Updated: May 23, 2020
Do you ever wonder why we repeat our mistakes? Is it because we are told, “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again?” I know that’s supposed to be a “pick ‘me up” cheerleader, don’t give up kind of thing, but that nonsense should be, replaced. How about “if it didn’t work out the first time, idiot, why would you expect a different outcome when you repeat the same behavior.” Not as catchy, but I would have appreciated that lesson being drilled in my head at an earlier age. Perhaps we can come up with a cutesy way of putting it. Maybe it has been done. Perhaps, “look before you leap” has a seldom used ending…. Look before you leap, stupid, you broke your ankle last time….so don’t do it again.
I don’t know, but I bring this food for thought to our imaginary picnic for future entrepreneurs. As I wrote a few days back, I believe there’s going to be a lot of inspiration and innovation that come out of this little blip in our world’s timeline. Supposedly, a lot of babies too. But I want to speak to those Toilet Paper Entrepreneurs that are going to spring from the 2020 Corona Virus Renaissance. #2020CVR and btw, The Toilet Paper Entrepreneur is not my line but a great book title by one of my favorite Business Book Authors, Mike Michalowicz. And, if you read my last blog, you know I don’t “read” but listen on Audible. If you ever listen to him narrate on of his books, you’ll see why I like him. We are just as goofy.
Anyway, I am going to make a lot of references to books that have been influential in my Entrepreneurial Career. And if you know anything about my life story, you’ll see how this all ties together. If you don’t, here’s a quick snapshot of the ugly. I’ve been an entrepreneur, officially since I was 20 years old, really 6 or so, selling stickers and candy in school. But, over the past 30 years, I have built no less than 3 multi million dollars businesses…. been a part of several other wonderful business projects but in the end, have nothing to show for it. But don’t feel sorry for me. I have a great, supportive, loving and understanding family, some amazing stories and have learned so much. So, by nothing to show for it, I mean financially of course. Perhaps a little wisdom is worth so much more. I know love is. But, do you see where I am going with the title…Those who can’t, teach or preach. If my failures and life lessons become your, “what not to dos” for your business…. winner, winner, chicken dinner.
Okay, I also want to be very clear. I am not a business guru or savant, that’s obvious. The idiot part of savant, yes, but can you not learn from an idiot? Did the three stooges not teach us to avoid being poked in the eye? This all circles back to not repeating my mistakes. The fact is, I have been self-employed most my entire life, but not a “businessman.” I thought I was. No, I am just an entrepreneur, and there’s a huge difference. And that term entrepreneur should be changed to “dreamer” or the fancy version, “visionary.” I took that title from Gino Wickman’s Rock Fuel. That is an amazing Business Book from a Series featuring Traction and the EOS System. Also, I just want to say here, I believe the EOS System, when fully integrated into any mildly successful business, can transform that business into a true beast in their sector. Spoken like a True Visionary.
And I hear you all now….” Sure Josh, great advice. Didn’t your last business just go bankrupt? Why didn’t this EOS System transform your last business into Sector Beast?” And here’s where the education happens….key phrase “Fully integrated” ….my team and I simply choose to implement what we liked about the system, glazed over the tough stuff, like holding people accountable, avoided making the tough decisions and really, the business integrated my passive aggressive nature. You see, I never wanting to make waves or have anyone not like me. All a recipe for a terrible CEO. And it’s funny, because in the end, everyone doesn’t like you anyway. Great lesson.
Here’s a great nugget. I was once told by a dear friend and business mentor; sociopaths make the best CEOs as they tend to be super clinical in thought and execution. They are amazing at seeing all things from a 30,000-foot level. And no, not hacking people up, silence of the lamb’s style. And yes, all this goes against my empathy blog post from yesterday but welcome to the business world. Does anyone think our President is a kind and empathetic businessman? If you do, “YOUR FIRED!” And for business, that’s okay. My point is, you got to know who you are, what you are good at, and accept it. Also, and just as important, know what you SUCK AT! Hard to hear sometimes but trust me. You’ve been told before and probably already know. But self-reflect if you must. Here comes another great book and probably the first once to read if you are going to start a business. The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don't Work and What to Do About It by Michael E. Gerber.
I don’t think I knew anything truly about business until I read this book. This was my first wakeup call and again, should I have followed it teachings like a good young grasshopper, things might be different. But you know what? Ain’t got no time machine yet so, what am I going to do about it now…. I tell you what I’ll do. I’ll teach!