Murray. Thank you for hiring Sean, your book and being on our show!
I don’t encourage stalking but I do encourage our listeners to follow our guests. Where are you on the web? And what cool project are you working on right now.
I’ve dedicated the rest of my professional life to helping small business owners to try to change their failure rate. I’ve got 3 business I’m working towards that end.
Mainstreet is my most recent endeavor. And you can reach me at AccessMainstreet.
Get The Answer is my personal site where I do a lot of personal work and philanthropic work and scholarship programs.
We have another program we work with to give as much access for free as possible to entrepreneurs through our initiative called Business Growth Makeover. There, what we want to do is reach out and provide the basic principles, the first three steps before anyone spends any time and money on any lead generation efforts. These three must steps are stongly recommended which we provide at no cost at that site.
Let’s talk about your great book.
Who was the reader you pictured in your mind as you wrote this book? Describe them for us. What need of theirs does it satisfy?
We wanted to write a book for people in business. Anybody in business that felt that that business could be the vehicle to achieve their financial success. It could be an employee, it could be as a partner, it could be as a direct sales person. Anybody that was looking for abundance in life and that were willing to consider doing things differently and were open-minded.
73% of people want to get in and start their own business. This book was written for those people who have that mindset, they want abundance and the instruction manual for how to be successful.
Your introduction talks about the Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle. What is it? And why does it matter.
That’s a very big word for a very simple statement. The statement is when you look at something different the very thing you look at changes.
We’re dealing with a client who was in the process of developing a website. They had built a $25,000 website and only to find out after they had gone through that exercise and they went through our attract more clients exercise and determined who their ideal client was did they realize their ideal client did not use the web as a means of identifying and finding where they are. They use other strategies to do that.
And this client then realized they had a $25,000 white elephant website with no traffic to it and won’t have any traffic to it because the customers aren’t looking for it as part of their decision-making process.
And we got them to change the way they were looking at their website from being a major lead generation device to being a supportive device and in this process it shifted the way their clients perceived them from being a web-based organization to their clients being able to them to go to other distribution channels to buy their products.
The Heisenberg Principle suggests that when you have a new set of parameters, a new set of considerations, for when you are looking at that thing... then that thing can change for what it references for you.
I wanted to ask you about how you mentioned in your biography that you were diagnosed with a learning disability early in your life. Clearly, that diagnosis was incorrect. And I’ve read where a high percentage of successful business leaders had learning disabilities.
There are a limited number of styles of learning. There are 37 possible styles of learning . And the public schools offer only 3. Reading for me...I couldn’t comprehend what the words meant.
Obviously with schools being reading and intellectual based I was several years behind the other students.
I was told I would never amount to much.
My first job when I got out of school was sewer cleaning. I began to study the owners of the company. They were no smarter than I. They were focused on the critical things responsible for revenues.
The owners of successful companies all focused on the same critical few things.
All I knew when I got into business was to focus on these critical few things. it worked. The formula for driving revenues became absolutely key for me and I spent 30 years perfecting it.
Success is not directly linked to intelligence. It’s linked to another set of criteria and another formula that has not been so easily fleshed out for other people to embrace it.
That’s what we believe The Answer does. It gives people the insight and the knowledge base to align themselves with the right mental conditioning and then to align their business those critical few strategies that drive revenue.
It’s almost irrespective of the industry and the predictability of success is very measurable.
Your book has 15 chapters. And at least 7, maybe as many as 9 of those chapters have nothing to do with strategy or tactics, execution or marketing. You don’t mention social media....Instead you talk about the brain, our thinking patterns, dreaming, big thinking, changing our minds, the universe inside our brains...
Why did you choose to spend so much time on this topic: our brain and how it works?
If you looked a race car and a race car driver and asked yourself which of the two were required for that race car drive to win a race 100% of the people would say both.
Yet, when it comes to the most complicated thing you’ll ever do in your life which is to start up and run a business some people think that the business can run on its own.
You need both. You need you as the business person and you need the business as the vehicle to get to where you want to go. And both have to be in alignment.
The driver in this metaphor needs to be excellent at what he does. He needs to have the right mental conditioning, the right training, the right belief system. The vehicle itself needs to have an engine that’s tuned to perfection, needs to have the the best tires. And they both need to be in harmony.
And when you get them working in harmony and then you put them on a race track with 50 other drivers one of them is going to win.
Same thing in business. We spend the first half of the book talking about how you can develop the right belief system, the right mental conditioning and we’re not talking about airy-fairy, personal growth stuff, we’re talking about the proven principles that give you an operators manual to tap into the most powerful resource in the universe, that’s the brain.
Get yourself ready to be the race car driver in your business.
If 95% of small businesses close their doors within the first 5 years and 95% of business books fail to mention that resource, our brain, maybe we’re on to something.
More interesting is the reason why they fail. It’s because they lose the hope and belief that their business will deliver the lifestyle they hoped when they began their business.
