“Yes, there were times, I’m sure you knew, when I bit off more than I could chew. But through it all, when there was doubt, I ate it up and spit it out. I faced it all and stood tall. And I did it my way.”
Frank Sinatra: My Way.
Daymond John: The Power of Broke.
The above quote is from the song, by Frank Sinatra, “My Way.” The song is used as the opening to Daymond John’s book, “The Power of Broke.” Before I continue, how many of you have been booed off, chewed up and spit out? But you kept rhyming, you kept writing? Ok, Eminem notwithstanding, how many of you kept up with your passions in life? How many of you took the criticism and laughter your peers, your own friends and family, nay, the entire world; gave you? How many times have you been broke? How many times have you let the circumstances in your life lead you to taking the easy way out and quitting? Keep your hands in the air, because we all have.
Daymond John, is famous for starting the urban clothing brand of the 1990’s, FUBU: For US, By Us. He created the brand by himself, in his mother’s small house in Brooklyn, learning how to sew and design his own clothes. He couldn’t afford the nice, expensive getups of the times, so he did what any youngster would do, he created his own. No, not everyone does this, but that’s my point.
Daymond did it HIS way.
He had the vision, and foresight to create a clothing brand that would go on to make millions upon millions of dollars. And it all started because he kept on. He had $40 to his name when place after place turned him down. He had no choice but to go door to door, business to business until he finally broke through. Sometimes, that’s all it takes, is to keep knocking on every door, every avenue, until you reach the point of just kicking the door down and announcing, “I’m here, I’m here to stay, and I did it my way.”
That’s the shortened version, of Daymond John. The modernized version leads him to being on the panel of the hit TV show, Shark Tank, now in it’s 9th season on ABC. He has been with the show since its inception, back in 2009. As one would imagine, this entrepreneur has many sides to him. The hard working side. The loving, jovial side. The ultra serious, don’t-waste-my-time side. And of course, the giving back side.
He knows what it takes to succeed in the world of business and the world of following your dreams and making them a multi-million dollar reality. He’s written books. He’s gone on numerous TV shows to promote Shark Tank, but also himself and his story. He’s also gone on the road, teaching his ways by holding workshop seminars.
I was lucky enough to attend one this weekend, and this is what I learned.
I’ll preface the rest of this by saying Daymond was not actually leading it, but his team was. After a short introduction video and him welcoming us to his workshop, a man by the name of Rob Lett (@RobTheSpeaker) began. Right away, I was ready to go. I had my name tag on, my ledger of notes and a pen handy. I turned my phone off and made sure my attention was front and center. Certainly, I was not going to waste this opportunity.
He started things out by using a hockey analogy. Wayne Gretzky, became one of the greatest players in history, because of one thing. He didn’t go to where the puck was, he went to where the puck was going. He was always one step (or skate) ahead of everyone else. He had the vision to see what was happening on the ice before anyone else. The Great One, indeed.
That’s how you become great. Know where the puck is going, not where it already is.
It’s the same in life, or business, or anything you are currently involved in. In order to have a successful endeavor, you must follow 3 basic components.
- Stay ahead of your competitors. Research, analyze, find keys to future ways to build on your successes. Look for trends and hit them hard. Don’t fall behind, always move forward. Use the technology the world has given us. We live in such an amazing time period, that to idly sit by and let everyone catch up to the times, would be foolish. And stubborn.
- Do things they are not doing. You don’t want to be like everyone else, do you? I don’t. That’s not how you get ahead in life, and that’s certainly not how people become great. Before there was digital music, there were CDs. Before that, there were cassette tapes. Before that, there were 8 tracks. And records. You want to break the mold, not stay stuck in it. Be bold, be different.
- Invest in people. There is a wealth of knowledge in this world, and contrary to what you may think, you don’t know it all. You know nothing. You don’t know what you don’t know. What you should realize, is that there are people out there that do know how to program your new software in one hour vs you trying for days to get it up. There are people out there who have launched a new line of product on a weekend before, with no prep time. Pay these people. Pay them a fair wage, for their time and commitment to bettering yourself and your business.
People, and the relationships you build, are worth more than any paycheck can ever write. Building a bond, the trust between two people, while mutually benefiting one another, can last a lifetime, and lead to so much more. Learn how to use your leverage, in these relationships. Again, by mutually benefiting one another, not to screw someone over.
Leverage = Money + Time
You want money. You want to save time. Use that leverage to get the best of both worlds.
You can’t get through this, at least in a quick and efficient manner, without using a few acronyms: SYSTEM and TEAM.
Save Your Self Time Energy & Money
Together Everyone Achieves More
Think about these, and get back to me about what you think it means. Tell me I’m wrong. You can’t. The less you do, the more you make. So work together. Delegate. Work smarter, not harder. Whatever cliche you want to use, it’s there for a reason.
I have one more story for you. Everyone knows 50 Cent right? The rapper, who was notoriously shot 9 times, only to come back and sell millions of records. He also was smart. He knew that he couldn’t rap forever, and that surely, there were ways to expand his wealth and make sure his great grandchildren’s great grandchildren would be millionaires. He started to invest in a few things.
Maybe you’ve heard of Vitamin Water? No, he didn’t invent it, but he did invest in the startup water company. Even his tiny stake in the company netted him a rumored $100 million sum, after it sold for $4 billion. When asked about how he knew this would happen or why is he so smart, he laughed and said, “I’m not smart, I’m special.”
When asked again what he meant, he explained to the reporter, “You’re smart right? You went to college, you sat in class and when your teacher asked a question, you knew the answers probably, correct? Did you always raise your hand and answer? Most people don’t. They let the fear of embarrassing themselves consume them, so they let someone else raise their hand and answer. They let someone else take that opportunity from them. I don’t. So, you see, you’re smart, I’m just special. I take those opportunities.”
MIND. FUCKING. BLOWN.
Do you want to know the real kicker in all of this? Daymond John’s Success Formula was completely free* to attend. Yep. FREE. I didn’t pay a dime. My opportunity cost was waking up at 7am on a Saturday morning and driving but 20 minutes from where I lived and sitting through 3 hours of jaw dropping truth bombs.
All of this and plenty more that I took notes and asked questions on, will start me on the path to where I want to go in life and what I want to achieve.
It all starts with your why. Your inside. You finding that drive. That passion. That courage. That one opportunity. If you had it, what would you do with it? Well, even if you’ve let quite a few go in your life so far, the beauty is, you’re reading this, and it’s not too late. There is another opportunity, right now, out there, waiting for someone to just take it.
I could go on and on, but I’ll just let these words of wisdom simmer in your mind. I already feel like a million bucks. It’s out there. Please excuse me while I take advantage of this opportunity…. and do things, MY WAY.
*Yes, there were advanced programs and other workshops to sign up for at a later date, but I had a prior commitment to a week of poker tournaments already in place. Thus, I passed on those, but I fully believe they would have been worth the price and would have done so if I could have attended. To remove any doubt, they come with a 3X money back guarantee and you can even claim it on your taxes as an educational expense**.
**DISCLAIMER: I am not an accountant or tax preparer, so anything here is not tax advice, merely thoughts.