Where Does Risk Come Into #Entrepreneurship – #Success #Fintech

 

When I was in college I thought I was sooooooo smart. I had a very little picture of a bottle Wisk detergent in my dorm room and I would tell who asked that, “every once in a while you have to take a little Wisk” and I would hand it to them. I know you are laughing on the inside.

Shocking

In conducting my UNCC class on Entrepreneurship I introduced the idea of risk in starting a business. Now, keep in mind my students are some variety of computer sciences major, and my class (for the most part) is and has been the only “business type” class they have ever taken. Their views of entrepreneurship is the typical view that we are a bunch of “work hard – play hard – fly by the seat of your pants – 5 hour energy drinking – sport car driving – can’t get a word in edge wise” risk takers. I think we all know the stereotype, however, it cannot be future from the truth. When I told my class that information was met with a great amount of skepticism.

Skepticism

The idea that I introduced to my class was entrepreneurs are not risk takers. Well, good entrepreneurs are not risk takers. Taking risk is a skill, and like any skill can be matured, practiced and perfected. An example, and as I continue on my journey to close the gap between salespeople and entrepreneurs (to me they are the same) an entrepreneur that is focused on generating income for the company knows that it is less a focus on income and more a focus on activity that will bring in that income. Activity like making calls, meeting people, webinars, conferences, blogging, advertisement, articles, social media, website traffic… With higher levels of activity and the more consistent that activity is the less risky the plight of generating income.

Luck?

I can’t tell you how many people don’t understand this and are subject to things like timing and the winds of change. Entrepreneurs that have a focus on mitigating risk by skill building are consistently labeled as lucky. Well, they are and I count myself as one of these because of what a mentor of mine told me about the topic of luck. He said luck is when opportunity meets preparedness. With a definition like that the more you prepare and the more you put yourself out there using activity the luckier you will be.

Want to know more? Buy My Books!

To buy the book – The Argument to Automate – How Innovation Can INSPIRE Not Fire – click here to buy

(Also) To get your copy of The 8 Pitfalls of Accounts Payable Automation – click here to buy

How about a children’s book? The Princess and the Paper – click here to buy

About The Author:

Christopher Elmore has written 8 books, countless articles, lectures at UNC – Charlotte and travels around the country speaking on on the topics of startup success, sales, presentation skills, change, entrepreneurship, accounts payable and payment automation. Having deep startup and entrepreneurial experience, Christopher was one of the six people that startedAvidXchange in 2000 and continues to work in the business today. If you hire Christopher to speak or teach at your company or event… you won’t be sorry! Request a media kit or contact usfor more information.

What’s the deal with Success? #entrepreneur #entrepreneurship #fintech #success

In my head, when I wrote this title I think I was channeling my inter Jerry Seinfeld. I really miss his show and watch the reruns whenever I can. However, my kids don’t really seem to get it.

I had always wanted to teach a class on success. I consider myself successful – others tell me that I am successful, but I think for the point of this article it’s important that you know that I believe that I am not there yet. I think there is a lot more for me to do and achieve. At 47 (that’s right – I am telling my age) I believe that I am just getting started. Because of teaching at UNC – Charlotte and running an internal mentoring program at AvidXchange (with both employee and interns) I have found out a few things about success that I wanted to pass on to the rest of the world.

The Problem

Have you ever notice that solving other people’s problems are easy than solving your problems? That’s because they are your problems and the bigger the problem the less ability you have to be creative and think outside the box. However, problems and obstacles are the root and basis of all success. People have a tendency view successful people as being lucky or folks that were given something that you don’t have access to. It’s not true. Take as an example famous people who are famous for no reason (I won’t name their names because I physically can’t bring myself to type them). Just because someone is on TV and have what seems to be a lot of money. That doesn’t mean they are successful. As I painfully watch reality TV because my wife loves it and I love her, the more and more I think about it the more I realize there is no one on any of those shows that are successful. Money and fame can be a detractor to success.

Real Success

The more I study the more I come to realize that success is not passing people by or eluding people, it just that they don’t know what it is. When you don’t know what something is (like success) then there is no way to know if you have it or not. That’s why I have made a persistent and conscious effort to teach people who in order to be successful you must have two things:

  1. A Definition – Tricky thing about success is you can’t touch it or grab it so the definition you come up with can’t be touched or grabbed either. (Like a car, house or title – that’s not success) Material things are outcomes of successes but not success. If you are interested, I will share my definition of success but you will have to contact me because I don’t really want to publish it.
  2. A Plan – Without a path, road or direction – any road will take you were you are going. I know I didn’t get the quote right but without details you are left to whims, changing winds and worst of all pointless and meaningless daily activities which is what creates depression and the idea that your life, business or direction is meaningless. The opposite of this is when you have a plan you have hope and you have motivation and when you hit on difficult times you keep working the plan and fighting.

