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HOT TOPIC Defining The Levels of Progression

Primeperiwinkle

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This is nowhere near pithy.

A few weeks ago I made a comment likening newbies on the forum to Cute Little Zoo-Kept Sloths and millionaires on the forum to Apex Predators. Then I thought about that spectrum. Sloths -> ______ -> _______ -> Apex Predator

I dunno what the business evolution ladder actually entails cuz I’m not an Apex Predator. What are the animals in between Sloth and Ferocious Tiger?

There’s got to be transition points or milestones or specific habits or tiers of experience that reveal where you are in the journey.

If you don’t know where you’re at you can’t figure out how to get to where you’re going.


Sloth is kinda negative. I need positive words to describe these tiers not negative ones. Please help and edit.

The main reason I want to break this down is because when you’re a freshman you DO NOT go out for varsity sports - you find other freshmen to compete against in the junior varsity. Same with chess or anything really.

You need one or two tutors or mentors or coaches who are much better than you, so you can grow, but the ppl you check in with and play with are at your level. That way you’re not a demoralized lump of sadness.

Ugh. I’m not being clear.

I’m a small business owner. I’m not gonna sign up for Kaks Killbigger Incubator.

I’m nowhere near that level.

I might never be.

I’m not limiting myself. I’m just stating facts.

But I’d reaaaaally like to move up from where I’m at right now and someday see the ppl who are at that level from my front porch as they drive by so I can wave hi to them right before I turn around and impact my own few thousand or hundred thousand ppl.

First I gotta get a hell of a lot better at the level I’m at. THEN I can move up. Like neighborhoods!

Is it possible to define the levels?

I have this feeling that each level is packed full of common sense habits and mindset shifts.

If we can identify ourselves better then we can track our progress better.

I think? I’m looking for a way to turn this thread into a breakdown of the principles or habits of the different levels.

Newbies - No business, no profit. No CENTS. Lots of generalizations and ego. They’re shiny, happy, and HOPEFUL AF. Usually they just read the book and they’re here to learn. They have a “realization” or a “passion” and they’re excited but it’s often misdirected excitement. They need encouragement and low doses of common sense given at intervals so they don’t run away after getting smacked in the face by reality.

Small Business Owners - They own a Business, usually a service they do themselves or a product they sell. Profit from 20-80k. The concepts of Control, Entry, and Need are all utilized if not completely understood. They’re brave but disorganized. Lacking clarity. Time is misspent, resources misused. They don’t understand how to effectively scale, track their Progress, or grow in efficiency. They’re often tired, scared, disgruntled, and in need of faith. These ppl are most impacted by real stories and specifics that relate to their industry.

______ Business Owners - Profit 80-200k Have employees or clear ways to delegate major portions of the business. They’ve learned the importance of developing systems...???

People who Own/Invest in Multiple Businesses - ???


______ Ummm.. I don’t know how many levels there are but I know that one of them involves investing and networking to get really big and scaling or multiple streams of income.

I can’t describe levels/neighborhoods I’ve never been to. If you’re in a certain level what obstacles are you facing? What strengths do you have now that you didn’t have 50k ago?

It’s just.. two weeks ago somebody took the time to tell me about an app for managing my to do list.. and it changed how I utilize my time. I didn’t miraculously change because I’d been told about time management AGAIN or because the app is wicked cool (both of which are true) I changed because I had a little lightbulb moment where I realized I’d never get to the next level of maturity if I didn’t start SERIOUSLY caring about how I spent my time every. single. day. BECAUSE PPL WHO IMPACT MILLIONS CARE MORE.

And because Andy saying “How you do one thing is how you do everything” keeps echoing in my brain.

And now I’m wondering.. maybe somebody is ALREADY telling me what the next common sense thing to do is, to get me to my next higher income bracket, but I’m not paying attention to them cuz I can’t identify with them.. I need somebody at my level to speak my snarktastic self-deprecating language.

These lil convos I’m having in pm and participating in on the forum are shaving off years of trial and error. I’m really thankful for all the ppl who are helping me!! But.. at this point in time I’ve needed like five separate mentors. One to hear my fears and laugh at my jokes, one to boss me around, one to encourage me and give me tips, and one to give me specific ideas to do today.

My problem? They’re all way way way higher than my perceived level. Maybe we just need more small business threads...but I want to find the ppl who are struggling with the same stupid a$$ concepts I am!

