It’s time to get your 7 Deadly Sins under control…
The business world needs saving–one entrepreneur at a time. When we deal in bad business, our work turns wicked (and our sales go rotten).
From the US Gov to Hillary Clinton to Lance Armstrong and the kid making your smoothie…we all put GMOs and emails and drugs and honey in places we shouldn’t…
If you’re trying to create and sustain a super profitable business (without all the freaking controversy)…it’s time to get YOUR 7 Deadly Sins of Entrepreneurship under control.
Let’s ditch those dastardly deeds–and start following the rules that actually matter (…& I ain’t talking about regulations and paperwork).
This is long-game, the future, & the afterlife of everything you’re working to create, stand for, and leave behind for every from your tribe to your family.
Focus your mission, learn to make Better Money, & save your work from BUSINESS HELL.
THE SIN: 1) Pride, an excessive belief in one’s abilities.
Over-promising, Kanye, illusion–this sin takes many forms….Pride makes us look PRETTY weird.
You don’t have to be a Lonesome Lion…
With too much pride, entrepreneurs become bullies. We become living, breathing lies–Facebook Actors trying to play out a highlight reel that’s nothing like our reality. That’s self-serving, and it fails to showcase most of the really-real stuff…you know…all that stuff that brings friends, companions, and confidants into your world–the struggle, sweat, blood and tears.
Here’s how you know you’re all Pride (and no Person):
- You make guarantees that mean nothing (just to make people feel like safe as you take their money).
- You never show anyone the tough, bad, or difficult parts of your work (or your life).
- You have more swag than you have substance.
- You make pledges and promises, but never follow up (just to hear yourself talk).
- You think you’re untouchable, that no competitor could Knock Your Lights Out at any given moment–now that’s real, true pride.
When entrepreneurs take on more than they can realistically accomplish–at first our work suffers, and then our name suffers. Why build an empire over ruined relationships and bad reviews…just because you weren’t willing to work harder? Be the kind of entrepreneurs that builds ecosystems and nature preserves–not another Rainforest-Chopper-Downer.
Wouldn’t you rather be known for saving the trees and the bees?
FOR INSTANCE…when Blue Bell dished out servings of listeria (unintentionally), people were hurt. People died. But this Big Business owned up to their mistakes–they closed production and distribution in 25 states to contain the problem. That’s not like your local ice cream shop shutting down for a day…or your standard Corporate Cover-up…
Isn’t that more relatable a brand than someone who pretends to be perfect or blameless?
STOP TAKING CHANCES.
Don’t let your PRIDE steal your GROWTH! Humble up, open up, and fess up when the Truth calls your number. Consider it one of those rare opportunities to prove how superhuman you really are. It will reveal more about the soul of your business than any dirty, sleazy, or cunning misdirection.
And it will save all the good work you do, too.
THE SIN: 2) Envy, wanting or resenting what others have–their title, swag, or success.
Do you really want to look like everyone else? Entrepreneurial envy makes us look–dare I say it–beige.
If all the copywriters in America wore capes, there would be A LOT of beautiful women flying around. And Superwoman just wouldn’t seem as cool anymore.
Didn’t anyone ever tell you it’s not polite to stare?
Envy makes us annoying. Look at how the iPhone and Galaxy keep poking and prodding one another. This is marketing…not a middle school science experiment.
- iPhone: “If it’s not an iPhone, it’s not an iPhone.”
- Galaxy: “It’s not a phone, it’s a Galaxy.”
GROW UP. Mimicking your competitor doesn’t work–it only tears society apart into blips of green and blue text message bubbles. Sad face emoji.
- You’re stealing your competitor’s language (or damn near close to it).
- You’re celebrating your opponent’s wins…like an insecure maniac.
- You take other people’s ideas, suggestions, and trends (even successes) and act like you came up with them.
- You ditch your original master plan–just to try to keep up with what’s popular.