And that’s the power of the human brain. It can get you jacked up, so hyped on wanting to something, you can go out and run a marathon or scale a mountain. It’s also equally powerful going in the other direction: depression, doubt, fear. These are not so positive emotions that hold people back. As you start to slip down that slippery slope, you start losing confidence, you ultimately get to that point where you give up.
If you look at every other living thing in the universe it has a period of time to develop. A human being is 9 months. An oak seed to an oak tree is predictable. They are all predictable and scientifically proven.
Every idea has the same gestation period and manifestation period. It takes a certain amount of time for it to develop. The only thing is that scientists haven’t figured out how long that gestation period is. Ideas have a thing about them that manifest and change all the time whereas those other examples are more physical.
So at the first sign of trouble we start doubting our idea is a valuable one or a bonafide one. We start digging up and not continuing to give the nourishment and we end up digging it up and abandoning the idea.
This is nothing to do with strategy or tactics. This has got to do with you, the individual. Could you imagine if a race car driver gave up when they were in the 15th position?
When we’re first conceived as humans from the time that happens throughout the course of our lifetime we’re surrounded with coaches to advise us, parents, mother to carry us, teachers guiding us, sports coaches, doctors. We’re looking to them to give us advice.
And, then when we come to doing the most complicated thing of all, to step out, take responsibility and to take an idea and birth it in the marketplace as a business, we think we can go it alone. And all of a sudden we think we can do it ourselves.
That’s right those failure rates are so high.
I love business strategy, theory and models. I love those who say that the key is execution. How are you going to bring execute that strategy, apply that theory, make money from your model. But you write that People tend to be focused on looking for the how, thinking that is where the answer lies. But it’s not.
If the answer rests not in the how, then where does it rest?
Most people have been taught that the answer is in the how. There are three parts of why people become successful. Back in the 70-90’s people used to focus on the what. Those are the secrets that were being uncovered. There are no secrets. They just are unaware.
What you need to know. Tell me what I don’t know, tell me what I need to know and what I need to focus on.
Why. Tell me why that’s important. If you get my why big enough I’ll swim an ocean to get to the other side, I’ll do what it takes to succeed.
How. And THEN the how falls into place.
We call it the what, why and how.
Tell me how to do it. Make it very simple. We refer to it as a grade 6 language. If we can do that with a grade 6 language we should be able to do with anybody on the planet.
This may be a good time to talk about neural reconditioning. What is neural reconditioning? Why is it so important for an entrepreneur or anyone really if they want to live a life of abundance?
I’m 55 years old. I’ve been conditioned my whole life by my environment, by my actions, by the people I’m involved with. Professionally or personally I am who I am because of my environment. I have a certain conditioning for the way a I believe and the certain priniciples and morals. They are what make me what I am.
By the time someone is 16 years old we’ve been told no 155,000 times in comparison to yes only 7,000 times.
That amount of bombardment conditions you to become who you are and what your propensities are.
We can’t change them on our own. It’s not easy to change them on our own.
It’s not easy to change our conditioning on our own.
Neural reconditioning is the ability to change your mental conditioning over the course of about 30 days with about 5 or so minutes of exercise every day. If you’re not willing to do that neural reconditioning process anything you attempt to do is not sustainable.
It’s not just related to business. It could be it’s related to business or training for a marathon.
My dad ran a marathon when he was 70 and he just went out got a college credit for French when he’d never spoken a word of it before.
The answer to this next question seems obvious. But sometimes the obvious answers need to be repeated. Why is it so important to go through this neural reconditioning.
Einstein said it best. If you want something different from what you presently got and you’re only willing to do the same things over and over, that’s the first sign of insanity.
If people are looking for abundance in your life and they don’t have it, doing the same thing over and over again is not the answer. Working smarter is the answer.
Working smarter is first understanding the power of the human brain and being given an operator’s manual to tap into its power. If you could in 30 days develop a millionaire mindset, ie, think like other successful millionaire’s think like, almost clone a millionaire’s behavior and mindset, you would some time in the future get what they got.
What are the elements of neural reconditioning?
I'm going to talk about three that I know work.
Affirmations, visualizations and meditation.
Affirmations by saying things as though they already exist. Let’s say I wanted to be a successful business owner, I would have affirmations like this:
- I am a successful business owner.
- I have all he money I need to live the life that I want.
- I have a small business with a dozen people who love working together in a collaboration to serve the customers we are serving.
The brain needs to hear it is though it is the present.
The other way is visualization. I have a vision board in my office. A bus plan is nothing more than a vision board. On my vision board I have my financial objectives, my non-financial objectives, and my personal objectives.
Another very powerful way is meditation. 10 years ago I started to meditate. I meditate every day.
Through the combination of all three of those I am constantly reprogramming and updating for the current market conditions for my current belief system and for my current wants and desires.
One hesitation I had for bringing you on the show was your use of affirmations. Don’t laugh. I see so many people use affirmations and the Law of Attraction as their sole tool for success and yet they never reach it. What are they missing?
