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Stop Listening To Yourself, Start Speaking To Yourself

entrepreneur image

Think about the person you communicate with the most? Who came to mind? If you’re thinking of a list of names, make sure yours is at the number one spot. We talk to ourselves the most throughout the day. Sometimes we talk to ourselves externally, but most times we talk to ourselves internally. Our thoughts and the way we speak to ourselves greatly determines our actions.

For example, if Negative Nancy controls your thoughts, she too will control your actions. Fill yourself with doubt, and see how you will be at a standstill for a while. If you are speaking negatively, speaking how difficult a task is, how whatever you do is not going to work, speaking your insecurities into existence; you will feel as if everything is impossible. Any obstacle will seem huge and overcoming will be a challenge.

It is hard to say that most of us just waltzed into success;  we were dedicated to our vision. Your thoughts can work with or against you, and it is your choice to feed one or the other.  We all hit walls or bumps in the road, but what made us successful is the process of finding ways over, around and under the walls and bumps.

When you begin speaking life into yourself, you take a huge weight off of your shoulders. You allow your mind to find ways to make things happen.  An optimistic mindset with a consistent work ethic is unstoppable when it catches momentum. You are unstoppable when you believe you can; therefore, you put a plan into action. Some things might not go as planned, but learn to tell yourself that those are learning lessons you had to go through to become a stronger entrepreneur. To be successful, you have to overcome many hurdles, trials and tribulations, but it is who you become through it that counts. Make the journey to success easier on yourself by speaking positively to yourself.

Instead of saying, “I can’t.” Say, “How can I?”

Instead of saying how hard you have it, have a spirit of gratitude for your journey.

Instead of telling yourself how tired you are, tell yourself how energized you are to get things done.

Instead of telling yourself how busy you are, start thinking of your work as productive.

Instead of telling yourself that it will never happen, tell yourself that it is not a matter of if it will happen, it is just a matter of when it will happen.

If you want to start controlling your thoughts and actions, try keeping track of what you are telling yourself throughout the day. Keep a journal of your self-talk for a couple of days or even a week. This will help you see if you are mostly speaking into existence positivity or by default harmful words.

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3 Fears Crushing Your Success Journey

By Nathan Strum

success man on mountain

There’s one thing that separates successful people from stagnant people: commitment.  Having fear is probably the most dominant reason as to why most people don’t succeed. For this reason, one of the most important qualities an entrepreneur needs is mental toughness. You can’t ride your way to success on your emotions. When you’re an entrepreneur, your vision and dream has to be so much bigger than anything else that when fear comes your way, you remind yourself that you are committed to your company’s success; therefore, you are unstoppable.  Naturally, entrepreneurs have fears, but their desire to succeed overrides everything else. Remember, action conquers fear. Inaction feeds fear.  Below are three grave fears that stop or delay an entrepreneur’s success journey.

Fear of what others think

Many people rely too heavily on the opinions and input of others, so when they do something out of the norm, they are afraid of the roar it might cause. Again, you can’t ride your way to success on emotions. You can’t be attached to the ideas and opinions of others especially if they don’t have any sort of credibility.  If you think about it, why take business advice from a broke friend? It sounds harsh, but people do this all the time. They let people who don’t have an entrepreneurial mindset steal their dreams or influence their decision making. They might not believe in you know, but trust me, they will believe in your results.

Fear that you’re not on the right path

Everyone gets tempted with doubts. Wondering whether you made the right decision can be an overbearing doubt to have. For the most part, aspiring entrepreneurs have the comfort of their full-time jobs and struggle with switching to something that is not as secure. Truth is, being an entrepreneur is all about risks, and starting your own business is a definite choice you have to make. Go all in. Talk to people in the field, read books, but know that starting a business is like having a child. The only way to learn how to do new things, is to do new things.  You are never going to be “ready.” Don’t let settling for mediocrity stop you from pursuing your dreams.  You may have a fear of getting started, but imagine what if you took no action at all? Imagine if other entrepreneurs would have conformed to the security of their job. We wouldn’t know huge companies, brands and innovators like we do today. Some days are going to be tougher than others, but when you’re building something that is going to benefit the lives of others, you’re on the right path.

