Five Basic Principles for Success

What is Success?

There are countless guides, tips and steps available all offering some guidance and direction; truth however remains that the road to success is one that is unique and tailored for each traveler.

Before I attempt to embark on sharing my version of what success may require of you,  allow me to share the most satisfying definition  I have ever come across.

a) Success is achieving that which you have purposed/set out to achieve. b) It is the simple act of setting a goal and achieving it. c) Doing that which you intended doing

1. Do What You Need to Do

In order to get where we need to in life, we are at times required to Push through and do things that we are not particularly excited about. Often than not, we are required to do mi-nude and mundane tasks to get by. Do What you need to in order to get where you need to be. as the saying goes, “Do what you have to do before you do what you want to do”

2. Do More

“In order to have what no one else has, you will need to do what no one else is willing to do.” Learn early on to always put in a little extra. If and when asked to do something, always put in a little extra above and beyond what is expected. Small actions ultimately lead to big results. For the purpose of this point, More can be anything from a smile when a smile was not expected to a Random Act of Kindness. DO MORE

3. Find Your Passion

Find something that you enjoy doing, it can literally be anything. If you enjoy playing video games… Good. If you enjoy watching movies all day… Perfect. Enjoy hanging out with your friends, Excellent. The catch to finding your passion though, is to learn something while doing what ever it is that you enjoy doing. Find your passion, but learn something each and every time while doing that which you enjoy doing. make it a concerted effort to learn something new each time.

4. Ask Questions

Question everything. Do not simply accept the norm or status quo. The world was changed in shaped into the cosmos of answers and explanations we enjoy today because people like you and me asked questions. If you wish to make your mark, you will need to provide answers to questions that do not exist yet. And the only way to come up with answers would be to have a question. So start asking.

5. Enjoy

As simple and easy as that may sound, more often than not we overlook this simple fact of life. We have but this one life to live (depending on what your views of the after life are), and we all share one common destination which is death. Best to enjoy the ride right. Live in the now, what ever it is you are facing, find the joy in it. Life is but a combination of up’s and down’s, curves and bents, highs and low’s. Best to find the joy amidst each season.

The Power of Influence

Influence is defined as;

the capacity to have an effect on the character, development, or behaviour of someone or something, or the effect itself.

To me, that translates to having the ability to alter, change or shape the way someone thinks. This eventually leads to a change in lifestyle, which later results in a change of destiny and purpose.

Yet influence can be positive or negative. It can be ‘good’ or ‘bad’ the same way it can also be to the benefit or detriment of the one being influenced.

To influence is therefore not just to have an effect, but if and when done with efficacy; can lead to a drastic deviation of current course and propel said influenced individual to live and exist either above or below their potential.

The thing most fascinating about influence and its power is that it requires no permission, recognition or approval. We can be-; are- and will always be influenced one way or the other. Be it by accepting, rejecting, ignoring or refusing the information presented with; the one unmistakable fact is that influence can be likened to a virus that can not be escaped or avoided. We are influenced one way or another, knowingly and/or unknowingly.

 

Personal Touch

Every morning I start my day with a cup of coffee. I love my coffee. It gets me going and provides me with that much needed kick to ensure I get a good few hours of labour under my belt.

Though I make a mean cup of brew, I find that for the past few months I have spent on average R825 per month ($63) on coffee. I admittedly, not the most insane amount ever spent on such an impeccable blend of water, beans, milk and sugar; yet its still a good few bucks.

Today I stopped and asked myself why! Why not just invest in a decent coffee machine, a good pack of beans and brew my own. Surely by now that should be the logical next step right. Clearly not.

Just because someone spends a small fortune on a house does not mean they have a desire to build. Same way that spending millions on legal representation does not mean you are destined to become a lawyer/attorney.

Businesses succeed for many reason; and they likewise fail for many too. Yet one of the reason behind the success or failure of a venture may be attributed to how much of its resources are devoted to finding rational solutions to irrational situations. Just because a client can afford to buy a product does not validate a sale the same way a clients inability to afford disqualifies them.

The art of service delivery relies heavily on irrationality. In order to succeed in business, at times, one may need to neglect the rational argument and focus on the emotive aspect.

I spent a small fortune (in my view) on coffee at my local coffee shop not because I am lazy or stupid. But because each time I walk in I am greeted by my name, I exchange a few words with the staff, get a glimpse of the beautiful ocean and listen too a popular song while taking in the sweet aroma of freshly brewed coffee. Therefore, my R825pm is not spent on coffee, but on a morning routine that gets me amped for the day ahead.