It’d be nice to have a few ppl to go “ohhh yeahhhhh... I should try that thing!!” And know that they’re trying it out for the first time too.

It’s wonderful to get help from super successful ppl.. but sometimes it’s really hard sharing your day-to-day little wins with ppl who make 10x what you do. Ya know?

ALSO!!!!

I’m happy to tag ppl in threads because at least I’m starting to know who the knowledge experts are (kinda) and connect the right coaches/mentors but it.. it SUCKS when I’ve tagged somebody and the OP person is so new and disorganized that they waste the cool mentors time! Wtf?? Like, now I look bad for calling in the big guns when this ungrateful lil new dipshit doesn’t even respond back!

I really loathe wasting ppl’s time.

Ok. Let me explain a different way. I don’t want to call the CEO every time someone asking a question walks in the door even though MJ pretty much says hi to everybody because he’s cool that way.

I also don’t want to bother the CFO or the COO or the HR director every time a homeless guy/girl wanders in to the building shaking his/her crazy little fist.

You don’t go from homeless to CEO in one day. There is a progression of internal and external habits. I don’t know what the ones in the middle are! It seems like successful six figure earners jump in to the forum every week but never stay.. like they’re so convinced of their own awesomeness they don’t realize they could be made a TON better or help ppl!

I’m at the coffee machine on the second floor. Lol. Where are the ppl on the second floor?!?!

What the heck habits do I need to work on to get to the third, fourth, etc, etc floors?
 

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broswoodwork

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Second floor, with you, checkin' in.

I think in reality, at least for me, Robert Kiyosaki's cashflow quadrant is a three dimensional cube with a strange limbo half-existence between Self- employed and Business Owner that I have to power through to get to the level above us.
 

Dignium

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YES! We NEED this! I don't have much to add to this now as I'm on the stairs to the second floor. However, this "stages of entreprenuership" needs to be hashed out.

Also, don't forget about software / SaaS / non-physical entreprenuers. It's a (slightly?) different progression.

OP described the first floor / stage 1 pretty well. Here is my one paragraph description of the basement / stage 0:

Basement / Stage 0 - You're a sidewalker who believes luck is required to get rich. You want to get rich easy, and buy as many systems as you can believing that get rich easy is out there. You believe wealth is owning status symbols. You do more than $5 worth of gambling per week (casinos, lottery tix, scratchers, card games, sweepstakes etc.) You want to strike it rich while simultaniously hating the rich.
 
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Timmy C

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Not much to add other than I'm making my way into door number 2, trying to do it without a time for money trade, or at a much higher hourly rate.

I just know I have alot to learn.
 
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Primeperiwinkle

Primeperiwinkle

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Second floor, with you, checkin' in.

I think in reality, at least for me, Robert Kiyosaki's cashflow quadrant is a three dimensional cube with a strange limbo half-existence between Self- employed and Business Owner that I have to power through to get to the level above us.
Thank you for the love at the coffee pot!! Lololol. Okay I like this idea. So to edit:

Newbies - No business, no profit. No CENTS. Lots of generalizations and ego. They’re shiny, happy, and HOPEFUL AF. Usually they just read the book and they’re here to learn. They have a “realization” or a “passion” and they’re excited but it’s often misdirected excitement. They need encouragement and low doses of common sense given at intervals so they don’t run away after getting smacked in the face by reality.

Job Owners - Have NOT separated their time from cash. Usually service-based businesses and consultants. High standards, hard time delegating. They only make money when they are working; they don’t own a business, they own a job.

Business Owners -
Something something -
Investors -
 

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I totally understand what you mean by levels of progression. As someone that is doing multiple millions in revenue per year right now, I often wonder how to get to $20 million or $50 million a year. I wonder if I have to think totally different to reach those milestones. I wonder what I am doing wrong or what don’t I know.

But as somebody who went from $1000-$1 million in revenue I can tell you that there aren’t really any levels during those stages. It’s not like suddenly you unlock some knowledge that gets you from $1000-$50,000/yr. It’s more like you learn what works and then you scale it as best as you can. Scaling at these levels work because it’s such a small scale.

When I think back here is how I leveled up.

$30k/yr - Dropship ecommerce - (standard SEO, learned Google PPC, understood pricing psychology)

$100k/yr - started carrying inventory vs dropshipping. (Improved website, learned inventory management)

$250k/yr - imported from China (learned branding, learned how to import, tax strategies)

>$250k/yr - more of the same (built brand, social media)

>$1m/yr - still working on it (I don’t know, venture capital? Tv commercials? Big box?). The point here is that I don’t know but I’m trying to figure it out. No syllabus to this stuff.

