We all know our economic recovery absolutely depends on small businesses. But not all busi...
Featured Blog Posts
Posted on Friday, April 19th, 2013 Add your comment
We all know our economic recovery absolutely depends on small businesses. But not all businesses are made equal. It’s high-growth businesses that will be essential to our upswing — a recent McKinsey study shows that 1 percent of US companies that are growing at the highest rate account for 40 percent of all net new jobs.
Every industry has its high-growth entrepreneurs: from construction to energy to financial services to tech. And you’ll find them in every area of the country. These powerhouse businesses — which hire, innovate and expand at disproportionately high rates — make up between 1 and 5 percent of every business sector in today’s market. Too often, good businesspeople fail because they do the right thing at the wrong time.
If you’re looking for the edge to thrive in any economy, I have spent three and a half decades collecting the best business strategies from the most brilliant minds in the world. Let me share them with you with my first-ever free online business course, The Ultimate Business Advantage. I designed it to help leaders of small- and medium-size businesses grow and expand even in volatile economic times.
Here’s a sneak peek of our first session:
Like what you see? Take my complementary offer to sign up today with code UBADRIVE for a limited time. The first session is now available on demand.
Posted on Monday, March 11th, 2013 Add your comment
While these are challenging times, they are also times of opportunity. In fact, the best companies have always excelled in the most difficult eras. More than half of the Fortune 500 were birthed in an “economic winter”—a recession or a depression. Companies like Disney, Apple, Exxon, Microsoft and FedEx were launched when the rest of the business world was licking its wounds.
If you can learn, as they did, not only to become more efficient, but to also optimize sales in this environment, you’ll be able to dominate in any economy. Whether you’re an army of one or a multi-billion dollar corporation, there are principles and strategies that you must understand and master to take your business to the next level. The 7 Forces of Business Mastery are about creating a system that improves your business by empowering you with the skills and tactics you need to gain an invincible advantage—in any environment.
Posted on Monday, November 12th, 2012 6 Comments
This is a guest post by my dear friend and colleague Scott Klososky, former CEO of three successful startups, including Webcasts.com, which he sold for $115 million. For more on how to leverage social media to grow your sales, join Scott and I in a complimentary online training session this Friday, Nov. 16. Register now.
By Scott Klososky
Social technologies provide a powerful collection of marketing tools, and they are inexpensive compared to other forms of marketing. Companies including Starbucks, Nike, Pepsi, Dell, Dirt Devil, IBM and JetBlue have already seen tremendous results from social marketing methods, and they are gaining traction with tools like customer intelligence, email, word-of-mouth campaigns and viral video—all tailor-made to provide huge benefits for businesses.
Let’s take a closer look at three techniques that can make an immediate positive impact on your marketing efforts:
Customer Intelligence – Most organizations simply maintain a database with a name, contact information and company. A customer intelligence strategy would increase the data to 20 or 30 fields of information and would include a mix of business and personal data. This data can be gathered by simply asking, or through harvesting the information from online social sites where your customer already belongs (LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, etc.)
Many businesses now automate this process by connecting their CRM systems to services that find every new customer online and harvest social profile information automatically. It is now possible to monitor online actions of customers for keywords that might create alerts at the business so action can be taken. For example, if a customer updates a LinkedIn profile with a job change or promotion, your database could be automatically updated, and you could send a congratulatory message.
Posted on Sunday, November 11th, 2012 Add your comment
Are you leveraging social media to drive more sales? Join me and Scott Klososky, a world-class leader in helping companies implement Socially Facilitated Selling (SFS), to learn innovative tools and strategies in an exclusive online training event — my compliments.
Posted on Friday, November 9th, 2012 5 Comments
Author and economist Milton Freedman once said, “Inflation is the one form of taxation that can be imposed without legislation.”
How do we simply define inflation? A “silent tax.” The loss of the purchasing power of your dollar, or more simply put, the amount of goods your dollars can purchase at any given time. And finally, as former major leaguer Sam Ewing says, “Inflation is when you pay $15 for a $10 haircut you used to get for $5 when you had hair.”
What does this mean to you and I? Our savings is effectively shrinking along with our paychecks.
The United States is in a precarious position to say the least. With $16 trillion in national debt and an estimated $100 trillion in unfunded liabilities (Medicare, prescription drugs and Social Security), it seems mathematically improbable for our government to be able to pay for these bills without cranking up the printing press or make drastic spending cuts.
The word “trillions” gets tossed around quite flippantly so let’s break it down to a more digestible example:
If the government were a person, he would…
• Have an annual income of $21,700
• Have an annual spend of $38,200
• Have credit card debt of $160,000
• Have a future impending expense of $1,000,000
BUT in recognition of the problem, he has made total budget cuts thus far of $385.
