8 Keys to Entrepreneurial Success

Welcome to another episode of Launched & Legal with Dayna Thomas, Esq., entrepreneurship attorney and law firm coach. Launched & Legal is an Atlanta Small Business Network original series dedicated to bringing entrepreneurs and business owners the best practices and tips for strategizing, legalizing, and monetizing their ventures. Today, Dayna breaks down her list of eight guiding principles that will help you find entrepreneurial success.

Transcription: 

Dayna Thomas:
Hi everyone, I’m Dayna Thomas, Esq., and welcome to Launched & Legal where it’s my mission to help you strategize, legalize, and monetize your business. I’m so excited that you’re watching because today, and in every show, I’ll be sharing the best practices and tips to take your business and brand to the next level. On today’s show, I will be sharing my eight keys to entrepreneurship success. Now, yes, I am a lawyer, but my first love is entrepreneurship and there’s so much to talk about as it relates to entrepreneurship, outside of just the legal aspects and how to build a solid legal foundation.

Dayna Thomas:
Now, I’m going to share today my tips and my eight keys for successful entrepreneurship. You’re not going to hear anything legal in those, you’re just going to hear about different ways that you can build yourself up and help you to make some decisions as you are pursuing your goals and your dreams in entrepreneurship. All right, number one, a positive mindset. Now this is number one for a reason, because it’s the first thing that you have to do. If you believe that you can do it, you can do it. If you believe that you can’t do it, you cannot do it. It all starts with what you believe in your mind that you can achieve. You have to be optimistic, believe in yourself, and really believe that everything will work for your good, all right? So do everything you can to create a positive and faithful mindset.

Dayna Thomas:
Some things that I’ve done, for example, when I was building my business, I stopped listening to music in the car. That seems a bit extreme, but I wanted to pump into my mind as much positivity as I possibly could, as much inspiration as I could, as much motivation as I could. So that my mind was filled with nothing but optimism as it related to entrepreneurship and nothing but motivation as it related to believing in myself. The first thing that you should do, and the first key to entrepreneurship success is making sure that you have a positive mindset.

Dayna Thomas:
All right, number two on my list is invest in yourself. Listen, there’s going to be some money involved as it relates to building your business. No one became a millionaire by spending tens or hundreds of dollars, you’re going to have to invest in yourself but you have to be willing to do that. All right, I remember when I was first starting my business, there was a course that I wanted to take, a weekend course, and it was a large sum of money. But because I knew that I needed to invest in myself and I believed in the vision that I had for my future law firm, I was willing to do that. And I had to take out three credit cards in order to come up with the fee for that course.

Dayna Thomas:
But you know what that showed me, it showed me that I was willing to do whatever it took. Now by no means am I saying that you should go into debt for your own journey, I’m just saying that you have to be willing to invest in your dreams, invest in yourself. Because if you don’t invest in yourself, who will? The third one is keep your expenses low. Now, expenses are different from investments. Expenses do not make you more money, investments do make you more money. A story about my life again, when I first started my law firm, I thought that I needed this fancy office and a fancy neighborhood in order to get clients or in order for them to take me seriously. All that did was be a $1,200 expense that I had every month when I wasn’t even making that much in the beginning.

Dayna Thomas:
I also liked working from home, so having that fancy expensive office did nothing for me. It didn’t make me any more money. In fact, a lot of clients like to meet over the phone or virtually. So make sure that you keep your expenses low. You do not need a new computer, you don’t need a new phone, you don’t need a new wardrobe. All of those things are expenses. You just need one computer, your regular phone is fine, and the same clothes that you have will be totally fine as you are building your business. And reward yourself with adding more to your expenses by reaching monetary goals, reaching your revenue goals. But you do not need to have high expenses in the beginning. You want to cut expenses as much as possible so that you don’t have that stress or anxiety that you have to make so much money when a lot of that is going to expenses that you don’t actually need.

Dayna Thomas:
All right, next, we’re going to talk about on the list, self-education. Self-education is absolutely a key for entrepreneurship. Formal education is only going to teach you so much. Formal education, meaning going to college, going to school, getting a master’s degree, whatever that may be. That will teach you a good amount about business, but there is so much more to learn to educate yourself. Law school gave me my degree, but honesty, 90% of the value that I provide to my clients, I educated myself on those things. So take some time, take a lot of time to educate yourself as it relates to your business, your product, your brand. When you’re on Facebook or social media and you see those ads for a free webinar or a free Masterclass or a free download, a free checklist, click on those things.

