Don’t Put All Your Trust in One Person

Put your trust in God, but keep your powder dry.
Oliver Cromwell

I had a good friend who had built a very successful carpet business from scratch. Twenty years later it was netting him over a million a year. This allowed him to open an art gallery, his true love.

Although his carpet business was a fairly large company, he had only one salesman, who was also his best friend. The trouble was, the salesman, as they often do, thought that he was not being paid enough. (He was making $250,000 in his late twenties, and this was 15 years ago.) One day he simply walked out; no comments, no arguments, no blow up, he simply left and started his own carpet business, taking half of my friend’s clients with him. It devastated my friend’s business; in less than six months, he lost everything!

In the karate business, the same story was repeated weekly. The dedicated instructor who had been taught from childhood by the senior master walked out the door with half the students, leaving the senior master devastated emotionally and financially.

I can’t tell you how many smart, successful people I know who have had hundreds of thousands of dollars embezzled by their bookkeepers or managers. (All of which could have been avoided by a 15-minute weekly audit of the financials.)

People are people; they are motivated by love, hate, jealousy, pride, money, ego, revenge, and a million other petty vanities.

Never put all your trust in one person.

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The Power of the Pareto Principle

It’s easy to have faith in yourself and have discipline when you’re a winner, when you’re number one.
What you’ve got to have is faith and discipline when you’re not a winner.


discipline factor

In 1906, Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto created a mathematical formula to describe the unequal distribution of wealth in his country, observing that 20 percent of the people owned 80 percent of the wealth. Most people have heard of the Pareto Principle, also known as the 80/20 rule, which says that 80 percent of your results will come from 20 percent of your activities.

More generally, the Pareto Principle is the observation that most things in life are not distributed evenly.

For example:

  • Twenty percent of the customers create 80 percent of the revenue
  • Twenty percent of the input creates 80 percent of the result
  • Twenty percent of the workers produce 80 percent of the result
  • Twenty percent of the bugs cause 80 percent of the crashes
  • Twenty percent of the features cause 80 percent of the usage
  • Twenty percent of your investments will produce 80 percent of your returns
  • Eighty percent of your problems will come from 20 percent of your people

They key to leveraging this knowledge is having the self-discipline to focus the majority of your efforts on the important 20 percent of your activities at the expense of the rest. This law carries across every single aspect of your life, although the actual number could be 85/15 or 90/10.

Take the time to seriously evaluate your business and personal efforts. Getting rid of the eighty and focusing on the twenty can have an exponential impact on most businesses if they have the courage to do it!

Focus your time, money, and efforts only in those places where you know you will get the highest returns. In life, every minute counts. Have the self-discipline to use your time to maximize your business.

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The Persistence Factor: The Turning Point to Greatness

“Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.”
Winston Churchill

Running a small business is never easy. It comes with long hours, red tape, unreliable staff or suppliers, and finicky customers. It can be a seemingly never-ending roller coaster ride of emotional and financial highs and lows. In fact, the average self-made millionaire has been broke, bankrupt, or financially destitute 3.7 times before becoming a financial success. Just about every business struggles for survival at some point in its life!

My first karate school was running on air for months before I cracked the code and eventually turned it into a chain of 400 schools. Along the way my savings vanished, my house was mortgaged beyond its worth, and I had $127,000 spread over an ever-expanding collection of credit cards.

On its first day of operation, with a fleet of air freighters flying in from all over the country to its Memphis headquarters, the ground crews of Federal Express waited expectantly. As the planes landed, one after another, and rolled up to the unloading dock, the crews scurried around like ants picking up packages from each plane and taking them to the central distribution center. When they had completed this task, they found a total of 16 packages had arrived. Today FedEx is synonymous with overnight delivery, and a major worldwide success story.

