MICHAEL PORT: You’re welcome. It’s my pleasure.
JAIME TARDY: So let’s first start off, because everybody can read about your background on your website, if they don’t know about you already because you’re huge, so I will definitely link to your website. But if you could sort of give us a general timeline of sort of how things went when you first started and maybe some of the pivotal things in your business that have happened that have really made you a big success.
MP: Okay, sure. Well, 2003 is when I started. It’s when I left my I guess what you’d call a corporate job and I just thought clients were going to fall into my lap, you know, it was one of those. I left with my bonus. I figured okay I’ll be fine; it’ll give me a couple of months. Well here we are living in New York City, my rent was like $4,000, $3,500 a month or something and that was like a small two bedroom in Long Island city because living in Manhattan and I’m blowing through my money.
It was just a huge big scary experience. I said this is wrong. So I really put the pedal to the metal at that point. I think the first sort of big change that happened was for me to realize that I’m not entitled to anything.
JT: That’s huge.
MP: Yeah, I just really did. I said well I’m entitled. I’ve worked hard and I’m an adult and blah, blah, blah and when it didn’t happen I thought I’m not entitled and, you know what, that means I got to work, do whatever it takes – 18 hours a day, I got to get over my fears. I‘ve got to be willing to be bold and fully self expressed and do things that I’ve never done before and really think bigger about who I am and what I offer the world.
That’s when I started to sort of work into this brand identity of being the guy to call when you’re tired of thinking small because I needed some way to stay accountable to it. One thing I think is wonderful about developing a brand identity you’re choosing is that it can be something that you work into every day. There’s some days when I don’t think big. I have small thoughts. I have fears. I have doubts, whatever. But when I get up every day I know that that’s my job for the people I serve is to help them think bigger. So I have to do the same. So that was a major, major change for me.
Then I was doing okay. I was building real slowly but surely and when my first book came out that’s when there was a second big, big change because the book did very well. It was like top, it was like actually the number two best-selling book in the world the first week it was out so it did really, really well. You know, that’s a big platform to have when you produce that kind of product. So that was a big deal. I know that everybody and their brother wants to write a book and so a lot of people feel like who am I that had something to say and I’m going to tell the same thing that somebody else has told.
I always said that Really Book Yourself out is an example. You think it’s the first book that was written on marketing for professional service providers? Everyone goes, “No, of course not.” I said, “That’s right!” But I told it in my voice for the people that I’m meant to serve and the people that I’m meant to serve resonated with it and they tell other people that I’m meant to serve and it grows like that. So we have to again find our rightful place. Like I say in society, but realize we’re not entitled to anything but our rightful place is when we’re fully self-expressed. So that was a big change.
Then I don’t know what was the next sort of big change. I would suppose it was when I started doing more TV. It wasn’t necessarily that so many people were seeing me on TV and coming and buying my books, etc. But the people that were meeting me through whatever marketing activities I was doing outside of TV were seeing the TV work and it added a whole other layer of credibility. So I think that was significant as well. And then another, I said the turning point that has been most significant for me over the last couple of years is actually working with fewer clients, sort of I guess in a way leaning out the organization and really just focusing on the people that I mentor because when you give really big speeches to thousands of people at a time, you get to talk to them for 45 minutes or an hour and a half but it’s really a monologue.
You’re not engaging with them and you’re not taking them somewhere so I really sort of think why did I get into this in the first place? Did I get into it to get standing ovations or did I get into it because I really wanted to work with people? I really wanted to work with people. That was, you know, my driving factor in the beginning and it is the driving factor now. So I want to work with people long term. So I sort of put a lot of things aside and I just focused on an annual mentoring program that I do again with people that I’m meant to serve. So that was another big transition for me.
JT: You came completely full circle and I definitely want to talk about that new mentorship program at the end too but let’s break down sort of what you said. When did Book Yourself Solid actually come out? What year?
MP: April 2006.
JT: Okay. So what made you decide, I mean you’d been doing it for about three years, what made you decide to write a book?
MP: Well, you know, in my business, the most successful people are the most successful authors. That wasn’t hard to figure out but I had to figure out if I could write because when I was in school you could barely get me to write a five-paragraph essay.