- You’re jealous, bitter, and bad-mouthing rivals and allies alikes.
Every time you mention your competitor, even if they offer different things than you do (iOS vs Android), each time you bash them, copy them, praise them, or whisper about them, you’re giving their name merit on the interweb. You’re adding keywords to their SEO, ignition to their fuel–mentos to their Diet Coke.
Don’t be a Hissy-Snake…
If you haven’t found a way to add to a product, design, idea, or revolution…drop the envy and get back to the laboratory.
No more Copied Cats. It’s your turn to give people something to stare at!
THE SIN: 3) Gluttony, the desire to consume more than you require.
You know when someone takes a sip of spoiled milk, says GROSS, then asks you to try it?
That’s what entrepreneurs look like when they use gluttony to sell their products. There’s a difference between smart, savvy upselling…and straight-up cramming gluttony down throats and into hearts.
Don’t be a Giant Hog…
When did it become okay to mega-size EVERYTHING? That’s just a marketing ploy…telling us we’re happier, fuller, better when our tables and tummies are full. It’s gross. When entrepreneurs bite off more than they can chew…their works becomes gross too.
I think we can all agree that gross business is NOT good business.
This is how you know you’ve reached Giant Hog Levels of Gluttony:
- You’re routinely handing people cartons of spoiled milk.
- You’re “white-lying” so much it’s become a routine at work, at home–everywhere.
- You feel guilty, insecure, and a little bit ashamed about the work you do and the products you sell.
- You wouldn’t want your Grandparents to see the way you do business.
- You’re working harder on your image than your name, quality, or future.
Stop peddling spoiled milk.
Did You Know? Food companies don’t HAVE to declare if their food has GMOs or not…
So why are they still using words that kinda-sorta don’t mean organic? Words like: natural, additive-free, farm-fresh.
Because they want the buyer to feel at ease. They want the buyer to feel like EVERYTHING IS OKAY. As if they’re eating organic when they devour a bag of Natural Chips N’ Chemicals before nursing their child…
Get outta the mud! It’s 2016…
Where solar panels power schools, rockets land upright, drones fly packages, cars drive themselves, and hover-boards are (still) a really badass thing.
If you can’t find a way to sell organic, sustainable food in 2016, with all these Millennials and Foodies and Hippies running (the world) wild and free…
You might just be in the wrong business.
You might just be using gluttony to sell your shit.
THE SIN: 4) Lust, a powerful craving for bodily pleasures sex or power.
I’m against human clotheslines.
When I walk into a place like Abercrombie, Hollister, or Aeropostale, it’s hard to find a spot on the wall to rest my eyes…
I don’t want to stare into the abs of a hyper-sexualized “teen”. I don’t want to see half-naked people hanging from other half-naked people…they’re basically human clotheslines.
Kids–yes, both boys and girls–leave these stores thinking they oughta look that way…thinking they WILL look that way. We’re a bunch of hot-blooded entrepreneurs, I get that. But we can’t ALL be sexy clotheslines!
Lust is a dangerous sin in the world of entrepreneurship–where ANYTHING can happen. I don’t know about you, but I’ve never had throngs of sex-crazed admirers draping themselves across my body as I walk down the sidewalk… I’ve never ran from a horde of admirers who just, ya know, needed my body–and I’ve never wanted any of that either.
I don’t even think Elvis wanted it…so what exactly are these companies up to?
Just because a selling tactic works…that doesn’t mean we should use it. Using sex to make your store or product look attractive is like eating a piece of burnt toast covered in sugar. It tastes sweet, but if you eat enough…you’re eventually going to throw-up a little.
You know you’re being a Lusty Bunny when:
- You’re SO hungry for power, you’ll lie, cheat, or steal to get more of it.
- You’d kill, murder, maim and defame the innocent–just to get your way.
- You’re willing to tear down another man or woman publicly, without reason or care.
- You’re not playing by anyone’s rules (including your own).
