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What Successful Business People Know That Others Do Not

Beware: Best Practices

Contrary to popular belief, success doesn't happen by accident. It has nothing to do with luck. It's not a magic pill someone swallows or a wand someone waves that immediately manifests a revolutionary change in status and bank balance. Success requires strategic planning, action and commitment.

Success also takes an additional ingredient most people overlook. That ingredient is the ability to thumb your nose at conventional wisdom and so-called “best practices” about achieving success. You’ve heard the lines, "its luck" or "you have to be in the right place at the right time" or "it's all about who you know" and the big one, "it's about how hard you work." Those lines just aren't true. We know a lot of people who work really, really hard and don't have much to show for it at all. You probably do too.

These statements make up the much of the conventional wisdom about what it takes to become a success. But conventional wisdom is not always the best wisdom and can frequently be detrimental if followed. The term “conventional” by definition should send up a red flag. According to www.dictionary.com it means, "Conforming or adhering to accepted standards," and in another definition, "Ordinary rather than different or original." Accepted standard? Ordinary? Do those sound like the building blocks of success to you?

No person in their right mind would describe an ultra successful person by those definitions. The über successful don't conform and they aren't ordinary. In fact they are the complete opposite. Ahh…maybe we’re on to something here. Let's take it from the top shall we?

From the minute we're born we start to conform and to follow the herd. We do what everyone else is doing, the way everyone else is doing it. We're taught to stand in line and we work to "fit in." We follow the masses and we get the same results they do...AVERAGE RESULTS.

It’s sad isn't it? Average is standard and most people work hard everyday just to achieve it. That's same and that's lame.

Here's a little secret...the high achievers in this world play by a different set of rules: theirs. They don't fit in and they don't stand in line or wait their turn. They blaze new paths and make they're own rules while everyone else settles for same old lame.

Have you ever looked up the word lame in the dictionary?

It means, says www.dictionary.com, "A pathetic lack of force and effectiveness." If being the same makes you lame and being lame means you lack force and effectiveness then what chance do you have at achieving everything (or for that matter, anything) you want out of life? Not much!

When you follow the crowd and do what everyone thinks is right—for instance, "best practices"— you're going to duplicate their results. Those results are typically mediocre and average at best. The norm isn't extraordinary. If it was most people would be wealthy and happy and we'd have mind-blowing experiences with businesses and people on a daily basis.

Instead, a normal day usually consists of frustration from small businesses and people who are just getting by, limping along and trying to keep it together. That's what conventional thinking and “best practices” deliver.

Extraordinary results come from doing something different…from challenging the status quo and shaking things up. So what can you do to get on a path to innovation, extraordinary progress and extreme success? Here are five things that the ultra successful do differently.

Exploit Their Uniqueness: The ultra successful businesses and people know what makes them different and they use it to their full advantage in their small business marketing. Most businesses and people try to be all things to all people. They try to please everyone. They are afraid that by being polar they will alienate their market. The truth is that real success comes from being "for" a specific group of people and “not for” others. Specialization and customization win the day, garner more attention and ultimately attract the most success.

Every person believes their situation and problem is somehow different and unique. They believe that a custom solution is needed to fix it. They don't want a one size fits all, "canned" solution. What they want is a customized solution from an expert person or company that specializes in helping people in their specific circumstances, understands exactly what they are going through and can relate to them.

Ask Better Questions: Many people think the super successful have all the answers. That may be the truth but they didn't get them from just divine intervention or from guessing. They get the answers from asking better questions. Finding what to do takes asking hard questions of yourself, your business, your industry, your employees, co-workers, customers, peers and family.

Average people tend to shy away from asking the tough questions because they are afraid of the answers they might get. It's like not going to the doctor because you're nervous about what you might find. The successful people face new challenges head-on, ask the tough questions and tackle them regardless of the answers.

Read: The ultra successful realize a need to continue to educate themselves. School's never out for the pro. According to the Jenkins Group, 80 percent of U.S. families did not buy or read a book last year and 42 percent of college graduates never read another book in their lives. Successful people devour information, read books constantly, listen to tapes, audio programs and attend seminars on a regular basis. They are addicted to information, positive thinking and improvement.

Jim Rohn sums this point up brilliantly when he says, "Poor people have big TVs, rich people have big libraries."

Take Risks: Risk tolerance is a success trait that is hard to ignore. Super successful people understand that with risk comes reward and they are willing to take chances. But they aren't stupid. They hedge their bets with high quality information and research. They put the work and time necessary to plan for and research the viability of a risky decision. It's still a risk but a calculated one. They don't make decisions based on a wild hair or whims unless they’re willing to lose it all.

The hyper-success minded also understand that with every failure comes a learning experience. They know how to gain extremely valuable information from their mistakes and failures. They analyze the situations and extract as many lessons as possible from their disasters. Then they synthesize this information and create better plans for going forward. They don't wallow in the misery of their failures and stick their head in the sand to hide. They pick themselves back up and move ahead again. This time armed with new information.

Fight: The average person tries to avoid confrontation at all costs. They hate to cause trouble, make a scene or have to get in someone's face. This happens even to the point of missing out on something they are entitled to, paid for or are owed just so they don't have to confront the situation. They’re happier practicing avoidance than strength. The overachievers on the other hand don't follow that thinking. They make it a point to engage in battle to get what they want, deserve or are passionate about.

The successful people are not afraid to hurt some feelings and be open, honest and blunt about what they think, want or need from anyone. They are willing to fight for what they believe in, their passion and their ideas. This is a leadership quality that allows them to achieve more, accomplish more and have others working for them and with them to accomplish everything they need to give achieve high degree of success and happiness in life.

Leverage Time: We all have the same amount of time in a day. Some people just do more with it than others. The "Trumps" of the world know the value of time and how to leverage it to get more accomplished. The average person thinks about time as a renewable resource not a precious raw material to success. They measure their success on money collected per hour or per year and think of time as something you exchange for money. An even swap. This thinking delivers standard returns and mediocre wages.

The truly successful know how to leverage time and how to stop trading it for dollars. They don't buy into a tit for tat mentality when it comes to the exchanging of time for money. They create systems that they build one time that work for them for eternity. They don't engage in projects that have small or non-leveragable returns. They seek out and get involved with opportunities that are scaleable and deliver returns for long periods of time. Action and ideas are the currency of the rich.