A lot of people starting a business have a particular vision of where they want to go.
They have a sense of determination to do everything on their own. They think they always know best. They understand the importance of networking, but they don’t know how to develop the relationships that can 100X success.
But they don’t want to admit it. They aren’t willing to show vulnerability or admit faults. This is especially hard for people who love to compete.
However, being willing to ask for help is one of the biggest keys to success in any industry. So what’s the single most important lesson you could learn that most people will never know?
You Must Reach Out to Move Up
If you are not willing to learn, no one can help you. If you are determined to learn, no one can stop you.— Zig Ziglar
I earned my business success and have become an entrepreneurial icon through my own hard work. But if I had tried to do what I’ve done on my own, I wouldn’t have been able to achieve even 10X success—let alone 100X!
And that’s what most people get wrong. They never learn how to reach out. You’ve got to be willing to put yourself out there, introduce yourself, and ask them for advice. I’ve done this same thing countless times over the course of my forty years as an entrepreneur—and I’m still doing it every day.
Here’s the truth: When you ask for help, you never know where it will take you.
My first mentor was my father. He helped me become the man I am today. The most important thing he taught me was that seeking help and reaching out is the key to success in life.
Find an Amazing Person and Ask Them to Be a Mentor
Never seek advice from someone you wouldn’t trade places with.—Darren Hardy
I took that lesson and learned to reach out to multiple mentors.
I started my business success journey as a teenager sealing driveways in a blue-collar Ohio town. I didn’t have anything handed to me. When I shifted to selling safety high chairs, I hit a wall. I turned to the owner of the company for help and he began to mentor me in sales.
One of the best things he did was to introduce me to other virtual mentors—Napoleon Hill and Zig Ziglar. Through their guidance and secrets, I learned the value of connecting with people in the right way and leveraging win-win relationships.
Since that time, the list of mentors has been long—Arnold Morris, Mark Burnett, Richard Branson—each of them came into my life unexpectedly as a result of my reaching out.
Start by Admitting You Need Help
Teamwork is the secret that makes common people achieve uncommon results. —Ifeanyi Onuoha
No one can do it alone.
That’s why I talk so much about building a Dream Team you can trust. I’ve been pitched well over 50,000 times by entrepreneurs with a dream and an idea. But so many of those entrepreneurs were trying to do it all alone.
On Shark Tank, I saw a lot of slick presentations, but when we talked about the Dream Team, I discovered it was often only one person not willing to admit that he or she needed help. Nothing worthwhile gets done that way.
All of us, not only entrepreneurs, need to admit we can’t do it alone if we ever want to achieve breakthrough success.
But the key theme in whatever mentorship I sought was that I had to be willing to fail. I had to be open to my life going in a new direction as a result of that failure.
Put a Shark in Your Tank
The best way a mentor can prepare another leader is to expose him or her to other great people. —John C. Maxwell
Don’t be afraid to reach up as high as you can as you reach out. You want to find someone who can push you to succeed. You’ve got to be the one to put a shark on your team and in your tank!
Few people realize the real-life story behind the Shark Tank concept. When local fishing grounds didn’t produce enough fish, Japanese fishermen had to venture further from the shore. They caught fish further out to sea, but then had to transport those fish back to shore, which took several days. Kept in a tank, many of the fish would die before they returned to the market.
Dead fish don’t make great sushi.
So they came up with another plan. They put a small shark in each tank with the fish on the way back to shore. The shark motivated the fish to keep moving! I’m sure the shark caught a few, but nearly all of them arrived back to shore alive and alert.
That’s the value of putting a shark in your tank.
You need to reach out—and up—to find someone who can push you to be the very best you can be.
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