The Fear of Failing

The fear that sums all fears: the fear of failing. Probably the most common fear that halts people’s success is the fear of failing. I cannot stress enough how detrimental self doubt is. Combat it with your self-talk.  If you think about it, out of everyone you talk to, you talk to yourself the most throughout the day. Practice affirmations. Practice speaking things into existence. You may not think you’re on the right path. Those closest to you may not believe in you. You may be having trouble finding funding. Or maybe your self- doubt is crushing you and making you question whether or not you’ll even attract customers.  What if something goes wrong? The fair of failing stops many, but entrepreneurs turn failures into lessons.  They hit a block in the road, but find a way over and around the block. Entrepreneurs don’t stop at setbacks, they move forward with resilience to breakthrough with a strong comeback.

Monday Mornings: How to Look Forward to Them

By Nathan Strum

monday-team-meeting

The Monday Blues: everyone gets it, but few know how to control it. When the weekend and everything leading up to the weekend is great, it’s hard to come back to work on Monday and be overly enthusiastic about being productive.  That mindset can actually have you at a loss of energy and productivity.  This upcoming Monday, try putting your energy into having a positive attitude towards the week. This will help you focus on getting things done instead of spending all your energy on what you have to take on for the week. Here are a couple of approaches I use to tackle the Monday Blues and turning my day into a strong start to my work week.
Stay away from Monday morning meetings
I was talking to some of my colleagues not that long ago, the topic being staff/manager meetings. We we’re bouncing ideas off of each other, and we realized that out of our entire Monday, Monday mornings are usually our prime time to get work done. It doesn’t make sense to invest your prime energy on activities that don’t require as much of your focus or attention. Studies have shown that the later part of the week is the least productive, for obvious reasons, so Thursday or Fridays would be great days to hold meetings.  In my opinion, I would lean more towards Thursday. When you do this, that gives you Thursday and Friday to get everything organized for the upcoming week. Waiting until Monday to organize what you have to do for the week makes coming in Monday morning dreadful. Plan everything Thursday or Friday. It will allow you to come to work on Monday with a clear head.
Have something to look forward to
When you are fired up about life, fired up about the direction your business is headed, fired up about the awesome team that you have, you always have something to look forward to! Each Monday try to make a list of about 3-5 things you are fired up about.  A list of 3-5 things that you have to look forward to that week can really hype your mood for the following days. When your mood reflects how excited you are about your week, you will send a signal to your brain to get things done!
The way you dress is the way you feel
As much as we would like to come to work in jeans or sweats, that kind of attire will make you feel sluggish. Dress up. Put on a nice dress. Put on your best suit. Feeling good and looking good boosts your confidence.  You already won half the battle by feeling good. Now put those feelings into actions.
Do a random act of kindness Monday morning
When you do a kind act towards someone else, it gives you that “feel good” feeling. There’s no better feeling than knowing you made someone’s day. If you are going on your Monday morning coffee run, think about maybe buying someone else’s drink as well. It’s a win-win because not only did you get a feeling of satisfaction, but you made someone else’s Monday morning as well. What you give is what you get in this world, so take the time to make someone smile. It will come back to you ten-fold.

Startups: The Three Tips I Wish I Would Have Known

By Nathan Strum

business-startup-space

As startup entrepreneurs, we have the odds against us. With the fact that about 9 out of 10 new businesses fail, it’s a bit intimidating and discouraging to be battling it all on your own. Sometimes you may feel that you just need a sign or a sense of guidance and that any bit of advice can help. Below are a couple of nuggets that can hopefully help you get on the right foot.

Is there a true market for your product or service?

One of the most common reasons behind why many companies fail is because there is little or no market established for their products to launch in. This can have to do with a variety of different factors. Most of the time there just isn’t the need for the product. Consumers don’t find a big enough desire to commit to purchasing it. They might think it is appealing and a neat concept, but it stops there. Failing startups have difficulty bridging a neat idea into a sale.