Inflation, or the possibility of more rapid inflation, is nothing new. In fact, inflation has been an issue since we removed the gold standard. In 1861, the U.S. government suspended payment in gold and silver, effectively ending the attempts to form a standard basis for the dollar. The sum of $1,000 in 1861 is worth $26,300 in today’s dollar when using the CPI index. Keep in mind, the CPI doesn’t take into account energy costs and is a flawed calculation by many accounts. Nonetheless, it does represent a mixed basket of goods and services and tracks the rate of aggregate price changes annually.
Posted on Friday, November 2nd, 2012 4 Comments
This post originally appeared at LinkedIn. Follow me there:
#1 Myth in Finance: You must be willing to lose in order to have substantial gains.
Over the past three and half decades I’ve had the privilege of working with millions of people across the globe in business and personal development as well as personal finance. Thankfully, I’m honored to have access to some of the top financial traders in the country, 24 billionaire business moguls and other successful entrepreneurs / investors. Since the meltdown of 2008 I have been obsessed with uncovering ways that an average investor can prosper and yet still protect themselves in these extraordinarily turbulent times. I’ve been constantly asking the “smartest” guys in the room: What are the biggest Investment myths and what are the truths that can set people financially free in the “new normal” that we all need to navigate financially?
Often I ask these billionaire clients of mine, if you could not leave your kids your actual financial wealth and you were going to give them the simplest plan for creating long term wealth, what would you tell them? They all give different answers but one of the most important themes they most often share is what I call Rule #1: Don’t lose money. That sounds wonderful but for a generation that has experienced two 40% drops in the past 10 years, is there really a practical way to do this in the modern financial world?
Posted on Wednesday, October 31st, 2012 10 Comments
Without language, we find ourselves living in a state of emotional chaos. Our brain has given us the potential to communicate in extraordinary ways and the way we choose to do so can improve the neural functioning of the brain. In fact, a single word has the power to influence the expression of genes that regulate physical and emotional stress. If we do not continually exercise the brain’s language centers, we cripple our neurological ability to deal with the problems we encounter with each other.”
—Dr. Andrew Newberg, Words Can Change Your Brain
In the last blog post we talked about how our habitual emotional vocabulary shapes and controls much of our emotional experiences in life—how the labels we put upon our experience become our experience. Today, let’s take a look at how you can transform the quality of your entire life simply by becoming conscious of what habitual vocabulary you use for negative emotions, and shifting them with words that break your patterns and provide you with new and better emotional choices.
Your assignment is very simple: Below you’ll see my 10-day challenge. I call it “Watch Your TV,” watch your “Transformational Vocabulary.” The labels you attach to your experience can transform the way you feel. Again, it’s not hard to realize that if you habitually take any intense emotion and say it’s “depressing,” it’s going to feel very different than if you say you’re feeling a little “down.” Being enraged by somebody’s reaction is very different than being a bit frustrated by their response. Saying to yourself they utterly rejected you, is quite different than they didn’t agree with your suggestion.
The real secret to transforming your life is to wake up and become conscious of the patterns that are currently unconscious and shaping the way you feel. Ultimately the way we feel determines the quality of your life. You could have whatever you think life’s dream is—building a billion dollar enterprise or a family that totally loves and adores you—but if every single day you live with the emotions of feeling frustrated and angry, then the quality of your life is called frustration and anger—it has nothing to do with the economic opportunities you have, much less the love you are surrounded by. The quality of our lives is the quality of our emotions.
The power of Transformational Vocabulary is its simplicity. It provides you with an immediate tool to increase the quality of your life. So here are the four step to your ten-day challenge:
STEP 1: Become conscious of the habitual words you use to describe your unhappy or distressing feelings. Begin to notice the labels you are putting on things. If you say something like, “I’m so worried about this,” stop yourself and acknowledge that “worry” might be too strong a word. Maybe what you really are is “a little bit concerned.” Monitor your language and make sure your language isn’t exaggerating the intensity of emotions. Or better yet, consciously pick a word that would lower the negative intensity (instead of saying that you are “furious” with someone, describe yourself as being a little “irritated” or “disappointed with their reaction”). If somebody asks you, “How’s it going?” instead of saying, “Okay,” what would be a word that might put a smile on your face to even say, that would break your own pattern? Like, “You wouldn’t even believe how I’m feeling!” with a smile, to be playful with yourself. Or a simple response like “I’m committed” or “I’m lucky” or “I’m grateful.” And then take a moment to think about what you are grateful for. We often lose sight of what’s beautiful in our life because of a few things that are out of line with our expectations.
Change Your Words, Change Your Life: The Simplest Tool I Know for Immediately Transforming the Quality of Your Life
Posted on Tuesday, October 30th, 2012 14 Comments
“Language shapes our behavior and each word we use is imbued with multitudes of personal meaning. The right words spoken in the right way can bring us love, money and respect, while the wrong words—or even the right words spoken in the wrong way—can lead to a country to war. We must carefully orchestrate our speech if we want to achieve our goals and bring our dreams to fruition.”
