My Favorite Books About Entrepreneurship

In my continued celebration of National Entrepreneurship Month, today I’m sharing my favorite books about entrepreneurship. I’m of the belief that both current and aspiring entrepreneurs alike will find these five books to be very useful resources. Of course, there are other great books on the subject, but let’s start here.

The Lonely Entrepreneur: The Difference between Success and Failure is Your Perspective by Michael Dermer


Do you feel that you have a great business but are struggling to thrive? …that the world is on your shoulders? …that you are energized and overwhelmed at the same time? …that no one understands or cares as much as you do?

In The Lonely Entrepreneur, author and entrepreneur Michael Dermer shows you how to thrive in the entrepreneurial struggle by changing your perspective. What took a decade to build was destroyed in ten days! Michael faced “the perfect storm” of struggles when the business he spent ten years building was almost wiped out in ten days by the financial crisis of 2008. Bankrupt customers. Enraged investors. Angry creditors. It would take years of working 24 hours a day to save his company. How did he do it? THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SUCCESS AND FAILURE IS YOUR PERSPECTIVE

Michael changed his perspective. He realized that with the right perspective, solutions were everywhere. With the wrong perspective, the simplest of tasks seemed impossible. Not only did Michael successfully sell his company and become an industry pioneer, he discovered a methodology that helps all entrepreneurs with the issue we face—the struggle.

In The Lonely Entrepreneur you will learn how to:

  • Identify the flawed perspectives you develop under the influence of the four Ps—pressure, passion, pleasure, and pain.
  • Change your perspectives from those that stifle progress to those that empower you to thrive.

Be a Disruptor: Streetwise Lessons for Entrepreneurs―from the Mob to Mandates by Stratis Morfogen

Lessons in innovation and entrepreneurship from building a New York City restaurant empire.

Stratis Morfogen has been one of the most innovative names in New York City’s hospitality scene for decades. From bringing the famed Fulton Fish Market online in 1997 to pioneering the automat movement with Brooklyn Dumpling Shop to opening a 25,000 square foot venue in Times Square during the pandemic, Morfogen continues to disrupt the status quo.

 In Be a Disruptor, Morfogen provides an unconventional, real-world education for any entrepreneur by sharing how he beat the odds in the cutthroat, mob-influenced New York City restaurant world. Morfogen teaches readers what he has learned about finding business opportunity in any situation, starting new ventures in times of adversity, and succeeding against all odds in one of the most challenging environments in the world. It’s a playbook for entrepreneurs with the page-turning qualities of a memoir.

With lessons for navigating pressures from powerful entities like the New York mob and local government, restarting mentally and financially after failed ventures, being aggressive when competitors are being conservative, and managing business and personal relationships, Be a Disruptor is a can’t miss, street-smart education for any entrepreneur, restauranteur, or anyone interested in how the NYC hospitality world really works.

Main Street Entrepreneur: Build Your Dream Company Doing What You Love Where You Live by Michael Glauser

100 Cities. 100 Entrepreneurs. 9 Keys for Success.

Main Street Entrepreneur offers a unique look at what it takes to create a successful and thriving business. Lifelong entrepreneur, business consultant and university professor Michael Glauser rode 4,005 miles in 45 days, spent 246 hours on a bike seat, climbed 165,748 vertical feet, and interviewed more than 100 entrepreneurs in 100 cities along the way to discover the secrets to entrepreneurial success.

Glauser has distilled hours of interviews and research to present the nine keys for:

  • Building a purpose-driven business
  • Meeting important community needs
  • Developing a supporting cast
  • Working with a zealous tenacity
  • Giving mind-boggling customer service
  • Diversifying revenue streams
  • Giving back to the broader community
  • And ultimately, creating the lifestyle of your dreams

Readers will learn how to achieve their own dreams and won’t need a 30-page business plan, venture capital, or an exit strategy. All they need to do is implement nine keys for success. Not everyone can build a Facebook, Google or eBay, but anyone with passion and tenacity can do what these entrepreneurs all across America are doing.

The Entrepreneur Roller Coaster: Why Now Is the Time to #JoinTheRide by Darren Hardy


That is what SUCCESS Publisher Darren Hardy set out on a mission to discover.

What he found was startling. All the previously reported reasons and assumptions for the failure rate (capital, location, credit, inventory management, and competition) were wrong.

Failure was not due to outside factors–they were internal. They weren’t economic–they were emotional. The unexpected and terrifying emotional roller coaster an entrepreneur experiences is the greatest factor in why most quit and ultimately fail.


The Entrepreneur Roller Coaster: Why Now Is The Time To #JoinTheRide, will prepare you for the wild ride of entrepreneurship. It will warn you (of forthcoming fears, doubts, and the self-defeating conditioning of your upbringing and past), inoculate you (from the naysayers, dream-stealers, and pains of rejection and failure), and guide you (as you build those under-developed skills of independence, self-motivation, and self-accountability) safely past the landmines that blow up and cause the failure of 66 percent of all new businesses.

