Average is everywhere.
Create An Extraordinary Business.
You have, or are planning, your own business because you have valuable skills.
Or there are things you want to change about your life, to leave a legacy.
This amazing business consumes you. You KNOW it’s going to work. You brag about it, stare at logos, brands, websites and potential competitors like a junkie looking for their next fix.
Nothing else matters and single minded people like you aren’t fun to be around!
I know, because I was one and still am.
It’s caused me pain, disconnection and loss, but creating an extraordinary business has been the cornerstone of purpose, passion and abundance in my life.
But here’s the slap in your face.
You Don’t Have All The Skills You Need
You’re already an expert at something. You may have a Masters, a series of qualifications, years of excellent commercial experience, experts to call upon and investors falling over themselves to back you.
Or it might just be your passion, drive, enthusiasm and optimism.
You’ve scoured blogs, feverishly copying and pasting all the tips until they all merge into a stream of confusion. How will you EVER get all this done?
If you’re lucky, you’ve been trained by some of the best online marketing experts such as Ryan Deiss, Jeff Walker, Brenden Burchard or Frank Kerns and you know HOW to do the online part really well.
But what about all the other critical business skills that you desperately need urgently but don’t know how to get, or worse, you don’t know you need until it’s too late?
Three burning questions
Wherever you are in the stages of your business, there are hundreds of thousands of people all round the world, just like you, lying awake at night with three burning questions.
Do I really have what it takes to make my business an extraordinary success?
What if I don’t get enough customers?
What happens if things don’t work out and I lose everything?
What if you knew the answers to those questions and knew you couldn’t fail?
I’m going to make you a bold promise.
I named my website Riches Fulfilled because a series of life defining moments uncovered long held secrets hidden in plain sight led me to create an extraordinary business.
I used my 34 years of working for, and with, the world’s best companies to create an extraordinary business myself and I want to show you how to do exactly the same.
I will show you how to create an extraordinary business that has ever increasing numbers of insanely loyal customers and one that makes your competitors irrelevant, no matter how big they are.
But it’s only for those of you who “get it”. And here’s why.
I’m really sorry but you might just be average
Imagine you’re one of a hundred new entrepreneurs in a room, all with brilliant business ideas. Thanks to the Internet and Lord Google, you’ll have exactly the same access to customers, the same avenues to funding, technology and marketing resources as everyone else in the room.
Almost all of you will get what you WANT to start your business but not all of you will get what you NEED to create an extraordinary business.
So you will end up with an average business.
You’ll refuse to accept it now, but you’ll be sucked into a cycle of advertising the same undifferentiated products and services, switching enthusiastically and ineffectually between promoting features, benefits and price.
Uninspiring, isn’t it?
The Results Are Always The Same.
And here’s what almost always happens, no matter where you are or what your business is.
One of you will become insanely rich because you designed and orchestrated your business to perfection.
Five of you will get it right by differentiating yourselves in a tough marketplace and the success you want comes into your lives.
Fourteen of you will do some things right or just get lucky. You have the trophy partners, fancy house, two car garages, and the summer parties.
The next forty people will go bust within five years, never really understanding what it took to create something meaningful that delighted their customers.
They became slaves to the God of undifferentiated, unremarkable businesses that made them irrelevant to their customers.
They will blame the market, economy, banks and customers for their failure and then move on with their lives, chastened, possibly broken and maybe wiser.
The last forty will fight ferociously before going belly up within ten years.
They fought harder, were more resilient but eventually, willpower alone wasn’t enough.
Quietly and over time, the market shifted, tastes changed, costs increased faster than revenues, customers drifted away and businesses, hopes and dreams silently evaporated.
“What is Hell? Hell is oneself.
Hell is alone, the other figures in it merely projections”.
T S Eliot
It is part of the universal human condition that everyday, millions of people start new businesses with hope, passion, a positive attitude, will power and drive.
I’m here to tell you that these qualities don’t work.
They don’t get you customers. You may well end up broke.
I’ve researched this endlessly and in depth.
I have travelled to over 50 cities and countries and everywhere I go, I see dead and dying businesses, thousands of them, many unaware of the invisible hand of failure slowly gripping their businesses and lives in a death grip.
And when the end comes, what happens to these desperate, dejected people?
In Dante’s Divine Comedy, Inferno opens with a level where those who have done nothing in life are doomed to live permanently.
The fourth level of Hell contains people who hoarded or wasted money, condemned to fight each other barbarically and forever.
This Hell occurs in life too, when a business fails, starting a cycle of despair, financial meltdown and wasted resources.
