Tag Archives: entreprenuership

4 Business Strategies from World’s #1 Business Strategist

By Logan Chierotti

Every experienced businessperson understands the benefits of good mentors. The knowledge they bring can be instrumental to a founder’s development and directly spur company growth.

But what if you don’t have the network to generate a mentor that fits your current needs? Well, instead of waiting around, why not learn from the nation’s #1 business strategist.

You may have heard of him. His name is Tony Robbins.

Robbins is the ultimate life coach and an expert on business leadership. And when he’s not making participants walk on hot coals across the world at his seminars, he’s inspiring some of the biggest names in business. Robbins super fans include Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff and Paul Tudor Jones of the $13 billion hedge fund, Tudor Investment Corp.

Long story short – Tony Robbins is a good person to listen to when it comes to creating a successful business. With that in mind, it’s time to pay attention.

Here are Robbins 4 tips for building a business that lasts.

1. Focus on innovation – Innovative businesses meet the needs of their clients in a unique way. In order to be sustainable, you must continually innovate and evolve.

2. Focus on marketing – Good marketing requires that you first understand the true benefits of your product. Next, you must have a clear idea of what your customer’s actually want. With this complimentary knowledge base, you can create powerful marketing that will get your prospects attention.

3. Find your differentiation – Look hard at the market, then alter your offering to satisfy customer needs. By differentiating your offering, your business will stand out.

4. Maintain your drive – You must maintain proper motivation in order to innovate, market you product, and differentiate your offering. Building a business requires commitment, and maintaining your drive is a key component. Show up to the office every day with the same passion and energy you had when you first started.

For those of you who want to take a deeper look into his teachings, Robbins provides a number of intensive business courses such as business mastery, new money masters and mastering influence.

But don’t only rely on Robbins, or any other guru’s teachings for that matter. Even with good mentors and teachers, advice will only take you so far. More important, is the implementation of that advice.

For an added dose if inspiration, here’s a quote from Robbins about achieving great rewards in life.

“I believe life is constantly testing us for our level of commitment, and life’s greatest rewards are reserved for those who demonstrate a never-ending commitment to act until they achieve. This level of resolve can move mountains, but it must be constant and consistent.”

Now get out there, be bold, and move mountains!

Read the original article HERE 

Your Business Is Going to Depend on Connected Spenders, So You’d Better Understand Who They Are

By Louise Keely

Consumer-facing companies are at a loss. The middle class, long the bread and butter of consumer companies of all kinds, is shrinking as a percentage of the population in mature markets. And in emerging markets, where many consumer companies have been laying their bets for the future, growth has started to slow.

To thrive again, companies need nuanced ways of defining a segment of consumers to focus on. Our research indicates that five questions can help point the way:

  • Do they have access to the internet?
  • Do they have a significant amount of discretionary income?
  • Are they willing to spend a lot of their discretionary income?
  • Do they prefer premium goods and services when they can afford them?
  • Do they seek to be on the cutting edge of consumer trends?

Consumers who answer yes to all five questions are what we call “connected spenders.” When we look more closely, we see that almost all of them are working-age, and over 30% are 25–34 years old. They are highly urban; nearly 80% of connected spenders live in a city. In emerging markets, that number is even higher, at 90%. While connected spenders are more affluent than the average, not all are high income. And, in turn, not all affluent consumers are connected spenders. Globally, connected spenders make up about one-third of low-income populations and two-thirds of high-income ones.

Today connected spenders count for about 19% of the global population, and that is projected to grow to 37% by 2025. Cumulatively, over this decade they will spend $260 trillion — 46% of the world’s consumer spending. In markets such as the U.S., where internet access is just shy of 90%, only 36% of the population are currently connected spenders, a number that will grow to over 50% by 2025.

Connected spenders are the heaviest purchasers in categories including electronics, travel, and dining out, and they’re likely to be early adopters of new ways to buy in any category. In financial services, for instance, these ways are the newest cashless payment methods or mobile banking products. In media, they will gravitate to multiple devices and to the newest services to stream video and audio. In CPG categories, connected spenders will be drawn to “hot” concepts such as health and wellness, and offerings that combine product and experience, such as subscription services. Shopping experiences such as in-store cooking demonstrations or shopping apps to help them find and select products in more convenient ways will also appeal to them.

How should companies approach the connected spender opportunity?

