Business Tips to Beat the Competition

August 22, 2011

Savvy entrepreneurs like Bill Lyons have taken small ideas and even smaller companies and turned them into huge successes, thanks to big dreams and hard work. But these successful people have also had to make some mistakes along the way to understand what works and what doesn’t. Bill Lyons, San Diego software start-up company founder and former CEO of one of the fastest-growing companies in San Diego, managed to turn a company with no revenue into a company that was bringing in $20 million annually. Those kinds of successes are why it’s such a good idea to take a few tips from such experts.

Of course, you need to have talent, skills and smarts to be successful, but there are a lot of other competitors out there who have all of those attributes, as well. Here are a few business tips that will help you beat the competition:

Do Something You’re Passionate About

This should go without saying, but it might shock you to learn just how many people are in businesses that they don’t care about – and that includes the business owners! If you aren’t passionate about what you are doing for a living, your lack of passion will come across in the way people perceive your business and the effort you put into your own success. Having passion will also help you stick with the business, even when times get tough. This isn’t something you can learn – you are either passionate about your business or not. So if you’re not, it may be time to consider doing something else. Passion creates excitement, enthusiasm, belief and the necessary momentum for explosive growth.

Forget About Fear

Fear will only hold you back from any goals you want to achieve in life, especially when it comes to your business. While a little bit of prudence and caution is good, you will never see the huge successes you’re dreaming of if you don’t take risks. You might make a few mistakes along the way, but it isn’t a failure unless you don’t learn anything from it. Dance with the fear or feel the fear and do it anyways. Fear and doubt go away when you “act as if” you are already there and it has already happened. Focus in on your vision with razor sharp precision, imagine it in color, make it become real in your mind and then in will come to life in this dimension.

Never Budge From Your Core Values – But be Open to Change Elsewhere

You never want to lose sight of the mission and values that led you to start your business in the first place, but you have to expect that other plans and goals will change over time. So remember to be flexible when it comes to your plans and strategies. This freedom to be flexible is one of the nice things about being a small business owner, after all. Just don’t give up on your values. Don’t allow others values to become your own or a distraction but make sure they aren’t incongruent. Values that are out of order or incongruent can cause problems when you get big so make sure they are aligned now.


August 12, 2011

For successful people like Bill Lyons, San Diego CEO and entrepreneur, there are few things more powerful than positive thought. Whether one is going to be successful as a business person, entrepreneur, artist, performer, teacher, parent, or at any other worthwhile endeavor, it’s important to retain a high level of positive thought, even when facing discouragement and crises. This is exactly the kind of attitude that has allowed Bill Lyons to become the flourishing entrepreneur and contributor that he is today.

Bill Lyons grew his former company from the ground up, starting from scratch and turning it into a booming enterprise bringing in $20 million per year and more than $3 billion in transactions within three years. As president and CEO of this firm, which quickly became one of the fastest-growing companies in San Diego, he managed more than 250 employees and a $6 million annual online marketing budget. Now he is involved with an exciting software start-up and eager to see what kind of opportunities he can build with this budding new company.

This kind of self-motivated attitude is exactly what Neil Strauss has written about in books such as the recently published “Everyone Loves You When You’re Dead” and other works, including “The Game” and “Emergency.” Although his most recent book chronicles two decades of touring and conducting intimate interviews with rock and rap stars as a journalist for magazines such as Rolling Stone, it is also quite relevant to the success of a businessperson or entrepreneur. After being put into very intimate situations with some of the most successful stars in the world, he has seen what it takes for someone to reach this level of success.

“Success comes from acting out of confidence, conviction, commitment and deservedness,” says Strauss, “no matter what critics, haters, and competitors are saying and thinking – with no fear of failure (and with no problem bouncing back undiscouraged if one doesn’t succeed at first).” He asserts a positive attitude and belief in oneself is what brought the most successful stars to where they are today – they believe they are destined for greatness, and so they are.

For entrepreneurs like Bill Lyons, San Diego is a great city to start up a new business, but for those with a negative attitude it doesn’t matter what city you’re in. Without a positive attitude and belief in oneself, success is never going to be long-lived.

Top 10 Things to Avoid in Business!

July 26, 2010

Some obvious, some NOT so obvious!