Business is not just about the product or service, but the experience… What experience are you offering to your clients?

What It Takes to Succeed

AQUAFRESH LEMON MINT TOOTHPASTE

As I went about brushing my teeth this morning, I took notice of the flavour for the first time since I started using it; Lemon Mint it read. Those two words manage to unlock a flood of memories from my childhood days.

Growing up, irrespective of where my parapets would visit, the moment they got chatting and the kettle started boiling, biscuits would appear. Not just any biscuits though, LEMON CREAMS. Maybe it was a cultural thing, or maybe just the friends my parents associated with, yet regardless of the host or visitors, the faithful Lemon Creams never neglected a gathering.

Another fond childhood memory I recalled was that of the Sunday morning church service. My grandmother never left home without her Peppermint sweets commonly known as MINTs. And as soon as we got a little restless in church, she’d start circulating a seemingly endless supply of mints down the pew to all her grandchildren in an attempt to keep us quiet.

Fast Forward a couple of years and we arrive in my bathroom doing something I have been faithfully doing for as long as I can remember.
I never spent more than 10 seconds selecting a toothpaste. My decision almost always based on the next item I needed to grab while about my trolley dash through the supermarket. I find myself asking how it came to happen that I chose this particular brand of toothpaste. Simple coincidence? Sheer chance? Sound market research? Pure Genius?

My opinion… COMPLETE CHANCE, right? Or was it?

No self respecting company would waste that much time on a name for their product, or attempt to increase sales by taping into customers fond childhood memories right? And even if some insane company decided to allocate precious resources and miss use their workforce on such a futile task, who would go to such lengthy trouble to even use the data? Better yet, who would set out to create a product that would cater for that specific need discovered through the research?

My guess, a company that is serious about survival. One that understands that customers have evolved into a much more sophisticated target audience. A company possibly serious about growth; one actively trying to increase its market share and overall brand position. An organisation who might just go as far as to grasps the importance of starting with the customer’s needs before setting about to develop a product, work out a price and actively go on to promote it.

My guess would be that a business that serious about its customers needs would be nearly impossible to stop or compete with.

DIE ANTWOORD we’ve been looking for

-The Answer we’ve been looking for

The first time I heard it was when my girlfriend jokingly sang the verse while teasing me about falling of the wall in an attempt to fetch her baby brother’s cricket ball. We bought laughed hysterically when her baby brother caught on to the song and could not stop singing the cores.

“I, I, I
I am your butterfly
I need your protection
Be my samurai
I, I, I
I am your butterfly
I need your protection
Need your protection

To both me and my girlfriend the song seemed pretty much irritating to say the least. And I jokingly said anyone these days can come up with two verses, slap a beat to it, make a video and wham!, instant artist. I never realized the truth of it. Not until I arrive at work this morning hearing my colleague whistles the cores. When I asked him about it he tells me he heard the song on the radio this morning.  I suddenly realized that these guys, who call themselves Die Antwoord (The Answer) are actually getting bigger and bigger.

It led me to ask a couple of question (no pun intended). Are we really that easily influenced? Are we really in need of Antwoorde (answers)? Who makes the decisions we ultimately decide to take?

Die Antwoord to all these questions still vaguely elutes me on a personal level. Yet if applied to business the answers become painfully obvious. Yes we as consumers are easily influenced. By simply evoking our senses, we are caught hook line and sinker while companies real in our money. Yes, we are always in need of “die antwoord”. It is the very way we have been created. We need answers in order to fulfill our never ending ever growing need for knowledge and satisfaction. Lastly, Who makes the decisions we ultimately decide to take? We are influenced by anything and everyone around us. Regardless of their status, knowledge, credibility or lifestyle the fact still remains that they influence us. The truth is that we all somehow in some way have an inherent desire to be. This desire propels us to make decisions. With so many decisions to make on a daily basis, it becomes easier to follow the masses then to individually analyze and way out pro’s and con’s of various options every time we have to make a decision.

To conclude, the decisions we make on a daily basis regarding what to eat, which off ramp to take, how many sugars to take, what kind of music we like, what makes us happy, etc are all to a certain extend pre determined. The Question then becomes not what to decide, but rather who to allow to decide…