Is it motivation or inspiration that helps us survive? Or both?

As I stated in yesterday’s article, Have you ever needed a little push to start your day?, I felt I really needed a bit of a pick me up as I was having difficulty getting focused. Quite frankly, that doesn’t happen often but when it does, I attempt to be proactive by seeking out something that will change my mindset and get me back on track.

Today, I feel my focus and positive mindset have returned but in light of one news story after another referring to economic uncertainty and signs of the times, I’m concerned about how others will be affected – or may be sidetracked by worry.

Adding insult to injury, Hurricane Ian is barreling down on the Florida Coast and there’s bound to be a ripple effect that will affect many people including those, albeit indirectly, outside the Sunshine State.

So even though I’m [mostly] back to focusing on tasks at hand, my mind is drifting back to yesterday’s thoughts about motivation and inspiration. I recalled an article I had written some time back and thought it appropriate to share again today.

In any event, I pray those in need find the inspiration and/or motivation necessary to survive and recover from whatever challenges they may be facing.

Inspiration vs Motivation

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I’ll admit, I often interchange motivation and inspiration. Actually, because I do, I find that I use both words together in a sentence. For instance, what motivates and inspires you? Maybe it’s because what motivates me, typically inspires me, as well. And what inspires me, often motivates me. Is that wrong? Maybe it is according to the definition of both words, but I find it works for me. It’s akin to a 1-2 punch. They work well together. In any event, it works for me. However, maybe it doesn’t work for you.

Inspiration is defined as, the process of being mentally stimulated to do or feel something, especially to do something creative; a sudden brilliant, creative, or timely idea.

Motivation is defined as, the reason or reasons one has for acting or behaving in a particular way; the general desire or willingness of someone to do something.

Kelly Slater, an American Surfer states, “Motivation is temporary. Inspiration is permanent.” A very concise message, to the point. Six simple words. Yet, I believe there’s much more to the spirit behind being motivated or inspired. Or should I say, motivated AND inspired?

The following quote from Dean Bokhari, a writer & speaker about personal development, meaningful work + mastery presents a different perspective:

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Some may look at Bokhari’s quote and think it’s just Salter’s quote further defined. I don’t see it that way. I believe Slater’s point is more a black & white issue, an either this or that scenario. Bokhari’s quote speaks to me of a yin & yang (most think it’s ying & yang) scenario, working together, complementing each other, reinforcing, if you will.

According to Wikipedia: in Ancient Chinese philosophy, yin and yang is a Chinese philosophical concept that describes how obviously opposite or contrary forces may actually be complementary, interconnected, and interdependent in the natural world, and how they may give rise to each other as they interrelate to one another.

From World History Encyclopedia: The principle of Yin and Yang is that all things exist as inseparable and contradictory opposites, for example, female-male, dark-light and old-young. The pairs of equal opposites attract and complement each other. 

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As the Yin and Yang symbol illustrates, each side has at its core an element of the other (represented by the small dots). Neither pole is superior to the other and, as an increase in one brings a corresponding decrease in the other, a correct balance between the two poles must be reached in order to achieve harmony.

I read an interesting article, “The Important Difference Between Motivation and Inspiration” by Rob Holman. He is an internationally recognized leadership expert, executive coach, keynote speaker, and bestselling author who has a heart for authentic relationships and a true talent for equipping people with the skills and the knowledge necessary for their success. He states:

“For years I thought that inspiration and motivation meant the same thing. But the more I thought about it, did some research, and became a student of people, the more I came to believe there’s a very important distinction. The subtle difference between the words can make a world of difference in leading people.

Merriam-Webster defines inspiration as follows: “Something that makes someone want to do something or that gives someone an idea about what to do or create.”

Here’s what it says for motivation: “The act or process of giving someone a reason for doing something.”

Inspiration is more a person reaching a point of wanting to act, whereas motivation is more of giving people reasons to act. That’s the difference between babysitting and empowerment, incentives or influence, fire-starters and fire extinguishers.

There is a need for both inspiration and motivation. But to lead effectively, knowing the difference makes a tremendous difference.

When we try to motivate people by using positive incentives, and perhaps even some negative tactics, that’s using outward things to enter the heart where real change takes place. This can work to some degree, but the effect is often temporary.

When we try to inspire people, we’re reaching for the heart in a way that the person is changed from the inside out. When people want to change because there has been a deep stirring in their heart, it’s sustainable and leads to long-term vibrancy.

There was a time in my life when I consistently sought encouragement from others as my main source of motivation. Sometimes I’d get it, other times I wouldn’t. I needed the encouragement to perform well.

Then I began to be inspired by a purpose-driven challenge in my life, as well as some individuals who helped me understand that what I do should not define who I am. This changed everything.

With motivation, I was looking for reasons to be a better me to maximize performance. With inspiration, I understood who I was and, as a natural byproduct, I was able to accomplish things that I never thought were possible.”

Maybe I’m off base here, but I’m starting to realize a difference in the meaning of both words but only as it applies to the act of doing something for the benefit of others as opposed to for one own’s benefit. Meaning, to motivate and inspire others appears to be different than being motivated and inspired.

In any event, when I feel inspired, it motivates me to do something. When I see that my coaching creates excitement for my client or even just a glimmer of hope, it motivates me to expand my reach to help others. If I’m motivated by a motivational speech, it inspires me to take my own personal thoughts regarding the speaker’s topic to a new level. In both cases, I feel both inspired AND motivated.

Is there a difference between inspiration and motivation? Yes, I know there is. But does it matter when in the moment of being inspired and/or motivated? I guess it comes down to something that is quite simple which is whether it provokes thought and confidence in taking action.

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There are a lot of things that can provide inspiration AND motivation – seeing other people accomplish great things, seeing others overcome adversity, speeches & quotes from great people, the written word (books, blogs, etc.), and even the sheer beauty of nature can inspire and motivate us… while also reminding us just how lucky we are to be alive.

Have a great day. Make it happen. Make it count!

Have you ever needed a little push to start your day?

This morning, I feel like I need a little push to jumpstart my day. Have you ever felt that despite feeling good physically and mentally, that your mind is a bit foggy and out of focus? That you know what needs to be done, yet you find yourself staring at the screen, staring at your calendar seemingly in a trance?

Well, I feel that way today and as I have done in the past, I turn to motivational and inspirational quotes. So, as I focus on my own motivation and inspiration, I’m happy to share the same along with some of my thoughts. I hope it helps you as much as it helps me.

New Beginnings

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If we focus and think deep enough, we know when the time is right. It’s when we listen to what presents itself as our intuition, that feeling in our gut, that we know it’s time to pivot, to change course, to take action. We must not fight it.

Instead, embrace it as part of the great journey called, life. The wonder of it all are the powers around us, spiritual as they are, they actually provide signs, messages that move us, sometimes by force in the direction intended for us, chosen for us.

