I just read Felix Dennis’s How to Get Rich. It’s one of the best books I’ve read on the subject. (Don’t let the title fool you. It’s very practical.)
Anyways, whenever I read a book, I look for a few big ideas, key concepts, or important reminders that can have an immediate or lasting effect on my business.
With How to Get Rich, that wasn’t hard to do. Here are 10 things I wrote down that may be of help to you:
1) Own and control 100% of the business
This was a biggie. Something Dennis brought up again and again. And he did not mince words: be willing to kill for more equity was the gist of it. You get wealthy by building monster businesses, selling them, and exploding your net worth overnight. Whereas, when you hand out equity like candy, everyone makes a little – at best.
Find, hire, train, and nurture top talent. And let them handle the heavy lifting. You can’t do it all by yourself. If you’re building an internet business, I know, it’s tempting. But I’ve made that mistake too many times before. Felix is, of course, right. Both of my multiple seven figure businesses had teams of competent independent contractors working around the clock. No way I could’ve done it without them.
3) Risk equals reward
Duh. But are you doing anything about it? Because, knowing and doing are two different things. Real businesses spend money on marketing and advertising. And the ones who dominate outspend the competition not by a little, but by a lot.
Crude as it may sound, wake up each day and imagine a gun is being held to your head. And if you don’t do everything in your power to grow that day, it goes off. Now compare that to a normal day. Big difference, huh? I bet you’d work on only the critical tasks. With all-out intensity. At a backbreaking pace. As if your life depended on it. Cuz, well, it would.
5) Do outstanding work
Again, sounds obvious. But you and I both know, in the race to that next one million dollars, quality sometimes takes a back seat to speed. As Felix Dennis just told us, nothing wrong with wanting to go fast (you should) but being the best at what you do has to come first. Exceptional work facilitates rapid growth. When it’s an afterthought, growth may never get off the ground.
6) Keep perspective
Even those who’re rich, Dennis explains, are merely holding onto their fortunes temporarily. No one owns their net worth. It’s all borrowed. And when your time on Earth is up? Later, millions. Buh-bye, billions. They’re loaned to the people and causes you love most. So remember this. Laugh and have fun along the way. It’s just money. And even when you think it is, it’s not even yours.
7) Commit or don’t
You can’t dip your toe in this, dabble in that and think you’re just gonna lackadaisically work your way onto a Forbes list. You’ve gotta be all in or all out. Kinda-sorta won’t cut it, Cupcake. Elite earners baby their business. They’re down to do the unthinkable if success calls for it.
8) Fear nothing
Competition, unfavorable odds, naysayers, embarrassment, hard work, long hours, failure, even success. It’s all scary. But you have no choice. You have to face it head-on. It’s like my older cousin used to say: “If ifs and buts were candy and nuts…” Which I think is a catchy way of saying, “The hell with your excuses.” I think.
9) No negativity
Turn off the nightly news. Stop listening to the radio. Put down the newspaper. Ignore trending headlines on Facebook. Quit gossiping. Distance yourself from any unqualified person who tries to pollute your vision, even if they’re a friend or family member. Brainwash yourself with positive input only.
10) Choose the right mountain
Money mountain, that is. There are many you could climb, but which one should you? What are your signature strengths? Weaknesses? What could you work on for 16 hours straight and not have it feel like work? What need could you solve? Is there something that intersects all of these answers? And then, when you think you’ve got it, run it through this checklist. Does it pass? If so, and you apply everything above, you just may get rich.
How do I sum up a summary of such a powerful book? I can’t. So I’ll do the opposite: go buy How to Get Rich by Felix Dennis. Read it yourself. You’ll gain a greater understanding of my 10 takeaways. Plus pick up some of your own.
Thanks to FelixDennis.com for the photo of the late, great and brilliant Felix Dennis. Publisher, poet, philanthropist. Built a “borrowed” net worth of nearly one billion U.S. dollars. Damn.