You will learn the best strategies Darren has ever collected from the most successful people on the planet, covering the four essential skills necessary for entrepreneurial success: Sales, Recruiting, Leadership, and Productivity.

This book is for you if:

You’ve dreamed of having your own business but have a fear of the unknown.

You’ve stayed on the sidelines of entrepreneurship, not knowing what to expect or what to do.

You’re already on board as an entrepreneur, but you want to ensure you re a success and not a statistic.


And, one of my favorites… The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur: 366 Daily Meditations to Feed Your Soul and Grow Your Business which previously appeared at Acceler8Success Cafe (September 2022)

The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur: 366 Daily Meditations to Feed Your Soul and Grow Your Business 

As many that know me are aware, I am an avid reader. Mostly, I read about franchising, small business, entrepreneurship, business & restaurant ownership, self-help and just about any related topics. I’m a sponge for information and resources that I can use in my life as well as in my business, and also for my team and clients.

I typically arise by 4 AM on the weekends and spend 4-6 hours reading through the 300+ digital publications, newsletters and blogs to which I subscribe and that I’ve bookmarked throughout the week. Some I file away for future reference. Others I save to share across social media. And a few I share with friends, colleagues and clients as may be appropriate and relevant based upon a recent conversation or as information, motivation or inspiration I believe will help them.

Over the course of a year, I will read between 35-50 books relating to the same topics I’ve listed above. Some I read and they’re one and done. Others I refer to as needed for reference or as a resource for a particular project. I also have a few go-to books that I refer to quite often for my own inspiration and motivation.

I do love biographies and autobiographies about entrepreneurs, successful business people and leaders. I marvel at these recounts of both success and failure. I’m intrigued by the journey of these individuals. I’m motivated by their passion. I’m amazed by the obstacles and challenges they’ve faced and overcome. And I’m inspired by the possibilities that come to mind as I relate their stories to present day times.

Why do I have such hunger for the written word? Well, my formal education is limited. I never graduated from college as quite frankly, I found it boring. I was not interested in the typical basic courses and although I always looked ahead to the courses I knew I would really enjoy, I fretted about the prerequisite courses that were required before being able to take the courses of which I had the most interest.

To compensate for not having a formal education, I knew I had to work my ass off to get ahead. Marrying and raising a family at an early age was a choice, and a great motivator. It was an experience of which I take great pride, especially as my wife and I have been married for 45 years. We have four great children, their wonderful spouses, and four – and soon to be five – extraordinary grandchildren.

Sure, I regret not completing college and although I have given significant thought on numerous occasions about going back to school, life always got in the way. So, early on when I read Lee Iacocca’s autobiography, Iacocca, I was inspired to learn more about this great man and leader. I read his second book and sought out to read all I could about other successful people.

My motivation to read all that I could was driven by an explanation by Iacocca that still resonates with me to this day. To paraphrase… A man is not as smart by what is in his head as he is by the information he could put his hands on, and that information is in books. And so began my quest for information to educate myself as much as humanly possible.

Oh, I do wish I had complemented it all with a formal education but there’s no use crying over spilt milk, right? There’s no reason to look back. Although, the “what if” questions do haunt me at times, yet they inspire and motivate me just the same.

No doubt I was self-reliant, so when I first heard about the book, The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur, I knew I had to read it. When my daughter, Jennifer asked me what I wanted for Christmas two years ago, I asked her for this book. Maybe the method to my madness was to start out making this book special as it was a gift and one that I knew I would treasure.

Well, as you can see in the image at the top of this article, the book sits at the top of a handful of books that sit on my desk at all times. These books are rotated quite often from the one I’m currently reading to others that I may be referring to for a special project I may be working on. Yet, The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur always sits atop the pileWhy? Because the book is meant to be read each and every day.

But what really makes the book very special is the author’s commitment to helping others. You can just tell he put a great deal of thought into the book. But to me, it’s even more than that as evident by an experience I had yesterday on LinkedIn when I posted the following:

This is my second year reading through the book, The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur by John Jantsch (author of Duct Tape Marketing). The book is comprised of 366 Daily Meditations to Feed Your Soul and Grow Your Business.

Today’s meditation is very spot-on in light of current challenges and economic uncertainty and especially the following sentence:

“As entrepreneurs pushing through fear and trying so many new things, we feel so intoxicated by the sensation of new that we are tempted to hold on and loiter – breathe it in, remember it, then turn the page and grind on.”

I highly recommend entrepreneurs everywhere purchase this book AND diligently follow the daily meditations. The book is great for aspiring entrepreneurs, as well.

Well, the author, John Jantsch personally responded, asking me to share my experience. I mean, who does that? Who takes the time to genuinely ask for your input? Well, it spoke volumes to me, as does this fantastic book.

John asked me, How are you finding you have changed this go around? I responded:

The first time I felt I was just reading. Sure, I always took away something from the various passages but I never seemed to give them much thought afterwards. This time around, I’ve found myself applying what I’ve read, or even like today, I found that it actually reinforced the message I shared in my daily LinkedIn newsletter, Acceler8Success Cafe.

