Robert Jordan Interview: Six Success Tips for Aspiring Billionaires (How They Did It)

If you are like me, you too will wonder about what sets these seemingly ordinary people apart from the rest in terms of their capacity to recognize and identify a need, develop a service or a widget that addresses that need and then go on realize their goal of turning their ideas into millions of dollars.

I asked Robert Jordan who has compiled interviews with 45 billionaire entrepreneurs and published his book telling us how they did it. Below are six indispensable tips that helped them succeed.

Click here to listen Robert Jordan Interview (unlinked)

Robert Jordan is an entrepreneur and author who has made it his mission to discover the “secret sauce” used by self made billionaires to launch themselves from growing an idea into $100 million dollar companies or if it suits, taking their pride and joy public to the tune of $300 million or more.

Robert’s entrée into their world is paved by his own success when he launched and grew his startup company, Online Access, the first Internet-coverage magazine that made it on the Inc. 500 list of fastest growing companies.

As is quintessential a characteristic of all serial entrepreneurs, he then sold his highly profitable Online Access and proceeded to start up a couple more companies, RedFlash, a project implementation team, and interimCEOinterimCFO, a worldwide network of interim, contract, and project executives.

Robert’s gift for getting consensus saw 21 of the eventual 45 founders agreeing to meet and freely share their insights, occasional pain and billion dollar experiences.

Their collective wisdom has been distilled into his latest book, How they did it: Billion Dollar Insights from the Heart of America.

He freely admits this book was a labor of love, driven by an insatiable curiosity to know the minds and passions of this select group of diverse individuals.

All aspiring entrepreneurs who believe they are billionaires in the making will do well to heed the advice of the 45 who have gone before them. Here are just six tips to steer you to success:

1. Do not be afraid to fail; if and when you do, make sure you fail fast.
2. Do not be precious about your idea, be willing to tweak it
3. Leave your ego at the door; be astute enough to hire people smarter than you
4. However, make sure they are nice not just smart.
5. Honestly is still the best policy, so be on the level when communicating with the people who work for you because no one becomes a billionaire on their own.
6. Believe in the goodness of your angel investors but have Plans B, C and D just in case they decide to bail
Find Robert Jordan on

Dal LaMagna Interview: Failure Is Not Final

If you subscribe to self-development eNewsletters, round about this time of the year, (late January of 2011), your inbox will be inundated with a ton of emails with subject headings like “10 reasons why your new year’s resolutions have failed” and that is usually followed by an offer of “How we can help”.

If you have stuck with your resolution to improve your health, fitness, finances, and personal relationships then kudos to you.

Okay, so the title of this article may sound like one of those motivational, “Come on people, pick yourself up when you’re down” types.

Maybe it is, may be it isn’t. It all depends on your perspective.

Dal LaMagna Interview You can download the mp3 recording and pdf transcript of this interview by going to

You see, we often make the mistake that successful people (millionaires) burst on to the scene as readymade straight out of the box (overnight) successes.

Some of these erroneous assumptions are engineered by the popular press because of the higher drama impact it has on the reader and hence circulation, and revenue (ooh, isn’t that cynical).

The reality is more boring, but nevertheless equally important.

It isn’t sexy to talk about the hard yards, sacrifices and sense of self belief and faith these people showed in the face of adversity.

Show me a person who claims to have just thought up an idea, implemented it and cashed in the millions of dollars without breaking into a sweat and I will show you Pinocchio.

So, I am going to throw you this idea. If you don’t fail, you will not know how to succeed. No, it’s not a mind bender, it actually occurs with predictable frequency.

I have made it my mission to ask self made millionaires how they arrived at their current situation.
Not a single millionaire has glossed over their multiple attempts before finally getting the right business plan, system or model to work well for them. Their candour and honesty is indeed refreshing.

Therefore, I would like to share with you the following interview with Mr Dal LaMagna, the founder of Tweezerman. He is actually a funny guy.

Mr Tweezerman

I have included a synopsis and titled the interview: How to fail your way to success

Dal LaMagna speaks honestly about his sixteen failed business ventures including turning down an offer from Coca Cola and saying no to being involved with the Woodstock Music Festival before he made his fortune from his company Tweezerman.

Tweezerman started as a one-man operation with seed capital of $500. By using head and heart business principles to grow his venture, he was able to walk away with millions when he sold it years later.

Dal shares his wisdom and insights on how to succeed as an entrepreneur in his new book Raising Eyebrows: A Failed Entrepreneur Finally Gets It Right (John Wiley & Sons).

