View Full Version : 7 Traits That Distinguish Super Successful People From Ordinary Ones

Randy Harris
03-29-2013, 05:47 AM
Found this and thought it might make for some interesting discussion....

What do you gents think?


How’d Richard Branson, Bill Gates, and Warren Buffett do so well? They lived according to these seven strategic, wealth-building principles.
My new book Business Brilliant (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0062253506/ref=as_li_qf_sp_asin_il_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=0062253506&linkCode=as2&tag=inccom028-20) is based on survey research that found seven key principles of work and wealth-building that super-successful people practice but ordinary people avoid.
Here are stories of seven of the most successful–and wealthiest–people in the world to illustrate each of those seven principles.
1. Guy Laliberte, Cirque du Soleil Founder: Do What You Love, But Follow the Money
Guy Laliberte was a high-school-educated circus clown from Quebec when he led a collective of performers to start Cirque du Soleil. Despite government subsidies, indulgent sponsors, and Laliberte’s hard work, the circus barely survived for years while evolving its distinctive style. Laliberte’s master stroke was to switch Cirque’s status from non-profit to for-profit (with himself as one-third owner). Today he’s worth $1.8 billion. Even clowning can be a smart career move, as long you’re the owner.
2. Suze Orman, Financial Advisor: Save Less, Earn More
Suze Orman has made a fortune telling people to grow their wealth through frugality, despite having no personal experience in the matter. When Suze was in her mid-30s, she lived high, but was mired in debt. She didn’t cut back on luxuries; instead she workedher way out. She did what she loved, followed financial opportunity, and today she is in a situation to spend $300,000 a year traveling the world on private jets. In the end, your time is much better spent seizing opportunities than pinching pennies.
3. Bill Gates, Microsoft Founder: Imitate, Don’t Innovate
Bill Gates built one of the world’s largest fortunes–$67 billion, according to Forbes–by licensing operating system software to IBM. In actuality, that software was wholly adapted from someone else’s code. Gates’ Microsoft lacked the innovative capacity to write it from scratch, so it dressed up some code from another company’s software, which Microsoft had bought for $25,000. When Gates delivered the second-hand software to IBM, it was on time, but it was so buggy that IBM engineers had to rewrite it completely. Thirty-three years later, no one remembers or cares. Innovation is seldom as important as timely execution of an adequate imitation.
4. Warren Buffett, Investor: Know-How Is Good, Know-Who Is Better
Warren Buffett arrived at his savvy investment philosophy when he was very young, but his know-how was nearly worthless because he personally lacked enough capital to make large market moves. Buffett didn’t get rich until he overcame his shyness, recruited members for his investment partnerships, and led those partners in squeezing stock performance out of corporate managers. Case in point: No one gets rich alone.
5. Adam McKay, Hollywood Producer/Director: Win-Win Is a Sure Way to Lose
Adam McKay is one of the most successful producer/directors in Hollywood. He’s teamed up with Will Ferrell on Talledega Nights, Step Brothers, The Other Guys, andAnchorman. But his movie-making career might never have happened if he hadn’t negotiated a sweetheart deal to produce film shorts while on the writing staff atSaturday Night Live. The secret to landing the deal? He didn’t try to play a so-called win-win negotiating game. Instead, he told SNL’s top dog Lorne Michaels that having his own film crew was his price for staying with the show, and he was ready to walk away without it. Michaels paid happily.
6. Richard Branson, Virgin Founder: Spread the Work, Spread the Wealth
Sir Richard Branson suffers from severe dyslexia, but he’s come to regard it as his greatest strength. Branson runs his Virgin Group as a venture capital fund that places bets on entrepreneurs with bright ideas that fit the Virgin brand strategy. He’s never tempted to micro-manage any of the dozens of Virgin companies because he can’t. ”If I could read a balance sheet,” he once said, “I wouldn’t have done anything in life.” In sum, work your strengths and get others to work theirs.
7. Steve Jobs, Apple Founder: Nothing Succeeds Like Failure
Steve Jobs had a vision, back in the 1980s, for a three-dimensional imaging computer that would revolutionize the defense, oil, and medical industries. He was wrong about it, and he lost millions of his own dollars before shutting down production of the $125,000 Pixar Imaging Computer in 1991. At the time, Pixar’s only profitable unit was a tiny team of animators using Pixar software to make computer-generated TV commercials–a team that would later form the Pixar movie studio that made Toy Story. And when Jobs died in 2011, more than 70 percent of his $8.3 billion fortune came from his stake in Pixar Studios, in an industry he never had any intention of entering.
Enjoyed this blog post? You’ll find more expert advice in Lewis Schiff’s new book, Business Brilliant.Click here to request a free Sample Chapter. (http://excerpt.business-brilliant.com/)
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03-29-2013, 06:06 AM
Fantastic post, thank you

