from the industry you operate within.
Great entrepreneurs thrive in challenging environments.
- Unconventional thinking is crucial in order to grow great businesses
- Forget ‘hustle’. It’s not about working harder, it’s about working smarter
- Harness the learnings of entrepreneurs that have already walked the path that you’re on
- Create a tribe of leaders that are experts in their particular function
- Have a plan that unites your team, but be flexible in your approach to it
- Lean into challenges as they arise. Doing so will be the periods that you learn the most about yourself and your business
Are you ready to challenge conventional thinking?
If you’re ready to take the unconventional path and elevate your business growth, you will not want to miss the entrepreneur’s Unconvention. Voted 1 of the top 3 events for entrepreneurs globally, with over 45,000 attendees since 2011, this is a must-attend event for business owners.
Network and learn from the entrepreneurial elite. This year's Unconvention speakers have a combined business value of over $8.5 billion, including Lorna Jane Clarkson (Founder of Lorna Jane), Simon Griffiths (Founder and CEO of Who Gives A Crap), Larry Diamond (Founder and CEO of Zip Co), Samantha Wills (Founder of Samantha Wills Jewellery) and our very own Founder, Jack Delosa.
Limited Spots Available - Get Your Unconvention Ticket Here.
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