They’re missing the single most important aspect and why The Secret doesn’t actually work. They’re missing the law of GOYA. And the Law of GOYA is Get Off Your Ass and Do Something. Or in other words, referred to as the Law of Action.
If you knew the combination of a safe with a million dollars in front of you and you knew the combination to the safe but you never reached out to turn the dial...that safe would never open for you.
The Secret gave you information for people who wanted the easy way out: to wish, believe and receive
The Answer gave you insights for taking the action to get what you believe.
If you don't get up and take action, action is the most important thing, once you have the right mindset, the right strategies. It’s the secret sauce.
Pablo Picasso had the saying that "Action is the foundational key to all success."
You talk about there are 5 Musts with the Law of Action. What are the 5 Musts?
- You must find something that stirs your soul. That’s something you’ll do whatever it takes.
- You must become excellent at it. You cannot slide by. Excellent goes far beyond good or great.
- You must condition your mind to believe you have it in you and can achieve it.
- You must figure out how to make money from it.
- You must take daily action. If you’re not taking the action, then you’re not going to be achieving the goals you set out.
Each one of these has a whole show in itself. But this is a wireframe.
Which is the most important one?
Number 5: The Law of Action.
What is the mental financial capacity and how does it effect our success?
This goes back to our own mental conditioning both from creating on our own with our limiting belief system and our family’s limiting beliefs.
Everyone sets a thermostat at what they’re capable of earning based on what their belief system is. We all have this mental condition belief system that says we should earn $70,000 a year. If we set our thermostat at $70,000 we will never earn $700,000.
Many businesses these days may think that any paying customer is their definition of the ideal customer. But you have a more specific definition. What is your definition of an ideal customer?
If we’re going to leave the brain for a moment and step into the business, the ideal client is the single most important factor for business success. If you don’t have your ideal client to market to you’re wasting your time and money marketing.
You offer a great real-world plan to identify your ideal customer, the gap between your current and the ideal customer. I encourage everyone to recognize this as one more reason to go buy your book.
[Great discussion of Dave and Buster’s process of discovering their ideal customer]
The profile is only one aspect of it. How they make decisions is a huge consideration.
What makes up the ideal client is nothing more than matching up what they want and what you want from them.
So what are the top 5 things they want from what you provide and what are the top 5 things they could provide you.
What makes it ideal is not that they buy from you but it is the enjoyment you get from their buying from you.
To know that is to know the combination to your safe.
Your ideal client is the foundation of your business. Whatever you put on top of that will be successful. If people are interested in finding their ideal client they can go to BusinessGrowthMakeover we’re giving access to a 55 page workbook, an hour coaching session, an hour interview...we’re giving that for free to help out during these tough financial times.
What role does need and want play in defining the ideal customer. Why’s that important?
People buy what they want not necessarily what they need. If they’re looking at it from a need standpoint they’re putting it off until the need is greater.
It’s the emotional side of the business process.
People buy what they want and not what they need. If you sell to someone’s needs you won’t be nearly as successful as if you sell to their wants.
Erika Andersen was on the show a couple of week’s ago. She’s authored a great book also titled Being Strategic. As part of that process she asks that we define our reasonable aspiration or hoped-for future. What was your reasonable aspiration or hoped-for future with writing this great book, The Answer?
We wanted to impact the lives of 1 million small business owners worldwide. We wanted to positively impact those lives. If we impacted a million lives then word-of-mouth would take over and we’d impact 10’s of millions.
What are the signs that will show your progress? What metrics are you using to measure you progress?
It’s the success of any of our businesses because they’re all in alignment with helping small businesses.
For example my attract more clients business growth system is licensed to more than 10,000 businesses worldwide.
Our Business Growth Makeover has helped more than 100,000 businesses.
The Answer has been translated into 37 languages and sold hundreds of thousands of copies.
If we can get to that critical mass of 1 million then our message will be heard.
There are 7 great laws of the universe. The Law of Compensation says that you will be directly rewarded for the number of people you help.
Our focus has got to be finding the cure for small business so that our economy and our future has the hope.
Jim Rohn wrote that Leaders are readers. You’re a leader and I assume an avid reader. What are you reading?
Unfortunately I’m not an avid reader. I’m an avid reader of bites and soundbites of information.
If you go to the back of the book, we have a list of current and great reads. My co-author and I have gone through them and I’ve gotten the nuggets of inspiration from them.
- Success Principles by Jack Canfield.
- Now, Discover Your Strengths by Marcus Buckingham
We’ve gone out beyond the business books to some of the more newer reads.
What is the one thing you would do different with one of your successes? Had I know this I could have done more...?
Had I embraced the concept of understanding how the brain works and the idea that you are a bigger piece of the puzzle than your business is.
I had great success. My biggest challenge was thinking that after 2-3 years that I had done my part and it was time to move on.
In most cases my passion and drive is not duplicatable. My biggest regret is not sticking with any of the deals for longer than 2 or 3 years and then watching them collapse in my wake.