Colonel Sanders, of KFC Fame, was 65 years old sitting on the front porch of his failing motel when his social security check of $105 arrived to see him through the month. Disgusted and with little hope of increasing his motel business since the new Interstate had stolen all his traffic, he thought hard about what he could do well. The only thing that came to mind was his fried chicken, people went crazy over it. Armed with nothing more than a hand written recipe, this senior citizen hit the road and visited 1010 roadside restaurants before one agreed to buy his chicken recipe and pay him a 5% residual fee on the sales. That person went on to be a multi millionaire – as of course did the Colonel. By 1964, Colonel Sanders had 600 franchises selling his trademark chicken. At this time, he sold his company for $2 million dollars but remained as a spokesperson. In 1976, the Colonel was ranked as the world’s second most recognizable celebrity.

McDonald’s founder, Ray Kroc, was once on the verge of bankruptcy, even with 200 stores in operation. Baron Hilton (Founder of Hilton Hotels) was so desperate for cash to meet payroll at one point that he kept his hotel chain going with a loan from a bellboy of just $300. In the eighties, former heavyweight boxing champion George Foreman was on the verge of bankruptcy. In Foreman’s case, fear of financial ruin proved to be a good thing because it drove him to re-enter the boxing ring at age 45 and regain his heavyweight title against Michael Moorer in 1994. This second chance at success enabled him to pay off millions of dollars of debt and launch a new career as an entrepreneur hawking George Foreman Grills. Millions have been sold, in fact I think we have two!

Before Rich Devos and Jay Van Andel struck diamonds by founding the Amway Corporation, they sold products for Nutralite. Nutralite was a California company that marketed products through direct sales in much the same way as Amway would later do. Shortly after embarking upon their new venture, they held what was to be a large meeting to try to attract distributors.

They ran radio ads and newspaper ads, handed out flyers, and scoured the town, telling everyone about the meeting and the excellent business opportunity they would be offering. They believed wholeheartedly in the products and the income potential they offered to other distributors. Because they felt so good about the product, they felt sure the hall would be filled to capacity with people eager to hear what they had to say. That night, despite their huge promotional effort, only two people showed up in a room set up for several hundred people.

They gave their sales pitch as best they could to these two people and then drove home through the night because they couldn’t afford a motel room. Looking back and laughing at the incident, DeVos said, “We could have done one of two things. Either we could give up, or we could persist. We persisted.” Later, as Amway become a billion dollar corporation, they bought the Nutralite company they had once represented. As B.C. Forbes (of Forbes magazine) said. “One worthwhile task, carried to a successful conclusion, is better than a hundred half-finished tasks.”

It is truly amazing how many turning points in the lives of most entrepreneurs come down to the same decision. Should we try again, or should we throw in the towel and settle down to a life of peace and security, such as it is. There is absolutely no better long-term solution to business success than single-minded, bulldog determination. There must, of course, be a capacity for making changes to deal with fluctuations in market conditions. Constant attention must be paid to implementing necessary changes in strategy, marketing, and sales, but the long-term goals remain the same.

Persistence is the ingredient that truly separates those at the top from the also-rans and wannabes. Like all the other ingredients, it can be easily learned, and putting it into action is as easy as deciding to just do it! Out of the greatest
disasters, come the greatest redemptions. As legendary radio commentator Paul Harvey so aptly put it, “In times like these, it pays to remember there have always been times like these.”

The Desire and Determination to Succeed Must Never Waver!

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Critical Business Advice You MUST NOT Ignore!

“Rule No. 1: Never lose money. Rule No. 2: Never forget Rule No. 1.”
– Warren Buffet

The Department of Consumer and Employment Protection had heard that a farmer was not paying proper wages to his employees and sent an agent down to interview him.
“I need a list of your employees and how much you pay them,” demanded the agent.

“Well,” replied the farmer, “there’s my farmhand who’s been with me for three years. I pay him $700 a week plus free room and board.

“The cook has been here for 18 months, and I pay her $750 per week plus free room and board.

“Then there’s the half-wit who works about 18 to 20 hours every day and does about 95% of all the work around here. He makes about $30 per week, pays for his own room and board, and I buy him a bottle of booze every Saturday night. He also has sex with my wife occasionally.”
“That’s the guy I want to talk to—the half-wit,” said the agent.
“That would be me,” replied the farmer.

Pay yourself first!