He has done a huge favor to all the budding business tycoons out there by being up front and authentic when he tells it like it is which means you have to do the hard yards and own up to your mistakes, and that’s just for starters.

What more, the man shows that you can be a capitalist and have a social conscience.

I found Dal’s leadership style inspirational-there aren’t many CEOs who genuinely care and will take onboard every employee’s suggestion to grow a business.

Tweezerman flourished because Dal had the foresight to make each and every employee a partner in the business. Yes folks, they got a share of the revenue, not just a monthly pay check.

Do yourself a favor, get the book and read Dal’s many tips on how to succeed in business, and maybe just maybe you will not need to fail 16 times before hitting the mother lode.

Find him at his website:

Matt and Amanda Clarkson Interview: eBay and Wealth Creation

Christmas is a wonderful time of coming together to share a special meal and re connect with other family members.

At one time or another we all have been at the receiving end of a Christmas present that has not rocked our world.

So hands up anybody who has had the idea of hocking off that gift on eBay.

I talked to an Australian couple Matt and Amanda Clarkson, who found eBay to be their ticket to financial freedom.

Matt and Amanda Clarkson eBay Magic

Matt and Amanda Clarkson Interview You can download the mp3 recording and pdf transcript of this interview by going to

The story of their journey may just be what you need to take inspired action towards a new beginning for yourself.

Matt and Amanda both left school at 16, he to become a carpenter and she working through 33 jobs and 11 businesses over the last 20 years.

They knew that working for “the man” or being a sole operator was limiting their dream of becoming financially independent. In 2006, the internet was where they found the clue that became their golden key to freedom.

In this interview they speak frankly of their learning experiences during this process including Amanda’s honest and candid admission that she was not introduced to her first PC until she was a young forty year old.

Matt is a bestselling author and international expert in Internet Marketing and in particular eBay business development. Amanda’s eBay business, which she started with a credit card in Feb 2006 was a run away success and is still forging ahead to this day.

Now, they show everyday people how to become cash and time rich with eBay through their simple, and inspiring eBay education courses through their multi national company Bidding Buzz.

The passion and vision of these two heart centered entrepreneurs is to help as many people as possible live life on their own terms instead of someone else’s through The Magic Of Making Money On eBay.

Owning Up and Learning from My Mistakes

Our education system does not encourage us to admit our errors and effectively punishes us when we get it wrong.

This is reinforced by the assessment strategy of grading us down in tests and formal examinations when we do not produce the “right’ answers.

The system is designed to turn out cookie cutter lookalikes with not a whit of individuality.

It stymies creativity, inventiveness and discourages exploration; in effect we get a slap on the wrist every time we colour outside the lines.

So does the title of this article stir up a bit of discomfort?

I certainly hope so, only because I want you to challenge conventional thinking and behaviour.

What if, for a change, we celebrated instead of shaming kids in grade school for giving the incorrect answer?

Rather than making them feel like a failure we gave them elephant stamps and gold stars for having a go, for attempting an answer.

Brian Tracy, one of my favourite motivational speakers and amazing business coach said it best:

Learning from your mistakes is an essential skill that enables you to develop the resilience to be a master of change rather than a victim of change.

The person who recognizes that he has made a mistake and changes direction the fastest is the one who will win in an age of increasing information, technology and competition.

By remaining fast on your feet, you will be able to out-play and out-position your competition.

You will become a creator of circumstances rather than a creature of circumstances.

In other words: Adaptability is the name of the game.

In every episode of Star Trek Dr Spock may have said, “Live long and prosper”, but Dr Tan says “Live smart and prosper”.

So, the faster you fail, the quicker you get to your goals.

You might as well get through it sooner than later because that lets you gain momentum as you hurtle towards success.

Yours in health, wealth and happiness

A Life of Abundance Without Compromise

What is a life of abundance without compromise?

So often we settle for the path of least resistance rather than uphold the values we consider sacred, values that define who we are.

I would like to think that some of our highest values include maintaining our integrity and honesty in our dealings with other people but above all, with the most important person in your life, and that is YOU.

To be honest with ourselves requires courage and for us to fly against convention and the expectations of others.

Our silence is interpreted as consent as we unwittingly become hostage to our own less than ideal circumstances.

I am reminded of the story describing the method used to catch the slender limbed spider monkey.

The clever strategy consists of placing a peanut in a heavy glass jar with a narrow neck and leaving this trap at the foot of a tree that monkey calls home.