Final Thoughts

Don’t sign up to be a victim. Having a proactive and intentional life is exciting and fulfilling. It’s never too late to start and great news – starting is easy. First define and then plan.

About The Author:

Christopher Elmore has written 8 books, countless articles, lectures at UNC – Charlotte and travels around the country speaking on the topics of startup success, sales, presentation skills, change, entrepreneurship, accounts payable and payment automation. Having deep startup and entrepreneurial experience, Christopher was one of the six people who started AvidXchange in 2000 and continues to work in the business today. If you hire Christopher to speak or teach at your company or event… you won’t be sorry! Request a media kit or contact us for more information

What’s the deal with Success? #entrepreneur #entrepreneurship #fintech #success

I had always wanted to teach a class on success. I consider myself successful – others tell me that I am successful, but I think for the point of this article it’s important that you know that I believe it’s not over for me. I think there is a lot more for me to do and achieve. At 48 (that’s right – I am telling my age) I believe that I am just getting started. Because of teaching at UNC – Charlotte and Queens University  and running an internal mentoring program at AvidXchange (with both employee and interns) I have found out a few things about success that I wanted to pass on to pass along.

The Problem

Have you ever notice that solving other people’s problems are easier than solving your problems? That’s because it’s difficult with your problems to have objectivity. (And) The bigger the problem the less ability you have to be creative and think outside the box. However, problems and obstacles are the root and basis of all success. People have a tendency t0 judge successful people as being lucky or folks that were given something unique. It’s not true. Take as an example famous people who are famous for no reason (I won’t name their names because I physically can’t bring myself to type them). Just because someone is on TV and has what seems to be a lot of money, that doesn’t mean they are successful. As I painfully watch reality TV, because my wife loves it and I love her, the more I think about it the more I realize there is no one on any of those shows that are successful. Money and fame can be a detractor to success.

Real Success

The more I study the more I come to realize that success is not passing people by or eluding people, it just that they don’t know what it is. When you don’t know what something is (like success) there is no way to know if you have it or not. There are two things you need to be successful:

  1. A Definition – Tricky thing about success is you can’t touch it or grab it, so the definition you come up with can’t be touched or grabbed either. (Like a car, house or title – that’s not success) Material things are outcomes of successes but not success. If you are interested, I will share my definition of success but you will have to contact me because I don’t really want to publish it.
  2. A Plan – Without a path, road or direction – any road will take you were you are going. I know I didn’t get the quote right but without details you are left to whims, changing winds and worst – pointless and meaningless daily activities which is what creates depression and the idea that your life is meaningless. The opposite of this is when you have a plan you have hope and you have motivation and when you hit on difficult times you keep working the plan and fighting.

Final Thoughts

Don’t sign up to be a victim. Having a proactive and intentional life is exciting and fulfilling. It’s never too late to start and great news – starting is easy. First define and then plan.

About The Author:

Christopher Elmore has written 8 books, countless articles, lectures at UNC – Charlotte and travels around the country speaking on the topics of startup success, sales, presentation skills, change, entrepreneurship, accounts payable and payment automation. Having deep startup and entrepreneurial experience, Christopher was one of the six people who started AvidXchange in 2000 and continues to work in the business today. If you hire Christopher to speak or teach at your company or event… you won’t be sorry! Request a media kit or contact us for more information

Where Does Risk Come Into #Entrepreneurship – #Success #Fintech

 

When I was in college I thought I was sooooooo smart. I had a very little picture of a bottle Wisk detergent in my dorm room and I would tell anyone who asked  “every once in a while you have to take a little Wisk” and I would hand it to them. I know you are laughing on the inside.

Shocking

In conducting my UNCC class on Entrepreneurship I introduced the idea of risk in starting a business. Now, keep in mind my students are some variety of computer sciences major, and my class (for the most part) is and has been the only “business type” class they have ever taken. Their views of entrepreneurship is a typical view that we (entrepreneurs)  are a bunch of “work hard – play hard – fly by the seat of your pants – 5 hour energy drinking – sport car driving – can’t get a word in edge wise” risk takers. I think we all know the stereotype, however, it cannot be future from the truth. When I told my class that information was met with a great amount of skepticism.

