In reflecting on my 20-year career, it’s evident that my success as an entrepreneur largely stems from the planning and understanding I put into my business ventures. My visions and goals have shaped the way I have performed and thought throughout my career.
My vision became my ultimate weapon for success when I was only 22. Before I started my rewarding career in business and during my employment as an engineer, I spent a lot of time dreaming about the possibilities of working for myself, travelling the world, and making lots of money. I was simply not inspired by the confines of traditional employment; I wanted the freedom to explore the possibilities and boundaries of an entrepreneurial career instead.
I spent a lot of time dreaming about the possibilities of working for myself, travelling the world, and making lots of money….
Around this time I read the book, McDonald’s: Behind the Arches, which shares Ray Croc’s powerful vision of transforming an ordinary hamburger joint into the largest food franchise business in the world, and how he turned his vision into a reality.
What struck me the most about Ray’s business philosophy and attitude to life was his firm belief in having a strong vision. For Ray, this implied growing the McDonald’s franchise to new levels of performance, and innovating the food and restaurant industry to new standards. He used his vision as a deterrent to his sceptics, and a platform for attracting major investors into his company.
Ray’s business philosophy and attitude to life was his firm belief in having a strong vision.
By the time I finished reading this book, I had absorbed Ray’s methodology and formulated my own philosophy for success. My new vision enabled me to kick-start my first business venture in retail, and grow it into a world-ranking brand that delivered and sustained revenue growth of more than 50% per annum over 10 consecutive years, and yielded $10 million in sales per year.
Formula for success
Have a vision: Humans have the powerful and unique capacity to imagine. If you can see, hear, feel, and smell your future, success will be yours. Learn the art of thinking big using creative visualisation.
Ignore the sceptics: Be warned about the tall poppy syndrome that can be inflicted when people resent your success. Instead of being affected by negativity – whether it come from the media, your peers, or even your family members – shift your attention to people who encourage and support what you do.
Fuel your passion: Doing what you love most will fuel your passion and help you deal with the ups and downs of business. Each day, focus at least 10% of your energy towards tasks that build your self-esteem, empower you, or drive you to the next level. I recommend this process is undertaken first thing in the morning.
Have a plan: Define the level of success you want to achieve in the short, mid, and long term, and stick to your plan. Avoid the ‘entrepreneur’s curse’ of being prematurely distracted by other seemingly more lucrative opportunities. I’ve learnt that the grass is not necessarily greener on the other side of the fence.
Know your strengths and weaknesses: Always seek help from the right people and know your limits. The most successful entrepreneurs, like Richard Branson and Steve Jobs, are generally the ones that openly admit their flaws and limitations, and proactively seek help from their team.
It’s about your mindset
As there are many theories when it comes to business success, my clients often challenge me to disclose the ‘right’ formula.
“You are not born an entrepreneur. You become one if you think like one.”
My response to this is always the same, “You are not born an entrepreneur. You become one if you think like one.” This implies using the power of your mindset to achieve your goals and aspirations. It’s that simple!