Overhead – Bigger is not always better. Don’t add Overhead for Overhead’s Sake (O4O). Overhead and infrastructure really depend on what your ultimate outcome or exit plan is: Create an empire or a cash-flow machine? Although infrastructure (human capital, office space and marketing) is deeply discounted right now, one must evaluate if technologies and outsourcing can be used to reach maximum return. Oftentimes, a giant office space doesn’t allow for the flexibility and mobility that this economy commands. Flexibility can be one of our greatest strengths while Elimination can be a path to enlightenment: “Simplicity is the key to brilliance…Absorb what is useful, Discard what is not, Add what is uniquely your own.” –Bruce Lee

Anti-Automation – The worst thing one can do in a business is fail to create systems. Scalability and profit depend on it! If you have to replace someone due to one of the principle’s outlined below then you will need to have systems in order reduce the reliability on one employee. A component of the business can’t be in one person’s mind or on a collage of sticky notes. If you don’t automate your business and take yourself out of the equation you are creating a JOB.

Conundrums – Avoid having to solve a series of problems in order to solve the one real underlining issue that needs to be solved in order to get the result(s) you need. Again, keep things simple and automated. Avoid the Cheesecake Factory mentality and strive for the Southwest Airlines / In & Out Burger Menu. You can be the “master of complication” in your own mind but not in business.

Time VampiresTime Vampires can come in many forms:

Busy people” that run in circles and never get anything done. They seldom ever get results and rarely solve problems. And usually can’t change and adapt. They focus 95% of their time focusing in on the activities that don’t get direct results and 5% on of their time on activities that yield direct results” Mostly “Work for Work’s Sake (W4W)” – Tim Ferriss

Talkers” are almost as bad as “busy people” they are the ones that “know everybody but really know nobody” or the false “Connectors” that never are able connect their so-called “connections.” These people never want to dig in and “work.” They just want to make money off of “introductions or “overrides” (Which is fine for the lone-rangers but has no place within a real business)

Social Media Expertslock-down everyone’s computer and don’t allow anyone on any site, software or program that isn’t necessary to complete a task, period! “But…I need to check my personal email, but I need to check my bank account, but a need to get on my social network real quick, but my friend sent me a funny email, (personal emails to company email prohibited)” Answer = TOO BAD. “But I read somewhere that it makes for a more productive and happy workplace” Answer = B.S. Do personal things on your own time, have fun focusing 90% of your time on profit generating activities and the day will fly by. You’ll then have plenty of personal time to do personal activities to create balance. Time Management is about blocking your time. If you feel it is necessary to allow personal computer time then put an off-network, virus-ridden, community computer smack dab in the middle of the room that everyone has to sign up for. If the culture is truly performance driven then the team will make fun of anyone who jumps on it.

As Neil Strauss says: Every second Counts!

Open Door Policy – I hear it all the time “I am the CEO of XYZ Corporation and I have an open door policy with all my employees on all levels. I don’t want to seem “unapproachable” and I want employees to be able to come to me with their “problems.”” In my opinion this is the worst way to lead an organization. How are you going to be creative, strategic and effective if you let other people’s agendas become your vision? How can you manage profit and growth? Remember, “Trying to get everyone to like you is a sign of mediocrity.” – Colin Powell and “…the key to failure is trying to please everybody” – Bill Cosby. Imagine when you have 250 employees that all want to get 2 minutes of your time everyday so they can cry about their problems or come up with the next new “brilliant idea” instead of following the system. Let’s assume that you work 8 hours (480 Minutes)/day. 250 employees with an urgent unimportant issue x 2 minutes = 500 minutes. Your day has just been sucked up by someone else’s agenda. If it is really important they can always request an appointment with you. Oh, and one more thing your employees are NOT your friends so therefore NEVER hire your “friends.” “If you love life, don’t waste time, for time is what life is made up of.” –Bruce Lee

Personal Guarantee (PG) – Never ever, ever sign a personal guarantee. If things ever happen where you make one too many mistakes, hire that one wrong person, get a psycho client and/or something out of your control happens you will end up Bankrupt or in a short sale. Business is not personal and a business is not you, it is a separate entity/soul. All you can do it control the things you can control. Always keep your integrity; always do whatever it takes to resolve things and constantly do your best to adapt and find a way. If the vendor asks for a PG ask for a higher rate instead.