So you see there is nothing in there that says you graduated to a level. You just keep learning and learning.
 
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Primeperiwinkle

Primeperiwinkle

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I totally understand what you mean by levels of progression. As someone that is doing multiple millions in revenue per year right now, I often wonder how to get to $20 million or $50 million a year. I wonder if I have to think totally different to reach those milestones. I wonder what I am doing wrong or what don’t I know.

But as somebody who went from $1000-$1 million in revenue I can tell you that there aren’t really any levels during those stages. It’s not like suddenly you unlock some knowledge that gets you from $1000-$50,000/yr. It’s more like you learn what works and then you scale it as best as you can. Scaling at these levels work because it’s such a small scale.

When I think back here is how I leveled up.

$30k/yr - Dropship ecommerce - (standard SEO, learned Google PPC, understood pricing psychology)

$100k/yr - started carrying inventory vs dropshipping. (Improved website, learned inventory management)

$250k/yr - imported from China (learned branding, learned how to import, tax strategies)

>$250k/yr - more of the same (built brand, social media)

>$1m/yr - still working on it (I don’t know, venture capital? Tv commercials? Big box?). The point here is that I don’t know but I’m trying to figure it out. No syllabus to this stuff.

So you see there is nothing in there that says you graduated to a level. You just keep learning and learning.
Ok but in your list you went from 30-100k just on ONE set of skills.

Then 100k moved up by switching to carrying your own inventory. That’s a big deal. You owned the stuff right?

So 100-250k was carrying your own stuff that somebody else made it did you start developing it then?

250k-1mil was developing your own brand and controlling all your own product from creation to market.

Is that right?
 

broswoodwork

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$100k/yr - started carrying inventory vs dropshipping. (Improved website, learned inventory management)

$250k/yr - imported from China (learned branding, learned how to import, tax strategies)
Are these the two incremental steps where you really started stepping out of doing it all yourself, or by directly supervising someone, and focusing on strategic vision? Sorry if that's a dumb question.
 

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I dunno what the business evolution ladder actually entails

I think you answered a lot of your questions here:

You don’t go from homeless to CEO in one day. There is a progression of internal and external habits.
Success is a gradual progression. It's a journey where there are some shortcuts and opportunities to increase your speed but only if you take note of the people who have travelled that road before you and heeded their council. BUT you still have to put the miles on the tyres.

If you define a successful business as one that creates a profit then creating a successful business is nothing more than finding a need, trying to fulfil that need. Assess, adjust, and reassess until the money coming in is greater than money going out. First time out it doesn't really matter what the business is or the scale of the profits. Usually they are governed by the resources and the experience of the entrepreneur.

I think that's what most of us who are some way down the road try to encourage most in those new to entrepreneurship. It's a very important first step. It creates action and action leads to knowledge, and hopefully, when done well, momentum to move onwards and upwards.

Because that is just the start of the journey. As your experience grows, so does your earning potential and, more importantly, so does your mental prowess.

There is no substitute for experience, but the wonderful thing about forums and mentors is that you can harness their experience to 'level up.' To take those shortcuts you wouldn't have know were there. To put your foot down because you have faith in the person telling you there is a section of open road ahead. To trust someone who says keep doing this and you will hit a breakthrough. Those insights can shave years off an enterprise. Hell it can easily be the difference between success and failure.

Business is just a process. Doesn't matter if it is a corner shop or multinational conglomerate, they were all built the same way and both started at the same point. It's just one went a lot further. And usually the boundaries that hold your enterprise back is a limiting mindset. I often think that is the biggest obstacle of them all. The further you travel down the road the more you realise what you are capable of. Many of the breakthroughs are of the mind, not of the process. But those breakthroughs are part of the journey and often some way down the road.

It can often be frustrating however when your mindset shifts but your resources haven't caught up. Slowlaners call that having ideas above your station but that is just narrow-mindedness. However you can utilise those snide remarks and your frustrations to find ways to go way beyond what others thought you were capable of (and often what you yourself thought were possible).

And I think in some ways that is where you are now. You have had a mindset shift. Are keen to race to the next staging post but are currently limited by external factors so things aren't moving as quickly as you would like. Trust in the process, know that we all have to travel that road. Sometimes our vehicle breaks down and sometimes all we can do is get out and push. It is rare for things to go according to plan or at the speed we would like. But know that just around the corner is an upgrade. Bigger turbo, wider wheels, smoother blacktop.