The difference between ordinary and extraordinary is that “extra”.
Congratulations! You may already be in the group of the first twenty people who will make it because you’re curious, sceptical and care about profits, passion and meaning.
But that’s not enough.
Let’s get you into the group of top six people where you create an extraordinary business that truly inspires your tribe by not competing on features, benefits and price like everyone else but exists because you and your customers share the same beliefs.
I worked for, and with, some of the world’s best companies, took the best of what they do and started my own business, generating $3.6m in revenues in less than 20 months.
There are formulas that successful companies consistently use that work exactly the same for start ups and it’s an open secret!
You can achieve awesome growth, loyal customers and cash – but faster, cheaper and more effectively than they do.
It starts with you. It’s all about you.
You exist to do something awesome that involves doing what you love and is deeply meaningful to you and others.
If you’re still reading, perhaps it’s because your calling is to create an extraordinary business inspired by your values, experiences or events that have taken place in your life.
Seven years ago, an instructor on a course stunned me by asking me three questions during an intense debate about life.
Why are you here?
What is your purpose in life?
What were you put on Earth to do?
I stared at him idiotically, my mouth opening and shutting like a goldfish as I struggled with the enormity of those questions.
I agonised over them for weeks, until Destiny prompted me again.
Does Your Life Matter?
My mother in law had died a few years ago and my wife and I travelled to Ireland to her mother’s house to sort her things out.
“Chris,” she said, with tears in her eyes as she lovingly went through her mother’s clothes, “ I can’t smell Mammy anymore”.
She whispered,“ I can’t hear her voice anymore either ”.
Later that day, as we drove through the damp, drizzly, emerald green Irish countryside, a presenter on a radio show talked about family generations and said something that will stay with me for the rest of my life.
“When you die, your children die and their children die, there’s no evidence that you existed unless you created a legacy.
Most people are born, they get married, they have children, and they die. That’s it.
For example, can you name your grandmother’s mother?”
Suddenly, I had the answers to the three questions. And when I acted upon it, my life changed forever.
My purpose in life?
Build an extraordinary business and then show others how to do it.
The most fun with my clothes on
The two and a half years I created and ran a travel business sitting on a beach with my laptop were the happiest days of my life.
I looked forward to every day because I was always trying to upgrade my customer’s experience, my knowledge, skills and business and in doing so, making a true difference to my customers’ lives.
Their holiday emotions became connected with my team, our business, our brand, and our message.
We were all in this together.
Your business is a reflection of who you are.
To achieve your purpose, you must set goals to become everything you are capable of achieving by being engaged with something, such as an extraordinary business, that is more than just about creating profits.
Something that challenges you beyond your current level and stretches you to the point where you look forward to every day.
If your purpose involves you setting up a business, don’t just create an ordinary business.
Create an extraordinary business.
“Successful people do what unsuccessful people are unwilling to do”.
GE. Safeway. McKinsey. Siemens. NCR. DHL. Diageo. Accenture.
I’ve either worked for, or with, all of them and there are five things that they all possess and do consistently well that will make your business a success if you can implement them:
- They all have a genuine, highly differentiated, “go to market” proposition,which is all about outstanding products, services and brands that command higher prices and better margins.
- They understand in excruciating detail who their target market and audience is and focus exclusively on understanding WHY their customers buy from them, conducting detailed research, deep dives, focus groups and they use that feedback to make constant improvements to their operations.
- They relentlessly engage prospects and customers and continually seek to create an extraordinary customer experience that keeps customers coming back even if their competitors are cheaper or bigger.
- They have detailed, systematic, well resourced business plans that clearly identify the opportunity, the target market, diligently applied resources plans (finance, skills, competencies and materials) and orchestrated interactions between all the stakeholders needed for successful product or service delivery.
- They have flawless implementation and orchestration.The intelligent design of products, services, business solutions and campaigns is connected to delivery mechanisms that eliminate faults, failure and shoddy execution everywhere along the process. Huge emphasis is placed on outstanding delivery and customer care, service guarantees and project completion.
So what now?
The more sceptical amongst you will say it’s, “common sense”, but as Brendon Burchard says, “common sense is often not common practice”.
It may have taken some of these companies over a hundred years to refine their portfolios to become world leaders but over the next few months, we will work together to easily and quickly implement the strategies, tips, techniques, tools and tactics that will make your business stand out, attract loyal customers and mystify your competitors.
And yes, you will have challenges and problems in getting there;you will take some risks and occasionally break the rules.
So work with me and take control over the direction of your life by creating an extraordinary business that continually engages and inspires you to push yourself, to combine purpose, passion and profits in a way brings out the best in you.
