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Inside the mind of a successful entrepreneur

|Nov 6|magazine13 min read

Written by Alex Pirouz

Read this article in the November issue of Business Review Australia

 

After dealing with thousands of business owners over the years I have come to realise many things that limit a business owner’s ability to succeed. Whilst there are hundreds of reasons why business never reach their full potential, there is one overriding element that will draw the line between success and failure: mindset.

Often, if you speak to successful people they will tell you that to be prosperous in business, 80 percent of it comes down to psychology and 20 percent skill/strategy. You cant reach success if you have only one but not the other.

This explains why the majority of those who have an MBA or university degree don’t become successful in their chosen field or they decide to choose another path - because they were not passionate about their subject in the first. 

It is not rare to pick up a magazine or newspaper and see a success story of someone who at one stage experienced a lot of obstacles and challenges before becoming successful as a business owner, musician, athlete or celebrity.

In fact if you study and look at some of the most successful people in the world you will come to realise that none of them were lucky or spoon-fed, in fact most had to endure hardship and battle through mountains of hurdles before reaching success. I myself failed in my first four businesses and lost half a million dollars before achieving success in my fifth business four years later.

The point of the matter is you can have all the skills, knowledge and expertise in your field but if you don’t have the right mindset to pull it all together chances are you will not be successful at the game of business.

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To get a deeper understanding into this topic I recently caught up with Jason Akermanis, an AFL star and Brownlow Medalist who after retiring has entered the business world as the Director of Ezy Bonds Australia.

“Often when I was playing a game early in my career and found myself out of play, I would run up to a stoppage or kick in and put on a bump or make a tackle. Guess what? I am back in the game. Now in business it is the same.

“Retreating into my cave to get a plan has to be short. I get straight back on the phone organize meetings with my troops (work family), potential clients or I’m following up with emails. I never wait to FEEL good to work well. Those good feelings will come after I work to the plan and do the best of my ability.

“So when I started a business in finance called Supersonic Global Payments there would be no other substitute than learning everything in my sector, developing a plan and then going and make lots of mistakes but improve with every knock back or disappointment. Every success gives validation of the plan. Good habits drive high performance.” Aker explains.   

Over the years I have had the privilege of spending time with some of the most successful athletes, philanthropist, entrepreneurs and celebrities. Whilst they all reached success in many different ways, what they all had in common are the following three attitude traits >>>

1. PASSION

Don’t go into business just for the sake of making money, be passionate about the industry. Too many times I see business owners enter a market simply because of social proof.

They see or read stories of others who have been successful and think: Well if they can do it so can I, there must be huge potential in that sector. But then when the going gets tough and they start to incur more and more challenges within the business, suddenly they start focusing on other ideas or projects. 

This leads me into the point…

2. FOCUS

Follow One Course Until Successful. Successful people focus on one thing until that job, business or project is completed. They are not dabblers! As they become more successful and earn more money they start to hire and delegate certain roles to team members to enable them to grow their portfolio.

Building a successful business takes time, it is not something you can start today and expect huge returns within the next day, week or even months. With competition fiercer then ever before, the effects of globalization and the internet we must realise that in order to be successful we must have a long term view and vision when looking to build a business.

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3. VALUES

Values are traits or qualities that are considered important and desirable. They represent your highest priorities and deeply held driving forces that influence your actions and reactions on a daily basis.

Because your values are most important to you, they are not something you want or wished you could have. They are traits you literally need everyday for you to make decisions and move forward. Values are your convictions, ethics and beliefs in one.

What you value may be totally different to someone else, there is no right or wrong. For example my top two values in business are passion and education. I love educating others about topics I am passionate about.

All successful people ensure that their vision and mission meet their highest values in life to ensure they are not in conflict. People who don’t know their values tend to wander around, hopping from one thing to another trying to find themselves.