JT: Good to hear. Believe me, good to hear.
MP: What did you say?
JT: I said that’s very good to hear. That’s what I hear all the time. People don’t know whether or not they can write.
MP: Absolutely. Yeah, yeah, right. I’m very dyslexic. I always joked that I could barely spell my own name. I can’t see typo if it’s blinking red and highlighted. I’m not one that you typically think is going to end up as an author but when you really have something to say, it changes the way you think about expressing yourself and there’s a lot of different ways you can express yourself. You can do it through words, through writing, through pictures, through music and I tried my hand at the writing thing and I just would write every day.
I just said I don’t care what it is. It doesn’t have to be great. I don’t have to make a big statement but I’m just going to write at least a paragraph every day and that helped me develop the habit of writing and once you start to develop the habit of writing, it becomes easier to write. Then of course you just have to get people around you to help in the areas that you’re not strong. So that’s what I have done and when I had something to say and I realize I could say it the way that I speak and that writing is really about storytelling and I was a good storyteller so there you go. That was sort of it.
The first book I had a lot of content already developed because I was teaching my clients, individually and in groups, a lot of the protocol that was in Book Yourself Solid so I wrote a book proposal, I sold it really quickly, you know, I was really lucky and all I had to do was sort of put the narrative around the book because I had a lot of the contents so that was a little bit easier and the second, third and fourth book were all from scratch and that’s a little bit of a different process.
So I always say work on developing a protocol, something that is sort of uniquely yours and then for a very specific group of people and test that out, make it work, develop it into something significant and then turn it into a book. But there’s really no need to use traditional publishing anymore. In fact, I might, as many probably do, would strongly suggest going in a different way and publishing yourself because you’re going to be the marketer anyway so why not be the publisher.
JT: Exactly and that’s sort of what I want to talk about too because there’s a whole point of writing a book which is great but then there’s the whole point of marketing the book. So how did you actually get your very first book to be the number two bestselling book in the world? That’s ridiculous. You didn’t really have a list I’m assuming, probably not a huge one at that time.
MP: A little one. I had a few thousand people, you know, nothing significant.
JT: So how did you do this? Please explain. Everybody would like to know and of course this was a couple years ago but still that’s really, really impressive.
MP: What’s interesting about publishing and book sales, like so many things on the internet, we’re moving a great neck pace. So what I did five or six years ago may be not as effective now although it may be. But at the time, everybody was doing this big hands on campaigns. Like here’s $15,000 or whatever of sort of basic like little eBooks or audio things and most of the things you could probably get for free on somebody’s site anyway, but they added it up to $15,000. All you have to do is buy this $11 book, right? And it was very effective at that time. It just bugged me like a lot of the things in my industry. I’m very skeptical of my industry often.
It just bugged me. I just said it doesn’t make any sense. You’re not really getting $15,000 worth of stuff. You’re just aggregating a whole bunch of free things in one place and putting a dollar amount on it. So I said I understand the concept of trying to get all these other people involved so that they put stuff into your campaign, they promote it for you and then maybe they get some more exposure at the time. I understand the whole concept but I wanted to do it differently and that’s sort of the way that I look at most of the choices that I make in my business whether it’s business development from a learning perspective for the people I serve or if it’s a marketing initiative, I look at what works at present.
Instead of looking at just the practical application of it, I look at the context around it because I think if you can understand contextually why something works, then you can repurpose that context using different tactics.
JT: Yeah, that’s great advice.
MP: So I said well it works but it’s just not for me. So what can I do that’s different that still leverages that concept or context of getting all these different people to help promote it for you? So I said okay I’ll do something but I’ll do a contest instead of this sort of giveaway of information products. I’ll do a contest but a real contest for things like cruises, vacation trips, blackberries. There were no iPhones at the time.
JT: Way back when, right?