- You don’t want to tell your parents, your spouse, or your children what you’re really up to.
Now, I’ve heard of open marriage relationship coaches (who basically teach married couples how to cheat “properly”) and I’ve been shocked by the wily temptress that was Ashley Madison (ick!).
Some reports say she created up to 70,000 fake bots JUST to message men. BUT DON’T WORRY. They met regulations…their user agreement was SO legit.
“You acknowledge and agree that […] communications from such persons may not be true, accurate or authentic and may be exaggerated or based on fantasy.”
Talk about getting down with the digital dirty…
When sex takes over the dignity and reality of your business…your buyers, clients, and lead-ins are going to have trouble finding a place to rest their eyes on your wall. They’re going to feel dirty. And when they get past all that sugar, they’re going to throw-up a little bit too.
If your product can’t be solid using classiness, maybe you should reconsider your products (and morals). It’s time you sell something REAL.
Take the clotheslines down. Find your Inner-Rabbit.
THE SIN: 5) Anger, the rejection of love–a desire to harm others.
Anger makes us dummies.
Entrepreneurs always want to get their way. We’re in constant battle mode–fighting for Better Quality, Faster Speeds, Bigger Launches.
From our watermelons to our parking spaces, we simply want the BEST.
That’s what makes us successful entrepreneurs–but we must choose our battles wisely. The Hulk said it well, “You wouldn’t like me when I’m angry.” And you know what Mr. Banner, you’re a giant, green asshole when you’re angry, okay?
If entrepreneurs get angry and lose their wits to an emotion, we either making someone else’s life a living hell…or you begin living in one of your own. I’m sure we’ve all worked for/with/like someone like that. It SUCKS and the work SNAILS.
It’s dumb business.
Not to mention how you run off the good people who are (for some reason) working for your crazy self…
This is how you know you’re being a Crazy Grizzly:
- You’re coming into work pissed off, hot tempered–not in the right mindset for getting work done.
- You’re not checking your baggage at the door.
- You’re yelling at the people you trust.
- You’re being snooty to your clients and employees.
- You’re dishing out “gossip barbed with anger” like it’s Halloween candy.
- You’re being a giant, green bully to everyone from the doorman to your dog at home.
- You’re not acting, leading, or even trying to be a good boss.
Throughout the world, anger only drives people apart. Bosses vs Employees. Slytherin vs Gryffindor. Christian vs [insert religion]. Black vs White. Kansas vs Missouri. Buyers vs Sellers. Armageddon vs Deep Impact.
It doesn’t matter WHO we’re fighting (or even WHY). The problem isn’t the person or group or the belief–it’s our own anger that keeps us from a solution.
As entrepreneurs, we thrive on our people, our cults, our followers, our employees and devotees. But if your tribe only sees your VERSUS (your brutal and unforgiving war mode), they might not want to work with you for very long…
…and the ones that are like HOORAY WARTIME!–those probably aren’t people you should be working with.
Don’t be a Crazy Grizzly.
Choose love, not anger.
THE SIN: 6) Greed, excessive desire and pursuit of material possessions.
Remember the kids that took a fistful of candy from the class candy bowl even after the teacher said only one?
When they grow into entrepreneurs, that bullshit doesn’t stop. They take everything–just for the sake of taking. Think about how disgusted you are with these workshops…
- EVERY cable, wireless, and phone company.
- Political elections.
- The IRS.
- Every oil & energy company ever. (Yeah, Exxon, we’re still f*cking pissed about our Penguins).
Entrepreneur or not, right or wrong, greed will very quickly turn you into a very hated person.
FLASHBACK: The Year Is 1999…
But on the Internet, it feels like 1960. Women are burning digital bras. Men aren’t shaving digital beards. It’s a real gas.
Young Gen-Xers and budding Millennials are downloading music from Napster in droves. They’re scripting playlists so epic even Rick Rubin doesn’t know what to do with them. Mix-tapes and love-tracks are bringing High School Sweethearts and College Stalkers closer than ever before…
It’s like Woodstock, everywhere, all the time.
