Harnessing Your Passion for a Better Business
Entrepreneurs like to focus on money. How to make it, how to make more of it, how to use and save it. It makes sense. Being an entrepreneur is your livelihood and let’s face it, you need money to live. But in all this talk about funding, finances and budgeting, the seed of entrepreneurship gets lost. We sometimes forget about our passions.
On Season 6 episode 15 of the Making Bank podcast, guest Brian Burke discusses the importance of passion in business. Having started his tech company SellYourMac years ago, he’s learned a lot about how imperative passion is to excel.
However, passion isn’t just caring about something. Sometimes, what you care about and how you care for it can truly lead to success. Brian breaks down his passion into two areas, which have helped him rise to the occasion many times over the years. If you can identify your passions in these areas and then harness it, you too will be able to tackle challenge after challenge.
Passion for Your Field
One of the most important things to be passionate about if you want to excel is the field you enter. Oftentimes, your field will dictate much of what you do for your business. While your product is always important, your field will influence your competition, your goals, your team and especially the product itself.
In the episode, Brian chats about the tech industry. Known to make millionaires overnight, many new entrepreneurs are looking to invent the next greatest app, social media platform, phones, or other tech. In a way, it is the gold rush of industries; many people flock to it, many people fail. But the ones who succeed become wealthier than they could have ever imagined.
Money vs. Passion
The allure of money draws a lot of people in, but people stay for other reasons. You see, as it’s a popular industry, the tech world is therefore extremely competitive. It can require a lot of money to launch, to be seen, and to grow.
Additionally, in a fast-moving market such as tech, one year can equal a lifetime. There are constant changes and challenges as companies rush to deliver the best products and services each quarter—and new ones at that. Brian recounts many incidents of victory and of failure, including scams, cut-throat competitors and changing trends. Basically, it’s a brutal market. The thought of gold will start to dull. To outlast all the challenges, changes, and competition, you have to love it. You have to have passion.
Success Takes Time
Here’s the thing. Being an entrepreneur can sometimes be brutal as well. It presents its own challenges of managing finances, a team, product lines, and much more. Brian articulates that no matter how great the money is, how shiny the prize may seem, that is not enough to sustain you.
At the end of the day, success in any field can take time. For some people, that may look like several months—though that is rare—while most of the time, it can take years. Despite the stories of tech giants going from rags to riches overnight, that’s usually not the case. Success takes time because you are learning how to be successful through trial and error. Those who are in it for the money can feel like the trial and error isn’t worth it. Why? Because they don’t have the passion to sustain them through the long days of learning.
If you’re entering a field for the money, you may never see that money.
Passion for Your Mission
In order to reach success, you must harness your passion to fuel you through the challenges. However, it goes deeper than that. You’ve got the passion for your field. Now, you need passion for your mission.
By “mission,” this can mean several things. It can mean your literal mission statement, which outlines the values of the company. Perhaps your company delivers an eco-friendly alternative to your competition. The product itself may accomplish the same things as the one next to it, but the process of building that product or disposing of it does not harm the planet. Customers who care about being eco-friendly will care about your mission, and therefore be more likely to buy the product.
Being passionate about your mission can also mean your product or service. Why are you making that particular product or service? What has fueled you to start a company around delivering it to customers?
This comes down to why you do what you do. Brian is upfront—he loves Apple products, and he loves helping people with their tech. Therefore, he helps people buy, sell, and understand their Apple products. It’s what gets him up in the morning and keeps him going throughout the day. He believes in the mission of his services. He believes in it so much he has done what is necessary to make his products and services the best they could possibly be—and then some. His belief pushes him to look at things in a new light and to rise to the challenges he faces.
Why? Because he has passion for why his product and services exist. He has passion for solving a problem he sees before him. Those that then have that problem will see your products as the solution.
At the end of the day, if you as the entrepreneur don’t care about your products or company, why should anyone else?
If you go into what you love, you will work harder, smarter, and better than the person who does it just for the money. If you go into what you love, others will see that and gravitate towards it.
If you do what you love, you can find success, as well as happiness.