Good morning, believe nation. Today’s message is execute your dream. Over to you, Eddie Murphy.
I knew I wanted to be in show business, and I just happened to luck out and things happened. I think you know, you know what you’re supposed to do. Deep down inside, I think everybody does, and a lot of people just don’t go after it, you know?
Like, most people start out, they say, I want to be a this, but I’m going to get that to make sure I have something to fall back on. And what you’re doing is you’re setting yourself up for failure ’cause you’re going, there’s a possibility that I’m going to fall back.
And when you put that out there, then you fall back, but if you just say, hey, this is what I want to do and you go do it, you usually get your stuff the way you want it, man.
“Most people start out, they say, I want to be a this, but I’m going to get that to make sure I have something to fall back on. And what you’re doing is you’re setting yourself up for failure ’cause you’re going, there’s a possibility that I’m going to fall back.” – Eddie Murphy
Evan: Thank you guys so much for watching. The question of the day today is what is preventing you from executing your true big dream? What’s holding you back? Leave it in the comments below, I’m going to join in the discussion. I also want to give a quick shout out to Lee Geng Yu. Thank you so much for picking up a copy of my book, Your One Word. It really, really, really means a lot to me.
So thank you guys again for watching. I believe in you. I hope you continue to believe in yourself and whatever your one word is, much love. And I’ll see you again tomorrow morning for another shot of Entspresso.
Evan: What’s up, believe nation? If you want a little more motivation on executing your dream, stay tuned for some bonus clips.
My assistant’s got a great thing now in this. Once in every four months, somebody sends an email saying, “I’ve got a huge startup “that I want you to invest in, “but you’ve got to sign this NDA,” right? Which literally every time gets an email back that says, “Fuck you,” right? And the reason is, I’m a humongous believer that ideas are shit and that execution’s the game, right? We’ve all got ideas.
Everybody’s got ideas. Do you know how many ideas we all have here? We can probably sit here for the next two hours, draw them all out, record them, and predict the next 78 great startups over the next nine years. And? So I think the thing that is another theme in entrepreneurship is there is way too much fodder brought to the idea. Uber was Magic Cab three years earlier.
“I’m a humongous believer that ideas are shit and that execution’s the game” – Gary Vaynerchuk
Uber is not an idea, Uber existed, it was called Magic Cab. But the guys that executed it sucked, so they lost. So I think, you know, if there’s any level of romance left in this room about your idea, I’d like to suffocate it because I think the actual situation is what you actually do with it.
The way of the entrepreneur is actually about looking at the world and finding problems. It’s actually, some people think that’s a negative mindset, but actually I find it is like, a curious mindset. ‘Cause you’re out there looking for problems, looking for things that aren’t the way they should be or could be.
“It’s easy to have the idea, or straightforward, but then you’ve got to have enough guts to go out there and try.” – Travis Kalanick
Okay, you got a good idea. Look, everybody’s got a good idea, you know? Okay, everybody has an idea, not everybody has a good idea, but lots of people have good ideas. Look, Uber’s a good idea. You push a button and get a ride.
I don’t know if we were the first person to ever think of that idea, but we were the first person to do it. And so you’ve got to just go do it then. You got to just get out there and go do it. So it’s easy to have the idea, or straightforward, but then you’ve got to have enough guts to go out there and try. And that’s the way of the entrepreneur.
Interviewer: I think you famously said, “Strategy is 5% of the answer and execution is 95%.” So what does that mean, and what did you do differently?
Yeah, 5% of the challenge is strategy, 95% the execution, this I said it as CEO as Nissan and I said it also as CEO of Renault, and I said it as Deputy CEO of Renault. When I said it the first time, it was maybe in France, and that was to the top management of Renault in France because there was a tendency in the company to spend too much time on strategy and leave the execution for other people.
And this is where I said, “Yeah, strategy is fine, it’s very important, but it’s only 5%.” If you don’t go to execution after this, the delivery and the performance of the company is going to be very weak. I really, really believe it.
“5% of the challenge is strategy, 95% the execution” – Carlos Ghosn
Now, it doesn’t mean strategy’s not important, but when you establish north, and you know exactly where north is for the company, you’ve done something very important because you’re giving the direction. But if you don’t start moving north, if you don’t start mapping and establishing milestones, you’re never going to be getting there. You’re never going to be getting there.
Execute. And you need to execute as fast as possible. Because the thing at the end of the day is whether you feel you have competitors or not, sooner or later you’re going to have someone and if you can’t move fast enough, someone’s going to beat you to the punch. So make sure whatever you’re doing, you get something out within a month or two. If it takes you longer than that, you’re taking way too long. I created this company called Serph and it was in Rockwell, Texas, right by Dallas. And I had this brilliant idea.
Have any of you guys heard of the Media Temple Grid server solution? That was my idea a year or two before it came out. And I spent a million bucks on it trying to actually do that idea before Media Temple. The funny thing is I didn’t have a million bucks, I actually had to borrow a million bucks, and I spent it on business partners who moved really slow and really weren’t the best at what they did. Within 12 months we launched nothing.
They also had some of the problems in my previous slide, right? Like financial instability, and they had a family and kids of I think like six. So I even bought ’em a home in Rockwell, Texas that cost 200 and something thousand. Why did I buy it instead of renting it? I have no clue, I was stupid and young. But nonetheless, I lost over a million bucks on that of borrowed money.
“Execute. And you need to execute as fast as possible.” – Neil Patel
Not investor money, but borrowed money that I had to pay back. And it failed miserably because we never launched anything. If you can’t launch something, somebody like Media Temple’s going to beat you to the punch, get a ton of customers, and make a lot of money. So lessons I learned from that? Set deadlines. No matter what, you have to set deadlines. People have to be held accountable to them as well, right? You can’t just set a deadline, it passes, nothing happens.
Someone better be meeting ’em. If not, you know, something has to change. You also need to make sure they’re small. If the deadlines, like milestones, goals, are too big for those deadlines, they’re not going to get met. So make ’em really small and tangible, that way you can see it really well in advance if they’re actually going to be met or not. And last but not least, don’t worry about perfection.
A lot of people are like, “dude, I’m going to create the most perfect version of,” you know, whatever it may be. “That has a lot of problems, mine’s going to be perfect.” Perfection is overrated, nothing’s ever perfect. You’re going to continue to have to iterate, so forth, so on. It’s never going to be perfect, there’s always going to be issues, just get it out there and start trying to make money.
Well the last and the most valuable lesson as an entrepreneur I learned, was about the value of execution. Way too many people, way too many people spend too much time thinking about the vision. We are taught that you have to build a better mousetrap. Every venture capitalist will tell you that to be a successful entrepreneur, you need to break through innovation.
“It’s not about the great vision, it’s always about the great execution.” – Naveen Jain
Well you have to assume, none of us, or at least most of us, are not the smartest people in the world. There are lots and lots of great, great inventors out there. How are we going to be the person who’s going to always build a better mousetrap? Well, to be successful, you don’t have to build a better mousetrap. You just have to build a different mousetrap. And as long as you are executing well, the business always comes down to block and tackle.
It’s not about the great vision, it’s always about the great execution. And you can always succeed by out-executing your competitors, not necessarily having the best product in the marketplace. And I think that Microsoft is a great example. Where they took a same product that other people may have had, but they executed it substantially better and today are the market leader in the industry.
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