Tuesday, June 8, 2010

(Quick wealth Series) How to make QUICK wealth: Making money the Jesus way (Part 3)

I am sure at this point, if you are honestly searching for how to create income streams and wealth from scratch you may be thinking to yourself, I honestly want to be good at something but I don’t know WHAT and HOW. The next principles will take you step-by-step on the practical basics of what you need to create income streams anywhere you are.

Principle five: Use your talents and anything else you have!
Jesus gave a parable of a ruler travelling away to a far country, and who gave three servants, five, two and one talents respectively. They all traded and doubled their talents except the man who had one, and hid it. Actually, I am going to refer to talents as ‘talents’ with regards to skill or aptitude, just for this article. The bible was referring to money. A bible commentator has said 1 talent was several year worth of income.

The ruler returns and is very angry, takes away the talent from the man who hid his, and gives it to the man who initially had five, but had doubled it to ten. Now that man had eleven. Jesus says something to further shock his listeners. He says that to a person who has, more will be given, but the one who has nothing, even the little he has shall be taken away from him!


You must always start off by taking stock of what you already HAVE – your talents, your skills, your education, your unique abilities. Can you write, can you sing, can you talk, do you have charisma, can you bake, can you cook, can you blog, can you strategise, can you dance, can you research, are you creative, are you energetic, can you plan, can you….I can go on, but there is very likely more than one thing that you can do – or more than one thing that you are.

Next, think of what tools you have. DO you have a pen, do you have paper, do you have a computer, do you have a social network, do you have friends who know someone that knows someone, do you have an internet connection, do you have books, do you have. .. Just keep listing as much as you can. The big guns in business organisations do the same thing. They just give it a fancy name – “resource audit.”

Now, you can take stock of all you have available and if you are broke or jobless, be excited! WHY?

Because this is a rare chance for you to achieve wealth by doing what you REALLY want to do.
So stop waiting for aeons for a job, or for money or for a ‘big break’ or ‘breakthrough’.

Start from where you are!

So sit down and make a list of all the skills and aptitudes you have, your education, the people around you, the tools you have and don’t think too hard. If something comes into your mind, write it down. You can always sort it out later, but for now, just let it pour out. That’s how to harness creativity and that is what business people use to bamboozle you when they say they were in a “brainstorming session”! They were allowing their minds RAMBLE about as many options as possible, getting all that down…because from among those ideas are huge gems that will be mined at a later stage.

Principle Six: I am sure if you have followed up to this point, you may be getting all revved up and ready to jump into the money making process. I know by now, many ideas of what businesses you can go into have filled your mind. Hopefully, you are getting used to the fantastic habit of writing down ANY idea that comes to your mind.

Now, take a deep breath and before you go on, read the next quote of Jesus:

For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it? Lest haply, after he hath laid the foundation, and is not able to finish it, all that behold it begin to mock him, Saying, This man began to build, and was not able to finish. Or what king, going to make war against another king, sitteth not down first, and consulteth whether he be able with ten thousand to meet him that cometh against him with twenty thousand? Luke 14: 28-31

Aha! Now you get the picture. What Jesus was saying, in modern-day expression, was “Look before you leap!” It is what business experts call a business plan.
When you have decided on what you want to do, you must answer several questions: Who, what, where and how.

WHO are you going to provide the service to – or who are you going to provide your product to? Hmm! In other words, there is no such thing as a product for EVERYBODY. That is a NAIVE concept – except you can come up with one style of music, or food, clothing, colour, movie or drink that is the favourite of EVERYONE in the world. So you will have to think about the age, location, maybe race, occupation…and so on – with regards to people you want to offer your product or service to. The business people DEFINITELY have a name for this one! They call it “market segmentation”. (Yes, go ahead, roll your eyeballs!). So you have to determine the unique characteristics of the individuals you want to reach out to with your product and/or service.

The next question is WHAT (exactly) is your product going to be? If your answer is, my service is to make people happy, then that is not a service. It’s just a good line for a screen saver. This is a HUGE question you need to answer, because if you cannot define CLEARLY what you want to offer people, then how can you work at smoothening out the edges of your obscure ‘stuff’?

So, spend time thinking of what you want to give and make sure it’s a tangible product, or a defined service, so defined that you can write down all the activities you will undertake within a relative timeline as you deliver the service.

