The Entrepreneur Mind Summary Author says to be an entrepreneur is to think differently. While most people seek refuge, entrepreneurs take risks. They don’t want a job; they want to create jobs. Their goal isn’t to think outside the box as much as it is to own the box. Entrepreneurs don’t follow the market; they define the market.
Summary of The Entrepreneur Mind By Kevin Johnson
The Author says all entrepreneurs must ask themselves three vital questions that concern their business strategy: Where are we now? Where do we want to be? How do we get there?
A business can fail in two ways: not surviving beyond its start and not reaching its full potential. While shutdowns receive the most attention, failure to reach full potential is much more catastrophic.
The two kinds of entrepreneurs are those who create markets and those who do not. On the one hand, the entrepreneur who creates markets is considered a revolutionary. On the other hand, the entrepreneur who competes in well-established markets is considered ordinary.
The Author says as a mentor to young entrepreneurs, I encourage my mentees to seek new markets rather than to go into well-established ones. The potential for attaining greatness is in creating new markets.
Don’t Waste Time
The best entrepreneurs create environments of stressful urgency. Entrepreneurs know that startups rarely get anything done in a relaxed, take-your-time environment. For example, Steve Jobs, the cofounder of Apple, was notorious for pushing his team beyond its limits by setting seemingly unrealistic timelines.
If you lack the sense of urgency to grow your business, evaluate why you want to be in business. Perhaps you are not passionate about the business idea. Maybe your subconscious tells you that the idea isn’t worth pursuing.
Ask for Help
The Author says when you start your business, lose the ego immediately. It’s the main reason that entrepreneurs don’t seek help. An overinflated ego even prevents those who ask for help from receiving it. Rarely do people want to help those who act as though they don’t need it.
There’s a difference between being confident and having an ego that’s too big for your own good. Confidence attracts people; ego repels them.
One of the quickest ways to lead a life of mediocrity or utter failure is to think that you can accomplish a major task all by yourself. The self-made man or woman is a myth. Even the greatest business minds of our time had to ask for help.
Do What’s Most Important First
The Author says if you are like most entrepreneurs, the lure of crossing something off your task list is too great to pass up. As you bask in the happiness of having crossed off another menial task, the more important tasks are pushed further down your to-do list and often forgotten. It’s ironic how the most important items keep getting put off and therefore become, in reality, a low priority.
Sometimes all you need to boost your productivity is a change in environment. If you work at home, steal away to a small park, or if you are in an office, go to a cafe. It’s amazing how something so simple can improve your output.
The Entrepreneur Mind Summary
Adapt to Change Quickly
The Author says the average lifespan of a Fortune 500 company is getting shorter and shorter, largely because of the ascendancy of disruptive technologies and companies. Small and nimble start-ups are often overlooked by big corporations and now have the ability with little resources to topple billion-dollar companies.
The Author says change is inevitable, but it is not easy. One of my favorite speakers and authors, Don Hutson, said this about change: “Change happens when the pain to stay the same exceeds the pain to change.”
Companies that have reached a degree of success are most likely to resist change and to stretch their pain threshold. If something is not broken, don’t try to fix it, right? Wrong. There are countless examples of large companies that dominated the market for long periods, but now are struggling just to stay alive.
If you have no strategy to proactively deal with change in your business, save yourself from a slow death and just shut down shop now.
Have a Laser like Focus
As Steve Jobs said, People think focus means saying “yes” to the thing you’ve got to focus on. But that’s not what it means at all. It means saying “no” to the hundred other good ideas that there are. You have to pick carefully. I’m actually as proud of the things we haven’t done as the things we have done.
The Author says when my vice president came into my office to tell me that we needed to cut some of our businesses, I quickly reflected on my various entrepreneurial endeavors. At that time I had started fifteen different businesses. All of them had made money at some point, but only a handful were profitable. I realized that I needed to return to my start-up days when my focus was laser like.
Don’t Underestimate Your Competition
When entrepreneurs approach me to invest in their companies, I naturally want to know who their competitors are. It’s a basic question that any investor would ask.
Never tell a potential investor that you have absolutely no competition. Any seasoned investor interprets such a statement as, “These guys are full of themselves and naïve enough to think that they have no competition. This is a waste of my time.” Instead, introduce your competition, but describe the severity of the competitive threat.
About the Author :
Kevin D. Johnson, president of Johnson Media Inc. and a serial entrepreneur, has several years of experience leading his multimillion-dollar marketing and communications company that now serves many of the most notable Fortune 100 businesses. As an innovative leader, he has appeared on ABC’s Good Morning America, CBS, Oprah Radio, and in The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. Moreover, he has appeared on CNN frequently.
Before founding his company in 2000, he engineered web applications and produced computer software for leading companies. He was a software programmer for IBM and a webmaster for CNN Interactive. He also worked for Arthur Andersen Worldwide as a business consultant and software developer.