Skepticism

The idea that I introduced to my class was entrepreneurs are not risk takers. Well, good entrepreneurs are not risk takers. Taking risk is a skill, and like any skill, it can be nurtured, practiced and perfected. An example, and as I continue on my journey to close the gap between salespeople and entrepreneurs (to me they are the same) an entrepreneur that is focused on generating income for the company knows that it is less a focus on income and more a focus on activity that will bring in that income. Activity like making calls, meeting people, webinars, conferences, blogging, advertisement, articles, social media, website traffic… With higher levels of activity and the more consistent that activity is the less risky the plight of generating income.

Luck?

I can’t tell you how many people don’t understand that luck isn’t subject to things like timing and the winds of change. Entrepreneurs that have a focus on mitigating risk by skill building are consistently labeled as lucky. Well, they are and I count myself as one of these because of what a mentor of mine told me about the topic of luck. He said luck is when opportunity meets preparedness. With a definition like that the more you prepare and the more you put yourself out there using activity the luckier you will be.

 

About The Author:

Christopher Elmore has written 8 books, countless articles, lectures at Queens University and  UNC – Charlotte and travels around the country speaking on on the topics of startup success, sales, presentation skills, change, entrepreneurship, accounts payable and payment automation. Having deep startup and entrepreneurial experience, Christopher was one of the six people that startedAvidXchange in 2000 and continues to work in the business today. If you hire Christopher to speak or teach at your company or event… you won’t be sorry! Request a media kit or contact usfor more information.

The One Word That Kills All #Entrepreneurs – #entrepreneurship

What? One word can’t kill… It’s true. I am at the end of another semester and this one was better than ever. However, three things happen at the end of each semester I teach.

  1. I am somewhat sad it’s over – Some of those bright young people who I have enjoyed their energy and effort over 12 weeks, I will never see again. I will miss getting together each week and being a little nervous that what I am teaching that week won’t connect and surprised when it does…
  2. I am somewhat happy it’s over – The grind was a bit much, having a full-time job, traveling and teaching. I dislike grading paper as much as I disliked having to write them as a student.
  3. Time to reflect – Even though I have been teaching the topic of entrepreneurship for three years now, I still think a lot about what went well and what didn’t go so well. My thoughts, when I let them, dwell more on what didn’t go well and how I can improve it.

Improvement?

As I was wading thought improvements of this semester I realized that I could do a better job explaining the overall landscape of the entrepreneurial world. Things like social entrepreneurialism, or Intrapreneurship, and things like, startups, main street and fast growth entrepreneurialism. Then my mind went to wanting to add a module (those are what I call teaching units) to the class on failure. So much of the class works off the idea that if you apply the principles and concepts I teach you will be successful, but I never talk about the things that will kill a business. Plenty of business ideas have failed even if it’s a great idea, and plenty of businesses have succeed with a bad idea… same holds true with the people in the business… having great people doesn’t insure success (it helps a lot but it’s not a sure thing). That’s when I came up with this…

The Killer

I believe the one word that can kill all entrepreneurs and their efforts is (drum roll) assume. Entrepreneurs that assume their idea is good or they have a market or the level of effort to succeed is low as well as support and abilities are in deep (deep) trouble. Assuming that a five-year exit is possible even when asked, “who do you plan to exit to…” is answered with, “I don’t know” is ridiculous. Assuming that your product or idea is relevant, needed, useful, innovative, marketable, achievable and good is dangerous. Here is the rub – that there are no secrets to success as an entrepreneur and action is the best course (I call that the fire – aim – ready method), assuming without testing, data or experience is the quickest way to kill your idea. Don’t do it!

About The Author:

Christopher Elmore has written 8 books, countless articles, lectures at UNC – Charlotte and Queens University and travels around the country speaking on the topics of startup success, sales, presentation skills, change, entrepreneurship, accounts payable and payment automation. Having deep startup and entrepreneurial experience, Christopher was one of the six people that started AvidXchange in 2000 and continues to work in the business today. If you hire Christopher to speak or teach at your company or event… you won’t be sorry! Request a media kit or contact us for more information.

What’s the deal with Success? #entrepreneur #entrepreneurship #fintech #success

In my head, when I wrote this title I think I was channeling my inter Jerry Seinfeld. I really miss his show and watch the reruns whenever I can. However, my kids don’t really seem to get it.

