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Perseverance Strengthens – Find a Way

I’d like to think of the early formation of Share On Purpose as a “million-dollar education” rather than a mistake, but at the time it felt very much like a HUGE blunder.

After selling a multi-million-dollar consulting business in early 2008, I decided to “invest” $500,000 in purposeful ideas with the goal of assisting entrepreneurs in bringing meaningful concepts to market.

From 2010-2012 we operated a business incubation program, launching 14 brands with 12 different entrepreneurs, including two brands (Succeed On Purpose and IGNITE On Purpose) that were my original ideas. Leveraging the Succeed On Purpose business training platform, we created a FREE 6-month business incubation program for purposeful entrepreneurs. At the end of the program, our management team determined if we wanted to invest cash in the incubated concept. These investments ranged from $10K to $100K in exchange for equity participation in these purposeful ideas.

We also provided office space, a CPA/Group Controller to manage accounting, and an operating team to help with the overall execution of the concepts. The aspiring entrepreneurs didn’t have to pay upfront for these resources. We assumed all risk, with the goal of earning distributions from equity positions that would eventually provide an investment ROI. The idea was simple: We only made money when everyone else made money, and we provided both the know-how and capital. A true win-win.

Perfect, right?

Wrong. Not only did I lose the $500K of initial investment but had to inject another $500K just to stay afloat, as the businesses struggled to meet financial projections, and many went under completely.

With spiraling negative cash flow due to infrastructure, we were forced to either exit each business at a huge loss, buy the business outright, or shut it down and assume the debt. Like I said, many would consider it a failure, but it was truly a million-dollar education.

  • Was it a million-dollar education in how to build businesses? Nope. I’ve built several successful businesses.
  • Was it a lesson on how to invest? Nope. I’ve made a lot of money investing in brands of all sizes.
  • How about an education in how to select entrepreneurial leaders? Nope. These were all wonderful people with great ideas.
  • Maybe it was a lesson in how to invest in start-ups? Nope. Not even that.

In fact, it wasn’t an education in anything related to business. It was a lesson in how NOT to quit.

One would assume that I would have already learned this lesson (how not to quit), as I’ve had a history of personal and professional challenges throughout my life. But, I’d never tried to do something this meaningful. I’d never tried to do something based on my purpose to inspire potential.

Learning how to stay the course when it gets tough isn’t all I learned about not quitting. What I learned was a hard-core lesson in the power of perseverance. Perseverance strengthens us. It prepares us for more.

Perseverance is an energetic force, and it’s through the energetic power of perseverance that we learn how to BE more as a path to having more. BEING more isn’t just about knowledge or experience. To BE more means that we’re able to access more of our potential. And, when we access more of our human potential, our dreams get bigger and our lives get better.

All great leaders, athletes, warriors, and entrepreneurs learn about perseverance. The only common denominator of successful people is perseverance. The refusal to quit. What most don’t realize, however, is that it’s not about quitting. It’s about tapping into the energetic power of perseverance. Every single person has an unlimited supply of perseverance, but only a few people know how to access it.

Ironically, the original dream for what is now Share On Purpose never changed. We set a bold vision in 2009 to build a place where great people did great things. We aspired to create purposeful brands that were game changers in their respective industries, with companies that were performance-based and leaders that were driven, yet purposeful.

Today, many people want what I have. They want to run an amazing portfolio of businesses and get to create brands that solve real problems. They want to attract amazing talent and develop them into world-class leaders. But not many people are willing to do what I’ve done in order to have this dream or any dream. Not because they are incapable, but because they haven’t learned how to harness perseverance.

To access perseverance, you have to first realize that it is an energetic force, which means we access it, or better yet, harness it. This force is already in us, waiting to be unleashed.

To access perseverance, we have to think in terms of “whatever it takes” or “find a way.” When life gets hard, it doesn’t mean that we should quit, it simply means we have to FIND A WAY. We have to think differently, learn something new, or look for a solution elsewhere. Or, sometimes we simply need to ask for help.

There’s ALWAYS a way to get what you want. Sometimes it’s persisting on the current path, sometimes it’s finding another route, sometimes it’s changing the approach altogether. But, there is always a way.

At Share On Purpose, we have built a place where GREAT people do great things. The emphasis is ALWAYS on great people, rather than the really cool brands we launch.

Share On Purpose hires driven emerging leaders and we GROW them. We prepare them, teach them, groom them, mentor them and develop them. I like to say that we grow leaders who launch businesses. We teach these leaders about the power of perseverance and how to maximize their potential. We help them discover their passions and help them chart a course to go after big dreams.

We have multiple brands in our Business Cultivator today, and we’re just looking for passionate leaders to launch these ideas. Many of our emerging leaders will soon get to create business concepts for us to cultivate. Through their passion and purpose, these leaders will identify world problems they want to solve. Working with our executive team, our emerging leaders will “imagineer” ideas that will make the world better.

Pretty cool right? Yes, if you can access perseverance. Perseverance strengthens, and when you access it, you’ll find a way.

Was the million-dollar education in perseverance worth it? Yep. And worth every penny.

A Career Without Passion Is Just a Job

Doing what we love is the surest path to success, but not every workplace values passion. At Share on Purpose passion is not only valued, it’s a key part of our leadership development program. This gives employees, like Engagement Manager Taylor Jackson, fuel to propel themselves forward for the company, their clients, and themselves.

