Finding Business Wisdom When the Wise Conflict | Up and to the Right | Episode 038

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Show Notes

If it ain't broke... don't fix it!

If it ain't broke... break it!

Good enough is never good enough.

You need to search for your minimum viable product.

Read enough books... tap enough resources... and the business information you'll get will start to conflict... with itself.

Let's get actionable value from conflicting wisdom!

For more detailed information listen to the audio version of the podcast or watch the livestream recording.

Business Principle(s)

  • Lifelong Learning

Keeping Perspective | Experience Conflicts

When you begin your journey learning about success in your craft or in business you're going to come across various concepts and tactics that the author will swear by that are going to directly conflict with concepts and tactics that some other expert also swears by... so who's right?

Spoiler alert... when business advice conflicts both are probably right! So let's figure out how that can possibly be helfpul!

So much goes in to any given success story and one of the most important elements is that each success experience is at least as unique as it is ubiquitous.

And that's the first thing to really understand is that there are so many variables that results are not likely to be the same for any two business owners.

Experience conflicts.

The Environment of Success

The environment in which you start a business is going to greatly impact the results that a given tactic or idea will have on your results.

In order to effectively choose which tactics will work for you and your business you'll need to understand your own business environment and learn to pick out the business environment of authors, speakers and others offering their thoughts.


While each of us is unique, I think it's fair to say that we look for business advice from extraordinary people. Whether they have achieved extraordinary results or are extraordinary in their character it's important to keep in mind that even if we use what they have to offer, we are not them, we do not exist in their environment and; while they may still have something valuable to teach us, our results will vary.

Personal Knowledge/Skills

What are your points of expertise? What do you know that you use (or can use) to bring value to your business?

Market Timing

Having the vision to see when a specific product will be valuable to a certain group of customers can have a significant impact on business success. During the current (2020) pandemic event Zoom has been able to capture attention offering video conferencing services. Why them versus others? Time will tell right now (we are still in the midst of the pandemic at the time of this writing) I believe that the free version of Zoom's services will prove to have been the right mix of features to attract businesses and organizations to try their service and probably increase their paying customer base.

Access to Resources

What resources do you have access to? These can be raw materials, labor, skills, equipment, capital, test markets etc.


Is luck a factor in business?


That was easy huh? Okay, if you're not comfortable with the term 'luck' let's call it a fortuitous collision of events and circumstances. In any case, you may be able to position yourself to take advantage of a situation but you can't make luck... and luck... is definitely a factor.

Lifelong Learning

Many of the elements within your environment of success can be increased or developed and one of the best ways to do that is to get knowledge from those who have gone before you.

As you work to learn from others, be sure to examine the environment in which they found themselves successful as much as the tactics they used to achieve that success.

Trusting Your Gut

"If I trusted my gut... I wouldn't be reading this book!"

Okay... I hear you. Entrepreneurs and small business owners often struggle with the fear of not knowing enough, having enough, being enough... imposter syndrome. In fact, every book I've read where the author has the courage to talk about it confirms how prevalent the feeling is.

The fact the so many of the thought leaders in this space share that feeling is on one hand helpful but on the other hand a bit disappointing as we realize that feeling is not likely to ever go away... at least not entirely.

If we accept that there is always going to be self doubt that we have to act in spite of then we can learn to also find the strength to trust that what and how we feel is an important part of responding to complex situations and taking action.

Your gut is more than just random guesswork. When people say something 'doesn't feel right' or that they 'just know it' they aren't actually going simply by the seat of their pants. What we call our 'gut' is our brain putting together any number of facts an experiences that we think apply to the situation and providing us a point of reference. No, you're 'gut' isn't always right (or our interpretation may not be right). What IS right though... is that if our gut is putting itself into the equation there may be important components of the situation that we haven't articulated well yet.

The bottom line is that if your gut is telling you something... it's worth listening to.

Practical Action

So how do we get practical here? When I read a book, watch a video, take an online course or have a conversation with a colleague I'm looking for action... what can I DO to move my business forward?

The first thing is to get clear on your own personal business environment. What skills do you have? What resources do you have access to? And so on.

As you read, watch & listen to all the great tips out there keep a few things in mind.

  • How does this fit into the context of my business environment?
  • What actions can I take away from this that are appropriate for my business?
  • What outcomes would I expect from this and how will I measure them?
  • What is my gut telling me about this? Why?

The Aftershow

I realize now that I brought a few major topics into this episode. Don't worry... I'll touch on a few of them more extensively in future episodes... like sequels I guess!


What is the best business tip you can think of and who gave it to you? Put a comment in and share!

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