It’s then up to us to face, address what’s in our path — to tackle challenges and capitalize on opportunities, listening carefully, watching attentively and acting decisively… essential to not ignore what is evidently clear.

Possibilities

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This is one of a handful of quotes that I keep close by to motivate, inspire and remind me to realize opportunities, consider possibilities and explore options – All part of the drive to achieve success at the highest level possible. Sometimes it means doing it for me. Other times it’s for someone else. But the most rewarding is when it helps another person while also producing benefit for me. Truly a win-win.

Balance

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This one really hits home on days like today… Successful entrepreneurs have a passion for what they do, so working hard is part of their DNA. But anyone who is successful also recognizes that life and work are a marathon, not a sprint. Even they need some downtime every now and again.

The Future

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With two plus years of the Pandemic in the review mirror and all that had adversely affected business as we knew it, and despite current economic uncertainty, it’s time to look ahead to the future. In doing so, we must keep this Peter Drucker quote in mind and act accordingly.

Entrepreneurship

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One of my favorite images that really gets me thinking and wondering. It makes me think about the complexity (or perplexity) of entrepreneurship. The universe is in sight, almost at the entrepreneur’s fingertips. The entrepreneur, tired and weary is still standing.

Like the ups and downs of entrepreneurship, is the light shining outward and as such, getting brighter or is the darkness overtaking the light? And as may be reality or perception, is the entrepreneur looking at the bottom of what’s closing in from above or is the entrepreneur on top of the world taking it all in.

Such could be the majesty or travesty of entrepreneurship. Or, could it be the basis of loneliness experienced by many entrepreneurs?

And One Last Push for a Great Day!

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Today is a new day and with it new beginnings, albeit with potential of different perspectives on first impressions or just seeing things in a different light. Life is great that way!

Have a great day. Make it happen. Make it count!

Arts Entrepreneurship

There are many different types of entrepreneurship. From traditional startups to business ownership to today’s popular side hustles. There are also many more in between including entrepreneurship involving personal artistic and creative skills such as being an author or artist whose sole business is to create and then sell their books and paintings.

Some might argue that being an author or an artist is nowhere near being an entrepreneur. I’d argue that they’re mistaken. If the individual with a creative talent uses that talent to earn income, and over time develops a business from his or her efforts, they’ve then become entrepreneurs. In fact, part of the Wikipedia explanation of an entrepreneur’s purpose states:

“An entrepreneur uses their time, energy, and resources into creating value for others. They are rewarded for this effort monetarily and therefore both the consumer of the value created and the entrepreneur are benefitted.”

Artist Entrepreneur

One such Artist Entrepreneur was Leonid Afremov. He was a Mexican–Israeli modern impressionistic artist who used to work mainly with a palette knife and oils. He had developed his own unique technique and style which is unmistakable and cannot be confused with other artists.

His paintings were mainly landscape, city scenes, seascapes, flowers and portraits. Most of his work is considered very colorful and politically neutral.

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Afremov was mainly known as being a self-representing artist who used to promote and sell his work exclusively over the internet with very little exhibitions and involvement of dealers and galleries.

Before the advancement of online sales and eBay, Afremov was a struggling artist. He was born in Vitebsk, Belarus, and lived there until 1990. Between 1990 and 2002 he lived in Israel, and from 2002 to 2010 in Boca Raton, Florida.

According to the Leonid Afremov website, during the cold Russian winter, Afremov stayed at home painting. He was not allowed to participate in government exhibitions because of his Jewish roots and was not allowed to be a member of the local art associations.

His early work was sold privately via family and friends and was not seen by many people. A lot of his work in the 1980’s was just given away for free. He did not keep records of his work then and not much of it survived. The family currently has only one painting that was made before 1990.

In 1986 the Chernobyl disaster happened. Vitebsk was only a few hundred kilometers from Chernobyl, close enough for radiation to travel with the wind and rain. The ecological situation in the area worsened, local crops and water becoming contaminated with radioactive fallout. Small children were affected strongly, including Afremov’s two year old son.

At the same time Leonid Afremov was experiencing serious discrimination and insults for his Jewish heritage. The liberal politics of Mikhail Gorbachev allowed Jewish soviet citizens to migrate to Israel in the late 1980s. After being fed up with anti-semitism and problems caused by radiation, Leonid decided to move to Israel without hesitation as soon as the doors were opened.

On 14 May 1990 the Afremov family left by train from Minsk to Warsaw where they stayed in a hostel for 3 days. Then on 17 May 1990 they took a flight to Israel provided by the Israeli immigration authorities. The Afremov family was among the first to migrate from USSR in the Russian–Jewish immigration wave of the 1990s.

Today, original oil paintings, original recreations, studio recreations, prints, giclees and much more can be purchased directly from the family of the world renowned Leonid Afremov at https://afremov.com/.

Author Entrepreneur

Another creative entrepreneur is author, Joanne (Jo) Rowling, better known as J.K. Rowling of Harry Potter fame. However, one might wonder how Rowling, the author, could possibly be considered an entrepreneur. Yet, considering the tremendous value of the Harry Potter franchise of books and movies, it’d be difficult to dispute.

We often learn about an entrepreneur’s humble beginnings such as Steve Jobs dropping out of college, living on friends’ couches, and sneaking into classes that he enjoyed despite not being enrolled.

Or, the early beginnings of Hewlett-Packard as Bill Hewlett and David Packard started the business out of a garage in Palo Alto, California. And the list goes on from Walt Disney to Daymond John, founder of the Hip Hop apparel company, FUBU.

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In the case of J.K. Rowling, how is this for a humble beginning as described in an article at InsideBusiness.com?

After her mother’s death, Rowling moved to northern Portugal for a fresh start and taught English as a foreign language. She started dating a man named Jorge Arantes, became pregnant, and moved into a small two-bedroom apartment with Arantes’ mother.

The couple miscarried, but they married in October 1992. Rowling later gave birth to a daughter, Jessica, in July 1993.

The rocky marriage lasted a mere 13 months, and Rowling and Jessica returned to the UK to live in Edinburgh, Scotland, not long after. She carried three chapters of “Harry Potter” in her suitcase with her.

Living in a cramped apartment with her daughter, jobless and penniless, Rowling fell into a deep depression and admits she even considered suicide. She was forced to rely on state benefits and spent much of her time writing “Harry Potter” in cafés with Jessica sleeping in the pram next to her.

“An exceptionally short-lived marriage had imploded, and I was jobless, a lone parent, and as poor as it is possible to be in modern Britain, without being homeless… By every usual standard, I was the biggest failure I knew,” Rowling said during a 2008 Harvard University commencement speech.

Today, Harry Potter is a global brand worth more than $15 billion dollars.

