Last week I met the guy in this picture who pissed me off! He also changed my perspective on business. He got under my skin big time because of all the work I had put into my business skills seemed like a waste of time. But on reflection it made me ponder what business was all about: the money or something more important?
For those who don't know me, let me give you some background for context. I have always loved business. My grandparents ran a small office stationery business in a northern suburb of Melbourne in the commercial area of Preston. As other family business people would know, it was the heart of our family. It provides incomes, cars, jobs for relatives and was often talked about when the family got together. I loved my grandparents so much and they taught me that if you work hard you can get somewhere in life. To me it was a special point of pride that my family owned a business. I couldn't wait to go work there on school holidays and ended up working there for nine years before life took me in a different direction.
The difference between my grandparents and my family was chalk and cheese. My grandparents and Uncle, who both worked in the business drove Mercedes cars, had overseas holidays, new clothes and never seemed to want for anything. My mother through various circumstances didn't work and had three kids by herself. It was difficult for her and although I went to a private school and lived in a nice suburb (all paid by the business) we were cash poor.
I saw what they had and wanted a bit for myself so I followed grandpa's advice and worked hard. I studied for 14 years at night school, climbed the corporate ladder and saved. I invested in property, shares and myself. According to my accountant and my friends I was doing well. After 20 years of effort I had a net million dollars. I was technically rich. House was paid off and money in the bank - life was good, for a bit...
RICH! THEN NOT...
After the GFC we had to have, a divorce and some reckless spending (as you do when you are not fulfilled in your life) I lost a bunch of money. It was earnt slow and spent so fast. So I started again. I created my own business in the vision of what my grandparents created. Social Star is my baby and I'm proud to be doing what I love most. I help people build their dream careers and businesses through authentic and powerful personal branding. It's fulfilling work that I am inspired and grateful to do everyday. I love it so much sometimes I do it for less than I can afford just so I can help others. Good for the soul but not for my bank balance! But I am growing and doing pretty well. Then I met this guy and he turned it all upside down (see his Ferrari!)
This guy was 27, no degree, no experience and a multimillionaire. Not only was he a multimillionaire, her earnt a million dollars every year! Surely there is 15 years hard work behind the instant success? Unfortunately no. Surely he created a once off app or social media product that just happened to take off - a freak like those Instagram guys? Nope. Surely he is super smart and talented, nup! DAMN! The worst bit is anyone can do this now. The barriers to entry to make money have dissolved so my hard effort really isn't worth what it once was.
He is a regular guy who sells some stuff. He is good at selling and in three years worked his way up a system to be the best in his area. Hard work, sure. But not as hard as 14 years of business school whilst holding down a corporate job. The worst part is (for me, awesome for him) he has an annuity revenue without doing much at all. CRAP! They didn't teach me that during my MBA!
I now ask you a question, is all his money and success the end game? Is that the real measure of success? For us entrepreneurs, yes it is. Of course we want to help people along the way but he does that too. In fact he helped his brother become a millionaire at the same time. I'm about to cry, sniff...
So what to do about this new realisation that you don't have to follow the traditional path of hard work to be successful? You either get pissed off like I did, or you join them. I chose the first for awhile before I realised the second was a better option. Don't fight the tide of change, it will not help you at all.
I still run Social Star because I love it and it helps people around me. But I also run this other business which helps people become rich so they can do what they love most. For some it will be spending more time with family, for others like me it will take the pressure off the business so I can help more people.
Will I make millions? Maybe not, but I will make enough to have a great life with my kids. How well I do is completely up to me. I'm going to give it a red hot shot! Sounds great, yes? Join me if you want but know it isn't some get rich quick scheme. It takes effort and persistence, like all businesses. The difference is this one is so simple, easy and profitable that other businesses models just don't compete. Uber and AirBnB are the start of the sharing economy, it's just going to get bigger and this is one where you get a part of the cake.
This guy really did piss me off. But he also taught me a valuable lesson. I teach people how the world has changed with social media, but built a business on the old economy. Now I know that to be really successful you have to join the new economy. Jump in with two feet and realise the world will never be the same. Join me and don't look back.
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