Tag Archive for: business

Once you accept money, you have to give something UP Law Of Exchange

Right now what I’d like to do is I’d like to talk about the law of exchange.

See, one of the things that people don’t understand is that once you accept money, usually there’s something you’re going to have to give. You’re going to have to either give up or create, generate something. The law of exchange is that I give you something, and you give me something. So, when someone offers you money, you need to be very clear what it is that you are going to be giving to them. Is it going to be your time? Is it going to be part of your business? Is it going to be your body? Is it going to be part of your life? Is it going to be your reputation, your integrity, your contacts, your health? What is it that you’re going to be giving to someone when they offer you money?

Now, this sounds a little bit crazy, but it comes up a lot, and I’m particularly talking to young people that haven’t been around enough to understand that there’s always an exchange. When I was little, that was one of the biggest lessons that my mother taught me, which is when somebody offers you something for free, there’s no such thing as free. The love of your mother or your father or your family and friends that have gone through a lot with you, business associates and employees and people in your circles that have already shown to be trusted? Yes. Probably there is already the exchange has been established. But when you see an advertisement, when somebody approaches you, and when it looks like that all of a sudden you’re going to have this free something, no. There is no such thing. There’s always an exchange.

You can handle it very elegantly. You can say, “Well, just let me know, what am I going to have to give up? What would you like from me? What is it that you want from me?” because there’s no such thing as free. I actually say that. I actually say that to people, and then we kind of have established kind of like, okay, this is where we’re working from, this is how we’re understanding. And I’m happy, happy, happy to give people things. I’m happy to give them my time, give them my money and give them something. What is going to be the exchange? And vice versa. One of the greatest lessons I learned from my Mamacita.

I remember seeing advertisements, “Order this and you will get this for free, and you will get this for free,” actually yes and no. Yes, I am going to get something for free, but what are they getting from me? They’re just getting me to buy as soon as possible, which is fine but don’t believe that there’s such a thing as free. I think that once you have that understanding your life is going to change radically. You are absolutely going to have a new understanding of marketing, and you’re going to have a new understanding of some people that maybe don’t have your highest good in mind, which actually ultimately you are 100% responsible for. Just remember that. Whenever I have met people that felt like they have been robbed or they’ve been ripped off or something has gone wrong, when we really dissect the situation, we find that they were a little bit naïve and really, really believed some of the great lines that were given to them.

So, once you understand that there’s nothing for free, that there’s always an exchange, life is going to get a little bit easier for you.

Offering me MONEY is not the way to work with me

We’re moving into a world where Social Enterprises and Social Entrepreneurs are populating the world of business more and more.

One of the shifts that’s happening is that we are moving away from the traditional way of doing business. Socially-responsible entrepreneurs like myself cannot be enticed by how much money we’re going to make in a business deal. We care more about it being in alignment with our purpose. Of course, we care about the bottom line, but you can’t get entrepreneurs like myself and other leaders to get very excited about working with you if you are just offering us money.

I get offered money to do all kinds of opportunities — and money is not the reason why I get interested in projects. Socially-conscious leaders like myself need there to be an alignment of purpose. We need to be very clear on how the results will be achieved, what the Rules of the Game are going to be, how we’re going to participate together, how we’re going to be working with each other, and how will it be in alignment with the highest purpose for everyone involved…

So be sure when you are approaching people to either invest with you or to work with you or to be part of a project that you’re creating, that you begin with the purpose. My purpose is to uplift humanity’s consciousness through socially-responsible businesses.

To that end, one of my missions is to transform educational systems around the world and eradicate poverty and hunger. Another is the Greening of the world.

So when you approach someone like me, a Social Entrepreneur, that you would like to work with, and they have something that you may be interested in – such as access to their network or their knowledge, or how they think, or for them to introduce you to people that you wish that you could work with and be able to participate in life with — then you have to do some research. You have to do some homework, you have to take a look and see if that person would be interested in doing your project and be part of your business that will add value to humanity. In other words, do your missions match?