If you operate as a corporation all documents should be executed as follows:

Where indicated to Print Name: Print Company Name

If indicated to additionally Print Individual Name: Print Name, President

Where indicated to Sign Name: Signature, President

If you operate as an LLC all documents should be executed as follows:

Where indicated to Print Name: Print Name, Member

If indicated to additionally Print Individual Name: Print Name, Member

Where indicated to Sign Name: Signature, Member

*Disclaimer: I am not an attorney and this post is not legal advice. Please seek a competent attorney for professional legal advice.

Misaligned/Incongruent Values – If your goals are to create opportunity for customers and employees alike, positively impact as many lives as possible and create one of the largest conglomerates in the world then don’t value opportunity, charity, growth and a performance driven culture above profit. The sole reason a business is in business is to profit, period. If along the way you create opportunity, change lives for the better, make an impact on society and grow – great. A business is not a place to “fix” people it is a place to collectively attract talent in order to add value. If you want to do charitable work then start a charity and keep the charity work out of the business. If everyone is “fixed” and everyone has been given opportunity at the cost of profit there will eventually be no opportunity to give. Don’t overdue opportunity, it is easy to do and can really create a sense of “entitlement” within the company culture.  In a culture “where anything goes eventually everything will!”

Blanket Partners – I’ve never been a big proponent of having a partner or partners but sometimes it can make sense. Make sure, if you do, you make a fair deal for all sides based on what each of you brings to the table. Never, ever, go 50/50 just for the sake of going 50/50. Never make a win-lose partnership, eventually the loser will find a way to get out of the deal no matter what you do. It is important to go in correctly upfront and in writing. AND the never of all, never partner with a “blanket partner.” A “blanket partner” is defined as someone who wants/needs to be involved in every business you have because she/he is a partner is one of them. Don’t marry a partner! Just because someone is a partner in one business does not give him or her the automatic right to be a partner in another business. Partners are utilized to add value not ride your coattails. Whether, you partner or joint venture, THE most important thing is “who” you are doing business with. If they fall into the “Bad People” section of this post then you can get egg on your face real quick!

Here are four questions that may help:

Who is going to manage/run the business and the day-to-day operations? = 0-25%

(Maybe both of you will so 12.5% each)

Who created/invented the technology/widget/idea? = 0-25%

Who is investing the capital? = 0-25%

Who is taking the risk? = 0-25%

*The percentage can be profit and/or capital interest

Bad People – Unfortunately “Bad People” are a fact of life.  They lack integrity. They connive and manipulate. They are willing to lie under oath. They don’t believe in Karma. They would rather destroy than create. They think with scarcity. They are miserable and negative. AND they’re ultimately lazy and weak underneath it all.

Believe it or not there are people out there that will betray you and try to do everything in their power to destroy you. I’ve had to learn that it doesn’t mean that all people are bad. I also have learned to not allow “bad people” to trigger dis-empowering emotions that don’t serve but rather to harness, utilize, deflect and transfer the energy into power and strategy. If you pity yourself and allow yourself to stay in the emotion it will eat you up. Every emotion has a purpose but don’t stay there!

You are not going to eliminate them all together but the best way to avoid “bad people” is to not attract them in the first place and filter them out the best you can. Spend time on the basics: Background checks and real reference checks but also implement real behavioral assessments that are tailored to the performance driven culture you want to create. “Good People” add value, positive energy and passion. They follow the vision, reciprocate, act with integrity and earn trust.  And remember if you happen to hire a “bad person”, “It’s not who you don’t hire that matters the most, it’s who you don’t fire” – Tony Robbins

Regression – You’ve heard it before “if you’re not growing you’re dying.” The important part is the pace of the growth and how we can best manage it. There are two main principles that we must master in order to constantly grow:

