A 15 Year Overnight Success Story

I love the term ‘overnight success’. Clearly, by the amount of time it is referenced in business stories in newspapers and magazines, I am not alone in the love of this term.

However, I am a complete realist. I understand that except in a very few instances, there really is no such thing as an overnight success.

When you go deep into these stories about entrepreneurs who have experienced overnight success, you usually find that there are one or two failed business ventures and many years of hard graft that have taken place before the success was achieved.

Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak and Ronald Wayne formed Apple in 1976, but the first Mac did not arrive until 1984. Richard Branson did not instantly achieve success with his Virgin brand, and along the way has had many failures too (remember Virgin Coke)?

When growing a business there are many, many challenges to overcome. Many business owners simply get paralysed by these obstacles. Having a good idea or a good business is never enough to succeed these days. Persistence, focus and consistent marketing action is the only formula to guarantee your shot at success.

I meet so many jobrepreneurs who do not give themselves the chance of success. They start well but then become distracted by any number of obstacles, including these most common ones that I notice:

  • Focusing on jam tomorrow instead of bread and butter today;
  • Relying on only one marketing method to bring in new clients;
  • Relying on only one service to make profits instead of growing their service offerings so that they can look after their clients better; and
  • Spending far too much time reading emails as soon as they come in instead of working on their business.

The last one particularly drives me insane. Unless you are a brain surgeon awaiting an email about which scalpel to use whilst in the operating theatre, nothing is so important that you need to read each email the second that it arrives.

If you disagree with this, I can guarantee that your profits are nowhere near where you would like them to be. You are merely fooling yourself and until you realise this and accept it you are bound to never reach the heights that you deserve to reach in your business. That is truly sad.

When I am working to my best ability I only check emails once every other day. This allows me to go deep into my work and do my best work working on my business or my clients’ businesses.

If this seems like too huge a step for you to take, try only reading emails after 11am every morning. Most people do their best work when they wake up, so if currently the first thing that you do is to go and check your emails, stop doing this for two or three weeks.

Instead, as soon as you wake up, go and do the work that you know will have the biggest impact on your business. Whether this is tweaking your Google Adwords campaign, writing blogs or emails to your prospects or picking up the telephone to call your hottest leads, do these things first.

If you go straight to your emails all that you are doing is letting other people determine the agenda for your day. If that is what you want to happen, fine, go and get a job. Someone will gladly tell you what you should be doing all day every day.

However, if you want to become an overnight success, you absolutely have to spend the best part of your day working on growing your business, putting in place automated marketing systems to attract new clients and providing a great service to your existing clients. This way, your success is assured.

If you are wondering, I have been in business now for 11 years, so I am only 4 years away from my overnight success story being complete…

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