MP: Yeah, right, exactly. Blackberries, there were iPods so there were some iPods on there. Like you know tickets to really big events and concerts and just cool stuff. So what I did is I went around to all the people I know in all walks of life and I explained to them what I was doing and I got them excited about this idea of donating something to this initiative and then I also got them excited about sharing the whole thing. So what I did is I actually put together and this was real dollar amount over $50,000 worth of prizes for a contest, again real prizes, a real trip on a ship. Those kind of things.
Then what I did is a raffle. So if you opt in for the contest, you get a raffle ticket. You don’t even have to buy a book. So I didn’t make it a bribe. I basically did the contest. You can be enrolled in the contest and you don’t have to buy anything. So it wasn’t conditional on somebody paying money. The benefit if you buy one big that gives you three more raffle tickets. If you buy three books, that gives you another five for a total of nine. So the more books you bought, the more raffle tickets you got. So if you bought 20 books you got et cetera. So it’s kind of fun. People got into it and it was different.
One of the reasons that it started spreading around all over the place is because people understood the context behind it but it was a new thing and so immediately once I did it, there were all these people calling me up and asking me how I did it. Can you come and do a teleseminar about how you did this thing? So all of a sudden now I didn’t have to go promote the book, I was now promoting this kind of cool thing that I had done which helped spread the message of the book.
JT: Which is perfect. That makes you really transparent so people trust you in general anyway and then they love your contest and your book.
MP: Absolutely. Then I think that transparency for me is key. I don’t necessarily, I mean I guess I can be a little preachy about it but people always want me to prove well that transparent tactic worked better than the one that’s not as transparent. The fact of the matter is sometimes they don’t work as well when you’re selling certain kinds of things. But for me that’s the only value proposition that I can live with. I always think about like what would my mother think about this tactic and if my mother thinks it would be cool then I’ll do it. If my mother thinks it’s not above board then I don’t do it. That’s my written attest.
JT: Mrs. Port’s test, right?
MP: Absolutely. That kind of thing. One of the things that I think entrepreneurs, successful entrepreneurs, do very well is they take what already exists and they reconfigure it to turn it into what they want. A lot of folks who start businesses and maybe even a lot of folks who listen to your program who want to get to that first million or maybe second or third or wherever they are, they’re still in the early stages of their business development. Their initial act of starting a business may have been a rebellious act against whatever they were doing before.
Now that’s fine. That’s a very typical way of starting something new. I can’t take this thing anymore. I’m going to rebel and do something else and you leave the old thing completely and do something new. Sort of like when a man has a midlife crisis and he dumps his wife of 30 years and finds some little thing to play around with. Now it’s rebellion. That’s a horrible thing to do but in a business it’s not terrible. But if you are always being rebellious in your business you may not continue to grow because what happens is sort of rebellion becomes your way of being.
Every time you get into something that’s a challenge or some sort of breakdown occurs or you don’t like the way something is, you push everything that existed before and throw it away and you try some new path and you end up as a dabbler. So you do a little bit of this, then a little bit of that, them a little bit of this and a little bit of that. Now that’s a kind of cool fun way to live because you’re learning lots of different stuff but you’re always flat line because you’re getting a little bit down the path with that one thing and then you hit a big stumbling block so you say that’s not the right path and you go back to the beginning and you get a little bit down a different path and go stumbling block that’s not the right path whereas the business owners in pursuit of mastery takes one thing and focus on that one thing. They get to that stumbling block and they work whatever it takes to break down that barrier and they get through the next one and the next and the next one.
Eventually those barriers get easier and easier to breakdown because they’ve got momentum on this path or this journey. So a great entrepreneur doesn’t throw away what they had. They’re not always rebellious. Instead what they do is they reconfigure what already exists and turn it into what they want. So take Jeff Bezos for example. Jeff Bezos had an idea for a bookstore on the internet and at the time nothing like it existed and people told him he was crazy. But he was able to convince some people that he was not crazy so they were willing to give him money to invest in his idea. But all he was doing was taking a bookstore, reconfiguring it slightly and putting it on the internet. He was still selling books to the same people, just in a different place.
