Take a second to look around you. Squint to look beyond your desk, your coffee mug, or the diplomas on your wall. What do you see? What don’t you see? What forces are at work just past your line of sight?
Rules Make The World Go Round — And Business Rules Make You Money.
You can’t tell with a quick glance, but our universe functions based on a series of invisible laws. You probably learned about this in high school. For example, we have Newton’s laws for motion and gravity. The physics are so consistent and predictable that we know exactly how long it takes for Earth to rotate around the sun. We then know exactly when to add leap seconds to our clocks.
Years ago, I was thinking about this when I had an epiphany. If the universe functions based on unwavering laws, do other areas of our lives have similar rules? Like love and money? If you understand those rules, can you create your dream life?
Are they the secrets to success? I believe so.
In my journey toward becoming CEO of Newsletter Pro, now a decade-old company, I discovered a few universal business rules I live by. And when I follow these rules, my life gets better. I become more successful, and I win in all areas of life. Even when I seem to be losing in the short term, I stay focused on these rules. Then, I can virtually guarantee my success!
Today, I want to share 3 of the business rules I live by. They’ve had a profound effect on my life both personally and professionally. And I think they can do the same for you in 2022.
Rule #1: Always Play The Long Game.
I’ve never understood sacrificing the future for a short-term win, but this is how most people live life. Do you really want to be most people? We have all heard stories of those who appear to have gotten everything they ever wanted virtually overnight. While you can luck into success, it is incredibly rare. These sensationalized stories of fast money and overnight millionaires just aren’t reality. Most millionaires are older — and they worked a heck of a long time to get their money.
When I moved out and had my first kid at 16, I only had the long game. Many of my friends went out partying every weekend, but I had responsibilities and business to take care of. I couldn’t party much at all — I had to get to work. So, unlike those friends, I sacrificed all the shenanigans of my 20s for a better tomorrow. Now, I get to live a life better than anything I dreamed about when I was grinding in my 20s.
Ultimately, you have to sacrifice to succeed in both life and in business. Will it be the hours on social media each night? How about hours of binge-watching Netflix? Will you sacrifice some money today and invest it in an asset or marketing campaign that will pay dividends tomorrow? If you choose not to sacrifice today, your better tomorrow won’t come. That’s a universal business rule in my book.
Rule #2: Pigs Get Fat, And Hogs Get Slaughtered.
Long before the 2013 film “The Wolf of Wall Street,” there was a 1987 movie called “Wall Street.” The main character, Gordon Gekko, famously said, “Greed is good.”
I couldn’t disagree more (and neither can The Atlantic). Greed, or the love of money, will cloud your judgment and impair your decision-making skills every time.
The worst business I’ve ever owned was a franchise I bought while living in California. I thought the service was a good product and would help me turn a profit, but I had little interest. I was just being greedy. I can still remember sitting in a 2-week training for this company in Canada. On day 2, I realized I had screwed up. It took me a week to admit it to anyone else and 9 months to sell the company.
When I made that business mistake, I was in my mid-20s; I couldn’t afford to lose money on a bad business decision. Ultimately, I hustled and grew the company just enough to get out and break even on the deal. I lost 9 months of my life, but the business rule I learned was worth the trade.
To this day, when I look at an opportunity, business, or investment, I first look at all the details of the opportunity. Assuming those details look good, the second-to-last piece of the puzzle I look at is the profit potential. If that looks good, I finally look at the risk and the work required from me versus the profit potential. Looking at a deal this way — putting work and profit last instead of first — has saved me from many bad opportunities. I’ll never be a hog again.
Rule #3: Fail To Plan, And You Plan To Fail.
This rule has many applications in both life and business. In this case, there’s 1 easy change that can impact your business next week, next month, and next year. We all have predictable issues in our businesses. For example, in the summer, many businesses slow down. This predictable trend happens time and time again. So, why are so many people surprised year after year?
Don’t let another summer slowdown get to you! Sit down right now and make a plan to limit or eliminate what you know is coming. Why not look for other patterns you can plan for to either amplify the positive patterns or minimize the negative issues?
Here’s another example: You know customers are going to cancel. You know they are buying products and services you sell from other businesses. Wouldn’t it make sense to put some effort into minimizing that turnover? While you’re at it, work on improving retention and maximizing customer lifetime value.
These are both predictable issues, but few people pay attention to them. They plan to fail because they fail to plan.
Everything you want and need to be successful is within your reach! You need to be willing to think long term, do the right things, make a plan, and take action. Keep these 3 business rules in your back pocket to find success in 2022.