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Image credit: Navi Radjou | Ted Talk

I’m a big fan of TEDTalks -- they’re full of insights on everything from human nature to scientific breakthroughs to trends in design. They’re inspirational, informative and eye-opening in ways that can help you become a better person and a better professional. For the aspiring entrepreneur, they exist to help you challenge your assumptions, believe in yourself and push you to be the best leader you can possibly be.

 

Then again, wading through those thousands of talks for just the right lecture on business development can be intimidating, especially if you’re just in the mood for a quick talk on your lunch break. That’s why I’ve compiled this list of essential TEDTalks, which every entrepreneur should see:

1. Creative problem-solving in the face of extreme limits.

This TEDTalk by Navi Radjou is all about minimalistic applications in the field of problem-solving. Problem-solving applies to everything, since it’s necessary for innovation, scientific discovery and even social constructs. Radjou introduces the demands and advantages of extreme limitation when it comes to problem-solving.

More: 5 Inspiring TED Talks That Will Free You to Be Happy and Successful

For the entrepreneur, this means working with limited capital, resources and time. The constraints are high, so it seems more difficult, but it actually drives greater degrees of innovation. This talk is perfect for when you feel like you’re up against the wall with almost nothing to work with.


2. How great leaders inspire action.

This TEDTalk by Simon Sinek explores the idea of leadership and why some people are better at inspiring action than others. Starting with examples from Martin Luther King’s leadership in the Civil Rights Movement to Apple’s leadership in the business world, Sinek examines certain patterns that seemingly predict the success rates of various leaders.

One line in the TEDTalk speaks particularly strongly to entrepreneurs: “People don’t buy what you do. People buy why you do it.” For entrepreneurs attempting to become industry leaders in their own right, fundamentally understanding this principle is a necessity. Watch Sinek’s TEDTalk for a more thorough exploration of this idea, with real examples.


3. The single biggest reason why startups succeed. 

Bill Gross attempts in this TEDTalk to quantify all the reasons why one startup might be more successful than another. As a serial entrepreneur and a mentor for other startups, Gross has had much experience in the business world. He’s seen great businesses fail and questionable businesses succeed, and this experience drove him to quantify exactly why these differences exist.

Gross measures each startup in terms of the strength of the idea, the timing of the company launch, the team leading the business, access to capital and the overall business model. What he found was that one factor led to success more than any other -- and that's timing. It’s a must watch for any business owner.


4. Do what you love. (No excuses!)

Gary Vaynerchuk offers a relatively simple premise, given away by its title, in this TEDTalk. If you’re the type of person who likes to scan through articles for a single nugget or takeaway, there’s no need to watch the full TEDTalk -- the title is pretty accurate. The method Vaynerchuk uses to convince you that this is the case, however, is inspiring and worth a watch.

Entrepreneurs are often motivated in part by the potential for great revenue or are thrilled at the notion of owning their own businesses. But to be truly successful, you have to love what you’re doing. You have to be in an industry that you truly care about and do the type of work you actually enjoy. Otherwise, you’ll never be satisfied.


5. How to manage for collective creativity.

This TEDTalk by Linda Hill is perfect for entrepreneurs trying to maximize the creative potential of their top teams. Exploring different tactics as they are used by some of the world’s most respected and most created companies, Hill examines the root causes for creative greatness.

Ultimately, she comes up with a simple set of tools and strategies that any entrepreneur can use to fuel the generation of great new ideas from the entire team, and keep pressing the company to move forward. Creative thinking and abstract problem-solving are some of the most important features of any company, and Hill explains the best way to incorporate these into your culture.

If you haven’t already seen these TEDTalks and you either are or plan on being an entrepreneur, add these to your queue right now. There’s no excuse not to -- you can even download them as audio files so you can listen to them on the commute home. The more open you are to new ideas and new experiences, the more likely it is that you’ll succeed in your entrepreneurial journey.


Source: This article was published on entrepreneur.com by JAYSON DEMERS

Categorized in Business Research

There’s a big difference between being busy and being effective.

For most of my early entrepreneurial journey I often found myself spending hours at my computer only to look at the clock mid-afternoon to realize I hadn’t really accomplished anything.

It turns out this is a common thing for entrepreneurs—entrepreneurs work63% longer than the average employee, working an average of 52 hours a week.