When you do that, when you challenge yourself and stretch yourself, then you will have a truly Riches Fulfilled life.
It hurts, but it’s OK. My three life defining lessons.
You Really Piss Me Off and I Hate You
I was absolutely devastated. I had been humiliated, offended, bruised and made to feel worthless. But in the despair that I felt in that moment were the seeds of my amazing success.
I sent a survey questionnaire to three hundred customers after six months of trading and invited fifty of my high spending customers to a cheese and wine evening at one of my stores to take part in an informal focus group.
I wanted to know what they thought of my business, our service and what they wanted their ideal customer experience to be. Here are just five comments from what was a very long, painful evening:
- “Actually, a lot of your emails to me are very confusing and most of it is excruciatingly dull. Can’t you talk to me more clearly and make it more interesting? If you’re just going to email “blast”me, then don’t be surprised I treat it as spam.”
- “I usually don’t trust anyone when I shop. You’re all the same but show me how I can trust you because I really like what you do. What will you do that’s different to everyone else?”
- “I’ve bought holidays from you twice and I get angry when I see you treating another customer better than me, especially if they’re a new customer. Why do you do that?”
- “You make me feel like an idiot and I don’t like that. Some of your holiday combinations are complex and I get anxious about being embarrassed or made to look silly if I don’t understand what you say. I might even pay more if you don’t make me feel anxious or stressed by packaging my holiday into a tailor made one (ready to use and easy to understand)”.
- “I get really enraged when you or your staff answers the phone while I’m speaking to you or them face to face. It’s disgustingly rude. Don’t you have voicemail? Why do you assume that the person on the phone is more important than someone standing in front of you?”
Those people changed the way I thought of how a business should be run and in the Ultimate Startup Blueprint, we will take their hostile outbursts, waspish rants and tender comments to transform your business into an extraordinary one.
Never take your customers for granted. NEVER settle for second best.
Two games, two goals.
I’ve always been competitive and when an ice rink was built in my hometown and an ice hockey team magically appeared, I was hooked!
Over the next year, I taught myself to skate and after a year of nonstop practice, got to train with the Jets.
I was delighted with my two training games, scoring a goal in each game, although I had no idea how it happened.
Gary, the coach, called me over after the training session.
“Chris,” he said, ” in ice hockey there are “A” grade players and “B” grade players”.
“Yes?” I said, my heart bursting with excitement.
“Sorry buddy, but you’ll always gonna be a C grade player – it’s time you quit!”
Don’t waste your time being average.
“Love is hard to find, hard to keep and hard to forget”
I learned about love and fear in one shocking incident.
One hot summer’s day, my wife took a long drink from a glass, unaware of the wasp in it that stung her in her throat.
I heard the shattering glass from another room and ran to her as she struggled for breath. Her throat was swelling fast, shutting off her airway.
I couldn’t wait for an ambulance so I picked her up, grabbed my three year old son and risked many more lives by driving through every Stop sign to get her to the hospital as she went into shock.
Everything after that was a haze – the paramedics grabbing her limp body, the shouting, my wide eyed son, the anxious faces, the whining and thumping sound of the defibrillators….
As I held my son tightly, weeping silently, my fears, hopes, memories, dreams and prayers all merged into one.
She survived, but has no memories of what happened and I thank God every time I think of that dreadful day.
Our marriage, sadly, did not but we kept the beautiful memories of our time together.
Fast forward in time.
I sat in a London restaurant, looking outside whilst I ate.
A middle aged, dishevelled, desperate woman looked in, making a silent motion with her hand pleading for money.
A beautiful woman with two children near me beckoned her in and gave her a surprising amount of money.
She then asked the forlorn woman whether she’d eaten and when she discovered she hadn’t, asked the woman to join her and share their meal.
They talked animatedly as one mother to another, as if they’d been friends for many years.
I used to wonder why God brings the hungry, the thirsty and the homeless into our lives. That day I knew why.
The perfection He seeks in us is how we react to these people and that beautiful woman and her two boys reached their level of God’s perfection.
That day, I learned the meaning of loving deeply. I hope it’s not too late for me.
Life is fragile.
Today, I focus on three things – finding purpose by helping people create extraordinary businesses, trying hard to love more deeply and using my energy to contribute in any way I can.
My mentors, Brendon Burchard and the late Dr Wayne Dyer urge me to look forward to every day, to challenge myself beyond my skills and competencies.
I’m stretching myself in a way that invigorates and stimulates me as I see my life progressing again.
Tomorrow I’ll be closer to becoming my highest self.
Will you do the same?