So, the days of offering people money only, are over. Yes, there’s still a lot of people out there who are just about the bottom line – money, money, money – but then you have to consider what it would be like to work with a person like that. If the bottom line is all about money, then values and the way that people are treated, the way that businesses are run and the way that conflicts are resolved, will take a backseat. When we think we can buy people or solve all of our problems with money, just remember that money only solves one kind of problem: money problems.

Later, as you get more and more money, you have different kinds of problems, what I call “rich people problems”. So problems don’t go away with money, only money problems go away. You still have to handle many other challenges in life. I hope that makes it clear of why you can’t buy people like myself with money!


Keep Saying “YES!”


Louis Lautman shares his thoughts with you in the first of our guest series of inspirations, which we call our Entrepreneurial Stimulus Plan”

If you are reading this right now you are strengthening your competitive edge, not only in your business, but in life as well.  We probably know countless people in our life who have started something only to give up when the times got tough.  What would have happened if they persisted through in the face of challenge and adversity?  We can’t control what other people do, but what you can control is what you do.

You Can BE, DO and HAVE Everything – you ever dreamed possible if you just continue to move toward the attainment of your dreams.  Most people think it is an “Either/Or” world, I know that to be limited thinking and limited thinkers live limited lives.  It is those who are unreasonable about what is possible who create greatness in their lives and impact the world in a major way.

Be Unreasonable – Have you ever noticed that the people who accomplish great things are the people who are taking actions aligned with accomplishing great things?  Is that a mistake?  NO They are doing what it takes because they are planning on accomplishing great things?  What are you planning for?  Are you settling mediocrity?   You can no longer stand for the results you are getting to achieve the BIG dream results that you wish for.

Study The Past, But Don’t Live There – You must realize that you are not the first person to come up to hard times in your business or life.  If you ask anyone successful or look throughout history, all conditions ebb and flow, but it is those who stick to it that ride the wave when it comes in.  Learn how others have gotten through their tough times.  We have heard that every cloud has a silver lining; the problem is that most people only see the cloud.  What could the silver lining on your cloud be?  If you knew you had a silver lining, what would you do differently?

The Time Is Now – Sometimes getting through a hard time takes a drastic new action that we have never tried before and fear taking that risk.  Some people stay in that tough time because rather than doing something that may help them out…they do nothing.  Doing nothing is the worst thing you can do in these situations, most of us know what we have to do, but getting ourselves to do it is the hardest part.  Once we get ourselves out of the way, everything becomes easier until it is effortless.  Ask yourself, is what I am doing right now, bringing me closer to my goals and if you answer anything but “YES,” do something right now that will bring you closer to living a dream life.

What Do YOU Think? As most people in hard times look out to others, they tend to look to the wrong people for advice.  Seek the advice of those who have been in a similar place that you are in, these are the people who will give you the best advice because they have had similar experiences.  as you hear all the negativity and naysayers telling you to give up, what matters the most is what you think is possible.  Do you believe you can get through this?  Are you willing to do whatever it takes?  Have you found a new strategy that you are implementing?  Find those who support your dreams and when times are tough, let them route you on to get through to the next level.

All of our greatest lessons are wrapped up in problems and the bigger the problem, the bigger is the lesson that you will learn.  While it may be difficult to deal with things when you are having challenges, we do grow stronger after having had them and will be better equipped in the future to deal with more situations.  Roll out the red carpet and welcome new experiences in life, because I know if you are reading this…you are growing stronger and stronger every day.

Your Friend,
Louis Lautman

Young Entrepreneur Society louis lautmanLouis Lautman is a Lifestyle Designer and Transformational Artist serving the world with his innovative strategies for happiness and fulfillment who is passionate about helping young people turn their passion into a profitable business.  He is the Founder of The Young Entrepreneur Society and the Executive Producer of The YES Movie, the film that exposes the secrets of today’s youngest millionaires.  Louis is a must have at your next event to inspire and educate your audience and get them to take  action.

Waves Of Change

The wave of changes ahead

A second article from John Maudlin that we’d like to share..