The road of experience creates a growth mindset. That doesn't leave you. I've gone from a kitchen table idea to a 2500 square foot warehouse in 10 months (we ran out of places to store stock at home). A year or so later we added another 3000 square foot warehouse and took sales to well over $1m. Contrast that to now, where I sold up and am in maintenance mode with a turnover of less than 100k a year. My mindset didn't shrink with that reduction. It actually grew by a huge margin.
 
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Primeperiwinkle

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Ok... darn it.

Second Floor Mindset - These business owners have learned a ton and are now stuck putting what they’ve learned into practice. They’ll look for ways to make it go faster, feel like they’re missing something important and get randomly confused about just how much progress they’ve made. They need encouragement and LOTS of it when they make really long posts in the middle of the night.


Lol. Note to self: This forum is good to me. I need more coffee..
 

broswoodwork

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I need more coffee..
I was up all night too. Wish I could say I went the two glasses of water and a painfully cold shower route recommended in the caffeine off topic threads, but I'm a liter of coffee deep.

Maybe we level 2 folks need a mastermind group to remind ourselves of what @biophase and @RazorCut cut say above? "Just keep working and perfecting the process". No epiphanies or overnight level jumping.
 

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I was up all night too. Wish I could say I went the two glasses of water and a painfully cold shower route recommended in the caffeine off topic threads, but I'm a liter of coffee deep.

Maybe we level 2 folks need a mastermind group to remind ourselves of what @biophase and @RazorCut cut say above? "Just keep working and perfecting the process". No epiphanies or overnight level jumping.
Yes. And getting from job owning to controlling our time.

I read Lighthouses thread about Trello. Razorcut told me about the 2Do app. I’ve reworked my emotional state multiple times and now have a clear idea how to get through my own crappy feelings when they occur. (That alone took at least three books and lots of practice so I don’t *need* other ppl to help me push through my own walls.) I’m keeping track of my budget with YNAB..

I think we need to compare notes. I’m not horrible at sales but I could be doing better. Hmm..
 

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That's an incredible post @RazorCut, thanks for taking the time to write all that out, sometimes you just need one of the big boys to remind of you of the big picture.

I definitely relate to everything that has been said here, I am very strongly a "level 2" person, things are going well but you aren't quite sure if you are missing something, or if you are working with the wrong information and pushing in the wrong direction. Some things have started to work, you have customers cash flow, employees, etc. but you worry your business isn't quite right or worse, you're not the right boss!

The mini-struggles of letting go of control, then not being happy with the result, then realising that you haven't defined the work as well as you could have and you could have saved yourself a headache if you had put more effort at the start. Ah, another learning lesson. How many more of these? Is it normal to be so crap at managing? Repeat for every part of running the biz.

For what it's worth, I take some respite in looking at some documents or emails that I made a year ago and how much I've come along and how much I take for granted now. Things that I thought I'd never be able to understand are now second nature and problem-solving is a lot faster. You get better at teaching, communicating and 1000 micro characteristics of being a business owner. It's just gradual.

What's even weirder is the feeling of further alienation from the people around me, the idea of having a boss or being told what to do is very distant. You find the idea of a scheduled lunch or coffee break almost humorous, like it's some weird alien concept to just stop working at X time for one hour. You also forget what it was like to not be the person who makes every single decision for a business. And it's when you take a quick break to look around that you realise that this isn't going to happen overnight and that a ladder with two steps is a bit of a shit ladder, so just as well that it's a long process.

It's just the unknown of the next stage and trusting the process, and getting to that level 3. I've only been here a month and I'm already super grateful to have found a community of like-minded people and so many golden posts and threads (and the odd landfill one).
 

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Two general tips for progression I think are worthwhile.

Just sitting down and taking some time to list your strengths and weaknesses. This can have a profound effect on where you place your focus and where you Need to get others involved to help move your business forward. Plus it identifies what you may need to work on in the future. One of mine was control. It took me a long time to learn the art of successful delegation.

I think the most important lesson any business owner can learn with regards to moving their business forward though is the 80/20 relationship. It is so extrodinarily powerful that I think that Richard Koch’s book should be compulsory reading.
 

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Yes. And getting from job owning to controlling our time.

