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21 Ways to Achieve Wealth and Success

Using author Tom Corley as inspiration, here’s a checklist to the best things in life.

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In his book, Rich Habits – The Daily Success Habits of Wealthy Individuals, Tom Corley outlines several habits that distinguish the wealthy from the non-wealthy.

It got me to think, How many people operate on autopilot and don’t stop to monitor their everyday patterns?

Below I’ve summarised 19 of his habits for success (nine culled from his book and the next 10 from his recent article in Success) plus two of my own. If you’re not actively engaged in these 21 things, you are, in effect, leaving money on the table.

Related: The 3 Biggest Obstacles to Entrepreneurial Success

Setting good daily habitsalarm-clock_daily-habits

Good habits are the foundation of wealth building. The difference between successful and unsuccessful people lies in their daily habits. Simply put, successful people have many good habits and few bad ones.

If you understand that your bad habits may be preventing you from becoming wealthy, that realisation will be the first step in your improving your circumstances.

In his book, Corley invites you to take out a sheet of paper and list your bad habits in one column and then invert each one to place under a new column for good habits. It should look like this:

Bad Habit/Good Habit

  • I watch too much TV. I limit myself to one hour of TV per day.
  • I don’t remember names. I write down names and remember them.

Then for 30 days, follow the guidance of your new good habits list. You’ll be amazed at how much you can accomplish.

Related: 2 Proven Launch Methods to Leap Frog Your Start-Up Success

Regularly creating goals

Successful people are goal driven. They create goals all the time. They plan their day the night before with to-do lists.

People who are headed for success think for the long term. They have daily, weekly, monthly and yearly goals. But what’s a goal without a plan to reach them? So not only do successful people have goals, they also come up with ways to achieve them and hold themselves accountable.

Engaging in self-improvement daily

Successful people are always looking for ways to improve themselves. They read every day and are students of their profession. They don’t spend their time on activities that don’t bring them closer to their goals.

I recently attended an event hosted by author Brendon Burchard, who said he consistently blocks out time to create. Successful people like Burchard know that time is too valuable a commodity to waste.

They spend their time on the things that will move the needle for them in their business: Being committed to self-improvement means you engage in activities every day that will stretch you.

Seek ways to expand your knowledge. This won’t always be easy, but people grow from things that pose a challenge. Once your knowledge grows, opportunities appear.

Regularly taking care of personal healthman-exercising_personal-health

Each and every day successful people make an effort to eat right and exercise. Eating right is of utmost importance. Exercising daily can become a regular habit, just like taking a bath.

People who exercise routinely have more energy to get things done. How are you doing in this area?

Often making time for relationship building

People who are successful are other-people focused. They take time out of their day to strengthen the bonds of friendship and form long-lasting relationships with others.

Networking is something they do all the time. They reach out to their contacts and look for ways to help them with no expectation of in return.

The most beautiful sound on Earth, I once heard someone say, is your name. So make it a goal to learn the names of every contact you meet.

Aren’t you impressed when someone remembers your name? I know I am. So stand out as different and start remembering names.

Doing things in moderation

You live in a balanced way if you do activities in moderation. This means having a balanced approach to work, eating, exercise, consuming alcohol, watching television, surfing the Internet and so forth.

As a result, people will enjoy your company. If people like being around you, then you will be more apt to collaborate or find the new business partner that you need to take your business to the next level.

Related: Why Starting Small, But Thinking Big Is Your Ticket to Success

Getting things doneJust-do-it-logo_Nike-logo

Don’t put off to tomorrow what you can do today: Accomplish things. All people have fears, but successful people push past them. They don’t procrastinate. They get the important things done, no matter the cost.

In Rich Habits, Corley explains that when the thought of putting off something enters the mind, immediately shed notion by saying, “Do it now.” He says repeat these words 100 times if necessary. Just don’t stop till the task is done.

Keeping a positive outlook

Consider the most successful person you know. Is that person positive or negative? Most likely this individual is positive, enthusiastic, energetic and happy.

This person chooses to see the good in others and in himself or herself. To this person, problems are just opportunities waiting to be uncovered.

Every day people are bombarded by news of bad deeds and doings. Successful people minimise their exposure to this type of thing and instead opt to fill their minds with positive ideas from books and magazines.

Regularly saving money

According to Corley, successful individuals put away about 10 percent to 20 percent of their gross earnings in a savings, investment or retirement plan. Not everyone can afford to do so, but what percent are you putting away?