Critical feedback

As an entrepreneur, you have to be prepared to handle objections or faults that others pick up on. Although your company is like your baby, it’s important to be objective and listen to input from credible sources in order for your company to grow. CEO Elon Musk classified this as one of the most significant components that has helped him be successful with Tesla, Solar City & Space X. He notes that businesses become stronger when an entrepreneur is open to critical feedback. In every facet of your business ask for feedback. Feedback may not be necessarily music to your ears, and you don’t have to agree, but allow yourself the grace of having options. Allow yourself to be open to the idea that there are people out there that know more than you and can help.

Know your “why”

This is a fascinating and transformational concept made known by leadership and management consultant, Simon Sinek.  Sinek has found that many companies do their marketing with an “outside-in” approach. Companies come up with a product; they figure out how to do it, and then they never truly put a purpose behind their business. Sinek talks about reversing that marketing approach with an “inside-out” approach. Successful companies, like Apple, start with their why. They set a belief that explains why their business exists to begin with. They then find a solution on how to fulfill that belief. Lastly, they define what the company does to execute their core belief. When companies know their why, they know what they stand for. When what you believe in becomes your set of values, making decisions will be clear-cut.  This approach helps companies reach their full potential.

It may seem tough to succeed as a startup, but these three tips can be beneficial to move into the 10% that succeeds.

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Business Cards- 3 Reasons Why You Still Need Them

By Nathan Strum

businessman-holding-business-card

In a world taken over by social media and everything digital, there are certain things that are going obsolete. Forget about CD’s and cassettes. What happened to good ol’ business cards? Regardless of your killer websites, cool ads, and things of this sort, there’s just something about doing things the old fashion way that still prevails in modern day society.  Regardless of your occupation, if you have been in business for a while or if you’re a startup, business cards can benefit your company on multiple fronts.

Credibility

Having a well put together business card can do a lot for your business, and it also serves as an instant trust builder.  It helps people remember you. In a stranger’s mind it builds credibility that if you took the time to tie your name, company name and logo onto hard copy, you are legitimate. No matter how advanced our digital world is, companies and representatives are still expected to have business cards. Not only does it build trust, but business cards show professionalism.

Networking

Asking someone what they do is probably one of the most common asked questions. If you are like me, you chat with everyone. Engaging with people on the elevator, at dinners, parties, or even in line at a restaurant is a norm for me, so conversations usually result in people asking me what I do. This is where a business card comes handy. After a nice conversation I am able to bridge that conversation and establish credibility through handing them my card. I like being prepared, so I always have a couple on me.

First Impressions

Having a business card sets you apart from the crowd. It says that you’re serious and professional. It gives your prospects something they can physically take out and look at later, and it shows them that you walk your walk and talk your talk. It leaves the prospect feeling confident in you and ultimately doing business with you.

Business cards are an inexpensive and a nice touch to always have. They can really come in handy to backup the work you put into your business.

4 Mental Shifts Entrepreneurs Make

By Nathan Strum

entrepreneur-working

As April is quickly approaching, that means we are already four months into the New Year. Most set out to accomplish a variety of different dreams, goals and aspirations on January 1st, so I challenge you to ask yourself how successful and consistent you have been in accomplishing those desires. One thing that I’ve learned is that you can’t make a significant change without having a significant mind shift first. Having long-lasting success begins when you start changing your thinking patterns and then adopting positive habits that align with the results you would like in the long-run. If you want to make a true shift from being an employee to being self-employed, your business requires you to put on your entrepreneurial cap through different situations, so what does that mental shift look like?

 

  • Stop following instructions, start making decisions

When you switch your mindset from employee to entrepreneur, you quickly learn that you have to be comfortable being uncomfortable. Risks come along with your new role. You make the decisions. You have to test new waters. You have to rely on yourself to make these decisions, and it takes great character to be able to get knocked down, accept rejections and get back up when things don’t go as you’d hoped. People are now relying on you, and being an entrepreneur doesn’t necessarily come with a handbook or set of instructions as an employee might have.

