On a walk yesterday in the Perimola region of Catalunya, about 2 hours drive from Barcelona. We went on a hike up to the hermitage of Castell Llebre.
My friend Mathieu Carenzo teaches Entrepreneurship at IESE Business School and is an early stage investor in many successful spanish startups, including some Unicorns. He shared 4 keys to identify a great business opportunity…
The 4 Keys to Identify a Great Business Opportunity
Market: People need you. Your product or service solves a real pain in the lives of potential customers. The people with the pain have decision power over the money.
Talent: You can get Resources. Computing resources, people with skills, infrastructure, good supplier network. You will be able to systematically deliver on your promises.
Profit: Revenue greater than Costs. You have an ability to produce the product for less cost than the market is able to pay.
Timing: The Market is ripe. If your idea comes too early and customers aren’t ready for it, they won’t change. If your idea comes too late and there are already a number of different competitors in front of your target customers, you won’t be able to squeeze in.
Entrepreneurship and Small Business
I’ll be making a number of videos over the coming weeks and months addressing the challenges of starting a business. There has been huge growth in new business formation in the US during Covid lockdown. One suggestion is that the government handouts of money have given many people the cushion of a couple of months they need to set up their own business. Entrepreneurship is not an easy ride, but it can be a path to a meaningful and rewarding life experience.
“Second order thinking” is a big part of Paul’s approach. Second order thinking is looking for non-obvious rules that improve decision making, efficiency and quality of life. Check out the Python Paradox for an example 😉
Paul’s Essays that have most Impacted My Approach to Life
“All my daughter really wants from me is a few minutes of my undivided attention… the richer people get the more money they spend trying to “
I am bad with money
It has taken me many years to admit this to myself. It was only by admitting it that I have been able to take the steps to put my family on a path to financial freedom.
I have a long standing belief that if I am a good person and do good work, the “money thing” will sort itself out. This has proven to be a poor approach to a well balanced life.
I still have had a lot to learn about my relationship to money. Many of the lessons shared in this video resonate with my own (poor) relationship to money. I am so optimistic that the future will be better that I don’t hold myself to the discipline of saving and investing my money. It has taken several business failures and a clear objective reflection on my poor money decisions to start to accumulate money over the last few years.
10 lessons about money from Dorothée Loorbach
Dorothée was “successful” in her job and made a lot of money… and then she spent it all… until she was broke, unable even to bake her little daughter a birthday cake. She had to face her own flawed beliefs about money and how they were damaging her ability to live a life that matters.
If you are to build a great business, you need to know how to hire great people. There are 3 things you want to see in a person to know that they will make a lasting positive impact on the organisation.
Can they do the job today
Will they do the job long term
Do they fit with the team
What do you look for in people when you are deciding whether to make an offer? What red flags have you identified?
This is a wonderful 10 minute speech by Brian Brault, Chairman of the Entrepreneurs’ Organisation, during a United Nations Global meeting on how Entrepreneurship can make a difference to the UN Developmental Goals.
Creating a Shared Future for Entrepreneurs and Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises in the framework of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
I have met Brian several times over the last 13 years that I have been a member of the Entrepreneurs’ Organisation. He is an inspiration and I am glad that he had this opportunity to share such an important message to the world’s ambassadors and governments.
“The people in the market for boring are spoiled for choice” Rich Mulholland
“All the good shit is reserved for those who put their hands up.” Rich Mulholland
All the good stuff is just beyond the rejection, the looking like a fool, the bad first impression, the being laughed at… if you censor yourself, you close off access to the good stuff.
Here’s Rich Mulholland’s Passion Direct via Video…
I am a fan of Rich Mulholland. He shares passion, some f**-bombs and some great personal stories as he tells you to take the risk that you know you need to take but are waiting for a better moment. The lesson: that moment will never come.
April Abboud is a successful American entrepreneur who has moved to the Middle East. She gave up the business she grew, the culture she knew and having family close by to start a family in a land thousands of miles away. She has chosen to challenge herself all through her life.
April was recently asked to be the Moderator and Welcoming Speaker for the regional Global Student Entrepreneur Awards. She shared a powerful story about the need for each of us to face difficulties in our lives:
The Man who Helped the Butterfly
A man found a cocoon of a butterfly. One day a small opening appeared. He sat and watched the butterfly for several hours as it struggled to force its body through that little hole.
It stopped moving. It seemed to have stopped making progress. It appeared as if it had gotten as far as it could, and it could go no further.
The man decided to help. He took a pair of scissors and cut off the remaining cocoon. The butterfly emerged easily.
The butterfly had a sluggish, swollen body and small, shriveled wings. The man continued to watch the butterfly. He waited for the wings to grow and expand to be able to support the body. He waited for the body to shrink to the beautiful proportions of a butterfly.
He waited. Neither happened!
The butterfly spent the rest of its life crawling around with a swollen body and shriveled wings.
The butterfly never was able to fly.
The Universe is Wise
The man, in his kindness and haste, did not understand nature. The restricting cocoon and the struggle is necessary. As the butterfly squeezes through the tiny opening, fluid from the body is forced into its wings. This long, tiring, intense struggle for escape is necessary for the butterfly to fly once it fights its way to freedom from the closed cocoon.
This is not only the nature of butterflies. It is the nature of life. It is our nature. If we do not have adversity and strife on our journey we cannot carry the weight that our dreams require of us. Everyone has gone through something that has changed them in a way that they could never go back to the person they once were. Some understand this difficulty for what it really is: Growth.
As an entrepreneur, I have often made the choice to travel the road less taken, one filled with uncertainty and fear. I dare to make the world a better place and somehow along the way find the courage to believe in my wings and let myself fly.
We must give ourselves permission to accept the struggles, for in them we find our true original, authentic self.
To those who crawl around swollen with desire we become leaders. Fierce are those with restrictions, strengthened by their journey, that not only find their wings but take to flight.
PS As of last night… I’ve updated my channel graphical look. I’d welcome your thoughts on the new look Rhetorical Journey Channel page. If you’re not already a subscriber to the youtube channel… What are you waiting for? Seriously… people pay me good money to talk and here you get me for free and in your comfy home.
How to Improve your Sales Process (4 Personal Habits to Develop)
My best blog posts have always come from interactions with readers… comments, questions via email, twitter, facebook… I’d love your help to think about ideas for future videos. What questions do you have? What topics should I cover? What lessons should I share by video? I read all the comments 😉
Here’s another smidgin of wisdom from Entrepreneurs’ Organisation Leadership Academy 2016. In this video, Rich Mulholland, an entrepreneur from South Africa shares his reflections on two key moments during the leadership academy: A re-enactment of the Martin Luther King “I Have a Dream” speech, and a session with Warren Rustand speaking about his time as Appointments Secretary to President Gerald Ford.
Rich’s message: Take control of your time.
I love Rich’s idea about protecting your time in the short term: If someone asks him for a meeting, he says “If you want to meet today or tomorrow, I can give you 15 minutes; if you want to meet next week, I can give you 30 minutes… if you can wait 2 weeks, I can give you an hour” – Most people say “I’ll take 15 minutes” and he can hold them to it when the clock ticks to 15 because they chose 15.
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