I had always wanted to teach a class on success. I consider myself successful – others tell me that I am successful, but I think for the point of this article it’s important that you know that I believe that I am not there yet. I think there is a lot more for me to do and achieve. At 47 (that’s right – I am telling my age) I believe that I am just getting started. Because of teaching at UNC – Charlotte and running an internal mentoring program at AvidXchange (with both employee and interns) I have found out a few things about success that I wanted to pass on to the rest of the world.

The Problem

Have you ever notice that solving other people’s problems are easy than solving your problems? That’s because they are your problems and the bigger the problem the less ability you have to be creative and think outside the box. However, problems and obstacles are the root and basis of all success. People have a tendency view successful people as being lucky or folks that were given something that you don’t have access to. It’s not true. Take as an example famous people who are famous for no reason (I won’t name their names because I physically can’t bring myself to type them). Just because someone is on TV and have what seems to be a lot of money. That doesn’t mean they are successful. As I painfully watch reality TV because my wife loves it and I love her, the more and more I think about it the more I realize there is no one on any of those shows that are successful. Money and fame can be a detractor to success.

Real Success

The more I study the more I come to realize that success is not passing people by or eluding people, it just that they don’t know what it is. When you don’t know what something is (like success) then there is no way to know if you have it or not. That’s why I have made a persistent and conscious effort to teach people who in order to be successful you must have two things:

  1. A Definition – Tricky thing about success is you can’t touch it or grab it so the definition you come up with can’t be touched or grabbed either. (Like a car, house or title – that’s not success) Material things are outcomes of successes but not success. If you are interested, I will share my definition of success but you will have to contact me because I don’t really want to publish it.
  2. A Plan – Without a path, road or direction – any road will take you were you are going. I know I didn’t get the quote right but without details you are left to whims, changing winds and worst of all pointless and meaningless daily activities which is what creates depression and the idea that your life, business or direction is meaningless. The opposite of this is when you have a plan you have hope and you have motivation and when you hit on difficult times you keep working the plan and fighting.

Final Thoughts

Don’t sign up to be a victim. Having a proactive and intentional life is exciting and fulfilling. It’s never too late to start and great news – starting is easy. First define and then plan.

About The Author:

Christopher Elmore has written 8 books, countless articles, lectures at UNC – Charlotte and travels around the country speaking on the topics of startup success, sales, presentation skills, change, entrepreneurship, accounts payable and payment automation. Having deep startup and entrepreneurial experience, Christopher was one of the six people who started AvidXchange in 2000 and continues to work in the business today. If you hire Christopher to speak or teach at your company or event… you won’t be sorry! Request a media kit or contact us for more information

Where Does Risk Come Into #Entrepreneurship – #Success #Fintech

 

When I was in college I thought I was sooooooo smart. I had a very little picture of a bottle Wisk detergent in my dorm room and I would tell who asked that, “every once in a while you have to take a little Wisk” and I would hand it to them. I know you are laughing on the inside.

Shocking

In conducting my UNCC class on Entrepreneurship I introduced the idea of risk in starting a business. Now, keep in mind my students are some variety of computer sciences major, and my class (for the most part) is and has been the only “business type” class they have ever taken. Their views of entrepreneurship is the typical view that we are a bunch of “work hard – play hard – fly by the seat of your pants – 5 hour energy drinking – sport car driving – can’t get a word in edge wise” risk takers. I think we all know the stereotype, however, it cannot be future from the truth. When I told my class that information was met with a great amount of skepticism.

Skepticism

The idea that I introduced to my class was entrepreneurs are not risk takers. Well, good entrepreneurs are not risk takers. Taking risk is a skill, and like any skill can be matured, practiced and perfected. An example, and as I continue on my journey to close the gap between salespeople and entrepreneurs (to me they are the same) an entrepreneur that is focused on generating income for the company knows that it is less a focus on income and more a focus on activity that will bring in that income. Activity like making calls, meeting people, webinars, conferences, blogging, advertisement, articles, social media, website traffic… With higher levels of activity and the more consistent that activity is the less risky the plight of generating income.

Luck?

I can’t tell you how many people don’t understand this and are subject to things like timing and the winds of change. Entrepreneurs that have a focus on mitigating risk by skill building are consistently labeled as lucky. Well, they are and I count myself as one of these because of what a mentor of mine told me about the topic of luck. He said luck is when opportunity meets preparedness. With a definition like that the more you prepare and the more you put yourself out there using activity the luckier you will be.

Want to know more? Buy My Books!