  • Be your own best cheerleader

Doubt is inevitable, but it is also detrimental. It is your job to crush doubt as much as possible. When you’re an entrepreneur, you are your own boss. Your business relies on you and your leadership abilities, so it is extremely important to lead from the front and believe in yourself no matter what. The truth is, you have to believe in yourself when no one else will. You have to believe in yourself when things aren’t going right because success is not one straight road or overnight. You will fail repeatedly and having a positive mindset that is focused on delayed gratification is crucial.

  • It’s not a 9-5

One of the biggest realizations of being self-employed is that employees clock in and out, but you clock in and don’t always clock out. Your business will be on your mind for the most part of your day. You are responsible for putting in the long hours, weekends, holidays and birthdays. Bill Gates is a great example of this. He worked every single day in his 20’s to make Microsoft the enormous successful empire it is today. Successful entrepreneurs have a clear understanding that what they do today will compound into the future. So if you choose to go to a bbq, birthday party, etc. ask yourself how that action benefits your dream. Get rid of distraction, learn to plan, prioritize and keep to your calendar, that way you can maximize your time.

  • Humble yourself and ask for help

Instead of beating yourself up over your failures, recognize that each failure is a step in the right direction to finding out how to succeed in that area. Doing something wrong or receiving criticism are both things that employees hate, but as an entrepreneur welcome them. After all, you can’t fire yourself. Seek for feedback from others who have been successful in your field. Find a mentor. There’s always someone out there that knows more than you, someone who has what you want and can be that objective voice of reason for you. Choose wisely who you listen to and then correct what needs to be corrected as soon as possible.

These are just a couple of mindset shifts that can drastically impact the way you grow as an entrepreneur and hop from being an employee to being your own boss.

Is Your Business At Risk of Being Hacked?

By Nathan Strum

business-computer-screen

What seems to be never ending and a huge current struggle is the amount of hackings taking place. The ones we hear about in the media are a bit intimidating while others are a bit more minor, but it’s best to know how to prevent your privacy from being invaded.

“Oh well, I have a small business, so I shouldn’t worry too much about it, right?” That is the common misconception that many business owners have and a mentality we should steer away from. Think about it. If a small business takes a hit, it will be much harder for them to come back from the damage that was done than a larger corporation will. When firewalls, protection systems, and other sorts of mechanisms are solely what you rely on, it’s safe to say that you are still at a higher risk. What also puts us at risk is the smaller things like ignoring the alerts of possible attacks or scrolling through unsafe sites.
Below are a couple of warnings and things to consider when trying to establish protection for your business.

Educate those in your business
Probably one of the most fundamental measures you can take is educating your staff. They might not know the severity associated with being on the wrong websites or the consequences that may come with opening a malicious email address. If you have access to your IT expert, it can be helpful to have this person do a quick meeting for your staff. It is also important that you layout an internet policy for your company, so everyone is aware of what activities are acceptable. Even try posting them in different place where employees know that they can always look back to for reference.

Use the Cloud sensibly 

Saving things to the cloud works great for small businesses. It’s secure and easy to use. There are many things that are safe to back up on the cloud, but there are a couple of other things that we can try to be more cautious about. A good way to start sorting through your information is to rank it by sensitivity. If the document has sensitive to very sensitive information, it is best to have it saved in a more secure location.

Lock your Network
We’ve seen multiple movies where there is a sketchy guy in a van parked outside a house, and inside the van there are antennas, computers and software systems. Think it’s just an exaggeration from Hollywood? Well, there is actually such a thing! Some hackers drive around buildings and neighborhoods to find unlocked or poorly protected networks. This is called wardriving. Having wireless networks can make it easier for hackers to intrude in your information. If you must have one, I would suggest disabling the SSID, so your network is hidden. Wired networks are more secure because hacking them is more difficult. Usually, hackers would have to access your database through hacking your modem or physically plugging into your outlets.

Closing the deal: Advice From Warren Buffett

By Nathan Strum

business-deal-closing

When you are taking advice, who are you going to take it from? Do you evaluate your sources at all? Many do not stop to think if they are taking advice from someone who has accomplished goals that they personally want to accomplish, or if the person they are taking advice from has no significant credentials. Then why are you listening to the person who can’t lead you towards your dream? With that said, let’s take advice from one of the top dogs in the business world, Warren Buffett.