Related: How to Start a Small Business

Rejecting self-limiting thoughts

Successful people command their thoughts and emotions. As soon as bad thoughts intrude, they cast out anything that challenges their ability to succeed at the task at hand.

They do not dwell on negative notions. Their self-talk is positive and not overly critical. They replace bad thoughts with good ones.

Because successful people engage in self-improvement daily and are constantly involved in positive things, they don’t allow themselves time to indulge in negative emotions.

Living within meansluxury-car_wealthy-businessman

Wealthy people avoid overspending. Among many of those struggling financially, some are living above their means.

They spend more than they earn, live from pay cheque to pay cheque and are drowning in credit-card debt. If this is you, resolve today to turn things around for you and your family.

Reading daily

Many successful people read 30 minutes or more every day. Reading can increase your knowledge and know-how.

When you read, often you are seeking to improve yourself. This automatically sets you apart from your counterparts. You will stand out from the competition.

Limiting TV watching

Did you know that many successful  people limit the amount their TV time to one hour or less a day? How much time do you lose in front of the television that you could be spending doing something more productive?

Doing more than what’s required

Successful people regularly go above and beyond the call of duty at work. Even if something is not in their job description, they will volunteer to do it. Wealthy people make themselves invaluable.

As an entrepreneur, you may not have a boss. But in what ways do you go above and beyond for your clients? How do you wow them?

Related: The Companies Act: Friend or Foe of Small Business?

Talking less and listening morebusiness-meeting_listening-to-others

When you listen, you learn. And as the adage goes, that’s why people have two ears and one mouth.

When you take the time to really pay attention to what another person is saying, it can truly help not only you but your bottom line as well. When you listen, you are in a better position to help others.

Not giving up

Don’t give up when the going gets tough. Successful people hang in there. They pivot. They try something new. They persist. They may have to change their direction, but they keep moving forward.

Spending time with like-minded ones

There’s a saying that goes, “Show me who your friends are and I’ll show you who you are.” I believe that.

People are only as successful as those they choose to surround themselves with. Good associations can help you more quickly achieve your goals.

Related: 3 Things To Consider Before Meeting A Mentor

Finding a mentor

Many people who have had a mentor have attributed their success to that person. Mentors can help you achieve your goals faster and keep you accountable. They can share valuable experience that can cut your learning time in half.

Knowing your why

When you know why you’re doing something, you will get what you want quicker than if you don’t.

Having a purpose is essential to being successful in business and in life. Why do you want to be successful? Why do you really want to be wealthy?

Not giving fear the upper handmaking-a-jump_jumping-off-a-cliff

Everyone has fears. Successful people don’t allow their fears to limit or define them. Fear inevitably keeps you in the same position and stunts your growth.

Recognise your fears and seek ways to overcome them. Interview someone you admire and ask that person how he or she overcame a fear or pick up an autobiography and take notes.

Upgrading skills

If you want to get ahead, there’s only one way to do it: Become better at something than you are today.

What’s the one thing you can focus on for the next 30 days that will catapult you to rock-star status in your industry? Focus your attention on that. I heard John Lee Dumas from Entrepreneur on Fire define “FOCUS” like this: Follow one course until success. Will you?

What I know for sure is that what gets tracked, gets done. If you’re truly serious about transformation, be sure to check out my ebook, 21 Ways To Achieve Wealth and Success Plus 21-Day Resource Book.

how to achieve wealth and success

This article was originally posted here on Entrepreneur.com.

San Diego-based Meiko Patton is a writer and editor for the federal government, a career consultant and the principal blogger at Career Savvy Fed.

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Lessons Learnt

Scaleup Learnings From Our Top Clients – What The Most Successful Entrepreneurs Do Right

So, how do our successful clients move through these constraints to scaling up? We see four key drivers of success, and they are: people, strategy, flawless execution and finance.

Louw Barnardt

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You’re out of your start-up boots, staff is increasing, your client base is growing, revenue is up and you’ve proven your case to the market. Now it’s time to scale up. The challenges of this vital growth phase are different and it’s a time that demands different mindsets and different actions. In a world littered with small business failures, it helps to be well-prepared for scaling up using a proven methodology. At Outsourced CFO, we get an inside look at the success factors of our clients who are mastering the transition.

