My ex used to tell me that life “came easy” for me. He said I didn’t understand the difficulties he had. Then, at the tender age of 19, I believed him. I figured everyone worked as hard as I did and that I just got alot of lucky breaks. So, for awhile, I felt sorry for him.
Then I started paying attention…and what I learned then has served me ever since. It serves me in life and it serves me in business. And the path to successful business is pretty simple… once you grasp one little trick. Let me explain…
See if you recognize the following traits:
- When an individual complains about how everyone else gets all the breaks… everyone else was probably working.
- While my “example” individual bemoaned the fact that things came easy for everyone else, that others (including me) were “lucky”… he dropped out of school and played hooky from work.
- While he demeaned the way I worked hard to pay off bills, saying there should be more money to have fun… he borrowed money from family and never paid it back… (I paid it back).
So while I worked and put off having a life today to build a future (something that’s not a good idea, BTW, given my current hindsight), he was the grasshopper to my ant-like-ness. Now, I know that in addition to alot of hard work, and great opportunities, and being at the right place at the right time, and more hard work, and having good examples as well as bad examples in my life…I’ve also been lucky. Incredibly lucky. And, I’m thankful.
I have people calling me now, wanting to “make it big” on the Internet. They want me to tell them how it’s done. Often the LAST thing they want to hear is that it’s hard work and it won’t happen overnight. They want a secret… a trick… a way to bypass the traditional means to a goal… (that means would be WORK).
Call me old fashioned. Call me crazy. Maybe I do things the hard way. Or maybe… just maybe… my grandparents and parents were right. Maybe hard work, diligence, setting and meeting goals… maybe that IS the only way to success. What a concept!
As I tell my clients now, the only road to success is a long, rough one. Progress is made everyday — in little, but ploddingly regular ways. It’s not something that happens suddenly, and it doesn’t happen with fanfare. It’s something that happens over time, not overnight.
How do you achieve small business success? What do I tell my own clients?
First, you find your “thing” — I can help with that. Identifying a niche, helping people see their own strengths and find their place in the sun and helping them to define that in words– written words — and learn to market those strengths and skills… well, that’s the fun part of my job!
But the REST of my job is helping each client ensure steady progress. Daily progress. And it’s not about gaining breadth… it’s about finding the niche and accepting that in an Internet-based business, it’s about depth. It’s about learning a great amount about a specific thing. It’s learning to thirst for all the knowledge they can possibly absorb about the area they choose.
The Internet is a big place. There are many products and services available to any potential client or customer. And yes, the Walmart approach works for Walmart, but it’s not the path for a small, Internet micropreneur. And it’s not the way for an individual real estate agent, writer, entrepreneur or consultant to make a living on the web.
Sure, you have to know how your area of specialization works in relation to other areas. You still have to maintain some generalities… but the crux of your efforts and your time and your study and self-education should be spent honing your niche and owning your own market.
So the “trick” to making it on the web? Work hard. Never give up. Work toward your goals every single day. Know your stuff like no one else can. Emulate no one. And,… try to take time to enjoy life a bit when you aren’t working!
Some trick, huh? Try it. It’s fail-proof.