Now why didn’t Barnes and Noble do that? Because they didn’t have the courage to reconfigure what they had because they thought they cannibalized what they had. So there were three things that happen. Either you rebel against what you have and you throw it away and you don’t do it anymore and you just start something new all the time or you hold on so tightly to what you currently have that you can’t do any reconfiguration, you can’t try anything new because you’re stuck, you’re afraid. Or you can constantly, making slight changes, slight reconfigurations, small continuous improvement over time and you create whole new worlds in the process which is what Jeff Bezos did, if you think about it. He continues to create new worlds with all the different things that they do over there.
JT: Yeah, but it just started with one little small idea.
MP: I mean it was a big idea but he didn’t throw away, he didn’t say well I’m going not do a bookstore. I’m going to make something up. I’m going to have books printed on the side of buildings. That’s going to be my new idea. He wasn’t ridiculous like rebelling against the industry. He said okay well people buy books. That’s a great business and I think people will continue to buy books. So how can I leverage something that exists somewhere else and reconfigure what already exists with that new thing? Again, the technology was the new thing.
He had to go outside of the world of bookstores to see that technology. The people who were running Barnes and Noble probably weren’t even paying attention to that other technology because they were so deep in the woods or deep in the weeds rather what they were doing. But he was looking outside of what you call his disclosive space, the space the he could just disclose around. He looked outside that and he said oh my God there’s this new thing, this ecommerce. What if I marry that up with a bookstore? So he took, he appropriated. He cross appropriated. He went out to this other industry, he took what existed in this new space – the internet – he tied it to a bookstore and created a whole new world.
JT: Now how far do you go before you know whether it works or not? With Jeff you kind of know it went really well. I mean I’m sure it was very difficult at the beginning but how does someone, a regular Joe, know whether or not it’s going to work once they’ve started getting into it instead of just rebelling like you said when it gets hard?
MP: One of my colleagues Seth Godin wrote a great book called The Dip. It’s truly about that. Have you read that book?
JT: It’s funny, it’s sitting on my night table right now.
MP: There you go. Read it. It’s a quick read. All of his books are really fast. It basically makes one big point. He says there’s this American idea that you never should quit anything you do. The person who doesn’t give up always wins. He says actually that’s not necessarily the case. Sometimes quitters do win. That’s different. That’s not contradictory to the concept of the pursuit of mastery, what I’m suggesting earlier. It’s not about dabbling. It’s not about a little bit of this, little bit of that, little bit of this. It’s about having the fortitude to look at what you’re doing and identifying the dip, as he calls it.
That point that if you get through that point, then it’s clear sailing and if what you’re working on does not have a dip, for example, being an actor doesn’t have a dip. There’s nothing you could look at and say, “If I just do that, then everything will work.” It’s impossible. Yes, once you get a lead starring opposite Tom Cruise, yes, everything is fine from there. But the point is you don’t know, you cannot predict the way to get that part. You can’t say, “Okay, if I just do X, Y and Z then I should be able to produce that result.” Most businesses you can look at the business and say if I do X, Y and Z and I do them fully to completion and bring talent and skill to it and full self expression, then I can get through that dip, that period, that initial period where you only have a certain amount of cash flow, you only have a certain amount of resources, etc.
But there are some things that don’t have a dip like most creative pursuits which is why if you’re going to be an artist, that’s the only thing you want to do. Meaning it has to be the only thing you want to do. You have to want to do it all the time. But if you look at it and say I can’t get through that dip or I’m not willing to do what it takes to get through that dip, it’s not going to happen. Seth explains it better in his book so read his book.
JT: I liked your summary though. I started reading it. It’s a really good summary that you got too.
MP: Hopefully it’s accurate to what he was writing. If it’s not, I’m sorry Seth.
JT: Michael Port’s interpretation of The Dip. I think that’s really important too for people to know that a lot of business can be really logical where you just look at the numbers and you look at the analytics and if you go this way and add talent and do this like you said but artistic, I haven’t heard of it sort of built that way. Maybe I should read more of the book, that with artists and actors it’s kind of difficult to measure.
