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Self Improvement

Three Ideas For Solving Society’s Entrepreneurship Problem

I am the Co-Founder and Executive Director of Founders Portal Inc. We are a full-service advisory firm for founders, startups and investors. Shutterstock Founding a company is hard to explain to anyone who hasn’t done it. Most people don’t understand the devotion, passion and commitment required to convert what existed only in your mind into a tangible reality. In fact, many people think you don’t really do anything. I can remember numerous instances when family and friends would reach out to me during a work day and say, “Hey, want to go for lunch?” and would be in utter shock when I said I was too busy. Yet, no one questions when someone goes to work and is unavailable. I think a lot of this has to do with what we are exposed to on a daily basis. People go on TV shows like Shark Tank and...

9 things you need to stop doing if you want to be taken seriously

Want to be known as a rockstar around your office? Here’s a tip: tTo really earn a stellar reputation, you can’t just do your individual tasks well. Often, you also have to master soft skills around how you speak and present yourself. But the challenge is that this workplace etiquette tends to be an unspoken rule — since you can’t exactly flip to a page in your employee handbook to read up on how to wow leadership with your communication style, for example, it’s easy to make mistakes. To shed light on some of these common workplace faux pas, we reached out to a handful of career experts. If you’re serious about earning your colleagues’ respect and improving your standing in the office, it’s time to nip these nine bad habits in the bud. 1. Being lat...

6 Things You Must Quit Doing Now If You Want to Be More Successful

Most of us grew up hearing the mantra “Don’t be a quitter,” and we’ve internalized it to the point where we feel guilty even if we don’t finish a book that’s boring us to death. Our parents weren’t entirely wrong in saying that persistence is necessary for success, but sometimes quitting is the most effective course of action. Whether it’s a failed project, a thankless job or a doomed relationship, quitting can be a virtue. “Quitting is leading too.” — Nelson Mandela As it turns out, some of us are really good at knowing when to quit, while others have a hard time getting “unstuck.” Research from the University of Rochester found that people are motivated by either “approach goals” or “avoidance goals.” Those who fall into the approach camp are motivated by challenges and don’t waste...

How to Build a Reputation That Brings You Opportunity Every Day

Shutterstock As a startup, attracting opportunity to Influence & Co. was extremely difficult. We were a content marketing company operating on a national level from Columbia, Missouri. That’s right: Columbia, Missouri. I can’t count how many times I had to repeat that to people who thought they’d misheard me. That detail is now something that helps us stand out in a sea of lookalikes in big cities like New York City and Los Angeles, where dozens of media and marketing companies emerge every day. It takes a long time to build a reputation that people not only respect, but are also familiar with. At this point, there’s not a day that goes by when an opportunity of some sort doesn’t come to me simply by virtue of someone familiar with our reputation wanting to partner with us or work with...

Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, and Oprah Winfrey All Use the 5-Hour Rule

Top business leaders often spend five hours per week doing deliberate learning. In the article “Malcolm Gladwell Got Us Wrong,” the researchers behind the 10,000-Hour Rule set the record straight: Different fields require different amounts of deliberate practice in order for someone to become world-class. If 10,000 hours isn’t an absolute rule that applies across fields, what does it really take to become world class in the world of work? Over the past year, I’ve explored the personal histories of many widely admired business leaders, including Elon Musk, Oprah Winfrey, Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, and Mark Zuckerberg, in order to understand how they apply the principles of deliberate practice. What I’ve done does not qualify as an academic study, but it does r...

Why most people will never be successful

“Success” isn’t just having lots of money. Many people with lots of money have horribly unhappy and radically imbalanced lives. Success is continuously improving who you are, how you live, how you serve, and how you relate. So why won’t most people be successful? Why don’t most people evolve? The more evolved you become, the more focused you must be on those few things which matter most. Yet, as Jim Rohn has said, “A lot of people don’t do well simply because they major in minor things.” To be successful, you can’t continue being with low-frequency people for long periods of time. You can’t continue eating crappy food, regardless of your spouse’s or colleague’s food choices. Your days must consistently be spent on high...

Become a Millionaire With These 7 Habits

The following excerpt is from the Brian Tracy’s book Million Dollar Habits. Buy it now from Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iTunes | IndieBoundYou must develop seven key habits for business success. The absence of any one of these habits can be costly — if not fatal — to your business. When you become competent and capable in each of these areas, you’ll be able to accomplish extraordinary results, far faster and easier than your competitors. 1. Plan thoroughly. The first requirement for business success is the habit of planning. The better, more thoroughly, and more detailed you plan your activities in advance, the faster and easier it will be for you to carry out your plans and get the results you desire once you start to work. To plan better, develop the habit of asking and ans...

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