I read Lighthouses thread about Trello. Razorcut told me about the 2Do app. I’ve reworked my emotional state multiple times and now have a clear idea how to get through my own crappy feelings when they occur. (That alone took at least three books and lots of practice so I don’t *need* other ppl to help me push through my own walls.) I’m keeping track of my budget with YNAB..

I think we need to compare notes. I’m not horrible at sales but I could be doing better. Hmm..
I don't know if this will help at all, but some thoughts I had.

The stage I'm in now is the hardest stage so far (maybe all the stages are as you progress up the ladder?).

As a "small business operator" (to steal a line from, I believe, @Kung Fu Steve), my business has essentially been built on my experience and expertise. Clients still know that when they signup with me, they're getting me, my knowledge, and my time. You can see the issue here, right?

I've been working over the last year to pass tasks off to an employee - and I've been mildly successful, but there is still a deep thought that I can't take myself out of the process. Clients expect "me" so how do I take myself out? How do I move from Business Operator > Business Owner?

With a physical-goods business, it seems relatively easy. The end customer is buying a product, not knowledge or service. They probably don't really care who the person is in between.
Branding and company image are, of course, important - but they aren't generally tied to one person.

Theoretically, I need to move personal knowledge to enterprise knowledge. Create the systems and knowledge-base so any of my employees have access to the same information that is stuck in my head. I can then sell clients on the "firm's" expertise instead of "my" expertise. Heck, maybe clients would feel better knowing there is a team, and not just two people?
Once I do, growth should be much less painful.

But it's a big step.

It involves not just creating a knowledge-base, but processes and procedures, and training processes, and consistency.
It involves training myself and my clients that I don't need to be involved in every step for them to get quality work (side note: some clients are on this forum, so these statements always carry some risk for me, but I encourage them all to do the same thing with their business. If they have to show up every day, they still just have a job).

I haven't figured it all out yet, but I believe it's possible. Heck, other businesses can do it so it must be possible.
 
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I don't know if this will help at all, but some thoughts I had.

The stage I'm in now is the hardest stage so far (maybe all the stages are as you progress up the ladder?).

As a "small business operator" (to steal a line from, I believe, @Kung Fu Steve), my business has essentially been built on my experience and expertise. Clients still know that when they signup with me, they're getting me, my knowledge, and my time. You can see the issue here, right?

I've been working over the last year to pass tasks off to an employee - and I've been mildly successful, but there is still a deep thought that I can't take myself out of the process. Clients expect "me" so how do I take myself out? How do I move from Business Operator > Business Owner?

With a physical-goods business, it seems relatively easy. The end customer is buying a product, not knowledge or service. They probably don't really care who the person is in between.
Branding and company image are, of course, important - but they aren't generally tied to one person.

Theoretically, I need to move personal knowledge to enterprise knowledge. Create the systems and knowledge-base so any of my employees have access to the same information that is stuck in my head. I can then sell clients on the "firm's" expertise instead of "my" expertise. Heck, maybe clients would feel better knowing there is a team, and not just two people?
Once I do, growth should be much less painful.

But it's a big step.

It involves not just creating a knowledge-base, but processes and procedures, and training processes, and consistency.
It involves training myself and my clients that I don't need to be involved in every step for them to get quality work (side note: some clients are on this forum, so these statements always carry some risk for me, but I encourage them all to do the same thing with their business. If they have to show up every day, they still just have a job).

I haven't figured it all out yet, but I believe it's possible. Heck, other businesses can do it so it must be possible.
Yes exactly! I’m a bit behind you but I’m definitely speaking your language. My problem is that I’d basically be replicating the business model of one of my mentors, who just so happens to be in the next city over.

Her business is thriving but it took her eight years... I guess I’m trying to figure out if I’m gonna be in this for the long haul (Option A: do it better than she did) or if I can move to another type of model (Option B: Educate the ppl similar to me, sell those tools/training materials) or if I can jump ship to a completely different business (Option C: No clue.)

Every time I think I have clarity I lose it three days later.

I’m convinced that Time Management is essential to leveling up, specifically utilizing the hours from 9pm-1am wisely.

But I’m haunted by “without a vision the ppl perish”.. it’s like I don’t know if I need more faith in the vision I already have or ... something.
 

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Two general tips for progression I think are worthwhile.

Just sitting down and taking some time to list your strengths and weaknesses. This can have a profound effect on where you place your focus and where you Need to get others involved to help move your business forward. Plus it identifies what you may need to work on in the future. One of mine was control. It took me a long time to learn the art of successful delegation.