Arts Entrepreneurship

According to AmericansForTheArts.org, Arts Entrepreneurship is nothing new. It is fair to assume that artists have always been entrepreneurial. Educators in higher education have been earnestly addressing this topic as early as the 1970s, first at the Eastman School of Music.

However, what is new is a formalized system of education that teaches artists how to, specifically, act entrepreneurially. Today, there are over one hundred colleges and universities addressing the topic, and at least 33 Master’s programs around the world focused on arts, creative, or cultural entrepreneurship.

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In academic literature, there is absolutely no consensus as to what “entrepreneurship” means, much less “arts entrepreneurship.” Similarly, there are no agreed-upon definitions for “creativity,” “imagination,” or “art.” These phenomena are complex and subjective.

Regardless, at Meadows School of the Arts at Southern Methodist University (SMU), in a course, Arts Entrepreneurship, students are taught that entrepreneurship is defined as follows: 

“The creation of opportunity and value with intent to profit financially, socially or otherwise through the assumption of risk and effort.”

In the context of arts entrepreneurship, the value created is art.

Have a great day. Make it happen. Make it count!

New Beginnings… If not now, when?

It’s the first weekend of Fall. The fourth quarter of 2022 is officially upon us. All that Summer represents is in our rearview mirror, and all that Fall represents is in full swing with pumpkin-flavored everything seemingly everywhere.

Halloween decorations are trying to hold their own against the premature introduction of Christmas decorations as retailers try to get a jumpstart on the holiday season. Nevertheless, pumpkins and candy-filled displays at the front of supermarkets along with costume store popups and Halloween party invitations remind us that Halloween is just a month away. Yet, holiday plans are starting to take shape.

On the business front, many entrepreneurs and business owners are making a full court press to close out the year on a high note. Some are hoping to salvage the year. But all have their eyes on the new year ahead, as well.

It’s very common at this time of year to reflect upon the goals and resolutions that were established at the beginning of the year. Questions are many.

Have goals been met to-date? Will there be enough time to achieve the goals before year’s end? How about those New Year resolutions? Were they just words with no plans and yet another year of not following through?

Further, will year-end bonuses be less than expected, if at all? How will either affect the next year?

Before year’s end, can more accounts be landed? Can more deals be closed? Can more projects be completed?

Can more pounds be lost? Can more miles be run? Can missed vacations be rescheduled?

Should plans be made to prepare for those potentially real possibilities with action be taken immediately to make things happen over the next few months — beginning right now, today?

There are many questions along the same lines and they can and all be answered with a resounding, YES!

Of course, YES! But only if this time of the year is considered to be a time for new beginnings, new possibilities, and new opportunities. And with that, new commitments and new focus. Or should I say, recommitments and refocus?

In any event, it’s time to make things happen and make things count. So, let’s get started with some inspiration and motivation with the following quotes:

“The best way to predict the future is to create it!”

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“Always ask yourself if what you’re doing today is getting closer to where you want to be tomorrow.”

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Can you do this? Of course, you can!

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Have a great quarter. Make it happen. Make it count!

Revisiting a Personal Experience of Fear and Consequences of Failure

I’ve been asked time and again, and once again this week to post the following article that I had written about in 2011 regarding my own personal experience as a multi-unit franchisee where I succeeded at first, only to crash and burn later on.

Over the years, this article has been posted on several of my blogs, picked up by numerous other blogs & online publications, and discussed on various podcasts. I have received numerous comments and inquiries about the article and my experience as well as individuals sharing their own personal experiences and requests for assistance.

Although I cringe at the thought of any business failing, I admire and respect the fact that franchisees and franchisors alike (small business owners and individuals & teams running larger organizations as well) know when to put their pride aside and ask for assistance, and I always look forward to providing my experience and expertise to help determine a practical resolve to their problems. 

I’m proud to say this article and talking about the same, has been instrumental in helping a number of businesses keep their doors open and work towards recovery. On the other hand, I’m also sad to say several businesses were not as fortunate, but at least the owners were able to exit with dignity and in few cases, with less liability than they previously thought possible. And, in one case, the business owner actually exited in the black when we were able to facilitate the sale of her business when she previously thought about just walking away.

Considering the difficulties many small business owners, restaurant operators, franchisees, entrepreneurs and organizations have experienced over the past two years and with challenges continuing, I’m sharing this article once again.

Fear and Consequences of Failure 

I can personally relate to the trials and tribulations of owning franchise businesses as I have “been there and done that” and have experiences on both ends of the spectrum from achieving overwhelming success to dealing with bitter failure. I have definitely come to understand the fine line between success and failure in trying to nail down the American Dream.

I know it is sometimes counterproductive to even mention failure which is why the subject is always avoided and never discussed. Yet, it’s out there and it’s real. Once franchisees face the possibility of failure and its very real consequences, they can be motivated to understand that failure is not an option and commit 100% to a plan that addresses immediate problems and provides solutions accordingly. Even if it’s necessary for the plan to be quite drastic or aggressive due to prevailing circumstances, franchisees that unequivocally realize that failure is not an option are prepared for immediate action.

Let me emphasize one point. Franchisees should not view poor sales and disappointing profits as either potential or immediate failure and stick their heads in the sand. I made that mistake in the past and suffered the consequences. Instead, franchisees should build upon the courage it took to become a franchise business owner and recommit to success as they did when they first took the entrepreneurial plunge.

They need to remember their wishes, hopes and dreams that prompted the decision to own their own business. They need to remember the admiration of family and friends when they heard about the new venture. They need to remember the excitement when they actually signed the franchise agreement.

Unfortunately, there’s a very distinct possibility the root of the problem is embedded in the franchisee’s actions, non-conformity to the franchise system and unwillingness to face reality. However, as there was some shining light evident during the franchise award process, it may not be a totally lost cause if the franchisee is made to completely understand the implications and consequences of failure.

As franchisors are faced with the potential of closed units [during this recession] that may be the result of things out of their control, it’s imperative they don’t lose even a single unit just because a franchisee just flat out needs a snap back to reality. It’s worth the effort.

Let me clarify something. I failed as a franchisee. Not because of anything the franchisor did or didn’t do but because I put and kept my head in the sand and did not face reality. I could go on and make excuses about things that happened around me but at the end of the day I could have turned things around if I got my own head out of the sand, made some difficult decisions and took full, immediate responsibility.

Unfortunately, I was scared of failing. I was afraid of what people would think. I was ashamed at what other franchisees, ones I put in business, would think of me. I couldn’t even think of facing my family. All lame excuses for not taking responsibility. Maybe a hard swift kick you-know-where would have helped.

Did I mention that I previously ran the franchise company where I failed as a franchisee? Did I mention I was elected by fellow franchisees, President of the National Advisory Council? Did I mention that I owned and operated five franchise units?

