On Wednesday evening I was fortunate enough to hear ActionCoach CEO and entrepreneur Brad Sugars for a second time. Brad was in Edinburgh touring with his presentation Brad Sugars Uncensored. It certainly live up to that reputation. Brad is a straight talking businessman from Brisbane, Australia – and he didn’t pull his punches.
Some of what he said covered ground from last year’s visit, so I will cover the new information in this post. If you want to read my previous posts, I’ve linked to them at the bottom of this one.
Brad’s Business Philosophy
We need to have fun in business. If we don’t enjoy what we do, why would our customers buy from us?
Do something you are passionate about. Love what you do.
Taking action is the key to success. It’s important to acquire knowledge, but we need to put it to use.
Go your own way, and stop listening to other people.The most expensive advice is free advice from a poor person - @actioncoachceo Click To Tweet
Choosing and Marketing a Business
Focus on profit – not sales. Turn your business into a saleable asset.
A rich milkman told him:
Son, you don’t get rich selling the milk. You get rich selling the milk run.
Look for the following factors when developing a business idea:
- Opportunity size – there should be a good pool of potential customers.
- Leverage – the ability to sell over and over again at minimal cost.
- Scalability – a business that can grow large fast.
- Marketable – easy to sell your product or service e.g. late night home delivery of alcohol in London (a no brainer!)
Be x Do = Have
If you want to have, you need to be the right someone and do the right things. You need both Be and Do to succeed.
Create an I am… statement that is bigger than you. As you improve your physical fitness by working out, you improve your mental fitness by thinking expansive thoughts.
The worst mistake we can make is not getting started.
We all have self-doubt when we start – it’s normal. Find someone who believes in you.Doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will - @actioncoachceo Click To Tweet
Practice, practice, practice! You can’t get good at something if you haven’t done it at least a thousand times.
Planning and Goals
Don’t just work in your business, work on your business.
Everyone hates planning, but it’s essential. The bigger your business gets, the more planning you need to do.If you don't have checklists and plans, don't expect success - @actioncoachceo Click To Tweet
Set the date when you’re going to finish your business. This will help you plan.
Go big. Never say you run a small business.
Dream big. Make them as vivid and preposterous as you can. We’re really bad in the UK for doing this. Write them down on paper and keep adding to them.
Dream x Goal x Learn x Plan x Action = Success
Create goals every day (business and personal).If your goals don't scare the crap out of you, they're not big enough - @actioncoachceo Click To Tweet
Most of us don’t have a clue about wealth.
The learning is the hardest part.If you don't do the learning, don't expect the earning - @actioncoachceo Click To Tweet
Money is not like sport. You don’t need special talent to make money. Anyone can do it.
Brad made his first $1 million aged 22, and had lost it by age 22 1/2. But he didn’t lose the knowledge of how to make the money.
You can get rich quick – it takes 10 years. Most people don’t want to wait that long.
Act like a business owner, not an employee. If you do employee’s work, don’t expect an owner’s salary.
Growing the Business
Your employees build the business, not you. Invest in them.Long-term success comes from growing your people - @actioncoachceo Click To Tweet
It’s better to improve employee productivity than hire new staff.
Your business needs a vision and core values. If you don’t have these, you will hire on skills, and end up with people who are the wrong fit.
Big companies have shareholders who demand growth. Business coaching works the same way. It holds you accountable.
Keep acquring more knowledge. Brad has read one book weekly since age 16 – that’s over 2,000 now.
Build business relationships. When networking, follow up by meeting 3 people for coffee.
Bad management leads to the following behaviours from staff:
We shouldn’t let employees get away with bad behaviour. It can create a toxic work culture.Fire them up or fire them out - @actioncoachceo Click To Tweet
The #1 excuse is always “I ran out of time.” Not acceptable!
Blame is worse, as it leads to negative working relationships.
Be clear on what you expect from your people. Worksheets and checklists are very useful.
Manage first, lead second.
Great leaders enrol and inspire.Tell someone twice a day, 'Thank you for doing a good job.' - @actioncoachceo Click To Tweet
Hiring staff is the most important role of a leader.
The best people are already in jobs and come from referrals. To find them, make a short video outlining your vision. Put it on a website with the transcript and add social sharing buttons. In the application, start each sentence with ‘You’. Don’t hire until the candidate has been through multiple interviews.
From Student to Entrepreneur
There’s a scale of business people, from student at the bottom to entrepreneur at the top.
Investors buy investments, entrepreneurs sell them.
Learn to invest or you won’t make much money. Choose things to invest in that go for a high multiple.
Pick a niche and stick with it. Invest in what you know well.
You can invest in business, property or shares.
When you have the money, buy, build, then sell companies. Buying is the hardest part. If you choose wrongly you can’t make a profit.
Whatever you do, commit to immediate decisions and actions.I'll think about it = I won't do anything - @actioncoachceo Click To Tweet
Read my previous Brad Sugars posts here:
- Brad Sugars Buying Customers – How to target your marketing, improve profit and customer loyalty, and be a happier entrepreneur (Part 1). This post covers marketing strategies.
- Brad Sugars Buying Customers – How to target your marketing, improve profit and customer loyalty, and be a happier entrepreneur (Part 2). This post covers the 7 things you can do to help your business today.
Does this advice inspire you to take action?
If so, why not start by sharing it on social media?