How to Take the First Step as an Entrepreneur - Episode 5

03.13.2019 - By Game of Grow

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We are back! You are now listening to the Game of Grow Podcast and I’m your host, Muoyo Okome. Episode 5 of the most dangerous business podcast in the world! It doesn’t matter where you start or where you are right now. If you are willing to develop your skills, study success, and work tenaciously over a long period of time, your future can be WAY bigger than your past. That is my promise to you.  Take for example my man James. If you read the very first of the Hustler’s Corner, the weekly update I send via email, you already know this story. If not, you’re missing out… Make sure to sign up for the Hustler’s Corner. Go to gameofgrow.com and submit your name and email using the form at the very top of the page. And if you like, email me at [email protected] and I will personally forward you volume one, which I happen to be very proud of.   Today we are talking about how to start. Well James started,  I am super excited about James and his progress in the app game! To quickly share the story, James is one of my App Moguls who joined me over a year ago before the program was even really a program. He won Co-Member of the Month for December when his first app Mobile Fax for iPhone went live -- well designed app which fills a real need in the marketplace (yes people are still sending faxes). I always advise people to get to market as quickly, cheaply, and imperfectly as possible, as the real learnings begin when you're live, making adjustments. No one ever listens, and neither did James, haha (neither did I at first), but now he is live and getting those real learnings from the market, and it is a joy seeing him trying many things, adjusting, and truly becoming an entrepreneur. I've already seen him plow through several setbacks on the way to nearly 100 PAYING SUBSCRIBERS who will pay month after month. This will only increase and compound, but he had to actually start and get out there to make it happen. Round of applause for James (and feel free to review his app if you like it.. no need to subscribe/pay to do so). I’ve saved the link for you at gameofgrow.com/faxapp. Definition of the Game of Grow... Review of the Week Alright, so before we dive into today’s topic… You guys are killing it on the subscribes & reviews. We’ve crossed 50 reviews, so let’s see how quickly we can make it to 100. We’ve crossed 1000 downloads. I think 2000 will happen a lot quicker. In case you didn’t know, podcasts are notoriously hard to grow, but thanks to you guys passing on the word guerilla style… very grass roots, we are doing exactly that. So I’ve been thinking. One thing I want to do in true Game of Grow fashion is to be extremely transparent with the downloads and the metrics… this is not something youre going to get on most shows, I want you to see the true impact of what happens, when you listen, subscribe, review, recommend. That is how we are growing it bit by bit. And it’s my job to bring you top level content that makes you proud to spread the word. And as we hit those milestones faster and faster, I am going to figure out some cool ways that I can reward you individually and collectively to celebrate. It should be a lot of fun! But yea, anyway… Each week we feature one review of the week as a way of saying thank you for helping us to grow the show and the movement. And to that end, for the very first time. I wanted to make sure I featured somebody new, who I don’t know personally (or at least I can’t decipher the username). So big shoutout to TuneJunez. Without further ado… “Sit back and relax as Muoyo Okome tells listeners about the trials and tribulations of not only his life and the app business but the marketing and savviness needed to become a true self-made entrepreneur. Love the length of time and detail with each pod episode. Each episode stands on its own but together it flows like beautiful African fabric to give listeners what they need: advice and positive energy to pursue their dreams in any field they’re in. I expect the episodes to keep getting better but it’s a great start that’s far and I am entertained and intrigued by what’s yet to come and the guests that will eventually arrive to supplement Muoyo’s words of wisdom.”   And again, that review came from TuneJunez. Thank you so much. Please feel free to email me at [email protected] so I can say thanks… and I would love to let the community know a bit more about you. So go ahead and subscribe and leave a review on iTunes, Spotify, Soundcloud or your podcast player of choice… and perhaps I’ll be featuring you next! And guys… after you subscribe and leave your review, please email me to let me know that you did, as well as a bit about you for 2 reasons. 