If you feel like you are always working but not advancing in your career one successful entrepreneur has a solution. He says there’s three skills he mastered to build his business to 7-figures in annual revenue in just two years. If you can master these skills, you’ll be able to put an end to “busyness” and advance your career in a fraction of the time.

 

Meet John Lee Dumas, founder of the daily business podcast for entrepreneurs “Entrepreneur on Fire,” which gets 1.2 Million monthly listens and generates 7-figures in yearly revenue. Entrepreneur on Fire has featured distinguished guests like Tony Robbins, Gary Vaynerchuk, and Tim Ferris, and was awarded ‘Best of iTunes.’

This week on Unconventional Life, Dumas shares the three skills every entrepreneur needs to master to advance their careers in 2017.

Photo courtesy John Lee DumasPhoto courtesy John Lee Dumas

Dumas says he can relate to feeling challenged in the early days of his entrepreneurial journey. When he first launched Entrepreneur on Fire, he had no experience with podcasting and had been told by his mentors it was a bad idea.

Though the odds were stacked against him, he saw a need for daily content for entrepreneurs and wanted to fulfill that need. “I wanted more content, fresh content every single day waiting for me and I didn’t understand why it didn’t exist so I decided to be the change I wanted to see in the world,” says Dumas.

Roughly four years later, Entrepreneur on Fire has become one of the most listened to and valued podcasts by entrepreneurs. Dumas has released over 1,500 episodes, which collectively have over 43 Million listens.

Dumas accredits his success to three key skills—productivity, discipline, and focus. He says these skills are the horsepower behind execution and separate those who follow through from those who don’t.

In mastering these skills, you can be sure you’ll be able to conquer anything in your path. Below, Dumas shares his tips to master productivity, discipline and focus.

 

1. Operate In Your Genius

Being productive is effortless when you enjoy what you do and you’re good at it. Dumas calls this your “zone of genius.” You can uncover your zone of genius with a simple 5-day exercise. Draw a line down the center of a blank piece of paper and label the left side, “things I enjoy,” and the right side, “things I’m good at.” For ten minutes each day, write down as much as you can on each side. Repeat the exercise for five days in a row.

2. Own Your Strengths

“We have way more weaknesses than we have strengths,” Dumas says. “The problem is people spend their time on all those weaknesses trying to be ok at something they’re crappy at. Nobody wants ok, you might as well stay crappy.” Forget your weaknesses; identify what your natural strengths are and work on developing them to a level of mastery. You’ll work your “discipline” and “focus” muscles in the process.

3. Outsource

You can free up a tremendous amount of time and energy with outsourcing. Check yourself by calculating your “hourly wage,” or the amount of money you make divided by the hours you work. If your hourly wage isn’t what you want it to be, consider hiring someone to do simple things like website maintenance or responding to emails that aren’t an effective use of your time.

4. Put The Blinders On

Those who try to do too many things at once rarely get anything done. Select one project you want to see to completion and make it the sole object of your focus until it is complete. Eliminate distractors and execute your project with laser-like focus for maximum productivity.

5. Plan

Your goals can feel overwhelming and unattainable when you don’t have a concrete plan of action to achieve them. Determine what your goals are and create a realistic plan with daily action steps that will take you to your goal. In creating your plan, make sure your roadmap is guaranteed to work. You don’t want to waste your energy doing things that don’t produce results. Your plan should give you confidence and peace of mind that every single day you are making progress and are certain to arrive at your goal.

6. Stick To A Routine

Routines are a great way to establish structure and hold yourself accountable to your best work. Dumas says he starts every day with running, meditation, and journaling to put himself in the frame of mind he needs to be successful. Maybe your daily routine involves coffee and rejuvenating breaks. Design a framework that will enable you to do your best, day in and day out. For even greater structure, check out Dumas’ Mastery Journal designed to guide you to productivity, discipline and focus in 100 days. 

Author : Jules Schroeder

Source : http://www.forbes.com/sites/julesschroeder/2017/01/23/3-skills-every-entrepreneur-needs-to-advance-their-career-in-2017/#58209aa47c21

Categorized in Business Research

The road to owning your business is not an easy one; Anyone who has ever started and grown a company will tell you that it was hard. The journey begins with creating a product or service that your target market will want and buy. Then there is trying to scale your company into a business that will have a future for you and your family. Add to that the day-to-day activities and strategies that are involved in keeping the door open, and you will quickly realize that entrepreneurship takes a lot of work.