The Millennium Wave

By: John Mauldin

Let’s look at some changes we are likely to see over the next few decades. My view is that we have a number of waves of change getting ready to erupt on the world stage. The combination of them is what I call the Millennium Wave, the most significant period of change in human history. And one for which most of us are not yet ready.

Some time next year, we are going to see the three-billionth person get access to the telecosm (phones and internet, etc.). By 2015 it will be five billion people. Within ten years, most of the world will be able to access cheap (I mean really cheap) high-speed wireless broadband at connection rates that dwarf what we now have.

That is going to unleash a wave of creativity and new business that will be staggering. That heretofore hidden genius in Mumbai or Vladivostok or Kisangani will now have the ability to bring his ideas, talent, and energy to change the world in ways we can hardly imagine. When Isaac Watts was inventing the steam engine, there were a handful of engineers who could work with him. Now we throw a staggering number of scientists and engineers at trivial problems, let alone the really big ones.

And because of the internet, the advances of one person soon become known and built upon in a giant dance of collaboration. It is because of this giant dance, this unplanned group effort, that we will all figure out how to make advances in so many ways. (Of course, that is hugely disruptive to businesses that don’t adapt.)

Ever-faster change is what is happening in medicine. None of us in 2030 will want to go back to 2010, which will then seem as barbaric and antiquated as, say, 1975. Within a few years, it will be hard to keep up with the number of human trials of gene therapy and stem cell research. Sadly for the US, most of the tests will be done outside of our borders, but we will still benefit from the results.

I spend some spare study time on stem cell research. It fascinates me. We are now very close to being able to start with your skin cells and grow you a new liver (or whatever). Muscular dystrophy? There are reasons to be very encouraged.

Alzheimer’s disease requires somewhere between 5-7% of total US health-care costs. Defeat that and a large part of our health-care budget is fixed. And it will be first stopped and then cured. Same thing with cancers and all sorts of inflammatory diseases. There is reason to think a company may have found a generic cure for the common flu virus.

A whole new industry is getting ready to be born. And with it new jobs and investment opportunities.

Energy problems? Are we running out of oil? My bet is that in less than 20 years we won’t care. We will be driving electric cars that are far superior to what we have today in every way, from power sources that are not oil-based.

For whatever reason, I seem to run into people who are working on new forms of energy. They are literally working in their garages on novel new ways to produce electric power; and my venture-capital MIT PhD friend says they are for real when I introduce them. And if I know of a handful, there are undoubtably thousands of such people. Not to mention well-funded corporations and startups looking to be the next new thing. Will one or more make it? My bet is that more than one will. We will find ourselves with whole new industries as we rebuild our power grids, not to mention what this will mean for the emerging markets.

What about nanotech? Robotics? Artificial intelligence? Virtual reality? There are whole new industries that are waiting to be born. In 1980 there were few who saw the rise of personal computers, and even fewer who envisioned the internet. Mapping the human genome? Which we can now do for an individual for a few thousand dollars? There are hundreds of new businesses that couldn’t even exist just 20 years ago.

I am not sure where the new jobs will come from, but they will. Just as they did in 1975.

There is, however, one more reason I am optimistic. Sitting around the dinner table, I looked at my kids. I have seven kids, five of whom are adopted. I have two Korean twins, two black kids, a blond, a (sometimes) brunette, and a redhead. They range in age from 15 to 32. It is a rather unique family. My oldest black son is married to a white girl and my middle white son is with a black girl. They both have given me grandsons this year (shades of Obama!). One of my Korean daughters is married to a white young man, and the other is dating an Hispanic. And the oldest (Tiffani) is due with my first granddaughter in less than a month.

And the interesting thing? None of them think any of that is unusual. They accept it as normal. And when I am with their friends, they also see the world in a far different manner than my generation. (That is not to say the trash talk cannot get rather rough at the Mauldin household at times.)

