I meet clients every day who are not where they wish to be – in life, in business or both. They may be unfulfilled in their lives and are not making the amount of income they desire. They may love what they do, yet they are not building the retirement nest egg they need. They may be juggling family, work, and other activities and simply are running themselves ragged on the infamous hamster wheel. And still others were ‘exited early’ from a position they were not ready to leave. Many of my clients end up asking me: ‘Is this it? Is this all there is? What’s next?’
Well….there is no pat answer to these questions and one size certainly does not fit all. We all need to define success on our own terms. In fact, my second book in the “Is This Seat Taken?” book series speaks directly to that reality and highlights 15 stories of ‘late in life success’….all defined uniquely by the individual. The book offers questions, introspective musings to help break the log jam and limiting beliefs which hold us back. Many have told me those stories inspire, offer alternative perspectives, and help to ‘lift the blinders’ so that we can approach our choices with a more open mind.
Yet, as we embark on 2018 (hard to believe!), and many of us are facing these questions, I wanted to offer one multi-faceted point to consider.
Be open to multiple approaches…..there is wisdom in creating multiple streams of revenue. The days of one job with one company for 30-40 years are long gone. Corporate America, on the whole, is not loyal to her employees. Folks will spend their entire lives giving to a company they love and believe in – only to be exited when they hit a certain age or their position becomes ‘redundant’.
Choosing a portfolio approach (aka: more than one revenue stream) is the future for most of us. This gives us an expanded portfolio (pun intended) for revenue, tremendous security from the volatility of our economy, and a proven source for residual retirement income. These revenue streams could be rental property, interest from investments, oil and gas annuities, book royalties, direct sales business revenues……thanks to the internet, the options are varied. It is very easy to presume business models, which we grew up with, are the same today as they were then. What a mistake. The world (and business) is in an ever constant state of change. That is reality. Be open to business models you may have once turned your nose up to – or rolled your eyes when they were introduced. That is a huge mistake. For example, the old-fashioned ‘direct sales model’ is NOW actually a social commerce model, leveraging social media and digital commerce in EVERY aspect of the business.
So be open – do not make false assumptions. Explore. Investigate. Learn. Had I not been, I would have missed one of the best business opportunities in my life.
Quite often I am asked what it is that I like most about being an entrepreneur and a portfolio business owner AND why I chose this path when my corporate career was successful and had a very bright trajectory. Well, the reasons are varied. Yet, in a nutshell, I embrace three truisms, in particular, which support my latest chapter.
1) As Warren Buffet so aptly stated: Find a way to make money while you sleep or plan to work the rest of your life.
2) The average millionaire has 7 distinct revenue streams.
3) Follow your bliss. (Joseph Campbell’s famous words) If we love what we do, we will never ‘work’ a day in our life.
These facts fed into my decision to build multiple businesses and revenue streams to support a lifestyle I desired for the next 40 years of my life. Yes, I loved my corporate career, and learned a lot through those experiences; however, after 25+years, my desires, values, and how I wished to contribute in the world changed. I was ‘out of alignment’ (to use my word). And alignment, to me, is loving what you do, being good at it, and most importantly having it tied to something greater than yourself. This can (and will change) over the course of our lives. My greatest joy, throughout my life and career, has always been helping individuals and groups of individuals (teams) reach their potential. It feeds my soul – always has. Leading teams and serving others is my ‘art’ and my passion. Yet, where and how this manifests, has evolved over the years. Today, I consult, coach, mentor, lead, teach, learn, write books and articles, and build multiple businesses which I own – and I help others do the same. It is fulfilling, liberating, challenging, and a life-long learning opportunity. It simply does not get much better than that!
If you are curious…reach out to me. I would love to share and brainstorm with you. AND, if you live in Dallas – come see me this week! I will be at the Small Business Expo on Wednesday, January 24th (FranchiseExpoSouth.com for information) AND at the #DFW Entrepreneurs Expo (www.DWEsummit.com for information) on Saturday and Sunday, January 27-28. Both of these forums will offer many opportunities to explore options and learn from very successful entrepreneurs. Stop by – I would love to see you!!
What do you think? Weigh in – we learn best through community! Share your thoughts, ideas, and opinions! And Texas peeps – I hope to see you this week!!