03-29-2013, 06:33 AM
This is all good stuff. If I may interject something, Randy, to which I think SI instructors see quite often in students:

I have read this kind of stuff for many years, as have millions of people. It is battle tested wisdom. The problem I see, even in myself until joining WT, is that this education is fruitless without the basic principle of showing up. I am a young man, but I have learned a great lesson here. The first principle of success, is the simplest.


03-29-2013, 07:50 AM
Fascinating read, thanks Randy. I am always intrigued to read about how successful people became successful.

For those who have not read Steve Job's biography, it is a long but very fascinating read about a paranoid, eccentric, and brilliant man with a lot of struggles and problems he battled his entire life.

Randy Harris
03-29-2013, 02:39 PM
Generally people who do something they like (or love) will be more successful at it than those who would rather be set on fire than have to get out of bed to go to work.

Saving money is great....but it should not paralyze you. If you stay where you are and save every penny then ONE day you might be well off. On the other hand if you focus more on busting your hump and making MORE money then you don't have to live like a fixed income recipient to have anything when you're too old to enjoy it.

You do not have to reinvent the wheel...or necessarily even build a different wheel. Sometimes YOU can do the same thing better than anyone else is doing it .

You gotta keep networking. Being a genius in a cave is still ...living in a cave. But if you get out and network you can make friends in places that can make things easier and lead to more opportunities.

Be prepared to drive a hard bargain. If you don't think YOU are worth it no one else will either... On a personal level I have people occasionally balk at the price I charge for private classes. And when they do it is their loss not mine. Those who pay all say the same thing...It is "MONEY WELL SPENT". Don't short sell yourself.

Being a good LEADER is being able to keep your ego in check and let other talented people do some of the work for you. Hire good talented people and then get out of their way and you'll do far better than trying to micro manage every aspect of everything. And you'll end up keeping those good people from leaving to work for your competitors too......

And sometimes you will fail at what you do ...but fear of failure should not paralyze you because even a failure can have positive results in an area you did not even expect. Success is not necessarily the opposite of failure...it is the opposite of inactivity. Sitting still and losing the opportunity to succeed is still failure. Again, the genius in the cave who never gets out never succeeds. But even if he fails at what he tried he might still gain something from the failure that leads to a different success that he might not have even realized was possible.

03-29-2013, 04:36 PM
Awesome post Randy. There's a lot of wisdom there.

@Michael: I still haven't managed to read Steve job's book, but I intend to. He said one of my favorite quotes.(and very fitting of this place.).

"Why join the Navy, when you can be a pirate"

03-30-2013, 08:06 AM

@Michael: I still haven't managed to read Steve job's book, but I intend to. He said one of my favorite quotes.(and very fitting of this place.).

He was a really weird, eccentric, crazy, paranoid, anal guy, but that helped make him who he was. Very interesting read, though longer than it really needed to be. It is very much worth the time.

03-30-2013, 06:07 PM
Great read Roger.

03-30-2013, 08:17 PM
A few years ago I read an article about the head of GM vs the head of SW Airlines. The GM manager wrote a book called “Confessions of an SOB” in which his philosophy was to squeeze everybody and everything. He was considered by his vendors and staff an actual SOB.

The head of SWA however ran his business on relationships and was considered a great boss. He as well was very successful and liked by just about everybody.

Bottom line, both were highly successful and very competitive. One used intimidation and fear to get cooperation. The other used relationships and trust to get the job done. I came away with the view you could be one or the other but not mix the two. I think Branson is a good example of the second type.

03-30-2013, 08:44 PM
found this a while back. kinda goes hand in hand with what they said