More so, as I often write about what’s going on in my own mind, many of the passages either reinforce my own confidence or motivate me in my own writing as well as in my business. To summarize, first time around I’ve read to read. The second time, I’ve read to apply.

One more thing… For anyone that wants to learn about entrepreneurship or expand skills as an entrepreneur, this book is perfect because so many feel they don’t have time to read a book, but with The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur that’s all they have to read is one page each day. It’s the best 5-10 minutes I spend each and every day!

Interestingly, this morning’s meditation is titled, Original Giftedness. Well, I was already given a gift of John’s response yesterday, so today’s meditation is an appreciated extension of the same. Thank you, John.

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If you’re interested in purchasing, The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur, you may do so on Amazon. I highly recommend you do so today. Also, I also believe it’s a great Christmas or Graduation gift that’ll make a difference in someone’s life. I know it’s made a difference in mine.

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

Celebrating Entrepreneurship: Looking Toward the Future While Learning From the Past

As we start to wind down in our celebration of National Entrepreneurship Month, I will share previously published articles at Acceler8Success Cafe. Mostly, the articles are about various types of entrepreneurship and the future of this fantastic business model. From groups that are defined by demographics to opportunities that may prove viable for others, celebrating entrepreneurship should be forward-looking and not just historical.

Is Entrepreneurship a viable option later in life?

When asked whether age is a determining factor in achieving success, many will answer with a resounding, yes, especially when the age in question is past 40, and even more if past 50 or 60. The same is true when the question is about starting a business – or anything new, for that matter.

In research conducted by MIT professor Pierre Azoulay the average age of individuals who founded companies between 2007 and 2014 was around 40 years old. His research was based upon analyzing over 2.7 million company founders. That’s a huge number to ensure accuracy in his findings.

Further, Azoulay discovered that a founder at age 50 is approximately twice as likely to experience a “successful exit” compared to a founder at age 30. A successful exit meaning their company gets acquired or goes public.

So despite the success of Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg and many others who founded companies in their teens and twenties, those are the exceptions, rather than the norm.

Let’s take a look at the opposite end of the spectrum and highlight those that achieved success later on in life:

Vera Wang

Before creating runway clothing and wedding dresses, Vera Wang was a figure skater and a journalist. She did not enter the fashion industry until she was 40 years old. As one of the most famous designers today, it’s hard to imagine Vera Wang doing anything but building her fashion empire. It just goes to show that it’s never too late to change careers, or to chase a passion.

Ray Kroc

After spending his career as a milkshake-device salesman, Ray Kroc, already in his 50’s, founded the McDonald’s System, Inc. in 1955, a predecessor of the McDonald’s Corporation. Six years later, he bought the exclusive rights to the McDonald’s name and operating system. He is credited with turning McDonald’s into the most successful fast food corporation in the world.

Julia Childs

An American cooking teacher, author, and television personality, Julia Childs is recognized for bringing French cuisine to the American public with her debut cookbook, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, and her subsequent television programs. After working many years in media and advertising, Childs learned how to cook as a hobby. She publish her first cookbook when she was 50 years old.

Harland Sanders

After holding a number of jobs in his early life, such as steam engine stoker, insurance salesman, and filling station operator, Harland Sanders began selling fried chicken from his roadside restaurant in Kentucky during the Great Depression. Despite closing his business, Sanders, better known as Colonel Sanders, franchised Kentucky Fried Chicken in 1952 at the age of 62. He sold the franchise business for $2 million 12 years later.

If interested in learning who else achieved success later in life, check out the article, 28 people who became highly successful after age 40. I’m sure you’ll find it quite interesting!

According to AARP, the three top sectors older entrepreneurs go into are business services, food/restaurant and health/beauty/fitness, followed by general retail and automotive. No matter where they choose to start their businesses, entrepreneurs 50 and older have a lifetime of experience they can leverage to get started. reports, If you’re retired or will be retiring soon, there are many ways in which you can become a franchisee. You can open a location, you can work part-time, you can invest or start a brand with others, etc. You can be hands-on working full-time, or you can stay in the back and watch your bank account grow. There are many options as to how you can become a franchisee, and that’s half the fun of it. There’s not a one-size-fits-all, but ways in which you can adapt to what meets your preferences and needs. 

Whether a franchise or an independent business, whether an acquisition or startup, entrepreneurship is a viable option for many individuals who believe they still have what it takes to succeed. Entrepreneurship is an excellent path to achieving that success. Albeit, success is not guaranteed. So, despite years of wisdom and experience, it’s still important and essential due diligence be performed to the highest level possible.

