7 years of mistakes & the ultimate secret of business success

- August 28, 2013 3 MIN READ

I’ve been in business for 7 years. I’ve screwed up a lot. But thank goodness after multiple ebook purchases and conference ticket purchases, I’ve managed to figure out the secret. Whew!

Below I will share with you my biggest learnings, along with the ultimate secret to business success (and how to buy my ebook).

1. Screw ideas – your idea sucks. No idea I ever had has made me any money. The only thing that ever made me any money was doing quality work consistently. If you are obsessed with ideas, then you are trying to be an inventor not an entrepreneur. Entrepreneurs do quality work and then they sell it.

2. Boredom is the opposite of happiness. It’s true, Tim Ferriss told me. So don’t start businesses that would involve you working on jobs that are as boring as bat shit. Businesses are not equal. Some are shit. Try to avoid the shit ones.

3. Stop reading this post now. Why? Because you are addicted to entrepornography? No blog post is going to solve your problems. Just skip to the end where I tell you the secret and then go and implement it.

4. Avoid distractions. Chasing celebrity, time-wasters, ideas, facebook, hiring when unnecessary, firing staff you shouldn’t have hired, porn, most forums, most websites (not this one), meetings, coffee, coffee meetings, miley cyrus gifs. Your life as an entrepreneur is full of distractions. Do quality work and sell it and don’t be distracted.

5. Experience doesn’t matter but relationships do. It takes time to build relationships. Help people till it hurts. Then help them more. Help influencers more. Be generous. Even if your business fails, at least you’ll feel good about yourself. Write blog posts, write guest posts, offer free work, do giveaways, employ interns. Give back.

6. There is no secret (except the one I post below). Selling to failed business people is big business. Everyone has the secret and if you only pay 126 payments of $27 they’ll fill you in. Truth is, there is only 1 secret and I’ll list it after this post so you don’t have to pay.

7. Don’t listen to successful people except for Donald Trump. Most successful people are trying to sell something. Not Trump. He doesn’t give a shit. He’s worth over 3 billion dollars! I caught up with him last year (I paid to be in the crowd when he presented to 10,000 people). Here is his advice – read this and never buy another ebook.

“Think big, be positive, go with what is working – momentum is massive, accept luck, get great people and don’t trust them, you have to love what you do, never give up – make changes but never give up, focus, be passionate, fight with anyone who fucks with you – people will know you are a fighter, think big, always get a pre-nup.”    

8. Don’t push shit up hill. I’m all for learning new skills that you want to learn but if you fundamentally suck at something then make sure you realise that. Solve it in other ways. I suck at sales. I tried for 7 years to fix that. I’ll never fix it. Now I’ve got a co-founder who’s good at it, happy days.

*Claff if you are reading this, stop reading and go out and close someone. Do what you are good at and get others to do the rest (or don’t start a business that needs skills you don’t have).

9. Qualify your customers. The reason you started a business in the first place was because you didn’t want to work with weirdos (believe me I know, I used to work in Government). You wouldn’t let them into your house, would you? Imagine spending all day working with weirdos and coming home to more weirdos hanging out in your house! This is what a business that doesn’t qualify it’s customers looks like.

11. Don’t underestimate the importance of motivation. Do whatever you need to do to stay motivated and not lose faith. Become a Tony Robbins groupie, drop LSD at apple farms, hug some trees, do yoga, get drunk and write articles for shoestring. Whatever. do it. Do whatever it takes to stay motivated. Without motivation you are compromising your number 1 asset.

12. Do quality work. There were times in my previous businesses where I wasn’t 110% confident in what we were offering. This is horribly de-motivating, it hurts customers, it hurts you, it hurts staff, ruins any chance of success and it wastes away your limited years on this planet. Don’t waste your time doing bad work.

I said before I’d reveal the secret of business success and this is it.

Do quality work. Focus on that and forget the rest.

By Dan Norris who is the co-founder of WP Curve which offers 24/7 WordPress support, unlimited small fixes and maintenance from $69 per month.