Dayna Thomas:
We do know that a lot of times at the end of those free items, there’s some type of offer. But if you have some self control, you can get so much education and free education online, whether that’s YouTube or other blogs, different resources. And not to say that it’s bad to take an online course, you should certainly take online courses. Online courses and webinars and MasterClasses, reading books. Those are amazing ways to educate yourself. There is no way to build this unless you educate yourself and constantly educate yourself as you’re building your business. All right, next is plan your next moves. I am a strong believer in having a plan. How do you know what your next move is if you don’t even really know where you want to be?

Dayna Thomas:
I don’t believe that an entrepreneurship you just wing it. We can’t just wing it in entrepreneurship. We have to know what comes next, so that we can know what we have to do now to get to the next level. So make sure you know what your ultimate goals are and devise a plan to get there. Wherever you are in business, you want to plan your next move so that you make sure that you’re intentional with getting to the next level and you are not wasting time or money to get there. Moving right along, you need to be great at what you do. There’s no substitute for doing a great job. There’s no substitute for being excellent at what you do, and that also goes hand in hand with self-education.

Dayna Thomas:
So make sure that you’re great at what you do. Not only just provide a certain product or a service and you’re doing pretty good or you’re just as good as the next person, be great at it, excel at it. Do more and go above and beyond. Along with that, we’re going to move on to our next key to successful entrepreneurship, which is to provide excellent service to your customers and clients. Please don’t take lightly the word excellent. I don’t mean good and I don’t mean great. I mean excellent stellar customer service. Customer service that blows the mind of your customers and your clients. Especially, if something doesn’t go quite right, do as much as you can to fix it. As the entrepreneur, we’re the ones that takes the L. The L meaning the loss.

Dayna Thomas:
So if something doesn’t go right with a client or a customer, there’s some confusion on what the service is or what the product offers. You have to make that right with your consumer or your client, your customer. And not only making it right, doing it with a smile. All right, last, but certainly not least, be extra. Now, Dayna, what do you mean by be extra? I mean do what other people are not willing to do. There is so much that other people are not willing to do. So many times I hear people say that they have this dream or this goal or this vision, and they want to make it happen but, “Oh, no, I can’t do that. I can’t, I’m not willing to do that. I’m not willing to do this.” You have to be willing to do whatever it takes.

Dayna Thomas:
If this is your goal, if this is what you want for your life, if entrepreneurship is something that wakes you up in the morning and you cannot stop thinking about this business idea and where you want to take your life and your legacy as it relates to entrepreneurship, you have to go above and beyond. You have to be extra. Think about what other people are not doing, and I’ll give you a story. I went to this amazing conference and they had guest speakers. And so for the next day of the conference, they told us that someone that had won Shark Tank was going to be our speaker for the next day, and I really wanted to meet this person.

Dayna Thomas:
So what I did was I went to every staff person that was running that show, producing the show, and I got their names and I wrote them all down. When I went home that evening, I wrote a handwritten note to each and every one of them thanking them for their service, their work, their contribution to the production. Not only that, I wrote a special note for the speaker that was coming not knowing if I would ever get a chance to talk to him. But I knew that it could be a very beneficial relationship in business. I wrote a note to him and I taped my business card in that note. And so the next day he spoke, it was amazing, he was leaving. I think he had to catch a flight, and I ran out behind him and I thanked him for his time and gave him my card.

Dayna Thomas:
You wouldn’t believe, before the end of that conference, I had a voicemail from him telling me how thankful he was about that and that he wanted to talk about some business opportunities that we can do together. Mind blown. You would never know what happens when you are extra, so do what other people are not willing to do. I guarantee no one wrote a handwritten note to everyone that worked for that production, so that’s what gets the results. So be extra, and remember all the other keys that I talked about for entrepreneurship.

Dayna Thomas:
Well, I hope today’s show helped to educate and inspire you as you pursue your business goals. Be sure to share today’s show with someone who can benefit, and visit myasbn.com and subscribe. If you have any questions or comments about today’s show, I would love to hear from you. Send me a message or comment on Instagram @daynathomaslaw. And remember to tune in next week and every week to make sure your business is Launched & Legal.


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