These tips on how to close the deal are tips that I read from Vivian Giang’s “Warren Buffett’s Four Tips for Closing the Deal,” on American Express.

In Tom Searcy and Henry Devries book, “How To Close A Deal Like Warren Buffett,” they state, “Warren is famous for doing enormous deals with as little information as a few pages of business plans and the standard financials that a company would submit to a bank in order to qualify for a loan.”

According to Giang, Searcy and Devries, here are some of the top ways to follow in Buffett’s footsteps and close your company deals.

Know their financial situation

If you want to understand the benefits of the deal, know how the other person is financially standing. They suggest that it is important to know how that person makes their money and how they spend it. They state, “Start with the understanding of ‘why’ a deal makes sense to your prospect. Once you know your prospect’s biggest problems, you’ll need to find your biggest solution to match.”

Have “The Money Talk”

Although it may be awkward initially to speak to someone you just met about money, there is no need to waste each other’s time. Price cannot be ambiguous because it is not worth investing so much energy into something that eventually is going to waste yours or someone else time.

Know when to negotiate

Giang writes, “You should work out each particular point of a deal one at a time. You shouldn’t try to tackle the entire deal in one meeting. And you should never try to negotiate before understanding the rest of the details. Before you get to this point, don’t try to negotiate, because this basically means you’re trying to ‘reduce the little parts before the shared picture of the whole has been established,’” as written by Searcy and Devries.

When Warren Buffett talks, we should listen.

Building Trust with Skeptical Clients or Colleagues

By Nathan Strum

coworkers-shaking-hands

How many times have you met someone and thought of how easily you both connected? At that moment, the conversation is flowing, you establish a positive perception about the person, trust each other, and you quickly find yourself brainstorming ideas together. You both cannot stop thinking about all your ideas that are being bounced back and forth, and a new project is now on its way. Well, that is an ideal situation that sometimes isn’t all too realistic.

Many times when you meet someone you can automatically feel the disconnect. Sometimes relationships seem like a strict business. Getting someone to trust you and see the value in your work is oftentimes difficult. There are many skeptical people in this world who feel like you have the need to prove yourself to them. These situations are extremely awkward because when it’s a strict business and you try to slip in a “How are you today,” here and there, their response is one-worded. That sense of disconnect makes it hard to enjoy what you are doing and bounce ideas off of each other because the relationship just isn’t there. I think a key factor is to establish trust with your new business colleague. Here are a couple of ways to speed up the process.

In Mike Schultz and John Doerr’s article “Building Trust with Skeptical Executives,” they give the following useful tips which I proved to be very helpful. They state:

  • Find areas of commonality and discuss them, but don’t get too personal too fast. [Skeptica]l Steve is willing to open up, but he takes a while. Get to know him over time. Move too quickly, and you’ll get rebuffed.
  • Live, face-to-face time will help. When setting meetings, make sure there’s a compelling reason to meet in person over and above “getting to know each other.”
  • Don’t embellish or be “larger than life,” as this will turn him off.
  • Don’t be too demonstrative, and don’t read too much into his lack of gestures and feedback.
  • Give [Skeptica]l Steve time to respond. Press him too hard, and he’ll disengage.
  • Focus your interactions in smaller groups, preferably one on one. The larger the group, the more Steve is uncomfortable.

Shultz and Doerr are both great at explaining and giving advice on strengthening client relationships. Mistrust incompetence, mistrust of professional dependability, and mistrust of motives as outlined by Shultz and Doerr are the three main issues of mistrust skeptical clients have.

In an excerpt from their article, this is what they had to say about mistrust incompetence and how to rectify it. They state, “In this case, it’s likely sellers have sold their ability to get something done in the past to an executive and were unable to deliver what they said they could deliver and unable achieve what they said they could achieve. Buyers can be burned by this. The more they’ve been burned, the larger a barrier they erect for new people and companies to prove their mettle. As well, if you’re selling something new – a new idea, new product or service, new company – buyers may be naturally skeptical because of your lack of track record. If you’re selling the ability to achieve something that is not certain in its outcome, such as great increases in revenue, reductions in cost, the outcomes that will be the result of a major change initiative or anything that could be a real breakthrough, buyers will be naturally skeptical.”

