Forget Lists of Entrepreneur Ideas – You Only Need 2 Things!

I am always amazed at human nature.  We are amazingly good at seeking out information that we need in order to change the directions of our lives, whether it's through blog posts, courses, or asking friends.  But when it actually comes down to putting all of that hard-earned information to use… well, that's a whole other thing…

A while back I got an email from someone on my newsletter that said:

I think one personal productivity problem I'm facing right now is generating enough income; I feel stagnated as I've been in the workforce for 4 straight years and have had the same pay rate for about 3 years. The only increment I have had was in the first year, when I got a raise, but after that, it's been steady. I mean, I'm thankful for having a job, but I feel that my skills and values are been sold short.

He then followed up in another email…

I really like your idea posted on the blog about making your own job and I was wondering how can I sell for you?

I really want to find a way to work less and make more; not only monetarily, but also more family time.

Always excited to help, I responded and gave him THREE ways in which he could sell for me and make anywhere between $10 – 20K per sale on some of the side business stuff that I do (just a note, this is not an earnings claim).

Two weeks later…  no response.

My Biggest Pet Peeve

What stops most people from starting something on their own?  Is it that they don’t have any great ideas that they can take to the bank? Is it because they don’t have a degree from an accredited university that tells them that they now have the ability to become an entrepreneur? Maybe it’s because they don’t have the right partners in place to be a success?

All that is bullshit... utter and complete bullshit.

That vast majority of people don’t start something because they are afraid.  They are afraid to give up watching worthless television shows for 4 hours a day.  They are afraid to give up playing video games for 2 hours a night.  They are afraid to stop wasting their time associating with other lazy and unsuccessful people  during the week.

I am a nice guy, but one thing that pisses me off more than anything are people who ask for my advice and don’t do anything about it (whether it’s following my advice or taking a different route but still acting on something).  You Can Work Less is not here to entertain you – although it may sometimes.  Your time is valuable, my time is valuable, and don’t waste both of our time by not taking action.

Don’t get me wrong, sometimes you need to veg out a bit and watch TV and play games, but if deep down you know that you need to do something more in order to provide for your family or enhance your career, or just to make more money, spending 20+ hours a week in front of the boob tube is not what you should be doing.

Action is the ONLY way to succeed

Stop being afraid.  Whether you think you are or not, no matter how many ideas you have, they aren’t going to matter unless you do two things:

  1. Contact those who might want what you are selling.
  2. Asking them if they want what you are selling.

There is your list!  You are now equipped with all that you need in order to start a business.  Stop reading blogs (including mine) that give you tons of ideas of how to become an entrepreneur, how to hire overseas, how to price, and just start talking to your potential customers.

When I first started my business, I was so worried about finding a niche, what business cards I needed, and a whole bunch of other junk.  Over the last 2 years my niche has changed over 5 times, and because of trying something, failing, and moving on, Revenue has been on a steady climb.

You need to fail to find your business.  The only way that you can fail is to try to succeed.

You are always welcome to comment below, sign up for my newsletter, and email me, but don’t waste my time and yours if you aren’t going to do anything. Only those that are willing to take the risk of being rejected are going to succeed.

If I fail more than you, I win – Seth Godin


  • Nikolas Allen

    October 1, 2011

    I feel your pain. Being a super-driven, action-oriented biz-head myself, I also find it irritating when people collect tons of great information and don’t do anything with it.

    As for your 2-point list, I agree, but I would also like to add this as a precursor: Make sure you are absolutely certain of a) How your offering is unique, and b) How it will improve the lives of your prospects.

    These points will definitely come up during step #2, and the more prepared you are to address them, the more sales you will close.

    Thanks for this swift, kick-in-the-pants reminder to take ACTION!

    • Dean Soto

      October 1, 2011

      Hi Nikolas,

      Thanks for the comment. Yeah, you are very right. You definitely want to do some market research in order to create a product or service that will help improve the quality of other’s lives. That also is a way to take action. You can easily start asking people about the service that you provide and whether they would find it valuable enough to buy. But… that means that you have to risk rejection and actually do some work as well.

      Great stuff. Thanks, man. Always love your content.

  • kat

    October 18, 2011

    I so get it. I talk to people all the time about this very subject and they will get this blank stare and say, “I should, huh”. I always think, they’re not going to do anything! If they were they would have said I will, not I should.

    You meet with my husband earlier this year about his website and he took you advise, although he doesn’t move fast, that’s just his nature. But he did hire virtual help and is moving in a positive direction. He is like most people in that he wasn’t sure which way to go or how to do it so he was doing nothing. He’s also a typical man and didn’t want to ask for help and thought he couldn’t afford to hire anyone. Your advise really helped him set a clear path.

    This article gave me a great idea, when I am working with people, instead of just telling them what they should do I will create an action list. They can add, delete or deviate in any way they want but at least they will have an action plan and I will feel like I have helped them instead of the, I should, huh.

  • Dean Soto

    October 18, 2011

    Hi Kat!

    Great to hear from you!!

    I think that is an AWESOME idea and would provide a ton of value to your clients. Most people are afraid to do anything and appreciate when they are given concrete action lists to take.

    A lot of Internet entrepreneurs make that a big part of the courses that they sell mainly because they know that it’s easier for people to actually take action, and when they do and succeed that’s a testimonial for the Internet marketer.

    ughhh.. yeah, I hate “I should.” Nothing good ever follows that… lol

    I’m so excited for your husband that he took the leap to outsource some of his tasks! He’s a great guy and smart. I think that it’s hard for any business owner to take the leap to try something new so that’s a testament to him, especially since he had something that seemed to be working well but could have been optimized a bit. I can’t wait to catch up and hear how everything is going!

    Talk soon,