I think the most important lesson any business owner can learn with regards to moving their business forward though is the 80/20 relationship. It is so extrodinarily powerful that I think that Richard Koch’s book should be compulsory reading.
Your authority is measured by that which you give away. ---- Henry David Thoreau
 
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There's a lot of value in this discussion. And I think the progression model can be useful...

But I just wonder if it can make things seem to linear than they sometimes are. Start at level 1, then get to level 2, then level 3, etc.

I've read about numerous examples (on the forum and off) where someone strikes out on idea 1, strikes out on idea 2, strikes out on idea 3, etc.

Then because they've had all that experience (and they keep swinging), they crush it with idea 7.

But there was seemingly no progress before the home run.

This probably doesn't contradict anything that's already been said. Maybe it is just a different angle or possibility.
 

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There's a lot of value in this discussion. And I think the progression model can be useful...

But I just wonder if it can make things seem to linear than they sometimes are. Start at level 1, then get to level 2, then level 3, etc.

I've read about numerous examples (on the forum and off) where someone strikes out on idea 1, strikes out on idea 2, strikes out on idea 3, etc.

Then because they've had all that experience (and they keep swinging), they crush it with idea 7.

But there was seemingly no progress before the home run.

This probably doesn't contradict anything that's already been said. Maybe it is just a different angle or possibility.
I think we’re on the same wavelength because what you’re saying is that BECAUSE OF WHAT HE LEARNED he was able to succeed on idea #7.

What I want is to figure out the mental habits that he learned.

Say you wanna be a house flipper. On your first property there’s this steep learning curve. But after that you can do it yourself and you have contacts with ppl who can help you source the stuff you need. But after six houses you get some minions to do certain things for you.

Delegation would be the difference from 4 houses to 25.

Same thing with digital agencies. They start w/ one guy doing everything but then they start utilizing va’s to accomplish certain things.

So every niche has this global perspective where you learn WAY TOO MUCH only to then narrow it down to what’s important to you, which you wouldn’t have figured out if you didn’t learn and implement a wide variety of things to begin with. I’m going in circles. I’m gonna get back to work for a while and just listen to what ppl say.

Brendan Burchard has a book called High Performance Habits and he lists six things but I don’t think he goes in depth enough.

1.Clarity
2. Managing Your Energy
3. Raise Necessity (Discipline to Excellence)
4. Increase Productivity
5. Develop Influence (Networking, Mentoring)
6. Demonstrate Courage (Breakthroughs)

I’d rename them and tweak it.

1. Clarity
2. Discipline and Time Management
3. Marketing/ Sales
4. Delegation/ Scale
5. Building Your Brand
6. Find A Mentor. Do what they tell you to.
 

RazorCut

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Your authority is measured by whatever you can give away. ---- Henry David Thoreau
Equate that to 80/20 thinking. You give away 80 percent of your knowledge (creating authority) but keep back 20 percent that 80 percent of the people would be willing to pay you for.

That is a tried and tested model you find all over the web (and cost me $97 not two weeks ago).
 

Bertram

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Equate that to 80/20 thinking. You give away 80 percent of your knowledge (creating authority) but keep back 20 percent that 80 percent of the people would be willing to pay you for.

That is a tried and tested model you find all over the web (and cost me $97 not two weeks ago).
Speechless.
 

MTEE1985

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Delegation would be the difference from 4 houses to 25.
My first thought is that there are many good insights here:

The majority seemed to agree that delegation gets you from step 1 to step 4.

it’s like I don’t know if I need more faith in the vision I already have or ... something.
More than faith. You need to know exactly where you want to be and know that absolutely nothing will stop you from getting there. For those familiar with the “X Prize” the foundation of it was that Diamandis committed to this 10 million dollar prize...without having ten million dollars. At that point though the only option he had was to go find it, which he did. We see examples of this all throughout history and even here on this forum. Napoleon Hill talking about burning desire. @MJ DeMarco moving across the country with $900 and a rusty Buick but 100% committed to accomplishing what he set out to do.

More recently, @Kak setting up the Underdogs meetup. Notice how he didn’t say “any interest, what dates work” etc. he said, “I’ll be here on this date, all are welcome.” If he got zero replies he was still going.

