Alternative Way To Think About Asking For Business Advice

Are you looking to bend the ear of a successful business owner? Here is a different approach to asking for business advice.

I was listening to a podcast some time ago and I made a note to record a video that I thought would be interesting. The podcast is by Tim Ferriss. It’s for sure my favorite podcast out there. His shows are excellent. He brings on great guests and he was talking to somebody, and I’m paraphrasing, because it is now a couple of months ago when I heard this.

He was talking about how to get someone to mentor you if you’re trying to learn the business. Learn marketing, whatever. You’re basically trying to grow as an individual so that you can become a better business owner. He gave the example of someone that the way he would get the attention of really successful people, is he would find out where they’re flying to, and he would buy them a first class ticket, and himself a first class ticket, so that he could sit next to them on the flight.

Basically he would say, “Hey, I’ll buy you a first class ticket to where you’re already planning to go. I’d just like to ride with you and chat.” I might have slaughtered that a little bit, but that’s my recollection of it. I thought, man that is a really fantastic idea. I’ve never done anything like that. I’ve never even thought of anything like it, but what it does is it speaks to a common problem.

The problem is that, and I’ve seen it first hand with doing these free Lawn Care Millionaire videos for 5 years now. I get tons and tons of email and a lot of it is, hey, can you give me a ring? Hey, can we talk on the phone? Hey, I’ve got a business idea I’d like to run by you or hey, I’ve got this problem that I can’t figure out. Can you call me? Can we go to lunch? While all of that would probably be fun and interesting and I enjoy doing this stuff, imagine what my life is like, my world. I’ve got a team. I’ve got multiple companies. I’ve got all kinds of things going on.

Basically, what Tim was doing in his podcast was he was giving a different way to think about the problem, and that is how to get time with the individual that you want to potentially learn from or help you shortcut the growth of your business, but make it beneficial to them. Almost every email I’ve ever received has been completely beneficial to the other party. Never to me.

Imagine who you’re probably talking to, whomever the mentor is that you’d like to deal with. If they’re actually somebody that’s not just, let’s say writing books or regurgitating other people’s information. If they’ve actually built companies and are currently running companies, and doing it, and they’re really, really, successful to the point that you want to learn from them. There’re probably making at least half a million a year, take home.

Many are probably making a million or more. You think about what you’re asking. If a guy’s making a million a year and you’re saying to him, “Hey, can you help me solve my problem that I’m having that would make my life better. I know that you’re super busy and I know you have hundreds of employees, and I know that you probably work an incredible number of priorities, don’t’ worry about that, I’ve got this little problem I need your help with. Could I have a bunch of hours of your time? Could you call me”?

That’s why a lot of times the emails don’t get returned. That’s why you don’t get the calls back. The individual you might be trying to get a hold of is just insanely busy, and you’re not giving them any benefit whatsoever. I say you loosely. It’s just a concept here. They’re not getting anything out of that relationship. Rather, they’re losing completely, because they make so much money that for every hour they’re not working or working with their team, they’re essentially costing themselves money.

They’re costing their team money. They’re costing the growth of their company. What’s in it for them? I thought the whole plane concept was ridiculously creative. It’s not cheap advice. I mean you’re going to spend a lot of money for that advice, but the power of advice to shortcut the growth of your company is insane.

When I finally got smart in life and started reading, and spending money on seminars, and getting in business groups, everything changed for me, but I had to spend a lot of money to shortcut that process. I’d suggest if you’re trying to get the time of somebody that you’d like to learn from or maybe a person that you know of that’s built a really successful business and you’d like to model that. Could you join some kind of a group that they have?

Maybe they host a business group or a marketing group or a mastermind group or something. Did they write a book? Could you read that book and then find some creative way to benefit them or connect them with someone else? In turn get a little bit of their time. What is it that you could do to make it beneficial for them to spend some time with you or giving you advice? I don’t know if there’s value in that, but it was something that came to mind when I was listening to Tim’s podcast and I thought that’s a super creative idea. That’s an actionable idea, and most people are disappointed that they can’t get time from the individuals that they most admire, most want to learn from. Maybe there’s a better approach.

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