Learn more about business ownership, franchising and entrepreneurship at and

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

Recognizing Hispanic & Latino Entrepreneurship During National Entrepreneurship Month

Recently, I shared an experience about Acceler8Success Group President, Erik Premont’s participation in an all “Spanish” panel at Franchise Expo South in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

This was the first time a discussion panel at an MFV Expositions event that was presented completely in Spanish. The discussion was centered around the theme “Franchise = Opportunity for Hispanic Entrepreneurs in the United States.”

The main objective was to increase awareness of the opportunities and benefits that franchises represent for entrepreneurs, and give greater prominence to diversity in general, including traditionally underrepresented groups. Hopefully, this was the first of many panels that will be delivered in such a beautiful language, with a message delivered without necessity of translation or interpretation by attendees.

To clarify an often misunderstood point, Erik reminded me that Hispanic and Latino are often used interchangeably though they actually mean two different things. Hispanic refers to people who speak Spanish or are descended from Spanish-speaking populations, while Latino refers to people who are from or descended from people from Latin America. Nevertheless, it’s typical to see either of the terms used to describe business ownership by these groups.

Erik is also quite knowledgeable about the various cultures associated with these languages. He often tells me, it’s not only what is being said, but how it’s being said, and in the context of the person’s country of origin.

Read the article, Hispanic Entrepreneurship Front & Center at Franchise Expo South here.

As we continue to celebrate National Entrepreneurship Month, I’d be remiss if I didn’t recognize Hispanic and Latino entrepreneurs and the efforts to expand entrepreneurship to their respective communities. To that end, I’ll refer once again to The Hispanic Entrepreneur Initiative.

Over the past few months, I have written about our participation in this initiative via our Strategic Partnership with Michael Dermer and The Lonely Entrepreneur.

The basis of this initiative is for organizations to sponsor a certain number of Hispanic entrepreneurs who will 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.

Learn more about The Hispanic Entrepreneur Initiative here.

Spearheaded by Erik Premont, our ongoing goal is to assist Hispanics and Latinos in achieving the American Dream of business ownership whether via franchising or business acquisition. In addition, we are also focused on assisting current Hispanic entrepreneurs bring their concepts to the United States.

Our efforts continue later this week as Erik will be speaking at VI Congreso Latinamericano de Franquicia in Puebla, Mexico. The theme is,  “Where are we going with franchises in Latin America?” Look for a recap about the event next week here at Acceler8Success Cafe.

Facts About Hispanic and Latino Entrepreneurship

According to the Joint Economic Committee Hispanic Entrepreneurship and Business Brief:

  • Nearly one in four new businesses is Hispanic-owned.
  • The nearly 5 million Hispanic-owned businesses in the United States contribute more than $800 billion to the American economy annually.
  • There are more than 300,000 Hispanic-owned, employer businesses located across all 50 states and the District of Columbia. These enterprises employ at least one employee other than the owner.
  • Hispanic employer businesses employ about 1 million workers, with more than $100 billion in annual payroll. The number of Hispanic-owned businesses that employ at least one employee other than the owner increased by 14% between 2012 and 2017 — more than twice as fast as the national average.
  • In the decade preceding the pandemic, the number of Hispanic business owners increased 34% compared to an increase of just 1% among non-Hispanic business owners.

The Stanford Latino Entrepreneurship Initiative (SLEI) at Stanford Graduate School of Business (GSB), in collaboration with the Latino Business Action Network (LBAN), released a report covering the latest trends in Latino entrepreneurship in the U.S.

The report highlights key areas of Latino entrepreneurship, including firmographics, financial data and employee statistics from Latino businesses and the overall ongoing effect of COVID-19 on the Latino entrepreneur community.

Key themes and findings include:

  • Firm & Employee Growth: The number of Latino-owned employer firms has grown 35% in the last 10 years compared to 4.5% growth among White-owned firms. In addition, Latino-owned businesses are increasing their number of employees at a dramatically faster rate than White-owned employer businesses (55% vs. 8% since 2007).
  • Tech Focus: Latino-owned businesses are as likely as White-owned businesses to be in the technology industry.
  • Career Advancement: Latino business owners are more likely to provide opportunities for the growth and advancement of their employees than White business owners.
  • COVID Bright Spots: Latino-owned businesses are more likely to make proactive, strategic business changes to mitigate the negative challenges of the pandemic.

Our Commitment

We want to do our part to both encourage and assist all the hardworking Hispanic and Latino business owners as well as the many individuals who want to own their own business. You’re all essential to our society and economic growth. So, keep thriving because we believe in everything you offer and we want to help you reach your business goals.

For more information about our resources, plans and programs, as well as the Hispanic Entrepreneur Initiative, please reach out to me or Erik Premont on LinkedIn. Or, if you prefer, please send either of us an email to or We look forward to helping to make a difference for Hispanic & Latino Entrepreneurs everywhere.

Hablamos español. On parle français. A gente fala português.

As our focus is always on connecting the right people, brands and opportunities, we can help you… and we want to help you.

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

Celebrating and Learning from Entrepreneurs

Today is National Entrepreneurs Day. It is a day to celebrate the people who represent one of the best things in America: entrepreneurship.

