A Conversation with Joseph Warren and Tony Whatley
Tony Whatley is the side hustle king. He’s literally written the book, Side Hustle Millionaire. When you think of side hustles, Startup Nation, what do you think about?
Probably a self-made entrepreneur. AMEICANS LOVE SELF-MADE ENTREPRENEURS. We respect the solo millionaire’s hustle and dedication.
But it’s a lie.
Tony Whatley has accomplished a lot, but even he says every great entrepreneur needs a mentor. Even millionaires and billionaires need mentors. Tony’s coach is legendary Ed Mylett, who’s able to offer him wisdom and advice during confusing times.
In fact, Tony breaks down success into a simple formula: Purpose + Coaching = Success.
Find your purpose
If you want to become an entrepreneur to make money, you’re going to fail. Why?
Tony says, “You need a strong enough purpose to start that business to carry you through the rough times. The first 1-3 years are brutal for every small business… 50% of businesses fail within the second year. 20% of businesses fail within the first year. If you don’t know what you’re going to be doing for free in that first year, then your purpose really isn’t that strong. Money is a weak purpose because you likely won’t be making any money during year one.”
Did you get that startup nation? Most new businesses DON’T MAKE MONEY YEAR ONE. You need a deeper purpose. My purpose is to coach Christian business owners and keep them from stealing time away from God, spouse, and kids. Your purpose might be to help addicts recover from addiction. You might feel called to produce art or inspire large audiences.
Whatever it is, get clear on your purpose before starting a business.
Find a business mentor
No one is self-made. You learned your skills and found your opportunities somehow. Even if you never had someone teach you business, you’ve probably read a book. Or you listened to a podcast (like Your First $100K). Books, podcasts, and articles are all mentors!
So, stop being a control freak and find a mentor. You’ve already had one whether you know it or not. A mentor will help you put your purpose into practice. A mentor will give you objective advice and cover your blind spots.
Find a GOOD business mentor
There are a lot of hacks out there, Startup Nation. Some coaches become “yes men” to boost your ego (and collect their overpriced fees). Other coaches have never done what they teach. They represent the saying, “Do as I say, not as I do.”
This is one of the reasons people criticize college degrees. Why spend $50,000 (or more) on a degree taught by someone who’s never run a business? Why not work four years for a great company or spend that money on a startup? You want to make sure your mentor has been there and done that.
Three tips for finding a great mentor:
1. Find a mentor who challenges you
A business mentor who doesn’t push you to improve is bad news. Find someone who gets you outside your comfort zone.
2. Find a mentor who has succeeded in their field
Check resumes! See what your coach has accomplished over the past five years. I’m not saying your coach has absolutely no experience. But make sure your values and industries align. If you’re trying to start a software company, you’ll probably want to connect with someone who has experience in software.
3. Find a mentor who has a mentor
Like I’ve said, all good mentors have mentors. You’ll want a coach who is humble enough to receive advice from others. Plus, it’s easy for a coach to look good on the outside (Porsche, Gucci, glamour shots) but you’ll want to make sure they’re solid on the inside, too. Ask if they have a mentor themselves.
To become a successful entrepreneur and reach your first $100K, make sure to get clear on your purpose, passion, profession.
Is your inner control freak afraid to find a mentor or coach? Take my free, 10-day lesson series to answer the top-10 questions that make entrepreneurs FAIL.
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