I have a good friend that is generating over $2 million dollars in revenue with a four person staff. Investors have been lining up for him to give them the opportunity to invest in his company. After much deliberation, he decided that the value of his time and having the ability to watch his two daughters grow up was more valuable to him than the additional cash and stress that come with running a venture-backed company. Are you only looking at one metric to determine the path of your entire life?
Just because something has not been done before does not make it a bad idea.
A third critique comes from NBA legends. Michael Jordan said via NBC: “There’s no way, with hindsight, I would’ve ever called up Larry [Bird], called up Magic [Johnson] and said, ‘Hey, look, let’s get together and play on one team,’ but that’s … things are different. I can’t say that’s a bad thing. It’s an opportunity these kids have today. In all honesty, I was trying to beat those guys.”
It is important to realize that things are constantly changing in business. It is important for you to be innovative and look critically for unrealized opportunities. Traditionalism will leave you as a relic of the past while new and innovative companies take your market share. Many of the older speakers’ bureaus could not understand why I moved away from the traditional commission model to a recurring subscription model for Great Black Speakers. My rationale is that you do not see many billion dollar agencies, but you do see billion dollar platforms like Facebook, Apple, Google, Amazon, and countless others. Divergent thinking will lead to higher rewards.
The way that LeBron James announced his departure from Cleveland may not have been the best move for his brand. However, there is much to be learned by the way that he has handled his career to this point. Hopefully, we can take these lessons from James and apply them to our lives to win our own championships in business and life. Now that he has won his NBA championship ring, a lot of his crazy ideas are suddenly wise.
Lawrence Watkins is the founder of Great Black Speakers, Great Pro Speakers, and co-founder ofUjamaa Deals, which is a daily deal site that promotes black-owned businesses. He graduated in 2006 from The University of Louisville with a B.S. in electrical engineering and earned his MBA from Cornell University in 2010. Lawrence currently resides in Atlanta. You can follow him on Twitter@lawrencewatkins.