Entrepreneurial Success

Why Is It SO Hard To Get Noticed?

Seems everybody nowadays is trying hard to get noticed. Advertising companies spend gazillions creating ad campaigns meant to flaunt the next big thing. Millions of people go to work each day hoping that their efforts will, even in a small way, get noticed by the powers that be. Entrepreneurs sometimes go to extremes to gamble everything they have on the "big idea."

With everyone competing for attention how, exactly, do you get noticed? Experts will tell you that in order to get different results, you have to try something different. Celebrities have been doing this for years. Every time I open the paper, I read about the latest celebrity who found him or herself in rehab (again), arrested, and/or doing something crazy in public. Celebrities know how to get noticed - even if in a negative way. Who is it who said that there's no such thing as bad publicity? Look at Paris Hilton and Britney Spears (Yes, I know she's no longer hip, but it worked marvellously for her for a while).

What baffles me is the amount of attention paid to celebrity media stories, when there are thousands of other people who are looking for a platform in which to express their talents or voice their opinion.

Personally, I feel I'm at a career crossroads, in that I'm not sure (exactly) what my next step will be. I wish I could say exactly where I'll be working - and exactly what I'll be doing - but I can't. I only know where my interests and talents lie, and hope that somehow it will all come together.

Like many, I feel that I'm trying hard to get "noticed", but haven't stumbled upon the opportunity that, in my gut, would make me say "this it IT - this opportunity is MEANT for me."

For now, I'll keep trying to get noticed. And I'll try different things. Instead of taking the usual business courses, I signed up for an acting class. I'm learning how to play golf this summer - an interesting compliment to my yoga classes and interest in competitive skateboarding! Instead of writing an article for a marketing publication, I wrote an article for an internationally distributed skateboard magazine.

Maybe by trying different things and expanding my comfort zone, something will click and I'll find my niche.

Have any of you ever felt this way? If so, how did you change your strategy so that it produced different results? Can you share tips with other readers of the blog?


Secrets to Entrepreneurial Success Found in the Story of Hollywood's Great Movie Moguls

Cover_2The story of the rise and fall of Hollywood's greatest movie moguls is a testament to the spirit of entrepreneurism, and the will and ability to achieve the American Dream. Over Christmas, I received a copy of Neal Gabler's Award-winning book "An Empire of Their Own: How the Jews Invented Hollywood." In addition to being an excellent historical account of the moguls rise to fame, the book also offers insights into what makes a successful entrepreneur.

The great moguls (Harry Cohn, William Fox, Carl Laemmle, Louis B. Mayer, Jack and Harry Warner and Adolph Zukor) all shared similar characteristics that led to the creation and definition of the American motion picture system. Most were immigrants who left their "old country" (or were the children of immigrant families) in the search of something much better - the pursuit of the American Dream. Their strong sense of business acumen combined with a dogged sense of determination, persistence and ability to visualize trends and markets helped them achieve heights that many only dare dream of.

What's striking about their story is that the characteristics that led to their success still apply today. Their way of thinking and doing things was quite visionary for the times, and they persisted when others insisted their actions would be met with failure.

What can today's entrepreneurs learn from the moguls? Here's what I think would be their Top 5 tips to entrepreneurs today:

1) Trust your gut - If everyone is telling you that your idea will fail, chances are it probably won't (Adolph Zukor was told that there would never be an interest in feature length movies)

2) Don't give up - Success doesn't come right away, so the more failures you get through the closer you will be to achieving your dream

3) Have a Vision - The moguls visualized what they thought was the future of motion pictures, then found ways to achieve that vision

4) The past doesn't determine your future - As immigrants, many left impoverished situations overseas and vowed to rewrite their lives in America

5)  Each career move is a stepping stone to greater success - Several moguls took what they learned in the fur/fashion trade and applied it to a new realm...motion pictures. They took what they learned from each business success/failure and used it to move on to the next step

As we move onto new projects and successes in 2008, I'll be thinking of the movie moguls, and how they were able to write their own way into the history books when virtually everything at the time was working against them.

May 2008 be the year you write your greatest story - and achieve your greatest vision once and for all!

HAPPY NEW YEAR - and I look forward to reading more of your thoughts and insights in 2008!