Recently I had the pleasure of hearing Daymond John speak at our regional EO event, and later on in the evening I had an opportunity to spend some one on one time with The Shark! And I lived to tell my story.
Between the official presentation and impromptu introduction, the Shark Tank investor emphasized what all the most successful people have in common. From that, I took away three lessons I learned that apply to entrepreneurs everywhere.
1. Make Decisions. FAST.
This was a point that Daymond emphasized during his presentation, and there are three good reasons why.
The first is that in the world of entrepreneurship where business moves at a breakneck pace, business owners have to make a multitude of decisions every day from the tiny details all the way up to strategies and deals that could change the entire course of the company. The only way to keep up is to make them quickly; taking time to sit back and analyze all the factors leaves you at risk for becoming overwhelmed.
The second reason is that slow-moving entrepreneurs miss out on opportunities. While carefully weighing pros and cons is a deliberate approach to a well-considered decision, it might come across as reluctant or even disinterested to talented potential employees, your first clients, or investors, who could all walk if you take too long. There’s no doubt in my mind that a lack of decisiveness as an entrepreneur can be costly in every sense of the word.
You cannot change the direction of a non-moving object. The quicker you make a decision and get going – the quicker you can make adjustments toward the desired result.
2. Be Who You Are No Matter Where You Are
To me, Daymond John seems like the same person in real life that he is on TV. He’s effectively maintaining his personal brand, and the fact that he hasn’t let fame change him bolsters his reputation.
Be yourself no matter how successful you become. Treat people well no matter your impressions of them. Not only is it the right thing to do, but doing so keeps the door open for more opportunities because people do business with people they like, and people that are liked are genuine. As a talented brand guru, Daymond understands the importance of word-of-mouth marketing and knows that it applies to his personal brand as well.
Keep your reputation as an entrepreneur in top shape by remembering who you are, and your success will only grow.
3. Conviction and Persistence Are Key
When trying to start FUBU, several banks rejected Daymond John’s loan request. That must’ve been frustrating, but instead of giving up he did something that showed how much he and his friends believed in their plan of creating an apparel company: John mortgaged his house and converted part of it into a factory.
There’s nothing like putting your place to live on the line after being repeatedly rejected by people who could fund your future. But this is the kind of sacrifice that entrepreneurs have to be prepared to make to see their dreams come to pass.
If you’re truly committed, nothing will stop you. Conviction and persistence drive entrepreneurs to take risks and bring their visions to life no matter what the obstacles.
These concepts have proven helpful as an entrepreneur in the past year. They’ve keep me motivated, inspired, and on the road to success. I hope they also stir your entrepreneurial spirit to make it a great 2016.
Vlad Molchadski is the CEO of BizTraffic, LLC, a Dallas-based digital marketing company. He’s been a proud member of EO since 2013.
For more reading about Vlad’s experience with Daymond John, check out The Do’s and Don’ts of Entrepreneurship I Learned From Meeting Daymond John on Huffington Post!