Simon Dolan has written a great book for everyone interested in becoming and entrepreneur or for people that allready is an entrepreneur and is looking for new insights. We learn by repitition and that´s why its important to continue searching and reading books that may seem basic at first, but you are sure to be reminded of skills and techniques that you have forgotten about. I prefer this book to Dennis Felix´s book “How to get rich” as well as Donal Trump´s “How to get rich” because Simon Dolan seems to be a much more balanced and realistic person to guide most entrepreneurial people in the right direction. A lot of books written by famous entrepreneurs are very populistic in the sense that they oversell the dream in a way that makes it hard for most people to relate, because the dream life they are living takes years to develop.
Simon writes honest things like; “As a matter of fact there´s a good reason millionaires don´t detail their rise from thousands to millions. It´s because the story is boring. Businesses grow little by little, year by year.” I can attest to that. 3sixty has doubled it´s turnover year by year and will do that in 2011 as well. If you keep on doubling turnover after 10 years you are making quite a respectable amount of money. I also appreciate his view on the fooling around period. I did that for years before I found out that I love tech businesses and how to build these kind of businesses. It takes time to find what you love and I don´t think you are able to properly find yourself at university because it has a sheep tribe culture in the sense that everyone is doing the same thing. I didn´t figure out that entrepreneurship was right for me until I was fired from my first job. I knew that job was not right for me, I wanted to run and develop the company, I didn´t want to work in it. People are different I like/need to build and develop my company they way that I enjoy and you can only do that but taking the bull by the horns.
Simon also says you need two key skills as an entrepreneur 1) Self-Belief and 2) the ability to sell. Pay attention to what he mentions first; Self-Belief in my mind is the essential skill of all. If you have self-belief you can sell anything in fact you can do anything. There is a lot of proof out there that all the thoughts you generate and that feel real to you are possible to achieve, but you do need that inner desire and passion for acomplishing or aquiring something. Simon also says he read and has read lots and lots of self help books throughout the years and in terms of developing and improving self-belief he recommends Neuro-Linguistic-Programming (NLP). “Your brain is a wonderous computer and organ, but it can be guided and improved. You can shut down bad habits of thinking and launch and strengthen good habits and thinking.” To learn these techniques he recommends Tony Robbins like “Awakening the Giant Within: How to Take Immediate Control of Your Mental, Emotional, Physical and Financial Destiny. Simon also describes how others rediculed him for reading self help books, but you can ask yourself this question; If you are not interested in bettering yourself each day, then you are living a baseline life, but thats not why you become an entrepreneur. You make the choice to become an entrepreneur to create something, and creation is very much about making something better than what allready exists. The better you get at the entrepreneurial lifestyle design the better companies you create and the more value you add to the world. In short try not to hang out with people that don´t understand that adding value to the world and bettering yourself and the people around you is a great life. “Don´t hang with the losers and downers.” Surround yourself with great people that inspire and encourage you and don´t listen to the naysayers! For a while I started listening to the naysayers and it nearly killed me and my business!
“Self-belief is an entrepreneur´s most precious commodity. It´s way more important than capital. Get it and keep it. Nurture and protect it, fiercely.” Simon Dolan
I haven´t read the book above, but it´s quite likely that it´s the next one on my reading list.
Simon also gives the same advice as other entrepreneurs that have “made it”;
– Don´t reinvent the wheel i.e. go into a nich in a traditional market and innovate there
I can agree to that, but you also need to follow your passions. If you love making/inventing things then become a specialist in patents or similar. In any case do what you love, but don´t lie to yourself about the need to generate money, money is not everything, but it helps a lot to have some if you want to create a company and actually add value through a company.
– Don´t have a business partner. Own the company 100% personally I can´t make up my mind on this one. Most of the biggest companies in the world were made by more than one entrepreneur, Microsoft, Apple etc. the list is endless. If you want to read more about this you can look into “Working Together” by Michael D. Eisner. The fact of the matter is if you add somebody as a business partner it becomes more risky because people grow and develop differently and this increases the chances of your business failing. I have had a series of business failures because of just this. In some cases it has been because i grew in a different direction once the business was up and running. It depends on what kind of person you are and of course what kind of business partner you have. My first accountant told me; “Business parnterships that work are the exception, not the rule.” In most cases I think he is right, but I believe in people working toghether, but there needs to be that special passion like working without a salary and wanting to work instead of relax. And finding that is really rare and I think like finding your true love is a bit similar to finding the perfect business partner. It´s possible, but hard to find. What I do believe in is franchises and other business partnerships and collaborations where the value added to each others business is great.
“With some things, however it is essential to do them alone. This includes going to the loo, picking your nose…and getting rich.” Simon Dolan
Simon is yet another successfull creator/entrepreneur/millionaire that goes back to explaining that getting the things you want in life is very much about a state of mind. He quotes from the book “Secret of the Millionaire Mind” by T. Harv Eker that “we all have a wealth thermostat deep inside us that regulates the amount of money we allow ourselves to have. This wealth thermostat is set subconsciously, as a result of the conditioning we receive from our family and from the community around us while we´re growing up.” I really appreciate Simon´s view on how to educate and communicate to your children that it´s very possible to NOT do what everyone else is doing and go to university or other traditional routes. I will most certainly educate my children about the possibility to go down the route of entrepreneurship and that its very possible to create anything you want in this world as well as the importance to confront fear and treat obstacles as opportunities. Personally I grew up in an environment of academics and people that have gone down the traditional path of education and job. When I think about what I now know because I was fired from my first propper job, and how everything has led me to do what the voice inside me always has wanted, to be an entrepreneur and in many respects treat life like an adventure where you create your own future instead of relying on others to create it for you.
All the best