If I had clearly understood the implications and consequences that were looming on the horizon and if I was able to get my big ego out of the way and address things head on, maybe I could have survived. Maybe I could have at least implemented an exit strategy that would have, in some small way, paid back the loyalty and support of my employees, family and friends.

In the end, I may not have survived because it may very well have been too late when and if I finally took action and responsibility. But maybe I could have at least exited with some dignity. Also, I could have saved many innocent people a great deal of hardship, embarrassment, wasted effort and ill-spent resources if I did face reality. This includes my family, my employees and yes, my franchisor; all who believed in me.

Yes, it was a tremendous learning experience but not one I would bestow or wish on anyone. Now, all I can do is to offer my experience to anyone in the franchise industry that needs assistance. As we’re again in the realms of economic uncertainty, I’m certain already difficult situations have been compounded but I’m confident a snap back to reality could only help. If just one franchise business is saved from the consequences of failure, then we’ve made progress. Progress we’ll continue to build upon.

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Fear and Consequences of Failure… A True Story Retold

If you’re interested in hearing more of my story, you may do so in my interview with Stan Friedman, CFE on Franchise Today. I’ll be forever thankful to Stan for prompting me to share my experience, LIVE on the air. It was difficult to do but upon doing so, I’ve felt even more compelled to share it again and again. Below is the promotion (and link) for the episode as written by Stan.

Franchise Today enters its ninth year with co-host Stan Friedman interviewing fellow co-host Paul Segreto. As has been the case multiple times in the past, Segreto shares his story of near-catastrophic failure to help others who may be fighting through their own business challenges. Also, he shares the story as transparency to a time in his life that on occasion has spurred questions and rumors without all the facts at the foundation of the matter with the strong belief that others will only benefit by realizing the magnitude of fear and consequences of failure.

You can listen to the interview HERE.

Assistance for Your Organization

The future may be a bit bumpy for some, more so for others. Knowing who to turn to and when to turn to for guidance and help is important. Having resources at your disposal is also important. So, if you hit a wall, for whatever reason, please feel free to reach out to me for assistance or even if you just need someone to talk to. Please do not hesitate. You can reach me on LinkedIn, by email to Paul@Acceler8Success.com, and by phone or text at (832) 797-9851.

Have a great day. Make it happen. Make it count!

Hispanic Heritage Month Continues: Let’s ALL Participate in the Celebration

As a reminder, Hispanic Heritage Month is September 15 to October 15. I just wanted to be sure to remind everyone that it does not end at the end of September as monthly celebrations are typically observed within a calendar month. The celebration continues into mid-October so please do your part to participate in this event.

I am please to see a great deal of news coverage around Hispanic Heritage Month. More so than I originally thought might be the case. To see a seemingly endless stream of articles, I suggest doing a search of the event on Google under the News tab.

It’s interesting to read various accounts of the journey to America by Hispanics, many success stories about sacrifice for their children, and heartwarming examples of their unwavering work ethic. As well, it was interesting to see some negative news about companies and organizations that really did not give much thought to the information they had shared about the event.

For instance, the National Football League (NFL) got roasted on Twitter for their lackluster efforts to recognize Hispanic Heritage Month. Latino and Hispanic users called the NFL logo design for the event lazy and bombarded the NFL’s tweet with memes. Others cited the poor grammar by the NFL. I’d say that attention to detail certainly appeared to be lacking at the NFL.

All in all, the celebration has been very positive and front and center thus far, as it should. I was particularly fond of a FOX News article (opinion) by Claudia Romo EdelmanWhy Hispanic Heritage Month matters more than everI felt it was written from the heart, a very proud heart…

“Hispanics are the second-largest population group in our great country and we are strong believers in the American Dream.

I’ve been asked more than a few times both by Hispanics and non-Hispanics whether it is still needed, relevant, or meaningful more than 50 years after it was established. 

The answer is not only yes, but now more so than ever. For Hispanics, it is a time of taking stock of where we are today, a month of pride and celebration, a rallying call to unite around our shared values and dreams.

For non-Hispanics, it is a window into a community whose incredible diversity makes it hard to connect the dots in a way that tells a cohesive story. And there is one. 

For all our differences in race, origin, religion, politics, occupation, socioeconomic status, and every other demographic and belief, the truth is that the Hispanic community comes together around one principle. 

We all believe in the American Dream. Whether our ancestors were among the first settlers in America or arrived last year, our lives and ambitions are shaped and guided by the values that drive our great nation.”

Helping Hispanics Achieve the American Dream

A few months ago, I announced that we’re very excited to partner once again with Michael Dermer and The Lonely Entrepreneur. I thought it prudent today to remind everyone once again of their newest project, The Hispanic Entrepreneur Initiative. This initiative is of major interest to Acceler8Success Group as we continue to build upon a growing list of clients from Mexico and Latin America whose interests focus on entrepreneurship in the U.S. 

With a goal of empowering 100,00 Hispanic entrepreneurs, Hispanic entrepreneurs will be provided with free access to The Lonely Entrepreneur Learning Community – a one stop shop for the knowledge, tools and support an individual needs to start or grow a business. This access is provided free due to the financial contributions of corporations, philanthropies, individuals, and economic development organizations. 

Supporters include UPS, Microsoft, US Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, HISPA and Molson Coors and the initiative has been endorsed by over 50 Hispanic leaders including: 

  • Dr. Juan Andrade, Jr. (President, US Hispanic Leadership Institute, Recipient – Presidential Citizen’s Medal) 
  • Luis Ubinas (Investor, Entrepreneur, Past President – Ford Foundation, Past President – Pan American Development Foundation)  
  • Dr. Loui Olivas (Professor Emeriti, W.P. Carey School of Business At Arizona State University)  

The challenges for entrepreneurs in general are great. The challenges for Hispanic entrepreneurs are even greater. And there isn’t just one “Hispanic” entrepreneur – there are entrepreneurs from various countries that face some of the same – but some different – challenges and opportunities.

In addition to lack of access to capital, many Hispanic entrepreneurs possess passion and great ideas but lack access to the knowledge and support they need to succeed.

With the help from corporations, philanthropies, individuals, and economic development organizations, the Hispanic Entrepreneur Initiative will change that by putting the tools in the hands of 100,000 Hispanic entrepreneurs.

How it Works

In this initiative, organizations sponsor a certain number of Hispanic entrepreneurs who receive free access to The Lonely Entrepreneur Learning Community – a one stop shop for the knowledge, tools and support a current or aspiring Hispanic entrepreneur needs to start or grow a business. The platform addresses both the business and personal issues Hispanic entrepreneurs face and provides multiple ways for Hispanic entrepreneurs to get the answers they need:

• Knowledge: 500 learning modules that cover both the business and personal issues entrepreneurs face including issues Hispanic entrepreneurs face

• Tools: 100s of templates (e.g., business plans, legal agreements) and reviews of the top vendors and solution providers they need (e.g., accounting software) including Ongoing Support via Two Channels: multiple ways to solve their pressing challenges, Guidance from the TLE Team in Our Community: where entrepreneurs can ask questions and get answers from members of the TLE Team, Group Coaching: entrepreneurs can sign up for an unlimited number of group coaching sessions on the various business and personal issues they face. If they miss sessions, recordings are available for future reference at any time.