This is their suggestion in building that trust:

  • Use your historical success as a proxy for future success in stories, case studies, and references.
  • Demonstrate a deep understanding of their businesses, their challenges, their opportunities, and their markets.
  • Know your content cold.
  • If you don’t know something, admit it.
  • Create experiences that demonstrate your competence and allow buyers to get to know your content and capabilities deeply. Webinars, white papers, research, speeches, and seminars can help.
  • Package services and products in pilot tests or phases that can prove the case and prove your ability to deliver.
  • Oldie-but-a-goodie: under-promise and over-deliver.

Using the advice above can really benefit your future work relationships.

20 Signs That Show You Were Meant to Be an Entrepreneur

By Nathan Strum

entrepreneur-working-on-laptop

Since a young age, I always knew that I wanted to be involved in the business world. At that stage, I wanted to be a word that I couldn’t even pronounce: entrepreneur.

I just felt it in my bones. I thought to myself, this is what I am meant to do. I could not see myself as an employee or a consumer; I wanted to be someone who revolutionized the business world, and that is what I stuck to. At a young age, I knew that building, growing and creating is what I wanted to do. My passion was just so transparently evident.

Originally, I read Jayson Demers article on Entrepreneur titled, “50 Habits That Prove You Were Born to Be an Entrepreneur.” The list goes on to pinpoint different aspects that signaled early on that I was born to be an entrepreneur. Here are a few from his article. Try to check off how many of these apply to you!

  1. You can’t sit still. You’re always itching to come up with something, and do something great.
  2. You’re always coming up with ideas. Good or bad, the flow of ideas never stops.
  3. You can pinpoint flaws in other ideas. It comes naturally to you.
  4. You marvel at successful business owners. Steve Jobs, Richard Branson, Mark Zuckerberg and Bill Gates are just a few of your heroes.
  5. You get excited when you see a successful business in action. Whether it’s a local bar or a supermarket franchise, you can’t help but smile when you see a good business.
  6. You constantly think of ways to improve your employer’s business. When you’re at work, you only think about how it could be better.
  7. You hate being told what to do. You’re resentful of taking orders.
  8. You love to learn new things. How tos and tutorials are what you’re all about.
  9. You take things apart to see how they work. Remotes, toasters, phones — you love to see the inner workings.
  10. You dream of wealth. Money isn’t everything, but you can’t help but have it on your mind.
  11. You don’t give up easily. You face tough challenges but keep going.
  12. You’re disciplined in your habits. You have set routines that don’t get broken easily.
  13. You aren’t afraid of hard work. You give everything in your life 100 percent.
  14. You have a high threshold for risk. You don’t take blind risks, but you don’t stay complacent either.
  15. You meet as many people as you can. You aren’t afraid to branch out and meet new people.
  16. You talk to everyone you meet. Strangers aren’t intimidating to you.
  17. You bounce back from failure. You’ve experienced crushing failure, but it’s never stopped you from coming back.
  18. You like calling the shots. You like the sound of being a director.
  19. You set goals for yourself. Big or small, goals fill your life.
  20. You help people whenever you can. You’re interested in the greater good.               How many of these habits rang a bell?

Getting Rich: Lessons Learned from The Richest Man In Babylon

By Nathan Strum

business-meeting-table

While reading a couple of articles this morning, there was one specific one that caught my attention. I ran across Brandon Turner’s article posted on Entrepreneur titled, “7 Timeless Lessons About Getting Rich From a Book Your Grandparents Read.” He jokes saying that there were two core books published in 1926 that changed our world. One, he marks as Winnie-the-Pooh and the second as The Richest Man in Babylon. While Winnie-the-Pooh is a major pop culture icon, and a favorite to many, The Richest Man in Babylon’s financial impact is huge to the millions of readers that have come across it. Its mission is to answer the ambiguous question: Why do some succeed over others? If everyone has 24 hours in a day then the same work ethic, why doesn’t everyone prosper and flourish? Here are a couple of lessons you may have picked up on or even missed that you can start being more aware of.