Y2K doesn’t take out everything with a plugin, but Lars from Metallica nearly does.
He’s SO mad about his music being downloaded on Napster–that he sues and allegedly creates a virus that spreads to young fans who just wanted to download HIS MUSIC and jam out harder than ever before.
Is that SUCH a bad thing, LARS? Kids wanting to feel the metal clanking in their souls?
This is how you know when you’re being a Wild Squirrel…(or Greedy Lars):
- You overcharge the sh*t out of your customers.
- You take customers you’re not well suited for (and you know it).
- You don’t deliver the 10x value someone just paid you to deliver.
- You can’t quit saying MY PRECIOUS, you’ve losing 83% all your hair, you feel like golem–and you’ve begun eating vermin.
- You don’t play nice with your colleagues (even when you’re CRUSHING them).
- You’re unwilling to give more than you take. It’s called being STINGY.
Nowadays we have to pay iTunes and Spotify and Pandora for that kind of beautiful chaos and rhythm. Rightfully so, we’re all pretty much cool with it now. But we’re always going to be mad at the guy who pulled the plug on our Woodstock. Damn you!
FREE LOVE. MUSIC*
Many of us will always (kinda) hate Metallica (a bit) for being SO SQUARE about such a fun moment of true, unrestricted internet freedom and musical bliss. Don’t be Lars from Metallica. Don’t be a Wild Squirrel.
Help create the next Woodstock…not bury it!
Turn that dial up, maaan.
THE SIN: 7) Sloth, the lazy avoidance of physical or spiritual work.
Remember the sloth who was too lazy to cry wolf? It was eaten by a CRAZY GRIZZLY…
Entrepreneurs must embrace an everlasting hustle at a young age…or we will be eaten by the bears (cray-cray grizzlies) too.
- Sloth is when Walmart only opens 5/100 checkout lanes. Stop avoiding the work! Either get more customers, or build smaller stores.
- Sloth is when the Salvation Army struggles to meet annual cash donation targets. Stop avoiding the hustle! Go get some card readers–people don’t carry cash anymore!
- Sloth is when the company you’re dying to hire doesn’t list a personal email on their website. Stop avoiding the masses and get another (free) Gmail account!
- Sloth is when The Tea Company you REALLY want to order from doesn’t list their telephone number. WTH? Your fans/potential customers genuinely want to speak with you (not your VA or outsourced, untrained customer service peep or PR rep).
Sloth promotes a LACK of excellence and commitment. When we allow the Sloths to infiltrate our daily dealings, we stop being entrepreneurial. We stop taking chances, we stop creating, we stop giving full effort.
We just kind of hang out…
Any work we do on sloth is a fraction of what we’re capable of. And our clients and customers WILL notice.
In 2015, 60% of all web traffic came from mobile devices.
As an entrepreneur, when your followers (or buyers) jump onto your website from their phone…and you don’t have a mobile page made. You’re being a real Sloth-Head.
It’s the modern world, where we hold universes in our palms or strapped to our wrists. And you’re too lazy to open the door for your mobile legion?
This is how you know when you’re being a real Sloth-Head:
- You refuse to update your tech, learn new trends, or adapt to change–of any kind.
- You take a long time to follow up with a potential lead.
- Your turnaround and delivery move slower than an iceberg in syrup.
- You aren’t willing to do as much work as your employees.
- You’re dodging calls, avoiding employees, and checked out of the market completely.
We have to ditch these dastardly deeds.
Before good work dies and we forget what it means to hustle–before the bears eat all the sloths and entrepreneurs wake up in the Stone Age…
Without sales. Without profits. Without tech. Without fans…
Entrepreneurs like us–we’d be FINE. We’d go reinvent the wheel or rediscover fire…
But I’d rather make something new.
How about you?