Hey guys. If you’re a new entrepreneur, or you’ve been going at this for awhile but you feel like you’re running through quicksand, this episode is for you.
Have you ever been listening to the accolades of someone you admire and feel yourself crushed under the weight of their accomplishments? It’s happened to all of us. It’s really easy to see someone standing in the spot we wish we could be and feel jealous.
But here’s what we don’t get to see: the steps that it took to get there. We rarely get to hear the struggles that our predecessors went through before they “made it”. Take me for example; I went through countless ups and downs before I ever started a truly successful business. I sold TVs in my dorm room long before I started SamCart.
The point is, no one’s first idea is their best idea. If you’re in the midst of a start up right now, chances are it won’t be the last time you find yourself there. If you can embrace that, you’re already ahead of the game.
I have always thought of my businesses as stepping stones. I have learned from every experience, good or bad, and used those lessons to launch into my next idea.
This week’s episode is short and sweet but it should offer a lot of encouragement if you’re feeling stuck. Take a listen and remember nothing is a waste of time as long as you’re learning from it.
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Speaker 1: Think of it as preparing for the next step because that’s what it’s doing. Even if you’re failing, you’re learning what doesn’t work. You’re learning lessons along the way and the only way you get to what you think is the finish line to be looked at like a Steve Jobs or Mark Cuban or these successful business guys and gals. The only way those guys caught there is because they just refuse to quit.
Speaker 1: Hey everybody, what’s going on? Just in the car. Coming home from a softball tournament. I’m listening to this, read this new book. Actually, forget the author’s name, but the book’s called Chasing the Lion, I believe, or Chase the Lion. The author’s name is Mark Batterson. Awesome author. If you guys haven’t read any of his stuff, you should, but this book Chase the Lion, it’s just all about goal setting and I think the subtitle of the book is, if your dream doesn’t scare you, it’s not big enough. It’s just all about dreaming big, setting goals bigger than you think, because we usually are more, are capable of accomplishing a heck of a lot more than we think we are.
Speaker 1: But long story short, the, the point he just, he literally just made a point and I was like, oh, my God, I have to record a podcast about this. This is so true. And it’s, this is more of a message for those of you that are in the beginning stages of your business, you’re either working on the first business idea that you had and I don’t care what age you are, you could be 18, you could be 88 but you’re just getting into entrepreneurship and you’re struggling or you’re on your second or third. You’re still early on in your entrepreneurship career, your sales career, whatever you’re trying to do. And he’s making the point about Benjamin Franklin and how he listed off all the accomplishments that this guy had and the accomplishments, the inventions, the role that he played in forming the United States, all of those things that this guy did. And it’s just, it’s incredible. We listen to these accomplishments and you’re like, man, this guy, I could never impact the world in the way that this guy did. It’s just insane.
Speaker 1: And then he started to rattle off all the things that he did before all of those accomplishments. And they were all things that showed how hard the guy studied and worked. And he spent 10 years as an apprentice printer and he, spent 20 years doing, studying this and studying debate and researching whether it’s politics or history or whatever it was. And he basically, at the end of this point that the author is making, it makes you realize that man, before this guy was, 40 or 50 or whatever the age was, he really didn’t do anything that any of us would have looked back and said, “Man, he’s really successful.” Because he spent decades studying, learning, perfecting his craft, preparing to do great things.
Speaker 1: And it made me think of my own entrepreneurship career and how way back in the beginning when I got started in 2008 that, really kind of 2007 when I was out of my dorm I was selling TVs. I was buying TVs on Ebay and then trying to sell them for more money. Trying to figure out little ways to make money. That was the beginning of my entrepreneurship career and to me it was just fun. But looking back, those things prepared me. They taught me fundamentals of sales, fundamentals of finance, fundamentals of business, of marketing, of copywriting, of creating products, of supply and demand.
Speaker 1: The first couple websites that I created were not successful. I’ve created a ton of them that were not successful, but looking back, like those were, I look back at those like studying for a test. Those businesses led me to create the first quote unquote, successful business that I had, which was get10000fans.com. We took that two, $3 million a year. That business was a precursor to SamCart, which is about to do 10 million a year and has helped tens of thousands of people sell, it’ll be close to a billion dollars. Over a billion dollars by the end of this year.
Speaker 1: And SamCart, I will look back at one day at SamCart and it’ll be the precursor to something bigger and better than I did. This is, I’m still in the minor leagues. If you think of a sports analogy. That I am preparing, whatever you’re doing right now, think of it as preparing for the next step. Because that’s what it’s doing. Even if you’re failing, you’re learning what doesn’t work. You’re learning lessons along the way and the only way you get to what you think is the finish line to be looked at like a Steve Jobs or mark Cuban or you know, these successful business guys and gals. The only way those guys got there is because they just refused to quit. Bottom line.
Speaker 1: Read any one of their biographies, autobiographies and you will see decades of failure, typically, and maybe not failure, but maybe not wild success. Decades of preparation and preparation can come through, failure, can come through success, it can come through study, it can become through mentorship, apprenticeship, whatever it is. That’s how you get there. Again, I know this applies to wherever you’re at in your business, but if you’re early on, look at whatever it is you’re doing as a stepping stone. Don’t look at the first business you start as it has to do six figures. It has to get you out of your job. It has to hit seven figures because you’re just setting yourself up for a mental breakdown, a mental failure. It’s not going to get there. And I don’t say that definitively, it might. But you need to approach it like it’s not. You need to approach it like you’re going to, no matter what happens with this idea, that you’re looking at and trying to make happen right now, that no matter what happens, you’re going to act fast, refuse to quit and learn as much as you humanly can learn. Period.
Speaker 1: And that this, whatever you’re working on now, can, should, might, might as well be a stepping stone to something bigger and better. Most likely, very, very, very few times is our first idea, our best idea. My first idea of selling TVs out of my dorm was not a million dollar idea. I was not going to build a business reselling TVs. My second idea, a website about baseball, it was a fine idea. I could have, if I was still doing that full time, I know guys that do, multiple million dollars a year in baseball, but that was not my best idea. The next idea I had wasn’t even my best idea. SamCart hopefully will not even be my best idea. I think this could be a massive idea. We’re getting close to $10 million a year already. I think we can get this business to 50 or a $100 million.
Speaker 1: It’s a big idea, but I hope it’s not the final idea I have. I’m not even 33 yet. I got a long life to live and if I look at this business like it’s got to take me to the end of my life, I’m going to be in trouble. I hate to break it to everybody, but I got hopefully 30, 40, 50 years left of doing this business thing and I’ll do it as long as I possibly can because I love it. But this business that I’m currently working on, ain’t going to be my last business. It’s just not going to be. Think about in just 10 years with the internet might be, and I’m in the eCommerce, online eCommerce space selling software. Who even knows where eCommerce will be in 10 years. We all might be buying things through VR goggles or some crap. I mean, who knows?
Speaker 1: That’s my point for the day. No matter where you’re at, look at it like a stepping stone. Treat this as your chance. You are preparing for what’s next and I wish you all the success in the world and hope that this is, whatever you’re working on is a massive success and maybe it will be, but don’t demand for it to be a massive success. The last business you ever have to create, most likely it’s not going to be.
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