1. The Peter Principle

Simply put, “The Peter Principle” is when an organization outgrows an employee’s workload, intellect or skill level and that employee becomes a cog in the system. This employee can even stop the entire company from scaling to the next level. These employees oftentimes are afraid of delegating and don’t have to ability to say “uncle.” They have the fear that the company will become bigger than just them and that they will ultimately lose their job. Unfortunately, in most cases, this becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy as most are unable to adapt to change. There are however, three possible solutions for this 1.) Replace them, 2.) Hire a manager above them, or 3.) Transfer them into a different role. (All three have risks and the decision must be made cautiously)

2. The Pareto Principle refined with Jack Welch’s Differentiation 20/70/10)

It’s not about loyalty. Loyalty is a double-edged sword it can save you but it can also kill you if don’t make a needed decision based on loyalty towards someone. In today’s workplace it’s about performance plain and simple. Company pays you, you follow system and perform, and vice versa. The bottom 10% are managed out so there is room for better talent to be recruited in and the rest are managed and lead up. If you want peak performers and a winning team you have to eliminate the bottom and reward the top. That will create healthy growth and limitless possibilities.

The Bill Lyons Explosive Energy, Anti-Aging, Alkaline, Vitality Diet! (Updated)

June 21, 2010

Since my vitality has been a little off track lately I decided to get back on track and update my daily schedule and vitality goals. Hopefully it gives you some ideas and inspires you towards greater vitality!

Fuel: (Food is for nutrition and energy not to indulge. Indulging causes fatigue)


-Water w/ Lemon (Room Temp)

-Green Tea w/ Lemon or Coffee (Never drink Coffee on an empty stomach)

Whey Isolate Protein Shake w/ MACA, Organic Berries, Banana, ACAIAloe Vera Juice, & Udo’s Oil (available @ Wholefoods in liquid or pill form. Keep in Frig.)

Burn fat not sugar. These essential fats give sustainable real energy not up/down

-Supplements: New Chapter One Daily, TwinLab Krill Oil, DHEA 50mg

-Wheatgrass (2oz.) or SuperGreens mixed w/ water (Don’t do Jamba Juice Wheatgrass it is weak! Go somewhere that it is potent)

-Distilled Water

PENTA (1/day)


Eggwhites w/ Organic Spinach or Protein Bar

-Distilled Water

Snacks throughout the day:

PomeZotic – Goji, Acai & Mangosteen blend


-Carrots w/ Hummus

-Distilled Water

-Emergen-C w/ MSM or Emergen-C ElectroMix

-Protein Bar (BodHealth)


FRS or Jungle Love (Healthy Energy Drink)

-Wheatgrass or SuperGreens


-Eat whatever the heck I want but not within 3hours of going to bed

-Melatonin 1-3mg (Currently looking for a good Melatonin Blend maybe with a little GABA, Valerian or Kava…)



Rebound daily


-Swim daily

-Run or Bike or Yoga daily

Structural support (stretching/chiropractic):

-Chiropractic weekly


-Gym 3x/week


-Massage weekly

-Accupunture monthly

Mental Focus:

-Massive heart solution daily

-Hypnotherapy monthly

-WhiteBoards everywhere with 5yr, 3yr, 1yr, monthly GOALS & Values

-Incantations daily

Cleanse: “When the fish is sick change the water instead of medicating it”

Cove Wellness monthly


-PH Level Sticks (Available at Wholefoods)

-Live Blood quantitative test / Panels (Available at Cove Wellness or Joe Dillon)

Please comment with any suggestions for improvement.

Thank You Bill Lyons San Diego & Coronado

Why is Cecil Always Howling?

September 26, 2009

We are all meant to grow, when we feel as though we are in limbo we can get stressed. We don’t sleep until we experience enough pain or enough pleasure to take action and do something about it. Like the old story about Cecil. Cecil was a hound-dog that laid down on the porch of a gas station in a small town in Texas, passer-byers would ask “why is Cecil always howling” and the gas station attendant would always reply, in his Texas accent “well, ya know, Cecil’s like most Americans, he sitting on a nail and too lazy to get up.” Knowing the next step in your life gives you that growth and freedom.

No Easy Way Out

September 19, 2009

I love Doctor Housing bubble! The data he compiles is great!

-$1 Trillion in CA mortgages are underwater & swimming in the Pacific Ocean.

-42% have Negative Equity.

-$3Trillion total in US

-$1Trillion in Alt-A (Interest Only etc.)