The desire for a tasty snack compels monkey to descend from his lofty perch, and to squeeze his hand down the glass jar to pick up his treat.

So as not to lose his precious prize, monkey makes his hand into a fist with the peanut safely tucked in the palm of his hand. In doing so, he cannot pull his hand through the narrow bottleneck and the heavy jar keeps him stuck at ground level.

The dilemma for monkey is whether to let go of his peanut treat and scamper up the tree to safety and freedom or become captive to the illusion of the prize.

In the corporate world, we refer to this as the “Golden Handcuffs”.

A person stays in a soul destroying job that does not inspire or invigorate them for fear of losing their perceived financial security, sense of prestige and the outward trappings of success.

In reality they are trading their life force for a dime.

If you can identify with this scenario, then realize that this is an inequitable exchange.

No amount of money can compensate you for an existence that is less than a life lived to its fullest.

By definition, a life of abundance in every sense of the word includes great health, happy loving relationships and material wealth.

And this is a life lived without compromise.

Yours in health, wealth and happiness

The Art of Giving and Receiving a Compliment

I was recently speaking to a colleague and in the course of conversation complimented her hairstyle and how the new color and cut really suited her. She was positively beaming.

So, the rest of this post is about two things:
1)    Why you or I would give someone a compliment, and
2)    How the other person interprets and then responds to this gesture

Firstly, we all enjoy and thrive on positive interactions-it is certainly much more pleasant, triggers our feel good brain chemicals (endorphins) and puts a smile on our faces long after we’ve gone our separate ways.
Said from the heart and from a place of love, it enriches you as much as the person on the receiving end of this random act of kindness.

The “art” of giving a compliment is to spring it on the unsuspecting, catching them unawares. From your perspective, this is not done because you are angling for a reciprocal compliment. In this instance, it’s not all about you, it’s about them! Give without the thought of getting anything in return is what I am saying here.

Secondly, people are not stupid and will sense if the compliment is genuine (and not an attempt to “butter up” the recipient). We can all sniff out a phoney, some one with an ulterior motive or hidden agenda.

When you are on the receiving end of a compliment, note how you respond. Do you stammer, blush and try and play it down, or do you say a gracious thank you because you are comfortable in your own skin, and can accept the praise or kind words unreservedly.

By the way, your response is an indication of how you feel about yourself.
The “art” of receiving a compliment is to say to yourself, “Yes, I do deserve the praise, compliment etc”. So, when the inner critic asks why is it that you are deserving, have this reply ready. Say, “Because I just do”.

You Ain’t Nothing But a Hound Dawg

A city slicker was visiting his distant relations out in the country and stopped by a gas station for refreshments and to fill up his fancy car.
As he was about to go inside to pay, he noticed an old timer sitting on his wooden porch in his rocking chair just quietly taking in the fresh country air.
But the peace and tranquility was disturbed by a howling dog laying at the feet of the old timer.
Mr City Slicker could not contain his curiosity and just had to ask, “Hey there sir, I can’t but help notice your dog howling. Is he ok because he sounds like he is in a lot of pain”.
“Well, son”, replied the Old timer, “That’s because this here dog is laying on a nail that ain’t hammered down smooth on this porch”.
The next obvious question he had was, “Why doesn’t the dog lay on the other side of the porch then?”
Without batting an eyelid, the Old timer said, “Because then, it’ll have to get up and MOVE!”

The first time I heard this story, I laughed so hard I almost snotted.

This is a great example of some people who say they want to be happier, thinner, healthier, richer etc but balk at having to make some type of effort.
They love the sound of their own whining, they wheel out their “story” to the unsuspecting and hope to reel them in with their tales of why something’s not right in their lives (cue violins).

So, below is this little checklist that is sure to get us thinking. It’s self explanatory.

We ask ourselves, do we play above or below the line.

If you are an OAR it means you take ownership of the situation. For example you might be a tad heavier that is healthy for your gender, age and height.
You are accountable for that less than healthy lifestyle, and you take responsibility by doing something about it such as making a choice not to have the greasy take out but choose the lean chicken whole meal sandwich instead. In other words you play above the line like a true CHAMPION.

Alternatively, you can lay in BED and play VICTIM and below the line by placing blame on everyone and everything, make convenient excuses about why you can’t (substitute “won’t) change your eating habits and downright be in denial about the fact that you haven’t been able to see your toes for years.

Accountability         CHAMPION
Excuses             VICTIM