There are no absolute rules; you will not find a road map to guarantee success in business. But if you were to talk to a new or even an established entrepreneur, they will tell you one thing: you will make mistakes. The risk element associated with operating a business can lead to a lot of mishaps as you try to grow your company.

You will find that mistakes are common and often inevitable. They also play a role in producing a more attentive and better business owner. You can solve some wrong decisions quickly, but there are others that can cost you precious time and money. In fact, some mistakes can lead to the failure of your business.

Below we share suggestions that will help you prevent six common mistakes business owners make while starting and growing a business.

 

Feedback is Good, but Beware

Doing business all by yourself is hard. So, do not be afraid to consult with business mentors and good friends. Feedback is exceptionally important to a new business – especially when the advice is coming from an experienced business owner who has been successful in the market or industry. Their valuable opinion can make a difference in your entrepreneurial skills and knowledge.

However, even well-intentioned business consultants can overwhelm and confuse entrepreneurs. A ton of advice can cause analysis paralysis. It is important to give yourself the time that is needed to make significant decisions without being rushed. However, don’t get caught in procrastination and lose out on an incredible business opportunity. So, surround yourself with individuals that will give you the support you need without pulling you in all different directions.

Get Your Customers’ Opinions

Despite your best plans, the products, and services that you create as an entrepreneur is for your clients. Accordingly, one of the biggest mistakes that you can make as a business owner is to ignore the feedback of your customers.

The opinion of your customers, especially in the beginning when you are defining your business offerings, provides an opportunity to fine-tune your product or service. Often what you think might be a big win may not resonate with your target audience. However, if your customers are telling you exactly what they want and your business is providing it, you could see your company flourish in the marketplace.

A prudent entrepreneur should test a new product or service on a small group of potential customers to get feedback on how to go forward.

 

Look for Business Opportunities to Network

As an entrepreneur, you should understand that networking is more about who knows you than it is about who you know. Your calendar might include meetings from daybreak to sunset. However, just 30 minutes at a networking event can produce significant business opportunities that can make a difference.

Do not ignore networking events. Some entrepreneurs consider them to be a waste of time, especially when they don’t immediate generate a business deal. However, the key to successful networking is to maintain visibility. Attend relevant networking events, create and sustain a list of corporate contact, and add value to the experience. Remember networking is a two-way street.

You will find this to be uncomfortable at first, particularly for entrepreneurs that don’t consider themselves to be social butterflies. However, to promote your business, you should get out of the office and mingle with others.

Be Focused at All Times

Like many other business owners, you have more ideas than you can execute. Don’t make the mistake of chasing every seemingly great idea while disregarding the core of your business. Instead keep a journal or folder and record all your thoughts and concepts. When time permits, you can go through your list and assess the ideas.

A lot of products and services with no real link can prove chaotic to the consumer. Delaying execution and going back to your plans when you are not too excited will allow you to make better decisions for your business.

 

Employ the Right People and Fire the Wrong Ones

Choices about who to hire and which positions to fill are few of the most difficult business decisions you must make as an entrepreneur. They also fall into the category of the most time-consuming considerations. Unless someone is the very best individual for the task, think twice about working with friends and members of your family. There are numerous stories of how personal relationships can create a challenging and toxic working environment.

Your staff is critical to the execution of your business plan. Hiring the wrong person, even if for the most minute role, can severely impact your company’s bottom line. Ensure that your employment process includes choosing the most qualified, capable individual with a strong work ethic. Think about hiring people whose strengths complement your weak points. If staff members are not carrying out responsibilities to your expectations, get them some training or let them go. Don’t make the mistake of making staffing decisions based on emotions.

Respond Quickly

It is important to be accessible both to your staff and your customers. Make sure you can respond to voicemails and emails within 24-48 hours. If you are not the techie type or you are prone to forget, delegate this task to someone on your team. Your initial response does not need to be an action plan but can just be an acknowledgment of the message and an indication to respond in a timeframe.

There are many benefits to owning your own business, but no one can promise that it will be easy. You can choose to be the entrepreneur who will go out and make the mistakes and hopefully learn from them, or you can save yourself some headache and incorporate some of the suggestions above.

Author:  Fabrizio Moreira

Source:  lifehack.org

Categorized in Business Research

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