1) it’s great to learn more about you guys in the community 2) gives me the opportunity to share more about you when I do the review of the day Alright, so moving on… Today's Episode... On this episode…. We are discussing How to Start. How do you take the first step in your entrepreneurial venture. First thing to establish is that there are 1,001 ways to do this. Anyone who tells you that there is one path alone is just lying to you. It’s not true! There are many ways to get it done. What I want to share with you is how I’ve done it. What I’ve done right, What I’ve learned, what I could’ve done way better, and I have a feeling this is going to be a more helpful approach for you. Cool? So let’s revisit my origin story which you’ve heard from a couple different angles in episodes 1 & 3… I think episode 3 is particularly relevant to this question, but we are going to go more in depth here on the “start” thing… on the question of START. Our story starts with me working as a “Business Manager” for one of the biggest technology companies in the world. In reality I was mostly managing spreadsheets and managing not to go crazy. Throughout life, I had mostly done all the things we’ve all been told to do… go to school, study hard, get good grades, and that is what I did. For whatever reason after both college and after graduate school, I was rejected from A LOT of jobs that I applied to, before I finally landed this opportunity, and I was making the most money I ever made in my life, the elusive six figures… I could not complain about that. Like a lot of folks in the corporate world, all I wanted to do was do well… dominate in my job, get recognition and promotions, more responsibility, and more money. I didn’t necessarily care about climbing up the ladder (I always had a vision that eventually I would work for me… I didn’t necessarily think it would be that soon), but making money was important to me.   The struggle ended up being that I was working long hours... days, nights, and weekends in a job that I did not enjoy, where I was not learning much on a daily or weekly basis (funny story: when I visited my business school on a couple occasions on recruiting trips, while speaking to the students, I actually realized that my mind was atrophying, and I was getting dumber from lack of using it)... and I was pretty certain from their actions and our interactions, that the people I worked with… the higher ups, did not respect me.   The worst part: I was starting to internalize some of this negativity and negative energy in the atmosphere (if you are in an environment anything like this, make sure to go the extra mile to fortify yourself against it) and had even begun to wonder if I was smart, competent, or capable. I gained a lot of weight and I just was not feeling good about myself overall. I wondered how it was that no matter what I did and how hard I worked, I kept finding my way back to the exact same familiar place… utter & complete failure Then, because things were not going poorly enough, I discovered that I was being demoted or moved into a position that I wasn’t actually trained for or credentialed for, and wouldn’t be able to contribute. It’s kind of like they were just looking for a place to park me because I was not seen as a valuable member of the organization. (I am grateful that they didn’t fire me though while all this was going on, and I was able to collect that check!) I still remember crying quietly to myself in my car driving on Washington Boulevard at nighttime on the way home. And it was around then I made a decision that something had to change. And for any of you who are going through something similar… who are going through a terrible time professionally, and perhaps even personally, I want you to pay attention to this story, and hopefully you can use it to your advantage and it can serve you as well as it has served me. And then you know the story… I was running around frantically… I had massive energy…. Just looking for a way out. Anything else that was legal that I could potentially pursue, whether it was another job or an entrepreneurial opportunity. Negative energy can be powerful fuel. Especially when you feel like you’re out of options. I was looking at everything, and I came across an entrepreneur doing mobile apps. I studied him for a while, and said “hey, I think this could be my thing” I loved that individuals and small teams were succeeding with it and I loved that you could build them one time and benefit many times over… not that there was no work to it… that doesn’t exist, but your work could be magnified. The apps kept on working without getting tired, complaining, or taking breaks, and you could always add more to the team!I decided I was going to build a big app portfolio, so that out of this portfolio, some would be big winners, and overall they would work together to replace my income and free me financially. That’s where I dove in and invested in a book and then 2 different online courses to educate myself. I started with small results, but it was enough to show me more was possible if I kept on pushing. 