MP: I mean he’s not necessarily using an artist as the analogy. I am because I was an artist. I was an actor. So one of the reasons I quit is because I was looking at it going okay well I’m what you call a working actor now. I’d work on a TV show for a week and then I’d sit and audition for three months, then I got the next thing and then a commercial and whatever. But I look at this and I go well I have the great agent. I know a lot of people. I’m going on all the auditions. Outside of that, you can’t make any prediction. There’s no dip. Even if I got a TV show for a year, you don’t even know after that.
There are certain types of business pursuits that you have a little bit more control over and control is different than being an entrepreneur and seeing, looking at what do I need to do to get through the dip. It’s sort of a long possibly even convoluted answer so I apologize if it is, to your question of well how do you know when you should quit. I think if you’re giving up, if you’re not hungry, do something else. You got to be hungry for this stuff. You got to want it. You got to want to sort of chew up the furniture as they say. Bite into it and if you lose that hunger, it’s difficult to do. It’s really difficult to do. Again, nobody is entitled to success at this. You got to earn it.
JT: Tell me a little more about your mentoring program because it sounds like this is sort of what you do. You work with clients and you help them through, you probably help them through the dip and through getting more clients and all this sort of stuff. What do you normally do with clients and do you have any stories of any of your clients of what they have accomplished?
MP: Sure. So basically there are four areas that you need to focus on when building a business. You have the model of the business which is the mechanism through which you make money, right, generate revenue. It’s the products and services you offer and the price points that you offer them. How you organize, package all of that is the model of the business. You have the systems that support the delivery of all of those products and services. So the business is a whole series of activities. You’ve got to have processes that support all of these different activities.
Then there are projects because business is made up of the completion of one successful project after another. So if you can’t do projects it’s very hard to do business but if you can do projects, you get a lot done and you’ll have a great time doing business. Then the fourth area is your mind. Where is your mind? This is what we were just talking about before. How hungry? Can you stay hungry? Can you stay accountable? So those four areas are essential. So we look at the business model, all of the systems, all of the projects and planning and the way you see the world.
What I do with them is I take them for a whole year. So the first thing we do is we develop a whole plan for the year – 12-month plan – and we identify exactly what needs to be done in all four of those areas. Then we break that plan down into 90-day chunks. Then, of course, if you know 90-day chunks, you can look at what you need to do each month and each week. We have built this really cool tracker and all of this information goes into this tracker. You keep going back every single week, every month to this tracker and measuring up where you are and making adjustments in your tactics to make sure that you’re fulfilling the goals that you set forth.
You’ve got financial goals, you’ve got sales goals, you’ve got marketing goals and personal goals. We want to hit these things. We don’t want to just haphazardly go out and maybe something will happen. We want to be very specific and very intentional about what we’re trying to create. So I have them work through this and then we get together three times for three days each year and they present here’s what I have accomplished over the last 90 days. They do a presentation to their group and then the group gives them feedback and they relate it to what they were supposed to do. Are they behind? Are they on target or are they ahead? Then they work on their plan for the next 90 days.
Then they run that plan by their group and they get feedback from the group and then they go out and do it. Then every single week we have an accountability department so to speak. Every week each person in the program puts their commitments for the week and then they come back and show us what they fulfilled by the end of the week. Because I think that if you want to get stuff done, you need to have really, really great habits of commitment making and fulfilling because if you say you’re going to do something and don’t do it, nothing is going to get done. If you don’t say you’re going to do anything, then certainly nothing is going to get done.
So you don’t want to over commit and that’s part of developing good habits of commitment making, fulfilling, you know, not to over commit or to commit to things you do not want to commit to. So each person has this opportunity intake filter inside. Hey this opportunity comes in, they know whether to say yes or no by running it through this filter. That’s fundamentally what’s most important is the long-term planning and the accountability. Inside of that, we’re able to work on all the different tactics that the folks need to know how to execute in order to hit all those goals. I love it. It’s just fantastic. I have the best time with them. It’s great.
JT: That’s what I was going to say. I love that too. It’s funny, I’ve interviewed now 50 millionaires and they all say the same thing. That they need long-term planning and they need accountability. So do we. So does everybody else that isn’t a millionaire and wants to be too.