America was built on entrepreneurs, who started from nothing and managed to build something amazing, by creating a product or a company that gives other people jobs and creates wealth. People with an entrepreneurial mind are usually ambitious dreamers, who see a need for something and create solutions to problems. All of the products that have become essential in our daily lives were once just a prototype in some budding entrepreneur’s mind.

This day celebrates those go-getters, and inspires people to be entrepreneurs themselves, and start their own businesses – especially those that are part of the next generation!

To honor entrepreneurs and all that they have achieved, I believe we should share their stories from which others may be inspired and educated. In light of challenges and economic uncertainty being faced by business owners today, it’s essential to shorten the learning curve however may be possible.

So, today I’m taking a different course of celebration by requesting entrepreneurs share their stories to afford others the opportunity to learn. I believe it will help eliminate doubt, minimize procrastination, and motivate others to move forward, either as current or aspiring entrepreneurs. After all, if entrepreneurship is the key to economic recovery, we must all do our part to promote and celebrate entrepreneurship.

Through Acceler8Success Group, we’re requesting entrepreneurs complete a questionnaire about their success as entrepreneurs. By way of four questions, we’re asking them to share their advice for todays and tomorrow’s entrepreneurs, especially in light of current business climate.

Below are the questions we’re asking:

  • How and when did you know that you wanted to be an entrepreneur?
  • Knowing what you know now, what would you have done differently upon entering the world of entrepreneurship?
  • How would you describe your greatest success as an entrepreneur and what challenges did you overcome to achieve that particular success experience?
  • What advice would you give to aspiring entrepreneurs, especially in today’s business climate?

To make it convenient for entrepreneurs to participate, we’ve created an easy to complete form that may be accessed HERE. As well, we will request entrepreneurs beyond this newsletter by email and across social media.

Our goal is to share responses at a future date and look forward to adding the same to our growing list of resources for todays and tomorrow’s entrepreneurs. Obviously, the more responses we receive, the better. To that end, please help share the word about these efforts. It will certainly be most appreciated.

To all, have a great National Entrepreneurs Day. Make it happen. Make it count!

Does acceptance help drive an entrepreneur forward?

As we continue to celebrate National Entrepreneurship Month I’ve decided to pull an article out of the Acceler8Success Cafe archives. The article, Is acceptance necessary for an entrepreneur? had generated a great deal of debate with responses falling almost equally on both sides of the question.

From my perspective, I don’t believe there is a right or wrong answer as it really pertains to the individual entrepreneur – What is important to that person? What will help build that individual’s self-confidence and self-esteem, while gaining the mental strength necessary to eliminate doubt? What will drive the entrepreneur to persevere?

So, Is acceptance necessary for an entrepreneur, for today’s entrepreneur, or not? I look forward to your thoughts and perspective!

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I always think about the thoughts that others may have had in their minds as they’ve paired a particular image and quote and shared it on social media. I know that I most likely take a longer look than most as I attempt to formulate in my own mind the reasons that I would personally share an image with a quote. Or would it be a quote to an image?

In any event, it’s the thought process that I love. Especially how it may relate to my current mindset. Even more so after a recent coaching session with a client, or as I may be thinking about challenges of the times and how our clients may be affected.

Coming across one this morning, it took me down a proverbial rabbit hole — one that really had me associating it with work we’re currently doing with both current and aspiring entrepreneurs. Although, it was not my intent to focus on work this morning. It just seemed to happen. I’ll just chalk it up to my passion for entrepreneurial success at all levels.

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So many thoughts come to mind as I view this graphic. Especially as I reflect upon the person who I see as an entrepreneur standing at the edge of a cliff. I see the solace, maybe even loneliness of an entrepreneur with his or her dreams seemingly within reach… yet, just out of reach.

Is the entrepreneur standing on earth in the shadows of his or her dreams, or is the entrepreneur in some distant place looking back at earth, and at reality?

An entrepreneur’s dreams, some brighter than others, are almost like spotlights that enable the entrepreneur to visualize things from different perspectives, spurring ideas and creativity in an entrepreneur’s mind. Or possibly, the various areas, both bright and dark may also represent wishes as well as hopes — rounding out the wishes, hopes & dreams trifecta.

Honestly, I didn’t see the quote until well after I had interpreted the image alongside the quote. When I did, it immediately took me to what I believe was a different path than what the person who had originally shared the graphic had intended. I’m certain of that, but my mind was already focused on entrepreneurship and the challenges being faced by entrepreneurs today.

So, I interpreted the quote along the same lines as I had the image. As such, I saw it as a reference to the acceptance of the entrepreneur’s ideas by others including investors, stakeholders, and even fellow entrepreneurs.

But as I continued to give it thought, I also interpreted it as a message addressing the introverted attitude of many entrepreneurs whose laser-focused approach to their work is seemingly without care of what others say or think about them. It raised the question in my mind about whether acceptance is necessary for an entrepreneur.

