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Business Development Tips Everyone Should Follow

Over the many years as an entrepreneur I’ve learned a few very valuable lessons for business development. Some I’ve learned the hard way while others I’ve learned through the success and failure of others.

What I’d like to share with you today is not some “blueprint” that is “guaranteed to make you money in 2 days” or any of that nonsense. Instead, I’m going to share a few business development tips that have helped me and many of the students I coach live a relatively financially free and otherwise badass life.

Get ready, because I’m about to drop some truth bombs…

Dream Big

You’d be hard pressed to find a successful person that isn’t a big dreamer. Sure, there are those that are a product of luck and had success dropped into their lap, wrapped with a big fancy ribbon, but the overwhelming majority reached the pinnacle of success because they had lofty goals, aspirations, and were willing to what it takes to reach them.

Famous motivational speaker, David Joseph Schwartz said it best;

“Think little goals and expect little achievements. Think big goals and win big success.”

Legendary inventor and businessman, Henry Ford is a perfect example of “dreaming big”. Ford was a popular mechanic that could have easily cruised through life fixing vehicles for his employer. Instead, he dared to dream big and concocted the best car in all of Detroit.

Again, he could have just sold his cars and made a comfortable living, working with his small team of engineers. At the time, the auto industry was beginning to boom. In Detroit alone, there were close to 100 other competitors, all trying to capitalize on the success of the automobile.

Ford honed his craft and continued to improve his models. Seeing the initial success that ford received, investors flocked to his side, trying to convince him to create a luxury model that would be marketed towards the upper class. You see, automobiles of the time hardly worked, broke down all the time, and were so expensive that only the wealthiest could afford them.

Ford had other plans. He wanted to craft a vehicle that was not only more durable, but affordable enough for the common man to purchase. While others were content marketing to the upper class, Ford saw the potential that the automobile had and wanted to create cars not just for the Detroit elite, but every family in America.

Many investors abandoned him because of this, but his reputation as an engineer spread, as did his business. Eventually, he created the fabled Ford Model-T that was incredibly durable and affordable, which quickly made it the most popular car in the world.

But, Ford’s story does not stop there. Yet again, Ford could have relaxed and enjoyed the spoils that he was receiving from his Model-T. He already had enough money to retire to some remote island for the rest of his life.

Remember, he dreamt of supplying vehicles to every family across America. With an automobile that was a fraction of the price of others and twice as reliable, but his workers simply couldn’t meet the demand.

With the advice of his team, Henry Ford introduced the very first assembly line to industrialization. Suddenly, production skyrocketed. A car that once took 12 hours to fully construct now took just over 2 hours from start to finish.

Before long, his factory was able to produce over a thousand new cars a day, that were not only cheaper, but more reliable than other brands. This was absolutely unfathomable only a few years prior.

For the first time in history, the average person could travel across the country freely, without the restrictions that trains and riding horseback imposed. Because one man dared to dream big, he was able to dramatically impact the entire world.

Which brings me to my next point…

Others Can Open Doors, But Only You Can Walk Through Them

Every single day we are presented with opportunities. Most of the time we are either completely oblivious to them, or we are simply too scared to act.

When we finally muster up the guts to take advantage of our opportunities, good things almost always happen, even if it’s a learning experience or a blessing in disguise.

Friends, family, teachers, and mentors can provide the advice necessary to become successful, but it is you (and you alone) that must put in the work, the effort, and take the proper actions necessary to achieve your goals.

You must possess a certain amount of drive or else you’re in for a rough road ahead. Here are a few suggestions to help…

Surround yourself with other successful people – Motivation and positive energy is contagious. If these people are hard working, successful business people, then spending time with them may just help their positive traits rub off on you.

Stop over thinking everything – Seriously, knock it off. The most difficult part of achieving success is doing the work necessary, instead of sitting around, thinking about it.

George Patton once said, “A good plan violently executed now is better than a perfect plan executed next week.” You’ll learn so much more from “doing”.

Tune out distractions – There will always be some sort of obstacle to overcome. Often times these obstacles manifest themselves in the form of distractions; tv, friends, family, significant others, internet browsing, etc.

I’m not saying you should neglect those you care about, but if you want to reach your goals, you will need to find the time to focus and truly commit yourself. Perhaps it’s only an hour or two at night or early in the morning when everyone is still in bed?

It doesn’t matter when it is. What matters is that when the time arises, you focus solely on the task at hand (even if it’s for a short duration).

Think Outside the Box

What is going to differentiate your business from your competitors? It’s easy to reverse engineer a company and follow their exact steps, but unless you think outside the box, you’ll end up as a less successful, unoriginal replica.

That means that you shouldn’t always listen to what others tell you to do. Even the smartest people out there make mistakes.

By thinking outside of the box you spur imagination and creativity, which is a trait that every successful person since the dawn of time has possessed. Do your research, draw your own conclusions, and don’t be afraid to go against the grain once in a while.

Think back to the story of Henry Ford. Every automobile manufacturer in the world was focused on selling high priced items to the rich upper class at the time.

There was absolutely no market for cheap vehicles or even the will to engineer one. Droves of investors bailed on Ford because he wouldn’t commit to a high priced, luxury model.

He thought outside of the box and did what no one else thought was even possible because of it.


People are always so eager to discover the newest, cool strategy for guaranteed success. Well I’m here to tell you that there is none. Don’t let people fool you with their smoke and mirrors. You don’t need to buy a bunch of online courses to teach you how to become successful (except mine. yes that’s a shameless plug).

All you truly need to do to reach the pinnacle of success is to dream big, take action, and think outside the box. If you do those 3 things, everything else will fall in place. Good luck!

Oh yeah, I also want to hear what traits you believe are essential for success. Leave it in the comment section below!

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About Sean Donahoe

Sean is one of the most recognized industry leaders in business and marketing. As a popular speaker, author, consultant he has helped over 50,000 students world wide find success in their businesses and has consulted with Fortune 500 companies and businesses of every size grow and thrive...
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