To buy the book – The Argument to Automate – How Innovation Can INSPIRE Not Fire – click here to buy

(Also) To get your copy of The 8 Pitfalls of Accounts Payable Automation – click here to buy

How about a children’s book? The Princess and the Paper – click here to buy

About The Author:

Christopher Elmore has written 8 books, countless articles, lectures at UNC – Charlotte and travels around the country speaking on on the topics of startup success, sales, presentation skills, change, entrepreneurship, accounts payable and payment automation. Having deep startup and entrepreneurial experience, Christopher was one of the six people that startedAvidXchange in 2000 and continues to work in the business today. If you hire Christopher to speak or teach at your company or event… you won’t be sorry! Request a media kit or contact usfor more information.

Accidental – Marginal Success – Want Some? #Fintech #Sales #Selling #Success

Now that the Super Bowl is over and I am trying to cope with my sport’s depression (I am a Panthers fan) I had a thought walking through the airport. Recently I became re-engaged with the idea of being intentional about my success. I had never left goal setting and planning, but for some reason I had achieved a level of success and was happy with it. Not now, I really feel alive when I am working on something big so I did the unthinkable, bought a paper note-book (that’s the unthinkable – because I am paperless) and started planning for something big.

Super Bowl

Part of sports depression is to not talk about the game and pretend it didn’t happen, however it is perfectly acceptable to talk about the commercial. This morning grading papers for my UNCC class, one of my students used “puppy-monkey-baby” in his paper… if I could – I would have given him extra credit. Ok back to success. Years ago there was a super bowl ad that Monster.com did where the theme was, “When I Grow Up”.. here it is if you don’t remember it.

Middle Management

One of the lines that struck me then and still gets me is the kids that says, “I want to claw my way up to middle management”. Now I know some great middle managers, but it’s funny because kids typically don’t aspire to be middle management. They want to be sports starts or entertainers or as my seven-year-old says, “a singer-teacher-mom with ponies”. What happen to our dreams in life? Where did they go and why do people settle?

Accidental

People leave their future up to chance. Have you ever heard the saying, “people spend more time on planning the wedding than the marriage”? I think people spend more time on planning their weddings than they do their entire lives. The problem with accidental success is you run the high risk of two things

  1. You don’t get want you want and you are stuck somewhere you don’t want to be
  2. It’s usually marginal

Marginal

I had a mentor say that there is nothing worse than a person going to their grave with their music still in them. That always struck me because for some reason I could picture that in my mind. To be marginal is to achieve a little and stop. In my first book The 8 Pitfalls, I wrote about projects and I made the point that you know when projects are good and you know when projects are bad but the difficult part is when projects are somewhere in the middle and folks settle. That’s the same way with life. You know when your life is both good and bad and usually you do something about it. The problem comes when your life is OK because failure is breathing down your neck and success seems like a lot of work.

Don’t!

Don’t settle and don’t leave it to chance. Start today with a few simple steps.

  1. Commit to change – really commit, don’t just give it lip services.
  2. Outline what it is you want to be – this will take time. I am taking all of 2016 to do this step
  3. Set goals – once outlined start breaking things down into smaller parts and start putting actions steps to them and dates on when they will be achieved.

Success

I had another mentor ask me about twenty years ago what my definition of success was. I was unable to tell him. He said that if you don’t know what something is than you will never be able to obtain it. He then told me what his definition was and I started on a process to create my own definition. Over time I realized that I really liked his definition so with permission I adopted it.

The continuous journey towards the achievement of a predetermined worthwhile goal”

What I love about this definition is that it’s the journey that is what is so exciting… It’s the journey that gets you up in the morning… it’s the journey that keeps you motivated and positive not the achievement. Don’t sign up for accidental, marginal success, join me for an intentional exciting life!

Want to know more? Buy My Books!

To buy the book – The Argument to Automate – How Innovation Can INSPIRE Not Fire – click here to buy

(Also) To get your copy of The 8 Pitfalls of Accounts Payable Automation – click here to buy

How about a children’s book? The Princess and the Paper – click here to buy

About The Author:

Christopher Elmore has written 8 books, countless articles, lectures at UNC – Charlotte and travels around the country speaking on on the topics of startup success, sales, presentation skills, change, entrepreneurship, accounts payable and payment automation. Having deep startup and entrepreneurial experience, Christopher was one of the six people that startedAvidXchange in 2000 and continues to work in the business today. If you hire Christopher to speak or teach at your company or event… you won’t be sorry! Request a media kit or contact us for more information.