First, they should recognize that people can only be connected spenders if they are connected. Mature markets already boast close to universal levels of internet access, but we estimate that 2.3 billion more consumers will come online in the next decade, almost all in emerging markets. By 2025 just three mature economies — the United States, Japan, and Germany — will feature in the top 10 countries for connected spenders. That top 10 will include Indonesia, Pakistan, and Nigeria — markets that do not get much attention from Western companies.

Companies therefore need a two-track strategy: woo the connected spenders in mature internet markets now, where they are already deeply invested, and get ready for the new connected spenders as they come online in emerging economies over the next 10 years. This approach fits the financial realities of the world’s markets. Even in 2025 the average mature-market connected spender will spend nearly $40,000 per year, 10 times what the average in an emerging market will be.

In a mature market, consumer companies must get already-connected connected spenders excited about the products and shopping experiences they offer. Connected spenders seek novelty and exciting experiences across all their consumer activities. They prefer cutting-edge products and state-of-the-art technologies. Offerings that bring an imaginative, technology-driven twist to an existing product or that solve a consumer problem with a new digital offering will open connected spenders’ wallets.

Connected spenders are a digitally oriented advertising audience. Online marketing and advertising, particularly on smartphones, will be a good investment to engage these consumers, especially with newer formats, such as online sporting events or sites that combine curated content with online shopping. Connected spenders respond to traditional advertising as well, but they are much more likely to spend time on a manufacturer’s website or to remember an internet ad. Connected spenders will watch an ad if it is educational or highly relevant. The challenge, therefore, is to increase the information-richness of advertising and the personalization of its content and delivery.

What does “getting ready” for emerging markets’ connected spenders mean? Three things:

First, make it easy for consumers to move their consumption behaviors online as access allows, by including safe and convenient access to and education about new digital goods and services. Connected spenders enjoy learning about products. Most companies know they need to make e-commerce easy. They are far less aware of how critical education is in these markets, especially for products and services whose benefits are not immediately obvious, such as insurance or organic personal care products. It may seem that making it easy for consumers to buy the goods is enough, but it isn’t. In many cases, a great deal of explaining needs to go along with access.

Second, design products and shopping experiences to align with the dominant internet access methods of each market, as in the China example above. In many emerging economies it is well-known that consumers are leapfrogging to internet access by smartphone and may never use personal computers. But what is underappreciated is that a mobile-first or mobile-only strategy will not be the same in all markets. In China, smartphones are prevalent among urban consumers and social media sites are used for everything from shopping for groceries to paying credit card bills to buying an insurance policy. In other places, such as Nigeria, traditional trade is more prevalent and smartphone use is less so. Shoppers there will be looking for text-based tools to help them pay for items in local retail stores.

The final imperative is to be flexible in prioritizing markets, because a connected spender in spirit only becomes one in practice when internet access is accompanied by the other elements needed for e-commerce to boom — including market-wide online payment infrastructure and solutions to the logistics of the “last mile.” Companies must monitor the development of communications, transport, and financial services infrastructure.

Connected spenders are naturally engaged and eager; it’s what makes them so attractive. But they are also demanding, and their expectations will need to be satisfied. They are looking for new goods and services, with the latest technology, but with tangible benefits — and they will do the work online to find the best prices. The reward for investing to meet their demand will be significant, as the total annual spending of connected spenders will rise from $15 trillion in 2015, or 35% of global consumer spending, to over half of the annual total in 2025 — $32 trillion.

Read the original article HERE

Going Global? Choose Your Country Wisely

By Anna Schlegel

More than half of Google’s revenue comes from outside the United States. Facebook, Apple, or PayPal, all enjoy global success. These companies have “going global” down—they perform strongly in international markets, and can execute across borders because they embed globalization on their daily executive discussions.

Develop a Globalization Strategy


Part of the agility for a company to stay strong globally is the makeup of their country investment. Being decisive on how to prioritize global expansion is key here. Many US companies fear the unknown and are not convinced you need to diversify geographically to scale. However, those companies with a globalization strategy will reap the benefits.


So, what countries do you choose to start with? Most of these decisions are made in an HQ setting in alignment with regional general managers tasked with global business expansion. In a major corporation, it is common to see a general manager in charge of Asia Pacific, another for Europe, Africa, Middle East, and another for the Americas. Of course, there are countless combinations among those, depending on where your company originated.


Most innovative and technologically superior products have the potential to become global if they are needed, are better than what exists, and will improve people’s lives. They can see huge success in China or the United States simply because of its pure customer diversity and thirst for constant improvements.  International growth by going global as an importer-exporter offers opportunity aplenty. However, companies do not typically start their operations with a global plan. Most companies spend years perfecting product features, go global in a handful of countries and then go global in a larger set.