MP: Just because we have more figures in our tax returns doesn’t mean that we need something different than somebody who has fewer figures. It’s all the same. If we start seeing ourselves as different than others, because of how many zeroes they have in their tax return, how many figures they have, we are always going to play a small game. If I sit down with Mark Cuban or something I might say, “God, Mark Cuban is just really kind of wild and crazy. I’m so impressed with all these different things that he does and maybe he’s even a little bit intimidating” but I don’t think it’s really Mark Cuban to be like well that guy is somehow different than me. He’s just a human being like me who has tapped into something really powerful about himself.
MP: So I can admire and respect and appreciate but don’t put anybody on a pedestal. If you put somebody on a pedestal, then how do you see yourself on the same stage?
JT: I think it’s funny, actually the intro to this podcast says real talk with real millionaires and one of the things that I want to get across is like you said at the beginning, sometimes you make spelling mistakes and that’s okay because everybody does. We’re all the same. Like you said, we’re all just human. So I really appreciate you echoing that too.
MP: I get yelled at by people like I can’t believe you’re a New York Times bestselling author and you have typos in your blog. What’s wrong with you? I’m like I’m so sorry. All the other blogs you should read because I’m going to make typos and if you care more about the typos than what I have to say, definitely go somewhere else. I don’t want to upset you so much. I don’t mean to upset you. I’m not trying to just ruin your worldview about how typos should or shouldn’t be found on blogs.
JT: You need to be perfect, Michael, perfect all the time.
MP: But one thing you just said that I was going to mention that I think was, it just spurred something in me, you’re talking about real people so the tagline for the Alliance which is my mentoring program is real people doing real work getting real results. There’s the landing page that describes the program, there’s a video of me talking about it at thealliancewithmichael.com. People are marking the video as unusual but it’s really me talking to the camera. There’s a few clicks in there of people in the mentoring program talking about the mentoring program and what it does for them and then there’s like a little fairly transition there’s a little thing that happens, not fancy just a little thing to know we’re going here to there.
But that’s it. It’s just me talking on camera. People talk about how it’s so different and it’s not. It’s a video with me on it just like all these other videos you see. But remember I talked about the idea of looking at context. What works and how do you do it in a way that is an integrity for you, serves the people, speaks to the people you’re meant to serve and resonates with them, but actually makes you stand out, makes you a little bit more remarkable because you reconfigured it. All I did was actually take away all the hype and apparently in my industry that’s a total reconfiguration.
JT: Which is kind of sad but yes.
MP: It’s very sad. It’s totally pathetic. It’s ridiculous. So it’s actually very easy to stand out by not trying to stand out and being hype. But you’ll see, I mean it’s obviously very well done. The page is nice blah, blah, blah but you can still use all of the sophisticated tactics. I do split testing, which page works better than this one? I look at all my conversion stats, all that kind of stuff. The video is just me talking to them. Real. I mean it has got to be real, real, real, real. Otherwise you’re just living in a fantasy land and if you read Good to Great by Jim Collins, it talks about great leaders deal with reality. They don’t make stuff up. They don’t pretend things are one way when they’re actually another way.
JT: Yeah and I think what’s really important is I feel like I’ve known you forever just because I read your books from a long time ago just because you seem like a real person both in your books and on your video and online in general. I think that comes across a thousand percents which is really good.
MP: Thank you. I always joke like how can you not be a real person? We all just have bones and skin. I mean I’m hairier than most which is my eastern European roots but the greatest thing is people say they meet me and they go oh my God you’re just like I thought you’d be. I said well how am I supposed to be like? But again, it’s your industry. Some industries you’re not going to have that problem and other industries you will. The industry that I’m in – authors, speakers, coaches and all that kind of stuff – there’s a lot of that hullabaloo. So it’s very easy actually to be quite unique.
You hear people talk about the unique selling proposition. You have to have a unique selling proposition. You got to have a unique selling proposition and that particular term works very, very well when you’re developing some sort of physical product or restaurant or something that the consumer is buying without strong connection to the creator of the product. But when people are buying something because of the connection to the creator of the product like a book or a speech or coaching or mentoring consulting, whatever it is, the way that the person sells that, the way that that coach or author or whomever, the way that they sell that is by being more themselves because that’s what makes them distinct.