• Funding Sources: 150+ funding sources available for entrepreneurs

• Vendors: 50+ vendor reviews, discounts and a list of “vetted vendors” (including some free resources)

• Procurement Opportunities: 150+ opportunities made available by large organizations

• Business and Personal Issues: our program not only covers business issues, but all the personal issues entrepreneurs face (dealing with stress, ego and humility, leading)

• Daily Perspective: an entrepreneurial “tip” sent to every individual each day

• Access: 24/7 access from any desktop or mobile device

Having the Learning Community at every step of the journey significantly increases their chance of success.

The Needs of Different Hispanic Entrepreneurs

There isn’t just one “Hispanic” entrepreneur. There are native born and immigrant entrepreneurs from various countries that face some of the same – but some different – challenges and opportunities. In addition to providing answers for the issues facing all Hispanic entrepreneurs, the initiative addresses the issues and opportunities faced by the different Hispanic entrepreneurs, including entrepreneurs from: Mexico, Puerto Rico, Brazil, Colombia, Argentina, Venezuela, Guatemala, Cuba, Chile, Spain, El Salvador, and Peru.

Program Supporters

The initiative has gotten off to a fast start with programs launched by major corporations including:

• Microsoft empowering Hispanic entrepreneurs in El Paso Texas as reported in El Diario Mx and on television

• UPS launching its program at the L’Attitude 2021 conference to empower Hispanic entrepreneurs

• US Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

Benefits of the Program

There are multiple benefits to the program:

• Help Entrepreneurs: provide individuals with the knowledge, tools and support they need

• Proven Success: the program has been implemented successfully by a vast array of corporations, governments and charitable organizations

• Scalability: the ability to put the tools in the hands of a large number of individuals quickly

• Branding: various elements of the program would be branded including landing pages, access to the leaning assets and a group in the online community.

• Minimal Effort on Your Part: the program is turn-key and is executed with minimal lift on your part

• Turn-Key Execution: you are investing in a program that delivers turn-key execution

• Marketing Opportunities: making a program like this available and the success stories that come from it are powerful marketing opportunities

• Flexibility: to apply to the specific type, geography or group of entrepreneurs

• Measurement: the ability to measure activity and impact of the program

The program provides the opportunity to quickly get tools in the hands of a large number of current and aspiring small business owners.

Integrated Marketing to Highlight Impact

The TLE Team works with supporter marketing teams to maximize the impact on their public image:

• Public Relations: coordinated communications with media outlets to highlight supporter efforts

• Social Media: ongoing social media activities to show the impact supporter is having

• Success Stories: to be used in marketing and to inspire supporter audiences

Endorsements from Leaders

A coalition of stewards of the Hispanic community have endorsed the Hispanic Entrepreneur Initiative:

• Yvette Donado (former Chief Diversity Officer of ETS; Hispanic Magazine, 50 Most Influential Hispanics)

• Marcel Portmann (Latin America Advisor for +70 global brands; liaison to Inter-American Development Bank (IADB); former Vice President of Emerging Markets, International Franchise)

• Dr. Pilar Nava-Parada, (Philanthropist and Leader For Women Entrepreneurs with Mexican Origin)

• Dr. Joy Nicole Martínez (Raised $240m for nonprofits; inaugural member of Peace50 Community; Director, World Woman Foundation)

• Andrés Guardado, (Mexican Football star and his wife Sandra De La Vega)

• Sheila Ivelisse Borges, (Managing Director, Research, at Rutgers University; former Assistant Director – NYU Adjunct Professor/STEM Educator/Diversity & Equity – Columbia University in New York City)

• Gabriel Brodbar, (Social Impact Leader; former Executive Director, NYU Social Entrepreneurship Program)

• Nepherter Estrada (Charlotte Business Journal 40 Under 40 Honoree)

• Catherine Milone, (President, Junior Achievement of New Jersey)

• Ivonne Díaz-Claisse (Founder/CEO, Hispanics Inspiring Students’ Performance and Achievement (HISPA)

… and other notable Hispanic leaders.

Measuring the Impact

Three different areas are measured to ensure that current and aspiring entrepreneurs are getting the value of the Learning Community and moving toward the achievement of business results:

• Engagement – engage with the Learning Community and fellow entrepreneurs

• Achieve Key Business Activities – achieve business activities and improvements that are necessary steppingstones to achieving business results (e.g., form a company, prepare financials)

• Achieve Business Results – achieve key business results (e.g., increase revenue)

Each day, entrepreneurs in the program improve their chance of success.

For more information about this exciting initiative and how you and/or your organization can participate, please reach out to me or Acceler8Success Group president, Erik Premont on LinkedIn. Or, if you prefer, please send either of us an email to Paul@Acceler8Success.com or Erik@Acceler8Success.com. We look forward to helping to make a difference for Hispanic Entrepreneurs everywhere.

Have a great day. Make it happen. Make it count!

Is your business hanging on by a wing and a prayer?

There was more bad news yesterday with the rise of interest rates for the third time in the past few months. Some entrepreneurs including small business owners, restaurateurs and franchisees, may be wondering about whether their businesses will survive. After all, many are already hanging on by a wing and a prayer.

Last night and through the wee hours, I had given significant thought about what I would write for today’s newsletter. I thought about yet another article about ways for business owners to fight the war against inflation. Honestly, I was stumped. I felt I was at a loss for words.

At that point I found myself praying for inspiration. I prayed for the words that could help those lying awake all night wondering about the future, and some about just being able to cover payroll at the end of the month. I asked God, how did we get to this point?

Early this morning, I sat at my computer staring at the screen still not sure about the message and information I thought would resonate with my daily readers. More so, I was searching for the words that would help those with immediate needs as well as those that might need a nudge or a push – inspiration and motivation, if you will – just to leave the house this morning to face another challenging day.

Well, as I was searching through various newsfeeds for my own inspiration and motivation using search terms such as business challenges, business owner worries, and hopes & dreams of entrepreneurs I saw a search result that caught my eye. I found the words I was looking for – thank you, God.

The Entrepreneur’s Prayer

As I awaken with the gift of yet another day and prepare for the tasks at hand, I offer up this most ardent prayer:

I pray for continued clarity of purpose so that I may hold my vision steady and keep my focus on the needs and success of others, which in turn shall bring me my success.

I pray for the wisdom to expect abundance in my life, that it surrounds me and is available for the taking and to be shameless and unapologetic upon its receipt, for I deserve abundance.

I pray for a cheerful countenance, be it clear or cloudy skies and that I may radiate and infect others with my positive attitude.

I pray for the trust of others that they may recognize my sincerity and true intentions so that we may move forward together.

I pray for the strength to fend off adversity and use my desire and determination as both weapon and shield.

I pray for the courage to carry forth my convictions during the battle of business and to resist temptation to a quicker monetary result when such temptation compromises these things for which I stand.

I pray that I may be used as a lightning rod to collect the amazing ideas already present in the universe and when blessed with such inspiration, that I may be able to apply my talents and abilities to turn the power of thought into measurable advancement of my goals.

I pray to retain my childhood wonder so that I can recognize and revel in the small miracles of each day that others may miss.

I pray for an infinite supply of self-confidence for it alone fortifies faith, strengthens my resolve and conquers the largest enemy I will ever face – fear.

I pray for a compassionate spirit and the patience to offer those who seek my advice and my help, my full and undivided attention.

I pray for good health and a feeling of well being, and the continued desire to improve those areas of my physical life I may be neglecting in the name of my spiritual and entrepreneurial advancement.

I pray that today is a day of excellence and at its conclusion I can acknowledge and be grateful for the forward motion I have made and the growth I have experienced.

I pray most of all for the understanding and support of those closest to my heart, my family, that they will equate what may seem like endless hours of apparent pre-occupation with affairs of business to what is at the very core of my being, that which drives me, for once I achieve what I have set out in its fullest, I will become that more complete being I strive to be.

It is for these things that I pray, for I am an entrepreneur.

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Maybe it’s okay to hang on by a wing and a prayer as it may be prayer that spurs the inspiration and motivation needed to survive these challenging times. I know it has done so for me this morning.

Have a great day. Make it happen. Make it count!

(you can download an mp3 of The Entrepreneur’s Prayer here: http://www.bettersalesrightnow.com/prayer.mp3)

Credit for The Entrepreneur’s Prayer goes to Rick Beneteau, co-creator of the breakthrough Make Every Day A Great Day Program. Read the powerful, life-changing testimonials and discover how this revolutionary product can dramatically change Your Life too!:

http://www.MakeEveryDayAGreatDay.com/yes

The Future of Entrepreneurship: Millennials & Gen Z Will Lead the Way!

We’ve all heard the terms, Millennials, Generation Z and while we’re at it, let’s look at Generation Alpha, as well. So, as we look at the entrepreneurial tendencies of these generation groups, let’s understand the actual definitions for each.

According to Wikipedia, Millennials, also known as Generation Y or Gen Y, are the demographic cohort following Generation X and preceding Generation Z.

Researchers and popular media use the early 1980s as starting birth years and the mid-1990s to early 2000s as ending birth years, with the generation typically being defined as people born from 1981 to 1996. Most millennials are the children of baby boomers and early Gen Xers; millennials are often the parents of Generation Alpha.

Also according to Wikipedia, Generation Z (or Gen Z for short), colloquially known as zoomers, is the demographic cohort succeeding Millennials and preceding Generation Alpha.

Researchers and popular media use the mid to late 1990s as starting birth years and the early 2010s as ending birth years. Most members of Generation Z are children of Generation X.

Have you yet to hear of Generation Alpha? Well, Wikipedia refers to Generation Alpha (or Gen Alpha for short) as the demographic cohort succeeding Generation Z.

Researchers and popular media use the early to mid 2010s as starting birth years and the mid 2020s as ending birth years. Named after the first letter in the Greek alphabet, Generation Alpha is the first to be born entirely in the 21st century. Most members of Generation Alpha are the children of Millennials.

These groups are the future of business. They are the future of entrepreneurship. For now, we can look at Millennials and Generation Z as the two groups most likely to start businesses today. Although, as both groups make up a large portion of today’s workforce, it’ll be Gen Z that will own more businesses in the long run than their millennial counterparts.

Difference Between Gen Z and Millennials (credit to DifferenceBetween.net)

Millennials and Gen Z are typically characterized as technology savvy and they daily use social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube. Also, they are passion-oriented, development-focused, driven to make a difference, and motivated by entrepreneurship.

In the book, Generations, it was predicted that during the adulthood of the majority of the millennials, family ties would be stronger, criminal behavior would be lessened, and those in their 20s would take less risks. Apparently, these predictions all came true. The millennials are also knowns as “generation Y” or “the me generation” due to the claim that they are prone to be self-centered. 

The following are some research-based characteristics of millennials: 

  • Internet dependent
  • Upbeat and receptive 
  • Atheists or agnostics
  • Mix business with pleasure 
  • Believe that money cannot really buy happiness 

Generation Z or Gen Z is the next batch after the generation Y or the millennials. This makes other sources refer to them as the post-millennials. Also, they are sometimes called “iGeneration”, “Gen Tech”, or “Gen Wii” due to their exposure to the internet since (and even before) birth. According to several studies, the following are some of the characteristics of the youngest generation: 

  • Pragmatic 
  • Risk-takers 
  • Highly value authenticity 
  • Prefer person-to-person contact
  • Involved with the community 
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What are the differences?

Due to the influence of apps and speedier technology, Gen Z tend to have shorter attention spans as compared to millennials. This also implies that millennials could wait longer and endure less entertaining situations than those from the generation Z. 

  • Since the millennials experienced the recession, they tend to be more frugal than their younger counterparts. In fact, a survey concluded that millennials have higher preferences to visit a website just to get a discount coupon as compared to Gen Z.  Similarly, millennials follow products’ ads before buying them. 
  • The most used devices of Gen Z are smartphones, TV sets, and laptops. On the other hand, millennials most often use desktops, smart phones, and TV sets. 
  • As compared to millennials, those from the Gen Z are more difficult to be reached by advertisements since many of them are on multiple platforms and they are more active in using adblocking software. 
  • Though both Gen Z and Millennials actively use social media sites, a survey indicated that millennials tend to use Pinterest more frequently while Gen Z are more into Vine. This implies that the older generation is more comfortable with sharing and browsing pictures while millennials prefer videos more. 
  • The working personality of most millennials veer towards independence while that of Gen Z reflect the team player attitude. 
  • As compared to millennials, Gen Z thinkers are better at multitasking since their brains have been conditioned to perceive various stimuli which is largely caused by newer apps and devices. 
  • As compared to millennials, Gen Z friends look for more quality relationships as compared to meaningless connections. They have apparently learned from their seniors as they have seen how millennials’ quantity-based friendships resulted to less genuine conversations. 
  • Gen Z entrepreneurs are more adventurous with their greater desire to start businesses as compared to their predecessors. One of the possible reasons is the lesser amount needed in setting up shop as online entrepreneurship does not need that much financial support. In addition, the mushrooming of start-up companies has encouraged bolder business moves. 

