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Excerpt
The following is an excerpt from the book The Maui Millionaires for Business
by David Finkel and Diane Kennedy, CPA
Published by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.; October 2007;$24.95US/$29.99CAN; 978-0-470-16495-2
Copyright © 2008 David Finkel and Diane Kennedy. All rights reserved.

The Most Important Business Multiplier #1:
Mastermind Power

One of the secret strengths of Maui Millionaires is the power of the mastermind. A mastermind group is a group of two or more people who come together to work on a common goal in the spirit of focused harmony and trust, where all members benefit. The skill of masterminding is so essential that we devoted an entire section of our last book, The Maui Millionaires, to it.

Level Three business owners have learned that they don’t have all the best answers or ideas. But they have cultivated a huge advantage in the marketplace -- multiple mastermind partners in various areas that they can turn to for ideas, input, accountability, and support.

We recommend five mastermind groups to maximize the growth for your company. They are:
  1. Within your company. This is your inside team. The mastermind principle is how you unify, focus, engage, and unleash your team to accomplish the work of your business. For a small company, this may include one group of all team members. For a large company, this may entail multiple groups in various areas of the business, each trained in how to use the mastermind principle to get great results.
  2. With key industry players. Form a mastermind group with people outside your company who are in your industry. This could include your vendors, companies that provide complementary services or products, or perhaps even competitors. Just think of the range of ideas and potential joint ventures that you could get from a mastermind group like this!
  3. Outside board of advisors. Successful business owners know they need input from quality business people outside of their industry and outside of their immediate financial world. Consider forming a mastermind group with like-minded achievers to help each other succeed and live at your best.
  4. Your family. Bring your family into your business life by masterminding with them on a regular basis (perhaps monthly or quarterly). Not only will they understand better the things you are experiencing in your business life, but by involving them in your business goals they will feel a part of what you do. This means they will support you and also, when needed, hold you accountable to not let your business grow out of proportion to the real values that you hold.
  5. Your hired team. Finally, every entrepreneur needs a team of talented professionals (CPAs, attorneys, insurance agents, brokers, etc.) who can advise you as you build your business. Use the mastermind principle to more effectively get the input and guidance you need from your hired team.

Business Multiplier #2: Your Client Base

Your client base is probably the most valuable business asset that you have. Does your business treat your client base with honor, respect, and integrity? If the answer is yes, then over time your business will grow and thrive. If not, your business will never last over time.

Yet how do many businesses treat their most valuable asset? Like a database to be strip-mined for maximum value. The people and relationships you've built are more than just data. They are the heart and soul of your business.

One clue as to how a business views its clients is what it calls them. Are they called "customers" or "clients?" Do they end up in a database or a client base? While this may seem like a minor distinction, in our experience the mindset behind it makes a huge difference. A customer is someone to sell to; a client is someone to care for. Databases die, go stale, or move on. Client bases grow as communities thrive. If you remember to always put your client's needs in front of yours, you'll find you have the secret ingredient to build that client relationship.

Business Multiplier #3: Creativity

Creativity is that priceless ingredient that can solve any problem, turn around any business situation, and enhance any business. It’s one of the most underutilized business multipliers, yet the creativity you harness in your company literally can take your company to the top of your industry overnight.

Consider eBay® for a minute. It began in September 1995, and the very first item sold was a broken laser pointer for $14.83. That's when founder Pierre Omidyar knew he was on to something. Over the past decade, by tapping into its teams' and its clients' creativity it has become one of the most powerful marketplaces in the world. In fact, it's now the 17th largest world economy!

Creativity is what made that all happen. Creativity is what can exponentially grow your business. You don't need more money, you don't need the perfect marketplace, you need to unleash the creative genius held idle in your company. How best to free it up? Combine your creativity with the mastermind principle.

Business Multiplier #4: Character

Your character magnifies you. It helps you be your best self and it's an essential ingredient in leading and influencing others. In essence, your character is that part inside you that keeps you moving toward your dreams even after the blush of the initial excitement has worn away.

There are four parts of your character we want to highlight. First is integrity -- the way you honor your word. Since all business relationships are predicated on trust, you will never succeed on the scale you dream unless you are impeccable with your word. Also, to build lasting success means you live your life in accord with your most deeply held values and principles.

Second comes passion -- the fuel that takes you to your dreams. We’ve already shared how we believe that every entrepreneur must find a meaningful way to connect his or her passion to their business in order to be wealthy. But understand that passion is also the fire inside you that warms your team, your vendors, and your clients to your business' vision. And when it burns brightly it is a contagious source of exponential power.

Third comes courage -- the steel that keeps you moving forward even when you are scared to death. And all entrepreneurs reach multiple points when they are scared to death. Yet it's your job to learn to act in the presence of your fears.

Finally, there is faith -- the gossamer quality that brings deep meaning into your business. Understand this: If your business exists only for the money you will never be wealthy. You may become rich but never wealthy. Enduring wealth comes from deep meaning and that takes faith. Faith is also the secret to enduring peace of mind. It's the real foundation for business and life success. And, just as you do with courage, you also have a faith muscle that expands with exercise and use.

Business Multiplier #5:
Your Business Skills

There are certain skills that may generically be applied across any business, which when mastered, will create real value in your business. Here is a list of six skills that we think are essential to business success.
  1. Leadership -- Your ability to create a coherent business vision, inspire others to join you over time, and empower your business to willingly accept and embrace change.
  2. Negotiation -- Your ability to uncover complementary needs and reach mutually profitable agreements.
  3. Time mastery -- Your ability to maximize your time, to manage priorities and conflicting demands, and achieve a harmony in what you do (and choose not to do).
  4. Salesmanship -- Your ability to influence the way people perceive a given situation and to sell a dream, a product, a service, an opportunity, or a course of action.
  5. Financial Fluency -- Your ability to speak the five languages of financial fluency and move in the world of money, wealth, and business with grace and ease.
  6. Emotional Fluency -- Your ability to understand emotions, yours and other peoples', and to be able to connect, engage, and, when needed, manage emotions.
So there you have the five business multipliers. Remember you can apply these universal leverage points in any business, in any industry, in any marketplace, in any country, to make your business succeed faster.
 
Copyright © 2008 David Finkel and Diane Kennedy. All rights reserved.