On the one hand, scaling up is a really exciting phase; this is what moves you into real job creation and making an impactful contribution to economic growth. On the other hand, it is really hard to scale up successfully. We see three major constraints that limit companies’ transition from start-up to scale-up:

Leadership

The business has to have the leadership that can take it to the next level. When you start scaling up, especially rapidly, the founders can no longer do everything themselves. The team must grow and include new leadership talent that can take charge and execute so that the founders are working on the business instead of in the business.

Infrastructure

The processes, procedures, networks, systems and workflows of the business all need to be scalable. This is imperative when it comes to your infrastructure for the financial management of your business. You’re only ready for growth when your infrastructure can seamlessly keep pace.

Market access

Scaling up demands more innovative marketing and storytelling so that you can more easily connect and engage with the new employees, clients, network partners, investors and mentors that need to come along with you on your scale-up journey.

Businesses that build a market conversation and a compelling brand narrative during their start-up phase are better positioned to have this kind of market access when they need to scale up.

People

It is critical to have the right people on your team. Our successful entrepreneurs have what it takes to attract, inspire and retain top talent. A strong team of smart, ambitious and purpose-driven people who love the company and want to see it succeed contribute greatly to a world class company culture. They are adept at communicating a compelling vision and establishing core values that people can take on. These entrepreneurs are tuned into the aspirations of their people and focus on developing leaders in their teams who can in turn develop more leaders.

Strategy

It is planning that ensures that the right things are happening at the right times. At successful scale-ups strategies and action plans are devised to ensure that the most important thing always remains the most important thing.

Strategy includes input from all team members and setting of good priorities for the short, medium and long term. Goals are clear and everyone always knows what they are working towards. The needle is continuously moved because 90-day action plans are implemented each quarter to achieve targets and goals that are over and above people doing their daily jobs.

Flawless execution

Top entrepreneurs are not just focused on what operations need to achieve, but how the business operates. They have the right procedures, processes and tools in place so that everyone can deliver along the line on the company’s brand promise. Frequent, quick successive meetings ensure the rapid flow of effective communication. Problems are solved without drama. There is no chaos in the office environment. Everyone is empowered to execute flawlessly to an array of consistently happy clients.

Finance

Everyone knows that growth burns cash. A rapidly scaling business faces the challenge of needing a scalable financial infrastructure to keep the company healthy. Our successful entrepreneurs pay close attention to finance as the heartbeat of the business, ensuring that everything else functions. They look at the tech they are using for financial management and for the ways that their financial systems can be automated so that they can be brought rapidly to scale. The capital to grow is another vital finance issue.

The best way to finance a business is through paying clients on the shortest possible cash flow cycle. However, when you are scaling up and making heavier investments in the resources you need for growth, it is likely that you will need a workable plan for raising capital. Our scale-up clients know the value of accessing innovative financial management that provides high level services to drive their business growth.

Navigating the scale-up journey of a growing private company is one of the hardest but most rewarding of careers to pursue. Having people in your corner who have been through this journey before helps take a lot of pain out of the process. No growth journey looks the same, but there are tried and tested methods that will – if applied diligently – lead to definite success. Happy scaling!

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Lessons Learnt

That Time Jeff Bezos Was The Stupidest Person In The Room

Everyone can benefit from simple advice, no matter who they are.

Gene Marks

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When you think of Jeff Bezos, a lot of things probably come to your mind.

You likely think of Amazon.com, a company he founded more than twenty years ago, that’s completely disrupted retail and online commerce as we know it. You probably also think of his entrepreneurial genius. Or the immense wealth that he’s built for himself and others. You may also think of drones, Alexa and same-day delivery. Bezos is a visionary, an entrepreneur, a cutthroat competitor and a game changer. He’s unquestionably a very, very smart man. But sometimes, he can be…well…stupid, too.

Like that time back in 1995.

That was when Amazon was just a startup operating from a 2,000 square foot basement in Seattle. During that period, Bezos and most of the handful of employees working for him had other day jobs. They gathered in the office after hours to print and pack up the orders that their fast-growing bookselling site was receiving each day from around the world. It was tough, grueling work.

The company at the time, according to a speech Bezos gave, had no real organisation or distribution. Worse yet, the process of filling orders was physically demanding.

“We were packing on our hands and knees on a hard concrete floor,” Bezos recalled. “I said to the person next to me ‘this packing is killing me! My back hurts, it’s killing my knees’ and the person said ‘yeah, I know what you mean.'”