Although, especially with all we know about entrepreneurs and their unique personalities and character traits, acceptance may not appear to be considered as necessary. However, it may be a consideration, or better said, a goal when and as relationships develop, mostly as a result of visionary similarities, that common bonds start to form.

Often, such relationships can become quite strong as the passion of two typically equals the same of four or five individually. After all, passion is contagious!

I believe it’s this form of acceptance that actually helps the entrepreneur’s vision to become clearer. It’s almost as if the entrepreneur’s dreams have been validated. Of course, confidence builds.

I further believe it’s this subliminal fact-checking process that leads to self-acceptance. THAT is what keeps the entrepreneur driving forward, not only in the face of challenges, but despite them.

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

And on the Seventh Day, Entrepreneurs Rest!

And on the seventh day, entrepreneurs rest. Is that a true statement?

Certainly, entrepreneurs need rest and relaxation just the same as others, and Sundays are the perfect day to do so. However, entrepreneurs always remain focused on the big picture.

Their eyes and ears are always open for possibilities and opportunities. They’re committed to keeping their minds sharp to be able to evaluate and act upon the same. They strive to stay fit to be prepared for grueling schedules and long days.

Nevertheless, taking care of mental and physical health certainly does not mean being complacent and lazy. Success is about balance… and focus on achieving goals!

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. They need some downtime on the weekend to ensure they’re up to the task of being creative problem solvers and innovators Monday through Friday.

Sure, they may spend some time catching up on administrative work. They may focus time on a big project that needs special attention. And they should dedicate time to thinking about the future and considering the big picture.

But what successful entrepreneurs don’t do is spend the entire weekend buried under work. Everyone needs a break, and entrepreneurs are no less immune to burnout than anyone else. Their weekends are spent restoring their bodies and minds and getting prepared to function optimally come Monday.

Read about nine things successful entrepreneurs do over the weekend to unwind and re-energize for the week ahead HERE.

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As we prepare to begin another week celebrating National Entrepreneurship Month, I’ve posted links below for the past week’s articles for anyone that may have missed an article or two:

Monday – Entrepreneurship Takes Center Stage!

Tuesday – Entrepreneurship Simply Defined, or Not!

Wednesday – Is entrepreneurship being harmed by misperceptions?

Thursday – Today’s Entrepreneurs: Visionaries or Doers?

Friday – The Future of Entrepreneurship

Saturday – Freedom + Choice = Balance for Entrepreneurs

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

Freedom + Choice = Balance for Entrepreneurs

We often hear about entrepreneurs being incessant about working long hours, never taking a day off, missing family functions, and essentially not having lives outside their own minds, and their work. Many have asked if all of that is true? Well, for the most part it’s not true. Yet, there is some truth. Sure, some of it is myth as people just love superheroes and the stories about their seeming superpowers including being able to function on little to no sleep.

Well, let’s dispel right now that entrepreneurs are anything more than human. Let’s dispel the myths that they can function without sleep, without rest, without knowing when to shut down for a day or two. But what we can do is learn from what makes them successful by ensuring sure they have the freedom and flexibility to do what they want to do, when they want to do it. It’s all about being positioned to have choices.

Award-wining author and entrepreneur, Richie Norton says it best, “Entrepreneurs don’t have weekends or birthdays or holidays. Every day is my weekend, my birthday, my holiday. OR every day is my workday. Mostly it’s a choice.”

Strategic Coach is one of the world’s leading organizations focused on entrepreneurial success. Within their resource section of its website is a blog post, Putting the Focus on Freedom. Of all the information about entrepreneurship that I have researched and read over the years, the opening question and statement in this post has become, in my mind the foundation of entrepreneurship to me:

Why did you decide to become an entrepreneur? “For most entrepreneurs, the answer is freedom. They wanted more freedom of time, money, relationship, and purpose when they took the leap to starting their own business.”

Another great organization focused on entrepreneurial success is The Lonely Entrepreneur. What I love about this organization and the writings of its founder, Michael Dermer is the reality of entrepreneurship and the inner workings of an entrepreneur’s mind.

There’s an article on The Lonely Entrepreneur website that always comes to my mind as the holidays are just around the corner, What is an Entrepreneur? Dealing with the Holidays. This statement is embedded in my mind:

“As entrepreneurs, we have enough stress throughout the year trying to win customers, bring on employees, raise money and sign deals with vendors. We may have enjoyed, or even taken advantage of these breaks in our “past lives,” but once you become an entrepreneur, we can’t understand how this ever made sense. Most of us also don’t understand how the world could be so insensitive to our efforts by taking time off when we need to get shit done.” 

I highly value both organizations and certainly, I respect both Michael Dermer and Strategic Coach founder, Dan Sullivan. I know that both strive to help entrepreneurs succeed. Both have approaches that make sense. Both speak and teach from personal experience and long distinguished careers of helping others succeed – thousands upon thousands! Yet, each comes from a different angle, so to speak. But I do appreciate that!