Circling back to the concept of progression, it is a very real thing though hard to define each step because of the variability amongst people, businesses, industries. I see it as “what is my clearly defined end game?” What does a 10 of 10 in all areas of my life look like, now how do I get there? Then start doing the most important things (a la 80/20 and The One Thing) every day that get you closer.
 

Kak

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More recently, @Kak setting up the Underdogs meetup. Notice how he didn’t say “any interest, what dates work” etc. he said, “I’ll be here on this date, all are welcome.” If he got zero replies he was still going.
There is another big reason for that...

I don't democratize decisions. It is a poor decision making method. Especially something like a date with a bunch of people that may or may not even be interested in showing up, you have a mess that never happens.

Don't confuse this with not taking advice or listening to smart people. I do that constantly, but a leader still needs to lead based on the intellegent information they can assemble.

I intentionally did not ask the opinions of others. "I will be in Erie PA on the 15th. Show up or not."
 

MTEE1985

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There is another big reason for that...

I don't democratize decisions. It is a poor decision making method. Especially something like a date with a bunch of people that may or may not even be interested in showing up, you have a mess that never happens.

Don't confuse this with not taking advice or listening to smart people. I do that constantly, but a leader still needs to lead based on the intellegent information they can assemble.

I intentionally did not ask the opinions of others. "I will be in Erie PA on the 15th. Show up or not."
While you’re here...I think it’s fair to say you are a great example of the progression from small business owner to an actual CEO and not a business card “CEO”

What were the habits or decisions you had and made along the way to get you there? Was it a mindset shift or has the mindset been there your whole life?
 

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While you’re here...I think it’s fair to say you are a great example of the progression from small business owner to an actual CEO and not a business card “CEO”

What were the habits or decisions you had and made along the way to get you there? Was it a mindset shift or has the mindset been there your whole life?
Meh. I'm chopped liver, but I still have a mindset. I know way too many people better than me to get proud.

I entered adulthood as an entrepreneur guided by a simple principle at the time. The goal is to build something where you are not trading time for money.

Later on I realized that even with passive contracts, I had a full time sales job that I owned with my energy company.

With my ecommerce company I realized that I was still trading time for money, just at a really high hourly rate.

Still I was doing things like inventory labeling, customer service, and other task work.

Entrepreneurship isn't sitting down and banging out 25 hours of work in one day. It is methodically leading from one step to the next. Steps that add up to something bigger than you, by yourself, would ever have been expected to do.

This is how every billionaire businessman got there. They purchased the value of others profitably. They inspired those around them to support the effort. They got the necessary people on board and they led.
 
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Meh. I'm chopped liver, but I still have a mindset. I know way too many people better than me to get proud.

I entered adulthood as an entrepreneur guided by a simple principle at the time. The goal is to build something where you are not trading time for money.

Later on I realized that even with passive contracts, I had a full time sales job that I owned with my energy company.

With my ecommerce company I realized that I was still trading time for money, just at a really high hourly rate.

Still I was doing things like inventory labeling, customer service, and other task work.

Entreneurship isn't sitting down and banging out 25 hours of work in one day. It is methodically leading from one step to the next. Steps that add up to something bigger than you, by yourself, would ever have been expected to do.

This is how every billionaire businessman got there. They purchased the value of others profitably. They inspired those around them to support the effort. They got the necessary people on board and they led.
I think leadership is the key to everything but developing one’s self as a leader... ?

Especially after being scripted for a long time.. it’s hard. The Script creates followers who look for permission and guidance and validation and constant encouragement.

I know because I’ve lived that life. Now that I’m thinking about it.. leadership as a trainable habit has to be on the progression. Sigh.

I don’t like being a leader.
 

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Ok but in your list you went from 30-100k just on ONE set of skills.

Then 100k moved up by switching to carrying your own inventory. That’s a big deal. You owned the stuff right?

So 100-250k was carrying your own stuff that somebody else made it did you start developing it then?

250k-1mil was developing your own brand and controlling all your own product from creation to market.

Is that right?
I don't how that was ONE set of skills. I wrote SEO, PPC and pricing models. Obviously SEO is a big skill to master, but it compounds. You learn it and apply it and the work you put into it grows over time.

There are a ton of tiny skills that you learn as go you. You learn some HTML, CSS. You learn about CC processors, shipping, FB, IG, Youtube... It's just about moving forward in knowledge as you need it.

Yes, carrying inventory increases your margins and gives you more control on shipping. I owned someone elses's brand.

The next jump was creating my own brand, this increased my margins again.
 

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