Related: Jeff Bezos: 9 Remarkable Choices That Shaped The Richest Man In The World

Bezos, our hero, the entrepreneurial genius, the CEO of a now 600,000-employee company that’s worth around a trillion dollars and one of the richest men in the world today then came up with what he thought was a brilliant idea. “You know what we need,” he said to the employee as they packed boxes together. “What we need is…kneepads!”

The employee (Nicholas Lovejoy, who worked at Amazon for three years before founding his own philanthropic organisation financed by the millions he made from the company’s stock) looked at Bezos like he was — in Bezos’ words — the “stupidest guy in the room.”

“What we need, Jeff,” Lovejoy said, “are a few packing tables.” Duh.

So the next day Bezos – after acknowledging Lovejoy’s brilliance – bought a few inexpensive packing tables. The result? An almost immediate doubling in productivity. In his speech, Bezos said that the story is just one of many examples how Amazon built its customer-centered service culture from the company’s very early days. Perhaps that’s true. Then again, it could mean something else.

It could mean that sometimes, just sometimes, those successful, smart, wealthy and powerful people may not be as brilliant as you may think. Nor do they always have the right answers. Sometimes, just sometimes, they may actually be the stupidest guy in the room. So keep that in mind the next time you’re doing business with an intimidating customer, supplier or partner who appears to know it all. You might be the one with the brilliant idea.

This article was originally posted here on Entrepreneur.com.

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Lessons Learnt

How Sureswipe Built Its Identity By Building A Strong Company Culture

Culture is unique to a business, it’s the reason why companies win or lose.

Nadine Todd

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A company’s culture is its identity and personality. Since this is closely linked to its brand and how it wants to be viewed by its employees, customers, competitors and the outside world, culture is critical. The challenge is understanding that culture contains unwritten rules and that certain behaviours that align to the culture the company is nurturing should be valued and cherished more than others.

At Sureswipe, the core of our culture is that we value people and what they are capable of. We particularly value people who are engaged, get on with the job, take initiative, are happy to get stuck in beyond their formal job descriptions, and who sometimes have to suck up a bit of pain to get through a challenge.

We include culture in everything we do, so it’s a fundamental element in our recruitment process. In addition to a skills and experience interview, each candidate undergoes a culture fit in the form of a values interview. We look for top performers who echo our core values (collaboration, courage, taking initiative, fairness and personal responsibility) and have real conviction about making a difference in the lives of independent retailers. If we don’t believe a candidate will be a culture fit, we won’t hire them.

If we make a mistake in the recruitment process, we won’t retain culture killers, even if they are top performers. This is such a tough lesson to learn, but it liberates a company and often improves overall company performance.

Culture should be cultivated, constantly communicated and used when making decisions. At Sureswipe, we often talk about what it takes to win and have simplified winning into three key elements: A simple, yet inspirational vision; the right culture; and a clear and focused strategy. The first and third elements can be copied from organisation to organisation. Culture on the other hand is unique to every business and can be a great influencer in its success.

Catch phrases on the wall are not the definition of culture

A strong culture is purposeful and evolving. It’s what makes a company great, but also exposes its weakness. No company is perfect and it’s important to acknowledge the good and the bad. Without it, we cannot ensure that we are protecting and building on the good and reducing or eradicating the bad.

Mistakes happen. That’s okay. But we are very purposeful about how mistakes are handled. Culturally we’re allergic to things being covered up or deflected and have had great learning moments as individuals and as an organisation when bad news travels fast. It’s liberating to ‘tell it like it is’ and almost always, with a few more minds on the problem at hand, things can be rectified with minimal impact.

Related: Starbucks Coffee Is All About Culture… For A Reason

Culture should be built on values that resonate with you and that you want to excel at. In our case, some are lived daily and others are aspirational in that we’re still striving for them. In each case we genuinely believe in them and encourage each other to keep living them. This increases the level of trust within the team, as there is consistency in how people are treated and how we get things done.

We are always inspired when, after sitting in our reception area, nine out of ten visitors will comment on the friendliness of staff. We hear their remarks about how friendly the Sureswipe team is or a potential candidate will talk about the high level of energy and positivity they experience throughout the interview process.

These are indicators that our culture is alive and well. It’s these components of our culture — friendliness, helpfulness and positivity — that cascade into how we do business and how we treat our customers and people in general. Being able to describe your culture and support it with real life examples is a great way to communicate and promote the type of behaviour that is important and recognised within the organisation.