Create a Cluster of Countries


The standard way of going global is to enter known territories such as a town across the border of a neighboring country. Many companies take advantage of their own treaties or free trade agreements. Most enterprises target top economic powers such as the United States, China, and Japan.


Clusters can form for the following reason:


  • Compliance with your government’s trade advisory rules.


  • A directive from the board of directors.


  • OEM models are ready to go.


  • Joint ventures become available and point to a handful of countries.


  • Pathways give reach to a specific set of countries.


No two sets of country clusters will look the same, and an enterprise globalization plan will look different for Japan than for Turkey. The following examples are decisions to be made at the executive level:


  • Will the company be selling indirectly through partners or will you hire sales teams, or use both methodologies?


  • What are the local teams needed to support each country in your company’s list: i.e. HR, Legal, Facilities, Sales teams, Marketing, Support, Professional Services


  • Legal entity creation.


  • Map a plan for 1-2-3 year growth.


  • A product globalization plan: what products are ready and internationalized?


What is Geo-Alignment?


Organizing a country strategy and explaining to the rest of the company which countries matter most clarifies intent and aligns efforts to the right business opportunities or calculated risks. You do not want everyone in your enterprise supporting each country in the same capacity because no two countries are the same, some bring back much more revenue. It is important that you have the list of countries that matter in your company, and you understand who brings home the top revenue.

Once clusters of countries are defined, you can explain that to the full enterprise and align your resources to countries and portfolios. That will help make decisions on budget and resources, and will focus everyone on the top opportunities. If you are leading globalization for your company, your first questions should be: “What countries should we focus on, and what is the strategy for each tier?” Your CEO and general managers will tell you if focusing in the Philippines is more important than Vietnam.

Don’t Get Lost in Translation

You will often need to factor in the tolerance of a language in the country if localization cannot be budgeted for. For example, you will most likely want to localize a product for Japan from English before you localize a product into Norwegian, simply because Norwegians are more English tolerant. I am generalizing here, but understanding what languages your countries can tolerate will help you make decisions if you have to.

Ideally, your company has a model that explains which countries deserve what entitlements. This includes which countries will have a call center in the primary language, localized products, a comprehensive digital presence, and globalized partner programs.

This is where your globalization strategists will spend the most time. They will advocate for these entitlements to happen for specific countries. Rallying a whole company to support local product sales with properly laid out entitlements and plans is a winning strategy, and your globalization team should have a major stake in this.

Read the original article HERE

10 Success lessons from Robert Herjavec – “Shark Tank Star” for entrepreneurs


Robert Herjavec is a leading businessman in North America and stars on “Shark Tank”. He is also the CEO of Herjavec Group, which is a global IT security firm. Herjavec believes that “our ability to achieve is only limited by our ability to dream.”

He founded his first company, BRAK Systems, a Canadian integrator of Internet security software, from the basement of his home. BRAK Systems was sold to AT&T Canada in March 2000 for $30.2 million.


Here are the 10 success lessons from Robert Herjavec – “Shark Tank Star” for entrepreneurs,

1. Test your business model before taking significant risks

So often you hear the story of the entrepreneur who risks it all to start a business. The entrepreneur quits her job, takes a second mortgage on the house, and dives in head first. Sometimes these stories work out, but often they don’t. And if they don’t, the consequences can be catastrophic. Keep your jobs until the business is at a point that you can safely quit it. Call on some potential clients and see if they will buy whatever it is you’re selling.

2. Believe in the business — and yourself

There are so many people that will say, ‘No — bad idea, it’s never going to work’. You have to have a senseless belief in your idea and yourself – almost to the point of being delusional. Remember that everyone has advice but no one knows what you have to go through to start, grow and scale a business until they live it! Talk is cheap, but action speaks volumes.

3. Everyone lies

Some people will lie to you because they mean to. Others will do it to tell you what you want to hear. Either way, test everything you are told. If someone tells you they are going to invest, get a date. And if the date passes, make sure your spider senses are tingling. If a client tells you he is giving you the order, ask him if it is in procurement yet; if not, ask him if he minds if you call the purchaser yourself. Test what people tell you. They don’t always mean to lie to you, but they do lie.

4. Know your numbers

“To a lot of small businesses, including me when I started, the numbers were like a jigsaw puzzle,” Herjavec said. “I kind of knew what revenue was, expenses, cost of goods, but I couldn’t put those pieces together into a picture that made sense.” Similarly, many of the businesses on the show were closely monitoring their revenues but didn’t know how to keep track of profits. Without a firm grasp of where your company stands financially, it is difficult to make changes when necessary, Herjavec said. Plus, if you don’t know the language of accounting and finance, “someone is going to take advantage of you, or you’re going to be left behind.”