I know from firsthand experience how easy it is to go into debt, borrow money from your friends, and max out all your credit cards to meet payroll while taking nothing for yourself save the promise of sweat equity in the future success of the venture. Don’t do it! Don’t even think about doing it! Demand a paycheck for yourself. Then demand profits. Do not just be satisfied with getting a paycheck. The opportunity cost will kill you if the work doesn’t!

If you are not getting paid, you are not in business!

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$900 for a Cup of Coffee!

     The key to getting where you want to go faster in life is simply to leverage off other peoples knowledge, expertise and experience. Especially the knowledge, expertise and experience of those people who have done what you want to do!Dottie Walters     Back when I was starting out in the speaking business, in the early 90’s I paid a lady, the grand dame of speaking, Dottie Walters, $380 for a morning consultation on what to do. She gave me excellent advice!

The following year I paid a man, whose name eludes me, $900 just to have coffee with me for about an hour. He had been the top guy in Anthony Robbins organization and I wanted to know how he filled the room. Now bear in mind at this time I was flat broke and had over $121,000 on nine different credit cards. I needed quick answers. I could not afford to wait!

BurtPlace In 1995, I paid Burt Dubin, $1,595 dollars for his three manual, Speaking Success System, and some phone calls. WELL, well worth the money! (still have it, love it)

     Later, when I had moved up the ladder, I booked Brian Tracy to speak at my annual convention for martial arts schools. One of my clients asked me what it cost to have Brian Tracy speak for an hour? When I informed him that Brian made $18,000, he was astonished.

BrianTracy     Although the presentation was well worth the money, the real reason that I hired Brian Tracy was not so he could enlighten my clients, but so that I could develop a personal relationship with him. Through hiring him I went to his office in San Diego and met with him personally. I was able to pick his brain and develop a more personal relationship with him. Once I had done this I approached him about co-authoring a book with me. Since I had written most of the book already, he found the idea appealing. I was able to leverage off his fame and credibility in the marketplace by teaming up with him.

When I wanted to franchise my martial arts schools I paid the guy who started Sylvan Learning Systems over $1,000 for a single phone call. Then paid someone from Michael Gerber’s organization $10,000 for showing up and another $60,000 over the next few years for phone advice.

Now as a Marketing Legend in my own right I still pay people top dollars for specialized knowledge.BrunsonKnowledge that will get me the answers I want in minutes, not weeks, months or years! Recently I paid this young man Russell Brunson, $500 for a five-minute phone consultation. (The call lasted 8 minutes) and he did follow up with a short power point! Money well spent again!

Have I ever not got 100 times the value from taking this approach? No!

  • So who knows what you want to know?
  • What one person can fast-forward your business or career?
  • Who has the connections you need to tap into?

Whoever that is find them, pay them whatever they ask it will short cut your journey by years not months!

Brian Tracy told me many years ago that the best thing a poor man can do is take a rich man to dinner! I believed him and I still believe him, life is simply too short to figure it out all by yourself!

If you can’t or won’t afford the top talent, the next best thing is to go to their seminars.

Failing that, read their books or listen to their audios. I bought every book and audio every mentor I ever had wrote or recorded! Well over $15,000 worth of books and audios!

AndrewWOodIf It’s Sales or Marketing Help You Need?

On site full day $10,000 plus travel (Just $3,000 until 30th).

At my Florida home or office full day $5,000.

By phone $1,000 an hour.

Book Now

Call now and enjoy the benefits of a professional sales, marketing and revenue strategy forever.

Normally $10,000, until Oct 30th, Just Two More Clubs Only, Just $3,000 plus travel, a savings of $7,000.

Call me direct at 352-266-2099(Yes I answer my own phone) or email me at



Andrew Wood
Legendary Marketing

PS. If you can’t afford the consulting start with the books or audios it’s a super cheap way to learn a good deal of what I know and how I go about tackling tough strategic problems

PPS. Are you really committed to success or are you just playing at it? I don’t mean to be insulting because it really is a fair question…… Most people are simply not committed to quickly finding the answers they need!