936 downloads for $81.78. I then knew that my biggest problem was more downloads, so I dove deep on marketing and was able to reach a $1000-$2000 monthly revenue plateau. I wasn't there yet and ran into a number of problems, so I just tried to address them one by one when they arose That December, the momentum started to compound and things really started to take off and the numbers started to make sense financially and I knew I was on my way I was getting more money than I had originally hoped for, I was experiencing the freedom I dreamed of, and I was being looked to for leadership, and having the pleasure of helping a lot of other people with their own journeys… Which is exactly what we’re here to do today. I hope by sharing my story and my experience that I can be helpful to you. And I am still on that journey to this day. Just because you experience success once doesn’t mean that you don’t have to continue earning it or that there are not different levels to unlock, but today we are talking about how to start… or even how to re-start. Maybe you’ve experienced success already and you want to build another thing. I’ve been there… Maybe you’ve experienced a failure or 5… I’ve been there… Maybe a little bit of both... Based on my own experience that we just recapped, here is roughly how I would approach it. Again keep in mind there are many other ways. This is my take: Make a decision that you’re going to start (and that you’re going to finish)I didn’t know how I was going to get from here to there, but I knew for damn sure that I needed to make a change, no matter what it was going to take and no matter how long it would take. In my experience when I approach with that kind of conviction and that level of fervor and determination, I have a much better success rate in getting what I want than if I just go through the motions or “give it a try”And another hack I like to use in combination with this is to make an investment so I have some skin in the game, and I am less likely to forget about the idea and move onFor example, the night in the coffee shop when I came up with Game of Grow, minutes later I was signing up for the social channels and buying the domains. Not as huge an investment in this. You don’t want to give it a try, you want to make a decision about what is going to happen. Slight shift in thinking, but it is powerful Start This might be the biggest thing. Even though I didn’t know what the heck to do in the beginning, I got into action and started trying a lot of different things. A lot of these things were the wrong things for me, but it allowed me to find some of the right things. Had I just stayed in one place and tried to come up with the best plan, it never would have happened. Just start. If you can nail points 1 & 2 you’ll be ahead of the game. What are your interests? Very simply, this is going to be a lot of work over a long period of time if you want to be successful with it. While you don’t necessarily need extreme passion in the thing you are working on, if you don’t enjoy at least some part of it, you are going to struggle to put in the work necessary to excel. Market demand We talked about this in episode 3, so feel free to go back. If we look at things from first principles… if we break it down to the essentials…. To have a business, you need to solve a problem for some set of customers, and in return they compensate you for it. In my app business to this day, I research the top charts and other data sources to determine what people want and how they are spending their money so I can use that data to inform my decisions. No matter what you decide to go into, it can’t JUST be about what you like. You want to be sure that whatever you decide to offer the market, there is demand for it. You can do this by looking at things that are already selling, and/or uncovering problems that you are aware of that could be addressed better, faster, more efficiently… whatever… Something I definitely could have done better earlier was zeroing in on exactly which customers I wanted to serve so I could offer them a series of complementary solutions rather than just moving from opportunity to opportunity. So that may be something you want to think about that will definitely bring value to your business. But don’t let it stop you from starting Establish a base While I know there is power in visualizing where you want to eventually be… (begin with the end in mind. I do love that) I didn’t allow it to paralyze me. What I needed was to replace my income or at least be able to cover my expenses plus some allowable margin of safety. My target became about $300 per day. If I could do that in a reliable fashion, I was in business. And that is pretty much all you need to do from the start. If you can cover your needs and then some in a recurring fashion, it’s going to allow you to go out and take bigger and bigger risks without even needing an investor, and I’ll tell you that you gain a lot of confidence by handling that for yourself, or at least I did. A lot more achievable than if I thought I needed to build Amazon or Facebook on my first try, which is what a lot of people set out to do… and that can be very daunting. Find a MentorAll of the things we talked about above can be expedited if you find someone who has already done what you want to do, already achieved the results you want, and then you walk in their path. I had several mentors for the app business, as