It truly has been a blessing and a privilege to have been exposed to both organizations. I have learned so much, and yet, have so much more to learn so I’m extremely grateful to see both founders’ continued efforts and commitment to entrepreneurial success. For me, it helps me balance perspective in my own work, and balance in my personal life.

Freedom, Choice & Balance Defined

Freedom is defined as the power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants without hindrance or restraint.

Choice is defined as an act of selecting or deciding when faced with two or more possibilities.

Balance is defined as a condition in which different elements are equal or in the correct proportions.

For some, the notion of freedom, choice & balance is irrelevant along the lines of, it is what it is. To others, it speaks volumes. But there really isn’t a right or wrong position. Instead, the correct one is what it means to YOU!

From my perspective, this quote from Madeleine L’Engle may sum it up best…

“Because to take away a man’s freedom of choice, even his freedom to make the wrong choice, is to manipulate him as though he were a puppet and not a person.”

Have a great day (and weekend). Make it happen. Make it count!

The Future of Entrepreneurship

As we continue the celebration of National Entrepreneurship Month, a question comes to mind – What role will entrepreneurs play in the economy over the next 5-10 years?

Investopedia addresses how entrepreneurship affects the economy as promoting economic growth, even if positive effects are sometimes overhyped. It goes on to list four key points for consideration:

  • Entrepreneurship refers to the “pursuit of opportunity beyond resources controlled.”
  • Entrepreneurship has become increasingly socially conscious, taking stock of the impact of entrepreneurial activity on societal issues and tending to view the possibility of addressing those issues as an important function of entrepreneurship.
  • The impact of entrepreneurs on economic growth is overall positive, though it may be more mixed than its proponents realize with evidence pointing towards widely different results within different sectors of the economy.
  • The evidence of how effective socially conscious innovations have been at solving the issues they tackle historically has been mixed.

In an eye-opening article, The Future of Entrepreneurship in the 21st Century, the author, Dr. Srikanth Gaddam points at some of the trends and changes we have seen throughout the business world over the past few years, and what those changes could mean for potential entrepreneurs looking to start their own business ventures in 2020 (and beyond), as well as how those changes could affect the future of entrepreneurship going forward. He lists them as:

The Rise of the Social Enterprise – there has been a sharp increase in the social awareness of consumers and the desire to contribute to businesses who use a percentage of their profits to help a range of deserving causes, and this change in habits has paved the way for a new kind of business venture. These businesses are known as social enterprises and are driven by purpose rather than profit, with a goal of improving the lives of others – and they’re most certainly becoming more and more common in today’s vast business landscape. 

The Importance of Digital Trends – aspiring entrepreneurs should certainly keep a keen eye on the changing trends appearing within their potential consumer base. These trends can then be used to better market products or businesses towards the target demographic, leading to an all-important increase in sales and overall growth of the brand – or they could even be the thing that directs target audience toward the business [idea] in the first place.

Growth of Platforms – there has been a sharp increase in the establishment of businesses that operate using the platform model. A platform is a business model in which the company relies on building a large and prominent user base to grow, achieve prominence and maintain long-term success.

Dr. Srikanth Gaddam wraps up his article with, “Overall, there has never been a better time to set up your own business, as long as you can keep up with the trends and stand out among the rest. You could be the entrepreneur behind the next global cultural phenomenon.”

In 2017, a similar question was asked on Quora – What will the future of entrepreneurship look like 10 years from now? What is your advice for young entrepreneurs?

A response from a founder, brand consultant & teacher:

“The future of Entrepreneurship in 10 years looks very promising. Technology and the information age that we are currently in is paving the way and enabling people to become Founders and CEOs at a higher rate and a younger age than our parents did-I’m speaking about the Millennials. Anyone born after 1982. Starting a business and failing was catastrophic for them, and it would be for some today, but it is easier to rebound from a failed venture today. Don’t ever be afraid to fail, it’s called learning. And you can’t prosper without it. Just don’t make the same mistakes three times. My advice as a Brand Consultant that consults Entrepreneurs every day, don’t put your eggs all in one basket. Don’t start a business and not love what you do and be willing to put the blood, sweat and tears into it.”

I hope the information shared above has helped to spur some thoughts in your own mind about entrepreneurship and especially its role as we face economic uncertainty, a changing business landscape, social issues of the day and so much more. This has me thinking once again about whether I am an entrepreneur. You should ask the same of yourself.

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 repeatedly, 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.

“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.” – Steve Jobs

We are living our fears.

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. And it’s when I don’t consider what I do as entrepreneurship, is when 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 is when 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.

Please spread the word about National Entrepreneurship Month. After all, we do need more and more entrepreneurs. Recognizing and celebrating entrepreneurship will help inspire and motivate entrepreneurs in ways that we may not yet be able to imagine. As well, it can go a long way toward inspiring future generations of entrepreneurs.

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

Today’s Entrepreneurs: Visionaries or Doers?