5. Confidence and drive to succeed are vital

Confidence and drive to succeed are vital to success in life. As the CEO of a global IT security firm and star of the hit reality show, Shark Tank, Herjavec exhibits confidence in every aspect of his daily life. If he didn’t have a drive to succeed, he wouldn’t have become such a successful businessman. He translates that confidence and drive to succeed to the dance floor of “Dancing with the Stars” as well. Bruno Tonioli told Herjavec that, “You got the flash. You got the dash. You do everything with confidence.”

6. Engage in smart marketing

“We see a lot of small businesses that are jumping to Snapchat and Instagram and getting business that way, but email marketing is oftentimes overlooked,” Herjavec says. It’s far easier and less expensive to sell to existing customers than to acquire new ones, Herjavec added, so maintaining a robust customer mailing list is a good way to increase your revenue at a low cost.

7. Ask for help

Success of the companies and any small business depends on how they make use of their newly acquired knowledge and resources. “What we found after eight seasons at Shark Tank,” he said, “is the businesses that continue to be successful are the ones that looked at our money as the start and not the goal.”

8. Bring a compass

When you’re starting out, you have to realize that it is going to be hard and then it will get worse…far worse than you think. Be prepared to survive the worst situation you can think of — and then assume that things will still get even worse than that. Be prepared — it’s much better to have a compass to get out of the woods (just in case) than to have to eat your friends to survive.

9. Train for a marathon

Once you find a good opportunity, go slow and check and double-check everything. Business is a sprint until you find an opportunity, then it requires the patience of a marathon runner. Herjavec says “I know this is hard and trust me, I am not a marathoner — but I have run two of them just to reinforce this point to myself.”

10. There is no work/life balance

Your business is a living, breathing thing, and it has to be fed and grow to survive. There is no balance in your life when your business is in trouble. If you are under the illusion that you can start a business and run it at your life’s schedule, you are mistaken. The business is like a starving puppy — when it needs to eat, then it needs to eat regardless of what you have going on personally.

Read the original article HERE

The Most Popular Harvard Business Review Article

By Leader Tribe

Leading Change: Why Transformation Efforts Fail (by John Kotter) was the most reprinted article at HBR. Dr. Kotter wrote it after he had watched more 100 companies attempt turnaround efforts. The vast majority of them fail. Miserably.

They failed for one of eight reasons; BUT HALF OF THE FAILURE SHARED THE SAME FATAL MISTAKE. Those companies had not created a strong enough sense of urgency.

What did the successful companies do right? It’s all in the article, and it’s my Merry Christmas present to you ($8.95 value). Simply leave a reply below or drop me an email within the next week, and the article is yours.

Let’s apply that same principle to our personal leadership. How do we create enough motivation to change for the better? How do we deal with the tricky character issues that keep us from accomplishing our goals?

Changing for the better is hard. As my former boss, John Maxwell, says, “Everything good that we want in our lives is slightly uphill from where we are now. We all have uphill aspirations, but we have downhill habits.”

Ouch! I’ve lived too many years of my life stuck at the bottom of the hill. But the last two years have been different, and I couldn’t be more thankful. (See the P.S. below if you’d like to see the tool that helped me so much.)

Here are 4 Tips for Creating Personal Urgency.

  1. Write down at least three positive benefits of the change you seek.
  2. Note three reasons you’d hate to stay stuck in your current pattern.
  3. What is the primary reason that you have not changed yet?
  4. How will you overcome that reason (and who will you enlist to help)?

THE BOTTOM LINE: You can be better, don’t lose hope; make 2017 your best year ever. Start small, but start today.


P.S. I discovered a program that took about 5 hours to implement (an hour per day for five days), that provided the desire, foresight, and motivation to change. It’s called 5 Days to Your Best Year Ever. This year I asked for the privilege of helping Michael Hyatt get the word out about his program. It’s available until Thursday at midnight. Check out his free webinar that will help incredibly whether you use the program or not! I have already purchased it again this year—it’s awesome.

Read the original web article on Leader Tribe here


How Elon Musk Started

Click here to view original web page at fundersandfounders.com

Elon Musk is now Earth’s most future-oriented person. How did such a person come to be?

In a hundred years, when most people reading this and the person writing this are long gone, Musk’s cars and rockets will still be circling the Earth and the skies. How can such a person get started against all odds is the question I ask here. And, more importantly, what can we learn from him?