A bad example of a service idea: I want to make money by inspiring teenagers everywhere I go as I provide an inspiring atmosphere when I meet with them

A good example of a service idea: I will provide dancing lessons to students in tertiary institutions focussing on exotic styles like salsa and tango.

The WHERE refers to you actively thinking about the best place to offer your product or service. Let’s say you are a laptop sales man. So you decide that if you can offer your services to a wide range of ‘prospects’ you have a better chance of landing a sale. Right? Well, if you go to a secondary school with a LOT of students, you will barely make a sale. The product is right, but the PLACE/LOCATION/WHERE is WRONG! If you were displaying your wares at an IT summit, that would be a better place. So think about the best place, whether real or virtual, to offer your package.

Finally, the ‘HOW’ is one of the biggest questions. Jesus says something to the credit of those who are not ‘Christians’. He says that the children of this world (non-Christians) are in their ways wiser than the children of light (Christians). Applying this to wealth, many Christians tend to have shoddy practices believing that so far they have prayed hard, God will give them ‘increase’.
Well, if your plan for wealth is prayer-based ALONE without proper business techniques AND strategies, you will ALWAYS need to pray – because you will always need help with being broke. So what is the ‘HOW'?

‘HOW’ refers to all the ways you need to think and act to make your service stand out. It has to do with finding the right price to offer your product, how you package the product, getting traffic and buyers to your product, emphasising the unique selling point of your product, how to remove buying barriers to your product, how to make buyers ENJOY buying your product, how to communicate after you sell your product, and how you can offer additional services, how you must put measures in at every point…and so on.


Now, if you have thought of your skill sets, the people you want to offer your service/product to – after really defining it, and you have followed all the steps above, but are confused by the ‘HOW’, do not worry. You are right on track. The way to ‘HOW’ is encased in the next principle.

Principle Six: Think big, start big OR small – but by all means, START!
I am told that in some part of the world, rabbits sometimes run onto the road and get hit by cars. The reason they get hit is not because they cannot get off fast enough. I am told that many times, there are so quick that they have so many options when it comes to getting off the road. With the options flooding their brains at the same time WHILE the car is bearing down on them, they tend to freeze.

Bam! Before you know it, they’re …they are kaput. (I hope that sounded nicer. Bunnies are cute creatures.)
Humans act like bunnies who get smacked over by TIME when they freeze when it's time to ACT!

Jesus said: Do not worry about tomorrow because it will take care of itself. The key word is WORRY. Many projects do not get off the ground not because of a lack of resource or ability, but fear that the projects MAY not be successful. So people stay in their dead-end jobs with all their skills and talents, not lifting a finger, ‘just in case’ they fail. The principle here is, stop worrying about what tomorrow MIGHT be and just DO what you want to do.

Just start that venture, just build that website, just start that novel, just buy that ‘How-to’ manual…just get something started because ALL successful people learnt ALONG the way – and are still learning.
So, "Nike" – Just do IT!

Principle Seven: Give it time…PERSIST!
Ok. You have finally started that ‘thing’ you wanted to start. You were expecting the big bucks to start rolling in. They told you if you did it ‘right’, you would be a millionaire ‘soon’, you would get a record deal, you would get mad traffic to your site, you would make a killing with regard to cash inflow. What they did NOT tell you is that most business will kick off running at a loss – by accounting standards – then will go off into a break even phase, where your income is equal to your expenditure, and then finally you will start to make a profit. And that is not the end, you will need to keep LEARNING and improving and adapting as you go along to stay relevant…CONTINUOUSLY!

HEY! Don’t get me wrong. It is very possible to make a killing from day ONE, but many times, it just doesn’t happen that way. Period. You will need time to understand your business more, to understand your market and so on – and you will sweat. This is the reason why you have VERY few millionaires. Most people can’t stand the heat.

However, there is a hidden principle here that Jesus emphasises in a story:

There is a really tough judge who does not regard anyone and appears to be atheist. The bible says he didn’t care a hoot about God. Now, in the same city as the judge was a woman who needed this judge to help her get something done.

Definitely, she wasn’t worth a row of beans to him!

However, she was always going to meet him, to beg him, to cajole him, to plead with him, to beseech him, to placate him, to implore him, to entreat him, to appeal to him, to…


He got fed up…

And he helped her.

If you keep at anything long enough, it will bear fruit. As the Zen saying goes, stones are finally worn smooth by the persistence of water.

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