Sam (Shlomo Zalman) Bregman is widely regarded as one of the rising stars in the world of online marketing. He is the CEO of Alpha Tribe Media and has been labeled a “social media star” in his own right by the Huffington Post, Reddit, and other media outlets.
Shlomo is a regular Commentator for Fox News and The Jerusalem Post, and prior to entering the world of media full-time, he enjoyed an almost 20-year stint as an internationally recognized Rabbi, Torah scholar, and best-selling author.
We recently caught up with Shlomo to discuss his journey to success and to pick up a few gems on career success.
In entrepreneurship, is timing just as important as hard work?
Some people claim that to become successful, all you really have to do is be “in the right place at the right time,” and that timing is almost everything. What nonsense!
Of course, buying a stock on the day before its price quadruples is certainly fortuitous. But if you look at the successful people of the world, you realize that seldom was it a serendipitous event that led to their success. Those who get it that way (e.g. lottery winners) almost invariably lose it. And there’s almost nothing to learn from those few stories either.
In truth, the vast majority of people who become successful do not rely upon being in the right place at the right time. It’s been said that they make themselves into the right people who will be at the right place at the right time, because being in the right spot matters little if you’re not able to capitalize on the opportunity when it comes your way.
Additionally, I’ve observed that those who make it were not simply “in the right place at the right time.” Rather, they became successful by deciding what the right place and the right time was and then parking themselves there for 18 hours a day of hard work! Successful people figure out what actions cause the results they want and become laser-like in their focus on taking those necessary actions.
Practically speaking, how can one know if one is correctly estimating the amount of effort it will take to achieve success?
Since almost everyone grossly underestimates how much effort is necessary to achieve what they want, I have a phrase that I live by: “add some zeros to it.” There is not any one thing you can do that will be enough to get you the results you want. But taking a constructive action repeatedly will bring you positive results over time.
I’ll give you an example. Working out at the gym one time isn’t going to help you lose a lot of weight. However, if you add some zeros to it, and repeat that one workout 100 times or 1,000 times, you’re going to get somewhere. Sending an email to only one prospect isn’t going to get you many clients. However, if you ‘add some zeros’ to it, you may begin to get somewhere.
Beyond that, I would point out that it’s extremely difficult to live life with razor-thin margins — financial or otherwise. If everything has to work out perfectly in order for you to succeed, then some real changes are needed. But if you take action in massive quantities, you no longer become reliant upon any one person, deal, thing, or situation to make your life work out well.
You need to actively assume that many people will ask for a refund, that checks will bounce, that payments will arrive late, and the like. If you take action in massive quantities, it serves as the best insurance policy for keeping your business operating in the face of set-backs.