-$182Billion in Option Arms

*50%+ are in Cali

*$20Billion~ BOA (CW)

*$42Billion~ Wells (World)

*$40Billion~ Chase (WAMU)

Short Sale a home you can’t afford and buy one for a deal that you can afford

Even though there were mortgage brokers that sold the option arm correctly by providing the proper education and disclosures most borrowers abused the product and did not save or invest the difference. If you haven’t been doing this start doing it NOW so you are prepared for your recast and if you can’t, get ahead of the game and do a short sale now.

While 88% have not yet recasted most borrowers are enjoying a 1% payment and a current interest rate of around 4%~ most commonly (MTA+Margin) or (LIBOR+Margin) Margin is fixed and usually ranges between 2-4%. (Review your loan docs or mortgage statement to obtain this information)

The problem lies when the option arm recasts and homeowners no longer have the OPTION of the minimum payment.

Well, I guess that wont be that big of a deal if the payment quadruples to 4%, right? 4% is a pretty low interest rate!

Oh, but wait! What about China? One would have to believe they want to start getting paid back their money by 2012, 2013 and that the LIBOR followed by the MTA will hit at least 4%.

Meaning (4%MTA+3%Margin) =7% septuple – octuple the payment!

Here is the ALT-A recasting schedule:

2009-2010 $6 Billion~/mo

2010-2011 $8 Billion~/mo

2011 $33 Billion~ /mo

“There’s No Easy Way Out There’s No Short Cut Home…”

…only a short sale

or will Lex Luthor – The Great Evil Mastermind of our time, be right?

Will someone nuke the San Andreas fault or will we have a big earthquake making California fall into the sea suddenly creating valuable beach-front property of the once barren desert? [shouting] “Miss Teschmaacher”

I don’t know which chart below is more scary…either way we are going to need superman

mortgage rate resets waves

Bruce Lee

August 19, 2009

Bruce’s philosophy I believe would say something like this…

@bill_lyons Defeating an opponent is not fighting fire w/ fire, it’s harnessing, utilizing, deflecting and transfering their energy into your power10:20 PM Aug 10th from Twitterrific

Accidental Billionaires (Facebook Story)

August 11, 2009

What a great book! Ben even gave a shout out to me on twitter!

benmezrich@bill_lyons I love that picture. Thanks! hope my book went well with the beer. I used to write while drinking Red Stripe. Now it’s Red Bull.10:13 AM Aug 10th from web in reply to bill_lyons

Having a landshark Jimmy buffet beer while reading @benmezrich PM Aug 9th from Twitterrific

@benmezrich just picked up accidental billionaires. Look fwd to the read! I loved rigged!4:04 PM Aug 8th from Twitterrific in reply to benmezric

Doing Business in Today’s Economy

August 8, 2009

Out of the who, what, when, where, why & how of business…

WHO you do business with in this economy is THE most important!

Bill Lyons Interviews Jordan Adler

July 6, 2009

I interviewed best selling author & entrepreneur Jordan Adler on a “new divide” between Sedona and Flagstaff Arizona.  We talk about overcoming challenges, razor sharp focus, The Go-Giver, leaders deal with adversity differently, beach money, and send out cards. Jordan is wearing his alien transformer sunglasses. His EtchASketch analogy is true stoicism.


Everytime I get the opportunity to spend time with Jordan it proves to be very valuable. When you are around him your mind opens and you become a limitless thinker.

Tony Robbins talks about how one action or one magic moment can create a processional effect like a stone that is dropped in a pond. Tony best describes this example with the story of Chris Hendrickson. “And then the story doesn’t end there…” It is a perfect example about how one thing or event can be created or gifted and attract amazing things that keep leading to more amazing things – All changing the course of time forever like the movie “Sliding Doors” or “Mr. Destiny.” Over the fourth of July weekend I can count at least three times where we just happened to run into someone because of something good being given out to the universe. These encountered weren’t happenstance or coincidence they were created and attracted.

Next interview I am going to discuss the above along with who Jordan’s 3 most influential mentors are and the 3 most influential events that had the biggest shift.

Send a card out in the mail to someone you love today, on me. Tell them how much you appreciate them and include a fun/cool picture of you so it makes them smile.

What if?

%d bloggers like this: