It's a question that's pondered and discussed a lot: Is there a "formula" for success? If you scout around a little online, you'll undoubtedly find a number of people who claim to have the formula — or secret, or plan, or whatever… for a price. But in the many years my brother Adam and I have been entrepreneurs, we've found that the so-called formula for success isn't all that difficult or complicated. And it certainly isn't anything you need to pay hundreds or thousands of dollars for.
In our experience, keeping the following ten keys in mind is what has made the most difference in our success and in the success we've had the pleasure of seeing others achieve.
1. Take Responsibility for Your Success: If you are to be successful, it's up to you. Don't wait for anyone else to make it happen for you, and don't rely on luck or chance. There's no doubt that being in the right place at the right time can make a big difference in your business; but you're only likely to be in that place at that time — and ready to do something about it — if you're actively looking for opportunities. And even then, it will be up to you to turn your "luck" into success.
2. Get Help: Don't make the mistake of thinking that number one above means you have to do it all on your own. Taking responsibility for your own success also means recognizing when you need the help or advice of someone else. No one knows it all, and the sooner you admit that you don't have all the answers, the sooner you'll be able to find them.
3. Know What Success Is: Success is different for everyone. For many it means having lots of money, while for others it has more to do with relationships. For most people, it's a combination of several things. But no one's idea of success can be defined by anyone but them. You've got to know what you're working for — what success means to you.
4. Stay Healthy: Regardless of how you define success, you won't get there if you compromise your health. This might not seem like business advice, but staying healthy is the best way to have the energy and stamina necessary to build a business. You don't have to be a health-nut, but just eating reasonably well and getting a decent amount of exercise will help you in achieving your business goals more than you might think.
5. Go for It: Being an entrepreneur means taking risks. Not stupid risks, but certainly not playing it safe either. If you aren't willing to go out on a limb and push past your comfort zone, you absolutely will not achieve all you can.
6. Have Some Fun: Working on your business shouldn't feel like going to a job every day. Entrepreneurship is a blast, and if you don't agree, you're doing it wrong!
7. Be Flexible: You've probably heard the phrase, "It isn't what happens to you, but what you do with it that matters." That is so true in so many ways. When challenges arise (not if — but when), being flexible enough to shift your approach and adjust your plans allows you to take just about anything that happens and turn it into a win.
8. Relax: Down time is essential. I'm not talking about taking a three-week vacation while you're in startup mode, but just allowing yourself a little time each day to unplug can really make a difference in your mental state, which will translate into more productivity — not less.
9. Be Who You Are: This goes back to knowing what success is to you and taking responsibility for your success. You should be working for you, and no one else. Obviously you're working to support your family if you have one, but that's not what I mean. Your business should reflect who you are and what's important to you. Don't let anyone try to steer you down a path based on their wants and needs, and don't ever compromise your principles. It's never worth it in the long run.
10. Always be Learning: Continually find ways to increase your knowledge about your industry, marketing, management, and business in general. Become fascinated by other businesses and how they do things. Ask lots of questions of other business owners. Not only will you learn a lot, but you'll make some great contacts in the process.
What's missing from the list? What have you done on a regular basis to keep on the path to success? Share with the community in the comments section, or on our Facebook page.