“The next generation will always surpass the previous one. It’s one of the never-ending cycles in life.” – Masashi Kishimoto

A New Generation of Entrepreneurs: Millennials and Gen Z (credit to SBA)

This new generation of entrepreneurs is more focused on social impact than ever before. Millennials and Gen Z are values-driven, demanding social change and accountability, from themselves, their peers, businesses, and political leaders.

The top three areas of concerns are healthcare/disease prevention, climate change and protecting the environment, and unemployment. They are also more community oriented, keen on taking action to create meaningful change, and prefer to shop with businesses whose products and services benefit their communities and focus on sustainability.

Younger business owners tend to be sole proprietors or operate with less employees than previous generations. According to the US Office of Advocacy, as of 2017, they made up 26% of non-employers and only 6% of employers. This points to a rising trend for self-employed individuals and gives rise to an opportunity for more resources for solo entrepreneurs.

One of the most prominent barriers to starting their own business is that of the entrepreneurs born between 1982 – 2000, 42% say they don’t have the financial means to start a business as 82% of this demographic has at least one source of debt. This can include credit card debt, mortgage, student loans etc.

Entrepreneurship Considerations for Millennials & Generation Z

The Millennial and Gen Z generations continue to grow, and a big reason for this is the increasing number of young immigrants and refugees arriving in the United States.

Thanks to Adecco’s ‘Way to Work’ survey, which surveyed 1,001 Americans who are mostly currently in college or recently graduated and in their late teens to mid-20s, the primary differences between the two generations and how these differences might play out in the workplace have been identified.

Three key takeaways, or differences between Millennials and Gen Z regarding work include:

  • Members of Gen Z are more concerned about the cost of education (21% of respondents), compared to Millennials (13% of respondents).
  • Millennials value stability (34%), while Gen Z puts more of an emphasis on finding their dream job (32%).
  • More Gen Zers follow their parents’ influence (42%), compared to their Millennial counterparts (36%).

According to an article in Inc. Magazine, Why Millennials and Gen Z are Going to Take the Small Business World by Storm:

There’s great potential in these groups. Despite reservations and setbacks, many young people are pursuing side hustles, creating their own opportunities, and going into business for themselves. In fact, even though some economic conditions have worked against young entrepreneurs, Millennials and Gen Zers have several natural characteristics that will lead them down the path of small business ownership.

Entrepreneurship and new ventures have the most significant impact on the economy, driving job growth, shaping the future of work, and creating entirely new products and services. Millennials and Gen Zers hold the power to do this, as we will soon see them start small businesses in ever-increasing numbers.

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What about franchising, once the American Dream of Baby Boomers?

Franchising is not often considered by the approximately 139 million Millennials and Generation Z population (as of 2020). But, with so many qualified people looking to start or extend their careers, and on their own terms, every job option merits consideration.

Here are five important considerations for Millennials and Gen Z open to this path of entrepreneurship:

  1. Affordability. Most people between the ages of 18 and 35 cannot afford $800,000 for a brick-and-mortar business but a home-based business might cost between $40,000 and $60,000. There are a vast variety of franchises. Millennials and Gen Z can find one that fits their budget as well as their ideal income, lifestyle, wealth and equity.
  2. Digital Minds. Both groups are digital natives who can capitalize on the Internet to grow their business. Every type of franchise can benefit from someone proficient in the cyber realm, whether that be growing an at-home business in pajamas, creating a digital work force or driving business with a creative social media campaign.  
  3. Control. Some franchises have a web presence that is systemized from the top. If that’s the case, Millennial and Gen Z candidates need to decide if controlling the social presence is important to them or not, then choose a franchise accordingly.
  4. Do Good. Many young people are as concerned their life work be meaningful and socially responsible as they are with money. A franchise allows Millennial and Gen Z candidates the opportunity to “do good” while being their own boss. Franchises exist for dog sitting, tutoring and healthy food, among countless options available for those looking align livelihood with their social mission. 
  5. Difficulties. Both generations like their own voice on social media, their own marketing plan and are generally excited to execute their next big idea. Franchisors offer a replicable model so customers know what to expect. A Millennial or Gen Z candidates who decide to become a franchisee must be sure they completely support the system they choose.

As the future of works rests on the shoulders of Millennials and Generation Z, changes to the work force will continue and most likely, not return to any semblance of what was common pre-pandemic.

I guess the most important questions (concerns) for me are, will Millennials and Gen Zers pull professional culture in opposite directions, or do both generations have common ambitions? After all, the workplace structure cannot be a work in progress forever.

Have a great day. Make it happen. Make it count!

Is Entrepreneurship the Path to Economic Recovery?

Is it necessary to change how to conduct business, adapting to the circumstances of the times instead of adjusting, revising which may be more akin to putting square pegs in round holes? Are we crazy to think different (as entrepreneurs, restaurateurs & small business owners), or should we just go with the flow?

Maybe we need a wrist band to remind us? What Would Jobs Do?

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What Would Jobs Do?

Think Different Because the American Entrepreneurial Spirit is Alive!

As we know, small businesses and restaurants are having a difficult time due to rising costs due to inflation, supply chain issues, and labor challenges (I’m not so sure about actual worker shortages). Feeling the inflation pinch, as well, customers are being more diligent as to where and when they shop or as they may decide to enjoy a meal at or from a restaurant.

Although, some businesses and restaurants are realizing sales increases over pre-pandemic levels. Why and how are they thriving while others are barely surviving? But the real question in my mind has to do with change – not a shift, not a pivot, but actual change.

I just love the words of Steve Jobs shortly after he returned to Apple, the company he founded and launched the Think Different campaign. He started things off with these words:

“Here’s to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes… the ones who see things differently — they’re not fond of rules, and they have no respect for the status quo… You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them, but the only thing you can’t do is ignore them because they change things… They push the human race forward, and while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius, because the people who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.”

I especially find his words fitting as it’s been repeatedly stated that entrepreneurship will be our country’s path to economic recovery. After all, we may not be able to imagine life without the contributions of one, Steve Jobs.

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I am an entrepreneur. Go ahead. Say it!

So, if entrepreneurship is front and center as the path to our country’s economic recovery, why is there reluctance to say, I am an entrepreneur? I’ve been asked that question many times. Heck, I’ve asked that question of myself on more than one occasion. It seems, at times we’re prouder to call ourselves, Founder or CEO or to say, I’m a business owner. Why is that?

Are those titles more respectful than, entrepreneur? Yet, we hear of late, we’re in an entrepreneurial economy. So, is that a bad thing or a good thing, and especially if we have a hard time fully admitting to entrepreneurship? Or should we just be entrepreneurial in how we approach our work, whatever that truly means?