Start saving

Mr. Turner recalls questions that were asked in the book. He states, “Arkad, the richest man in Babylon, asks a very simple math question to his students: What would happen if, every day, you added 10 coins to your purse but only spent nine? The obvious answer, of course, is that wealth would increase by one coin each day.” The first step is to set aside your coin each day. Take away a small amount of your earnings and save your coin. Akrad instructs his students to take ten percent of the income they earn. So every time your paycheck comes around, take 10% and save it.

There is more month than money 

Turner asks if this is a phrase anyone has heard of before. It boils down to, having more by spending less than what you make. For example, if you want to start building on your wealth, get on a budget. Spend less. Spend on the necessities. Monitor your spending and add to your coins. Turner states,” Americans, especially, have trouble with this concept, which has given rise to a huge debt problem. According to the Federal Reserve’s G.19 report on consumer credit from 2013, the total U.S. outstanding revolving debt was $856.5 billion dollars in 2013. That’s a lot of consumer debt for a nation of 300 million people.”

Multiply your gold

This step is a huge one. It is important to know how to grow your earning and multiply your wealth. Today, many people do this by reinvesting their profits, stocks or real estate investing.

Increase your ability to earn

The final lesson that Arkad shares was that there is always a way to increase your ability to earn. Turner states, “If you want to increase your income, you must increase your ability to earn. If you want to increase your ability to earn, you must increase your value to society. Learn a new skill, do the work no one else is willing to do and say yes to more of the right things and no to more of the wrong things. Focus on the few tasks that bring the most value to the world and outsource the rest.”

3 Million-Dollar Businesses That Turned Down Shark Tank

By Nathan Strum

man-reaching-out-handshake

Every season, thousands of entrepreneurs apply to appear on ABC’s “Shark Tank.” If you have not seen it yet, experienced millionaire investors like Mark Cuban and Robert Herjavec hear pitched ideas of various entrepreneurs who are looking for some form of capital. Often times, entrepreneurs are not able toconvince the sharks that their product is worth investing in. Many times, large sums of money are offered to the entrepreneurs in exchange for equity. There have been many instances in which the sharks’ offers are tempting but do not fully satisfy the entrepreneurs. Here is a look at entrepreneurs who pitched their brilliant ideas perfectly, yet what the sharks offered was just not what they were looking for.

Coffee Meets Bagel

Entrepreneurs Arum, Dawoon and Soo Kang are the three sisters that turned down the largest offer in Shark Tank history. Their online dating site used Facebook profiles to recommend matches based on a users’ friend or friends of friends. Cuban initially thought to opt out of the deal, but as he learned more information, he then offered to buy their entire business for $30 million. Without flinching the three sisters declined the deal. They said, “We see this business growing as a big as Match.com. They’re becoming a billion-dollar-revenue company, and we think this model and the product has potential to be as big as Match.”

Voyage-Air Guitar

Jeff Cohen appeared on the show’s first season. He asked for the sharks to give him $500,000 for 5% of Voyage-Air Guitars. The goal of the company is to provide easier transportation of guitars by making them to where they can fold in half. Kevin O’Leary offered $500,000 in exchange for 51 percent stake. Jeff declined the offer. On Season 4 when the show aired their “update” segment, they noted how Voyage-Air Guitar reports to be making millions of dollars a year.

Copa Di Vino

This idea was pitched in Season 2. Here is what The Huffington Post reported about Copa Di Vino. “The Sharks were very impressed by the Copa Di Vino product in Season 2, a selection of seven wines sold in single-serve, resealable containers. But Copa Di Vino founder James Martin came to play hardball: He asked for a whopping $600,000 for a 30 percent equity stake and wasn’t willing to compromise or consider the Sharks’ ideas, like licensing the single-serve cup design to other wine companies. Martin left without a deal. He returned to “Shark Tank” again, but proved to be just as difficult the second time around. Once again, no investors came on board. Despite never making a deal, however, Martin told ABC News that Copa Di Vino has made $25 million in revenue.

These are deals the sharks tried to get their hands on, but the entrepreneurs went with their gut and still succeeded.