—Dr. Andrew Newberg, Words Can Change Your Brain
Throughout human history, great leaders have used the power of words to transform our emotions, to enlist us in their causes, and to shape the course of destiny. From Winston Churchill’s focus on the “finest hour” to Martin Luther King, Jr.’s depiction of a “dream” we are well aware that beliefs are formed by words—and they can be changed by words. But what about the ability we each have within us to use words to ignite change, to move ourselves to action, and to improve the quality of our lives?
We all know words provide us with a vehicle for expressing and sharing our experience with others. But do you realize that the words you habitually choose also affects how you communicate with yourself and therefore what you experience?
For the past 35 years I’ve had the privilege of working with more than 50 million people and I’ve observed firsthand the power of changing just one key word in communicating with someone and noted how it instantly changes the way people feel—and how they behave. And I can tell you that simply by changing your habitual vocabulary—the words you consistently use to describe emotions—you can instantaneously change how you think, how you feel, and how you live. This is the power of what I call Transformational Vocabulary—consciously using your words to improve the quality of your life today and for the rest of your life.
According to Compton’s Encyclopedia, the English language contains some 500,000 words. Yet the average person’s working vocabulary consists of 2,000—0.5% of the entire language. And the number of words we use most frequently—the words that make up our habitual vocabulary? For most people, it averages 200-300 words. Isn’t that unbelievable? (By contrast, John Milton’s writings used about 17,000 words and William Shakespeare used 24,000 words, 5,000 of which he only used one time.) Of those 500,000 words total, as much as 3,000 are used to describe emotions—2/3 of which are used to describe negative emotions.
Posted on Saturday, October 27th, 2012 7 Comments
Just last week, I was speaking with a friend who came from nothing and has become a veteran financial journalist. He is dumbfounded and sickened with what has become the “new normal” and how the little guy, the normal investor, is always left holding the bag.
“Tony,” he exclaimed, “I’m most concerned that the mechanics of the market have changed so dramatically that we’ll never go back to the world we once knew — when what was going on beneath the surface in individual businesses and the economy mattered. Today it’s all macro and algorithm-driven, tied to the latest headline.”
Over the past three decades I’ve had the privilege of working with millions of people across the globe in business and personal development as well as personal finance. Helping people take the right steps towards financial freedom has always been a focus of my mission but the reality is, we are living in a “new normal.” The dangers and potential opportunities that lay ahead have forced me to put the topics of investing and personal finance on center stage. Thankfully, I have the privilege of having access to some of the top financial traders in the country, 24 billionaire business moguls and other successful entrepreneurs / investors. My goal has been to extract their global views, determine their course of action, and ultimately find real solutions or my friends, family and clients.
Like most Americans, never before have I been so concerned with two things:
- Our country’s national debt and out-of-control spending, which will ultimately impact your quality of life through inflation and rising taxes.
- The financial services industry, which is addicted to volatile investments and allowing the investors to shoulder all the risk (while they are compensated regardless).
Consider the “new normal” in which we are living:
- “Buy and hope” no longer works. Only 4% of stock mutual funds have beat the S&P 500 in the last 10 years (USA Today, December 2011) which means they are adding no value whatsoever. David Swensen, manager of Yales endowment writes, “Overwhelmingly, mutual funds extract enormous funds from investors in exchange for providing a shocking disservice.” This is not to say that ALL mutual funds are bad, but the vast majority are charging hefty fees for no additional return (when compared to the broad market). Read More »
Posted on Friday, October 19th, 2012 5 Comments
Following is the complete transcript of Tony Robbins interviewing app developer Chad Mureta. A summary version and video of the conversation is here.
TR: It was 2009 if I remember right. Is that right? When this all kind of started for you? The accident?
TR: Okay, that’s cool. Okay, well you sent me some questions which really make my job easy. Thank you for that. That’s kind of you. That will kind of guide me along the way here and we’ll rip through this. Set to go?
CM: Yeah, let’s do it.
TR: Great! So hello everybody. This morning I really wanted to bring to you some live examples of people that have prospered during the tough times of this economy. You know, so many people today, if you’re not in the tech business and a lot of other businesses, are in really tough shape and one of the things I’ve tried to get people to do is to think about adapting. Instead of continuing to do what doesn’t work, find something new that can really give you some new opportunities.
The man we’re privileged to have this morning is Chad Mureta and Chad is a guy that’s written a new book. It’s called ‘App Empire: Make Money, Have a Life and Let Technology Work For You’
CM: I was in the real estate business and my whole goal was to get into a business that could work for me and I thought at the time that real estate was that game and so I opened up a company in 2006, as you know was the worst, absolute worst time to start a real estate company. So I went at it and the market obviously dropped and all the money that I had just worked about five years of my life to save, that I put into the business, I watched go right down the tubes.
CM: I was struggling and I wasn’t going to just let myself pretty much die. I was going to fight to make it happen.
CM: So it was about three years of just working eighteen hour days, miserable, not really having a life, watching all the friends and family members just kind of fade away because I wasn’t connecting with them.