Are we claiming to be in an entrepreneurial economy to justify the disappearance of the lifelong career at one company, and this is just a way to say we need to create and prove ourselves over and over again, and forget the gold watch?

Back to the reference of being an entrepreneur… Is there a stigma of being a dreamer, always looking for something better, bigger, faster as opposed to what some believe is mundane, repetitive work with the security of a paycheck? Often, I hear it’s mostly due to yesterday’s immigrant mindset of being thankful to just have a job, yet it’s that same immigrant mindset that is the epitome of entrepreneurship.

We are living our fears.

Actually, I believe it’s because of fear — fear of failure, fear of what other people think, fear of the unknown, fear of the what if, fear of starting over, fear of change… But it’s when those fears are hit head-on and the adrenaline rush of success far outweighs those fears because you know, deep in your heart that you have a deeply ingrained talent that can and will make a difference.

Does that mean failures aren’t possible? Hell no, but it’s working through those failures, those blips, those aberrations that provide experience and resiliency to improve and innovate to make the next step, the next task, the next venture successful. That is entrepreneurship.

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And it’s when I don’t consider what I personally do as entrepreneurship that failure mostly occurs. Conversely, it’s when I focus on what I do as an entrepreneur, complete with that thinking outside the box and failure is not an option perspective, and when focused more on results as opposed to opinion of others that success mostly occurs.

Yes, I’m an entrepreneur. My focus will stay as such as it is not only good for me, but also for my family and for those that rely on me to help them achieve their wishes, hopes and dreams! Why? Because I believe in possibilities, as without them, there are none. How about you? Are you an entrepreneur? If so, then say it, and say it proudly because our great country needs you!

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Still not sure about being an entrepreneur? If so, I’ll leave you with another quote by Steve Jobs…

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.”

Have a great day. Make it happen. Make it count!

Resources about entrepreneurship and business ownership may be found at the following sites powered by Acceler8Success Group. Please check them out and if you’re interested in learning more, please submit the form on either site. We are here to help you achieve your entrepreneurial goals. Thank you!

OwnABizness.com and Entrepreneurship411.com

The Reality of Entrepreneurship

As we slowly move toward Q4 amidst challenging times and economic uncertainty, I’d like to share a heartfelt story about the hard truth of entrepreneurship. As more and more are exploring entrepreneurship as a career alternative for a multitude of reasons, I feel compelled to share this story as I believe it truly outlines the efforts and emotional toll of today’s entrepreneur.

I met Amy Martinez through a local group of restaurant owners and managers. This group was started to enable restaurant operators to exchange ideas, discuss difficulties they may be facing, and as one might imagine, just to vent. I’ve been honored to have presented to the group several times and often interact with members as the need arises.

Approximately a year or so before COVID raised its ugly head, I started interacting with Amy on Facebook as she was building her brand, Grazeables. It was essentially a side-business whose products were described as artisan-created grazing boxes, boards & tablescapes. You see, Amy was a full-time nurse and a single mother of four. So, it truly was a side-business.

As many know, I am extremely interested in seeing an entrepreneurial quest unfold. Amy’s quest was one that was a textbook example. Amy would often share absolutely magnificent photos each weekend on Facebook of extraordinary tablescapes for clients’ events — birthdays, anniversaries, family get-togethers and the like.

Each beautiful tablescape included magnificent arrays of mouth-watering food, all exquisitely displayed. They were true masterpieces with absolute attention to detail. This was not your typical restaurant catering off to the side for the sole purpose of providing food for that evening’s guests. Instead, Amy’s work — a work of art — was the centerpiece of the event. It was also a conversation piece as evident by the detailed positive reviews after the event.

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There was no doubt Amy was committed to excellence. She truly exemplified the delivery of positively memorable experiences — all the time. However, it certainly wasn’t easy as she wore so many hats. Yet, wore them exceptionally well — at least so it appeared to everyone looking in from the outside.

Well, it’s not my story to tell as to what Amy endured as she juggled work, family and business. One day, I’m sure there will be a book that will share Amy’s story. But what I do recall was Amy openly sharing her struggles. Although, it was never about the hard work or the long hours, nor the difficulties of being a single parent. It was about the struggle between her job as a nurse helping others and being able to dedicate full-time to her brand and business.

Today, I’m proud to share what Amy posted this past weekend on Facebook. I don’t know what prompted her to do so. Although as many entrepreneurs do, or should do is to share her thoughts and frustrations, and maybe even vent a bit. But more so, that as an entrepreneur or not she is also a person and as such, has emotions and feelings just like everyone else. She may appear to be Super Woman by her drive and commitment, but she is still human and should always be respected as such.

The Truth of Entrepreneurship by Amy Martinez — Creator of Grazeables

The majority of people with side hustles or small businesses are hobbyists, not entrepreneurs. There’s a HUGE difference, and I’ll tell you why.

Walking the tightrope of Entrepreneurship is HARD and SCARY AF!!! It’s quitting your secure job and selling everything you have to lay yourself and your creativity out there… naked… to take a chance with no safety net. It’s the nauseating churn that forces you to work 3 days straight without sleeping because if you don’t sell, your kids don’t eat. It’s the painful loss of relationships along the way because effort & focus are never evenly divided.

We spend MONTHS, years even… researching, building, and scraping every penny just to pour it all out over a dream while we hold our breath and pray that it works. We jump the hoops with exhausted legs, we sign our security away on the dotted line, and we navigate our communities in the dark with the hope of discovering that one missing piece we can fill with our work.

The creative process is an IMMENSE amount of effort… but it’s NOTHING compared to the magnitude of work it takes to scale that process into a profitable business. Then, just when it all starts to come into focus, you learn how completely unprepared you are for the toll it takes on your spirit while you fight like hell to protect it.

This enormous, beautiful, soul-aching, brilliant work that we do… I guess I just wish that more people respected and understood the gravity of the accomplishment for those of us that have succeeded… ESPECIALLY as women!

When you marvel at the originality and uniqueness of someone’s work, please also take the time to notice & appreciate the efforts behind its publication.

Profitable businesses require years of strenuous and consistent effort, high risk, deep investment, and personal sacrifice. If you aren’t willing to put in the required amount of work & education it takes to lay the foundation from the beginning, you will spin your wheels on the very short road to failure.

Please also understand the occasional frustration from those of us that try like hell to mentor others along the way. We offer tons of wisdom and experience, but none of us can do the work for you, nor will we reveal the proprietary information that gives us the distinct, however minute, edge over our competition and its the essence of who we are. Our brand is our baby, and we protect it al all costs.

Those in the trenches get it. Everyone else? Well, they never will.

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Very well said, Amy. Your words are truly from the heart and soul of an entrepreneur. You are amazing. Thank you for sharing your thoughts as I’m sure they will resonate with many, as they have to me.

Have a great day. Make it happen. Make it count!