Learning From The Outlier

Learning from Musk might seem naive. After all he is an outlier even among billionaires. I think this is exactly why he is worth studying – you don’t get insight into the extraordinary by studying the ordinary. Even with a sample size of one Musk we may find something in the way he started out that is fundamentally borrowable.
Sure, we can’t recreate the exact circumstances of his life for ourselves – we all have different parents, live in different countries, and have different bodies. Despite all the differences, we have control over our mindset as much as he does over his. This part of Musk we can borrow. The ways he deals with uncertainty, the books he reads, the ways he makes promises, and patches up his own mistakes are all borrowable, for example.

Mo Money; Same Problems

By Robert Kiyosaki

Why things like poor millionaires exist

If you had $1 million in the bank, would you feel wealth? How about if you had $2 million? What about $5 million?

If you’re not a millionaire, more than likely you said, “YES!”-probably at the $1 million mark, and most definitely at the $5 million mark. Most everyone thinks that having enough money will make them rich and solve their financial problems. But what those who are really rich know is that money doesn’t make you rich at all.

Revisiting our $1 million to $5 million question, consider this finding from a survey by UBS: Only 28% of those worth $1 million to $5 million considered themselves as wealthy.Mo Money; Same Problems

How could this be?

“Half of those worth $1 million to $5 million believed that one bad break, such as a market crash or a job loss, would have a major impact on their lifestyle.”

In other words, these millionaires have a lot of money but not a lot of financial intelligence. How do I know? Because a financially intelligent person isn’t ruined by a job loss or market problems. The rich do not worry about these things nearly as much as the poor do. Why? Because the rich know how to prepare for them.

The survey by UBS brings to light a reality of many millionaires. They are not really financially free. Rather they are high-paid employees that have a large amount of liabilities, bad debt, and bad spending habits. Some even live paycheck to paycheck.

This confirms a simple truth: no amount of money can change bad financial habits. In fact, it often magnifies them. The rise and fall of lottery winners and pro athletes are good examples of this.

This week, in the US, we celebrate Thanksgiving. Many families and friends will come together to feast and to enjoy one another’s company. Many of these folks will then leave to stand in line hoping to get deal on this or that knickknack-a new flat screen TV, a video game consul, toys, and more. Some of them will spend the next day running around like crazy people on the hunt for deals.

In 2015 consumers spent $67,560,000,000 in store and another $2,932,000,000 online on Black Friday deals-an average of $403.35 per person. This year, even more shoppers are expected and even more money will be spent.

This will be just the beginning of a glut of holiday spending. With the average shopper going into debt by $986 on average. Couple that with the fact that the average household has a total personal debt of more than $90,000, and you can start to see that the average person has a real problem when it comes to money.

The fundamental difference between the truly rich and wealth, and the poor-even those with millions of dollars-is that the rich invest in cash-flowing assets that cover their liabilities, and the poor rely on a paycheck, spending it all often before they even have it in hand. These “poor” millionaires just happen to spend a lot more each month than the average person.

Hopping Over the Rabbit Hole

SO MUCH OF SUCCESSFUL ENTREPRENEURSHIP is learning to lead yourself. It requires some luck, but more than anything it means always pressing forward and a good dose of creativity especially when things don’t look good.

It’s not surprising then that Anthony Scaramucci’s book, Hopping Over The Rabbit Hole: How Entrepreneurs Turn Failure Into Success is not just an important read for would-be entrepreneurs but anyone who looking move through life in a forward direction.

Scaramucci is the founder of SkyBridge Capital, a global investment firm with around $12 billion in assets. The firm also produces the annual SkyBridge Alternatives (“SALT”) Conference, a premier global investment and thought leadership forum. But his road to success has not been without a number of failures and near-misses. And he shares many of them to our benefit. He points out that SkyBridge’s success was ultimately defined by “our ability to learn from mistakes and turn failures into success.”

He writes: “I’m a firm believer in the idea that you’re either moving forward or backward. You’re either growing in confidence or swelling with hubris. The moment you become complacent is the moment you lose your edge. There is always somebody working harder than you, and there are always copycats ready to take the model you’ve built and make it better.”

So “we need to put our egos on the floor, get outside of our comfort zones, and push ourselves, while maintaining some level of gracious audacity.”

Life and business bring with it regrets. But we can learn from them or let them hold us back. The danger is to look for to blame and not taking responsibility for your outcomes.

Empowering Leaders to Lead