Four Things I Learned Interviewing Top WNY Entrepreneurs So Far…

After interviewing 10 Entrepreneurs the past few weeks I am noticing some patterns arise in the interviews. Before I dive into what I’ve learned so far I cannot wait to interview more Western New York Entrepreneurs. I have 10 more interviews lined up with some top WNY Entrepreneurs in the next 3 weeks. I am already booking interviews into the middle of May. The list of interviewees is getting better and better. People keep referring me to great business owners who are just doing so well in their respective fields. The knowledge that is going to come from these podcasts is going to be priceless and best of all FREE!

Now cramming everything I’ve learned into a few bullet points would be impossible. If you haven’t listened to all the podcasts yet I would highly recommend it. But there are some patterns that I’ve noticed from interviewing 10 top entrepreneurs so far:

Passion and Love For What We Do Is 100% Crucial

The one thing I’ve noticed that Entrepreneurs absolutely ‘no questions asked’ need is PASSION and a love for what they do. I’m not talking about money. They actually love the work they are doing. Top Entrepreneurs believe in their vision so much it almost doesn’t matter how much work it takes to get to where they are. I’ve noticed Entrepreneurs who struggle the most with excitement for what they do always struggle with their business in general. When money becomes the focal point of the vision, is when it all unravels. Because once we make it; we lose sight of what got us there and what will help us grow. Running a business isn’t easy as we all know but when we don’t love what we do its impossible to have the energy to tackle the tough task,the rough spots and the tough conversations (with others & our selves). Money can NOT be the #1 motivator at all. Entrepreneurs who love what they do do not count hours worked. They can careless about that. They care about the vision and what they are building (not bank account wise). They care about the work and services they are providing. Every Entrepreneur I’ve interviewed loves what they do. You can see, feel and it breathe it just by being by near them. If you don’t have a passion for what you do, it is time to move on and so something else.  I’m dead serious.

Risk Is Always Involved

I’ve yet to meet a top entrepreneur who hasn’t taken a big risk in their business. I’ve interviewed entrepreneurs who have doubled down on their business and won. I’ve also interviewed business owners that doubled down and completely whiffed. Whoof right? Chez Ann opened a 2nd location and shut it down. Eat Rite Foods doubled down and it went great. But what I love about it is they went for it! And they both learned from risking it. Chez Ann Salon & Spa went from 700 square feet to 1500 to almost 4000. And then went for a 2nd location. Ann is really successful and still made mistakes. You and I are going to make mistakes. It’s okay. Because when we love what we do; our passion, learning and tenacity make up for it. We are in this to go all in. Top Entrepreneurs aren’t here to play it safe.

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There Is No Secret Sauce To Business

Can I be honest with you? I’m a little disappointed in not finding some big secret from interviewing business owners. What I mean by that is I was expecting some really good well-kept secrets to succeeding in business. I was expecting some really amazing ideas that I never thought of before. Now don’t get me wrong I heard some great stuff and ideas from interviewing these business owners but when it comes down to it we just have to do the work and put in the time. We need to hustle and work for everything we have. Sure, there are great tips and ideas to minimize the struggle and give us better results quicker. But in the end, we still need to hustle and work for what we have. It takes time and usually longer than we expect. We have to put the time in. That’s entrepreneur-ism. That’s the cold hard truth. The work needs to be put in. The grind must be done.

All Entrepreneurs Are Human

If you are like me I can idolize some entrepreneurs and wonder how they have built some of these great empires of a business. What I’ve noticed is that they are just human as I am. No superpowers, no secret sauce as I mentioned earlier. I noticed they all have made mistakes. Usually a lot of them. They are just as prone to mistakes as you and I are. I love this because that means everyone is on the same wavelength in terms of opportunity. There is a margin for error because we are going to make them as entrepreneurs. We need to forgive ourselves for being human, being emotional, and sometimes just being air headed in our decisions.

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