It’s Day Four of celebrating National Entrepreneurship Month at Acceler8Success Café. After spending the past few days discussing the definition of entrepreneurship, we will now look at today’s entrepreneurs and their thought process.

Today’s Entrepreneurs

The world around us has become so noisy that it’s easy to not hear opportunity knocking. In the past, opportunity presented itself in only a few ways… job offers, a referral, an ad in the paper. Business was regimented… 9 to 5, straight forward processes, slow to change, staying inside the box.

Well, technology along with our lost feeling of security, job and otherwise has provided us opportunities and reasons that we must keep our eyes open, explore beyond our comfort zones. We must maintain an open mind to create things of value, to control our own destiny, to diversify our income, to take calculated risk, and to think and act outside the box (of complacency, fear, and procrastination).

We’re in an environment where the visionaries continue to create the playing field but it’s only the doers who will win. Acting swiftly, yet decisively, albeit deliberately, often throwing caution to the wind, caring little about what others think of them and their decisions, maintaining a laser-focus to not only succeed, but to thrive. These individuals not only make things happen, but they also make them count, and in a big way.

They are today’s entrepreneurs.

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An Entrepreneur Knows

An entrepreneur knows to wake up in the morning and immediately begin planning the day ahead.

An entrepreneur knows to do this despite having already done so the night before and possibly several times throughout the night.

An entrepreneur knows he or she will awaken hungry for results.

An entrepreneur knows new ideas will be churned and devoured by his or her mind each day, each hour, each minute.

An entrepreneur knows the hunger for success has no end.

An entrepreneur knows all too well the success bar will keep rising.

An entrepreneur knows personal expectations will continue to grow.

An entrepreneur knows the fire in his or her belly must be fed continuously.

An entrepreneur knows he or she must accomplish more and more each and every day.

An entrepreneur knows the hunger will persist no matter how much he or she bites off.

An entrepreneur knows to chew faster and faster to keep from choking.

An entrepreneur knows to survive and to succeed is to fuel the hunger, not curtail it.

An entrepreneur knows all this because it’s in his or her DNA.

An entrepreneur knows…

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

Is entrepreneurship being harmed by misperceptions?

Yesterday at Acceler8Success Café, as the celebration of National Entrepreneurship Month continued, I addressed the definition of entrepreneurship. It was quite interesting to research the multitude of definitions, explanations, and perspective on entrepreneurship. A well, it was eye-opening to see how the words entrepreneurship and entrepreneur are often referred to in an interchangeable manner.

Today, I’d like to share how individuals from various walks of life have expressed their understanding and perception of entrepreneurship.

Freedom to do what I want to do. Control my own destiny. Spend more time with my family. Take more vacations. Play golf as often as I’d like. Not having to be accountable to anyone. These are just some of the statements I hear all too often from individuals that want to be an entrepreneur. Or think they do!

When I ask them to define entrepreneurship, almost all respond with their thoughts of glory, reverence, and the materialistic aspects of success. I ask them to tell me what they believe an entrepreneur looks like. It’s interesting to hear most describe a middle-aged male wearing dark, fashionable clothes. They describe this person as having a tan and wearing sunglasses. Seemingly, they wear sunglasses all the time. Many reference the look of Mark Cuban and Ralph Lauren.

They describe entrepreneurs as being very cool and relaxed. An open collar shirt or expensive T-shirt is the order of the day along with a dark sports coat or suit jacket. Yet, they’re emphatic that it’s not what had been previously labeled as traditional business wear. No ties. Several were adamant that a golf-type shirt was unacceptable, especially with a country club logo. Although, a polo shirt with a name brand logo would be acceptable some days.

Interestingly, the responses are very similar from those 30-55 years old. The under-30 crowd are more inclined to describing a young celebrity appearance as their entrepreneurial success look. More interesting are the similar responses from men AND women. When I push women a bit to share their thoughts about the look of a successful female entrepreneur, I have found they tend toward explaining how the female entrepreneur acts, as opposed to how they look. It seems like they’re describing the Meryl Streep character in the movie, A Devil Wears Prada.

Considering the popularity of TV reality shows like Shark Tank, The Profit and Undercover Boss along with series like Billions and Succession and how business moguls (entrepreneurs) are depicted in the movies, it’s easy to realize how entrepreneurs in general have been stereotyped into the minds of many considering entrepreneurship today. Even across the Real Housewives franchise where some of the wives and most of the husbands have achieved varying levels of entrepreneurial success, the influence about entrepreneurship is front and center.

Sadly, what isn’t realized or showcased is the work and effort it takes to achieve entrepreneurial success. And what about the risks and hardships of being an entrepreneur? Dare I mention failure as an entrepreneur and its potential ripple effects?

That has me thinking, is entrepreneurship ultimately being harmed by misperception of what entrepreneurship is about – launching ideas, taking risks, solving social problems, innovating, creating jobs, etc.? As such, are tomorrow’s entrepreneurs being set up to fail due to these misperceptions? That’s a scary thought considering the popular opinion that it will be entrepreneurship that will save our great nation.

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