Adviser alert: 5 success secrets from billionaires

By Daniel Williams


Have you ever wondered how billionaires got all that money? What steps did they take to rise to the top?

As advisers who control your own destiny, you have more in common than you might think with the entrepreneurs who are the captains of their industries.

In the book “How They Did It: Billion Dollar Insights from the Heart of America,” author Robert Jordan carves out a path you can take to rise above your competition.

Following are five success secrets from the billionaires Jordan interviewed for the book:

1. Be willing to tweak your idea. If you fall too much in love with your idea, you won’t have the capacity to take feedback from other people and from the market. The idea you start with is unlikely to be the exact idea you’re going to win with.

2. Fail fast. What doesn’t work, throw away, and what does work, run with it. Knowing what’s going right and what’s going wrong — and doing something about it quickly — puts you at the front of the class.

3. Create a business plan that’s a selling tool. Venture capitalists look at hundreds of prospects, so your business plan has to be clear, credible and able to demonstrate in 10 minutes or less your dedication to solving a crucial problem.

4. Be honest in all your dealings. Running a business is no different than running your life. Founders should be honest in their dealings and in their investments. Always look at facts because facts don’t lie.

5. Start with what you have. If you wait for the perfect solution to come along, you’ll never get your business going. Assume the right tools, systems and people will come along to refine it.