“In my work, I try to come up with out of the box things that no one has ever thought of before or done,” said Taylor. “I’m very innovative, or at least I try to be. Creativity and problem solving are my passions. When I have a really hard problem or task, I get a rush from trying to figure out how to solve it.”

“At Share, I get a lot of opportunities to be creative,” she added. “I expressed my desire for that at the beginning, and they’ve been great at honoring that need. At first, with Succeed On Purpose, I was always making graphics. Now, as engagement leader for Promote On Purpose, I do a lot of brainstorming. There’s always a problem that needs a solution, so I’m constantly challenged.”

Loving the Hard Parts

That constant challenge keeps Taylor engaged and focused, even when things get tough or something doesn’t go according to plan. When challenges arise, it’s her passion for problem solving that sees her through.

“I don’t look at the hard parts of my job as hard,” she explained. “They’re challenges. Challenges aren’t something to be avoided. They’re something to address immediately. And that’s what I do. I don’t back away from the hard parts, I tackle them, and while I’m tackling them I’m always hoping I can come up with an innovative solution that no one else has thought of.”

Working at Share has made it easier for Taylor to come up with innovative solutions, too.

“I’ve always been relentless and competitive,” said Taylor, “but I didn’t always know what could set me up for success. Share taught me what resources and tools I could use to solve problems more effectively.”

Working Together for The Win

Taylor acquired those resources and tools in Share’s leadership development program, which prioritizes developing leaders in a way that aligns with their passions and creates value for the company.

“At Share, they do a really good job at honoring what you’re passionate about and what you’re meant to do,” said Taylor. “They also check in a lot to make sure my passions haven’t changed, that I’m feeling fulfilled, and that I’m on the right career path. They are really quick on making that adjustment to get you where you want to be if something isn’t fitting or if something has shifted.”

“I’m a builder,” she added. “So, I’m always going to want to build a company. They’ve seen that from the beginning, and so they’ve lined me up to launch a new brand. I get to start from the beginning — it doesn’t even have a logo yet — and turn it into a successful revenue-generating business over the next year and a half. I’m excited!”

Ready to do what you love with a company that understands and rewards passion? Check out our open positions.

Culture – It’s What’s for Business!

Do you ever feel there’s something missing in your day-to-day work? Maybe you feel like you don’t exactly fit in, or perhaps there is something “off” about the company you currently work for. Maybe you are just simply looking for something bigger, better and more significant.

You are not alone! According to an article in Harvard Business Review, 7 out of 10 people are not actively engaged at work. This not only impacts each employee’s happiness, but costs an estimated $450 billion in lost productivity each year. That’s billion, with a “b.”

Lack of engagement is bad news for companies, but also equates to a challenge for career-oriented professionals who desire a challenge and want to be a part of a larger purpose. If the company cannot tackle the issue of engagement, talented professionals will go elsewhere. This begs the question – what should you consider if you are wanting to make a positive change in your career trajectory?

Find a Culture Fit

When you feel like there is something missing from your career, it impacts every aspect of life. Perhaps you like your current role, but the company itself is not in alignment with your overall goals. Successful leaders will advise you: choose the company, and choose the leadership, rather than the job itself. Look for a company that has a culture that is in alignment with who you are.

The culture of an organization showcases its beliefs, values, and behaviors. By investing time in learning about a company’s culture, you can find a workplace that aligns with your personal goals. It should be relatively easy to learn about a company’s culture, because organizations are very aware of the advantage a positive culture brings. If you cannot find out about the culture, that is your first sign you don’t want to pursue that company any further.

A recent Forbes article outlines how organization’s that focus on culture are becoming icons for both job seekers and those looking to fulfill a larger purpose. Reasons listed include:

  • Younger companies that focus on culture see a huge payoff (think HubSpot with its culture manifesto).
  • NetFlix’s culture manifesto “freedom with responsibility” is one of the most popular documents on the internet, 11 million+ viewers.
  • Value statements have popped up everywhere. Examples include Zappos’ cultural values focus on innovation, Google’s 10 “truths” (focus on the user is one), and LinkedIn being in the “human service” business and calls itself a “tribe.”

Obviously, culture is a focus for many organizations. Those who understand the value will be actively creating and cultivating a culture. Those who don’t may not realize that culture happens whether you focus on it or not, and are the ones who end up with a culture you may not desire.

Make the Best Choice for You 

Finding a culture that aligns with your value set is key to your success and happiness. The following tips will help you get started on discovering the best business opportunity for you:

  1. Write down your values and goals. Make sure to be specific and think long-term.
  2. Review the company website for their culture information. At Share On Purpose, we are very clear on our culture and focus – “to inspire potential in others while launching game-changing ideas. We believe in creating BOTH meaningful vocation and financial success.”
  3. Consider reviewing survey websites. Many current and former employees will provide their feedback on a company through sites likes Glassdoor. One caveat – review these with a critical eye. It’s very easy for people to voice “sour grapes” on these sites, so review them for valid content that provides good feedback.

Finally, don’t wait until you are completely unhappy or out of a job to start seeking your next opportunity. It takes time to find the best organization for you, so start earlier and invest time in really understanding the type of opportunity you desire. For those who crave an entrepreneurial environment filled with opportunities for high performing individuals, please check out the open positions at Share On Purpose. Starting now gives you the best chance to find the ideal place for you.