I am a firm believer in the power of habits. What you do every day defines who you are.
My success as an entrepreneur has been due, in large part, to my ability to adopt consistent habits.
That is why I wanted to invite Andy Margison, the Founder and Director of ZZap Ltd., to write a guest post about the 3 habits of successful entrepreneurs.
Take it away Andy!
If you Google, “The habits of successful entrepreneurs”, people offer many tips and tricks – read more books, wake up early, put your customers first, don’t take no for an answer, etc. The list goes on and on.
Habits require focus and consistent action. If you manage to integrate a habit into your daily life, it can have a profound impact on your success. In order to maximize your rewards, you need to pick the best habit for you.
Some will have a higher return on investment than others. Prioritizing is very important. Here are 3 habits of successful entrepreneurs. If you’re going to learn a habit, make it one of these:
1. Know what you want
Without direction, you won’t be successful. A ship without its captain is doomed. If you ‘sort of’ know what you want, you will meander and waste time. Sure, you may achieve things along the way, which will be comforting, but in the end you will fall short of your real goals.
To be put in the same class as the greats, you need to do some soul searching to find out exactly what it is that you want. Moreover, you can't change a goal from one day to the next. It has to be set in stone. If you are focused and work hard, society will tell you that’s the way to go.
However, it’s important to remember that working hard will keep you busy, but it won’t necessarily make you successful. Knowing what you want ensures that your actions are aligned with your goals, so that you are always moving in the right direction.
Successful entrepreneur, Gary Vaynerchuk, knew from the age of 7 that he wanted to buy the New York Jets NFL team. At 41 years old, he is thought to be worth over 100 million dollars, and he’s still pursuing the same goal, with obsessive focus. Arnold Schwarzenegger, one of the most successful celebrities on the planet, saw Reg Park in a magazine when he was a young man.
Arnold read the article on Reg Park succeeding in bodybuilding, and then progressing into movies. Once Arnold had read the article, he knew “It was the whole plan laid out.” Conor McGregor, a star in the UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) has recently been in the news because he is the first ever to simultaneously win two titles in two weight divisions.
Conor knew exactly what he wanted from a young age. Today, he is living his dream. Only you know what you want in life. Make sure that you’re true to yourself, and don’t let others detract you from your goals.
If you’re struggling to think of a business idea that you love, check out my article “The real truth behind finding a viable business idea.”
2. Work like hell
Work ethic is such a huge part of entrepreneurial success. If you think you can achieve a high level of success with mediocre work ethic, you are wrong. As Gary Vaynerchuk says, ‘There is no such thing as an overnight success.”
Gary V works 18 hours a day, Idris Elba says he can do 18 to 22 hours a day easily, and Will smith confesses his work ethic is ‘sickening.' There are countless examples of hugely successful people with exceptional work ethic.
People with a high work ethic, like myself, can be lured into a false sense of security by thinking that because they are doing more work than everybody else, they will automatically be more successful. I work 14 hours a day building my business, but I am fully aware that unless I consistently focus on it, I am wasting my time.
You need to work hard AND smart. If you want to achieve success, you have to master it.
3. Get to the point
I once asked a man with a net worth of over 150 million pounds if he could give me one piece of advice, what would it be? He thought about it then said, “To cut the bullshit.” By doing this, you are getting to the point. You are stating the real situation.
It is simply astounding how much unnecessary and useless ‘noise’ there is in today's society. The Internet contributes to this by making so much information available. Many people are dragged down by trivia, and hide behind it, using it as an excuse, instead of facing the real issues.
When you watch interviews with successful people you will notice that they don’t beat around the bush. As an entrepreneur, you are up against the market. The market does not care about your excuses, it simply responds to results. Entrepreneur, Alan Sugar, epitomizes a ‘cut the bullshit’ approach, and it's no surprise he’s now worth over 1 billion pounds.
Getting to the point is a hugely underrated habit. It is similar to ‘know what you want.' It allows you to focus on your goals and eliminate wasted time. Ultimately, time is the most important asset.
I challenge you to adopt these 3 habits of successful entrepreneurs. It may be the best thing you ever do.
My name is Andy Margison and I am the founder and director of ZZap Ltd,a specialist cash handling company focused on reducing operating costs for a wide range of businesses and charities. From an early age, I have had a burning passion to run my own business. At the age of 9, I started my first car washing business, at 11, my own gardening business and at 14, I sold confectionary from my school locker. I have always loved entrepreneurism. I believe that work ethic is the foundation of success. If you truly want something bad enough, you can achieve it.