I’ve discussed. I paid for their books and their online courses, and I’m glad I did because it saved me a ton of time and allowed me to get to the results I wanted a lot quicker than I would have otherwise. To this day I invest a lot of time and money in my skills and personal development in order to acquire the skills I need to accomplish what I want to accomplish. I also leverage free and inexpensive information… podcasts, books, audiobooks, etc. And sometimes I will be lucky enough to find myself in a position where someone has taken an interest in me and I’ve cultivated a relationship where the mentoring is free of charge. But I don’t count on that and I to this day I don’t have a problem paying to invest in my future if I know there is value there, and most of the people I know who have had some level of success will tell you the same thing. Note that It has to be in the right person for your goal, so definitely do your research before you start signing up for everything left and right and spending money foolishly, and note that it doesn’t absolve you of doing the work or running your own race. So know that as well. But mentorship can be a major shortcut when it comes to this entrepreneurship game. And like I said… I will never claim I have all the answers for you. Keep letting me know what your goals are and what you want to learn. As much as I can, I will do my best to introduce you to accomplished and credible people I know that can help you get start   So that’s about all I have to say today on how to take the first step. Well actually… I would be remiss if I didn’t mention this. After all, my wife is Nicaila Matthews Okome, aka Side Hustle Pro, of the chart topping Side Hustle Pro podcast. I did not leave my job until things were up and running and making significant revenue and you don’t have to either. You can certainly get started on the side as a side hustle and still be effective, in my experience. You just need to be disciplined and take it seriously, subtract from the areas of life that you need to so that you can focus and give it your all. Question of the Week Which brings us to the question of the week…. What do you want to learn about doing business online? Send your response in to [email protected], or the Game of Grow Community, gameofgrow.com/community, or you can reach me @gameofgrow on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter   The Fee This episode was sponsored by you, so IF AND ONLY IF YOU GOT VALUE, for each episode you liked bring me back one like minded person who you know would enjoy this content and show them how to subscribe and leave a review… and obviously I would love for you to do the same. And send me a screenshot at [email protected] so I can say thank you! Tell me a bit about yourself and what you want to learn! This is exactly how we are growing the show, through word of mouth… and it is working big time! They don’t want us to win, but guess what… we gon win anyway   Alright… And with that, I’ll see you guys back here real soon on the Game of Grow Podcast. Would love to see you in the Game of Grow Facebook Community. Join us at gameofgrow.com/community To sign up for our weekly email updates from the Hustler’s Corner, check out gameofgrow.com, and use the sign up form right at the top of the page…   This is not your typical entrepreneurship podcast. A lot of people ask me for advice, and I figured rather than tell you, I want to show you exactly what I’m doing. You’ll see when I get it right, when I fall on my face (it happens more than you think… that’s how we grow), what I learn, and everything that happens along the way. I don’t want to show you the result. I want you to see the process. It’s not about where you start. It’s about where you want to go, who you want to become, and the price you’re willing to pay to get there.A lot of people talk about VC’s and investors, but here in this community (gameofgrow.com/community), we take action and invest in ourselves. I LOVE the game. I LOVE the Hustle. I’m grateful for every moment and can’t put my foot on the brakes. If you want to build or grow a powerful, profitable, ethical business that makes money AND but also makes CHANGE and leaves the world a little bit better than you found it at the same damn time, I’d love if we could work on that together. It doesn’t matter where you start. Are you willing to take the challenge and GROW?   DJ drop that beat and take us out...   This episode is sponsored by my first book, "The 7 Steps to App Success".  12 million downloads, 8 years of grinding, 7 months of writing & editing, and thousands of dollars of my own money later, it’s finally here…. And you can get it for wayyyy less. Head to appmagic.co/book and pick up your digital copy, in its 108 pages of glory.   Stay connected with the movement: Join the Facebook Community: gameofgrow.com/community Instagram: instagram.com/gameofgrow Facebook:facebook.com/gameofgrow Twitter: twitter.com/gameofgrow LinkedIn: linkedin.com/in/muoyo To sign up for our weekly email updates visit us at gameofgrow.com  

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