I find great cause for optimism in that. I am not saying we are in a post-racial world. We are not. Every white man in America should have a black son. It would open your eyes to a world we do not normally see. But it is better, far better, than the world I grew up in. And it is getting still better.

My boys play online video games with kids from all over the world. And the kids from around the world get on the internet and see a much wider world than just their local neighborhoods.

Twenty years ago China was seen as a huge military threat. Now we are worried about them not buying our bonds and becoming an economic power. Niall Ferguson writes about “Chimerica” as two countries joined together in an increasingly tight bond. In 20 years, will Iran be our new best friend? I think it might be, and in much less time than that, as an increasingly young and frustrated population demands change, just as they did 30 years ago. Will it be a smooth transition? Highly unlikely. But it will happen, I think.

I look at my kids and their friends. Are they struggling? Sure. They can’t get enough hours, enough salaries, the jobs they want. They now have kids and mortgages. And dreams. Lots of dreams. That is cause for great optimism. It is when the dreams die that it is time to turn pessimistic.

I believe the world of my kids is going to be a far better world in 20 years. Will China and the emerging world be relatively better off? Probably, but who cares? Do I really begrudge the fact that someone is making their part of the world better? In absolute terms, none of my kids will want to come back to 2009, and neither will I. Most of the doom and gloom types (and they seem to be legion) project a straight-line linear future. They see no progress beyond that in their own small worlds. If you go back to 1975 and assume a linear future, the projections were not all that good. Today you can easily come up with a less-than-rosy future if you make the assumption that things in 20 years will roughly look the same as now. But that also assumes there will not be even more billions of people who now have the opportunity to dream up their own psychic income and work to make it happen.

We live in a world of accelerating change. Things are changing at an ever-increasing pace. The world is not linear, it is curved. And we may be at the beginning of the elbow of that curve. If you assume a linear world, you are going to make less-than-optimal choices about your future, whether it is in your job or investments or life in general.

In the end, life is what you make of it. With all our struggles, as we sat around the table, our family was content, just like 100 million families around the country. Are there those who are in dire distress? Homeless? Sick? Of course, and that is tragic for each of them. And those of us who are fortunate need to help those who are not.

We live in the most exciting times in human history. We are on the verge of remarkable changes in so many areas of our world. Yes, some of them are not going to be fun. I see the problems probably more clearly than most.

But am I going to just stop and say, “What’s the use? The Fed is going to make a mess of things. The government is going to run us into debts to big too deal with? We are all getting older, and the stock market is going to crash?”

Even the most diehard bear among us is thinking of ways to improve his personal lot, even if it is only to buy more gold and guns. We all think we can figure it out or at least try to do so. Some of us will get it right and others sadly will not. But it is the collective individual struggles for our own versions of psychic income, the dance of massive collaboration on a scale the world has never witnessed, that will make our world a better place in the next 20 years.

All that being said, while I am an optimist, I am a cautious and hopefully realistic optimist. I do not think the stock market compounds at 10% a year from today’s valuations. I rather doubt the Fed will figure the exact and perfect path in removing its quantitative easing. I doubt we will pursue a path of rational fiscal discipline in 2010 or sadly even by 2012, although I pray we do. I expect my taxes to be much higher in a few years.

But thankfully, I am not limited to only investing in the broad stock market. I have choices. I can be patient and wait for valuations to come my way. I can look for new opportunities. I can plan to make the tax burden as efficient as possible, and try and insulate myself from the volatility that is almost surely in our future – and maybe even figure out a way to prosper from it.

A pessimist never gets in the game. A wild-eyed optimist will suffer the slings and arrows of boom and inevitable bust. Cautious optimism is the correct and most rewarding path. And that, I hope, is what you see when you read my weekly thoughts.

You can read more of John’s article here.

John Mauldin is a multiple NYT Best Selling author and recognized financial expert. He has been heard on CNBC, Bloomberg and many radio shows across the country. He is the editor of the highly acclaimed, free weekly economic and investment e-letter that goes to over 1 million subscribers each week. You can sign up here.

Creative Commons License photo credit: Scott_J_

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