Culture doesn’t just happen

We are fortunate that culture has always been important to us, even if it wasn’t clearly defined in our early days. As we grew it became important to be more purposeful in the evolution of our culture. About four years ago, the senior leadership team and nominated cultural or values icons were mandated to relook all things cultural.

A facilitator said to us, “You really love it when people take the initiative, and get very frustrated when they don’t.” That accurate insight became core to our values. We love to see people proactively solve problems, take responsibility for their own growth, initiate spontaneous events, change their tactics or implement new ideas. It energises us and aligns to the way we do business.

We celebrate growth and love to see our staff getting promoted due to their hard work and perseverance. We recently had one of our earliest technicians get promoted to the Regional Manager of Limpopo. It was one of the best moments of 2018.

Be purposeful with culture, describe it, communicate it and use it in all aspects of business. Culture should change. Don’t allow phrases like ‘this is not how we do things,’ or, ‘the culture here is changing,’ to stifle the growth and development of your culture. When done correctly change is a good thing. Culture is driven from the top but at the end of the day it’s a company-wide initiative. Design it together with team members from different parts of the organisation to get the most from it. And then make sure everyone lives and breathes it.

Cost Cutting

The best ROI is achieved when you stop wasting money.

Peter Drucker once said that businesses have two main functions — marketing and innovation — that produce results. “All the rest are costs.”

If you agree, that means that the average business has a lot of fat to trim. Obviously you can go overboard trying to cut costs too. My philosophy has been to look at some of the general areas where you can add some efficiency but not at the expense of impairing your most valuable resource — your focus.

The following cost-cutting measures will do that. Think of these as adding value to your company, whether it’s time, creativity or a closer connection to your consumers.

Related: Wise Words From wiGroup On Building A “Wow” Company Culture

Uncover inefficiencies in your process

This is where I begin. In fact, it was analysing the inefficiencies of legal communication and knowledge sharing that led me to create Foxwordy, the digital collaboration platform for lawyers. I noticed that attorneys in our clients’ legal departments were drafting new documents from scratch when they could pool their knowledge and save time by using language that a trusted colleague had employed in a similar document. Business is all about process. When you create a new process, or enhance an existing process, you will drive cost efficiency.

Refine your process, then automate

If existing processes are lacking, it is time to create process. If you have processes, but they are not driving efficiency, it’s time to redefine your process. Either way, a key second step is refining processes that are needed in your business. Only then can you go to automation, since automating without a process will result in chaos — and won’t save time or money. Similarly, automating a poor process is not going to give you the cost-saving results you are looking for.

Thanks to the Cloud, there are very accessible means of automating manual processes. For instance, you can automate bookkeeping functions with FreshBooks and use chatbots to interface with clients — for very basic information. If you’re a retailer, a chatbot on your site can explain your return policy or address other frequently asked questions. Automating such processes allows you to spend more time focusing on clients and customers. Technology alone isn’t a panacea for all business functions, but if you find something you’re doing manually that can be automated, take a look and consider how much time and process definition automation would save you.

Rethink your outreach

Marketing and outreach are usually big and important challenges for an organisation. In my experience, there are two main components to successful marketing — knowing your customers and using the most effective media to spread your message. For the first part, I recommend polling. There are various online survey services that offer an instant read on what your customers are thinking. You may think business is humming along, but a survey could reveal that while consumers like your product, a few tweaks would make it even better.

For the second part — marketing messaging — once you have a firm idea of your marketing messaging, Facebook is a great vehicle for outreach. The ability to granularly target customers and create Lookalike audiences (from around 1 000 consumers) can help grow your business.

Related: Take Responsibility For Your Company’s Culture To Boost Productivity

Scrutinise your spend history

There are tools that can help you assess spend history and find cost-cutting opportunities. For example, you might be able to take advantage of rewards or loyalty programmes to reduce common business expenses, like travel, or consolidate vendors for a similar function. If you have a long-standing relationship with a vendor, negotiate better pricing.

The most important elements to keep in mind are resources that make your company special. Your company may be built on one person’s reputation and expertise. Guard against tarnishing that reputation with inappropriate messaging in advertising or social media. If your company’s special sauce is intellectual property, protect that too. But everything else — ranging from physical property to salary and benefits — are costs and should be considered negotiable. — Monica Zent

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