That’s the unique selling proposition. It’s not trying to be different. It’s not trying to be distinct. It’s be more yourself. If you can be more yourself, there’s nobody else who is going to be like you so that’s unique. Through that process, you’ll see why you’re unique selling proposition is very strong.
JT: That’s brilliant. I love that because we hear that so much but it’s really hard when it’s just you and you’re offering some of the same stuff that other people are offering but you’re totally offering it in a different way and that’s what you do and that’s why I think it’s a really key point too.
MP: Again, it’s a really simple concept to me. Look at where there’s like, what are we at – almost seven billion people in the world? Seven billion with a B, that’s a lot of people. We get so worried about one or two people. We go oh my God this one other person wrote a book that’s similar. One other person? Or oh my gosh so and so didn’t like it. So and so? That one person out of seven billion? So we often get wrapped up in this small disclosive space that we’re in and we forget that this is a huge world we live in.
So there is more than enough for everybody. We don’t need to compete with each other when we are in the business of serving others. I understand one product can beat another product. Apple iPhone against this other one but still there’s enough sales out there for all these companies to make a lot of money and do really well. They don’t really have to fight with each other. They don’t have to do that but they do. So we don’t have to because we’re individuals creating these kind of cool businesses, this brand, these concepts.
Then there are sort of people you’re meant to serve and others that you’re not. So there are certain people I’m meant to serve. There are certain people that Seth is meant to serve. There’s certain people that John is meant to serve. There’s certain people, now there might be some overlap. That’s really cool because then we’re part of the same community but there’s enough people out there for all of us to live very well and enjoy life because at some point how much do you really need?
JT: And all you’re doing is looking to help people and if you can find the people that want to be helped from you, that’s all you need to do. Perfect.
MP: Absolutely. I was talking to a friend of mine who was doing some press for a book that she just come out. So being on TV was sort of new for her and she had this TV gig so she says, “What do I do to be really good?” I said, “You can’t be good. You can be helpful.” So if you’re really helpful on the program just answer the questions to try and be helpful, then you will probably do a really good job. We sometimes get wrapped up in how do I do this good? I know it’s supposed to be well but you get my point. How do we do this so that we’re good? I want to be good. It’s very difficult to do that. We can be helpful and if we’re helpful then we will probably do a good job. That’s what we should ask of ourselves, to be helpful.
JT: That’s great. I know we don’t have much time and I would love to talk to you about speaking and stuff because I’ve heard also if you’re so worried about what you look like when you’re speaking and all that stuff and you can’t deliver good content, well then that doesn’t matter. Like you said, it’s just about being helpful and that’s sort of the whole point. I know your time is extremely valuable though too and I don’t want us to go over too too much. So, for the very last question that I always ask, I’d love to hear your thoughts on this, what’s one action that listeners can take this week to move them forward towards their goal of a million?
MP: Take the thing that has to make you nervous, you really know you want to do and need to do but you haven’t been fully committed to it, take that thing, make the most public commitment you can to the most number of people that you can, put a date on it and define the deliverable because that’s your job. Our job is to get up every day and make something or solve a problem. That’s our job as entrepreneurs.
JT: That’s invaluable. Perfect. So everybody that’s listening right now, if you’re driving pull over and then start writing that down, because that’s huge. That’s one of the projects like you said, it’s a project by project based approach. So this is a project that you got to do. Get over it and keep moving forward. So thank you so much for coming on today, Michael. I’m definitely going to link up to the Alliance and also to your website so everybody can check that out and have more information. Is there any other place we can find you online like Facebook or Twitter?
MP: Yeah, I’m on Twitter @MichaelPort and Facebook Author Michael Port. I hang out at those places. I don’t spend all day there because I want to make stuff but I am definitely there and then my blog is at bookyourselfsolid.com/blog.
JT: Great and I highly recommend everyone checking that out because he has got some really great content on there too. Don’t pay attention to the spelling mistakes or don’t go there if you do care. Thank you so much for coming on today, Michael. I really appreciate it.
MP: You’re welcome. Thanks so much for having me.
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