5 things I learnt from Tim Ferriss

Tim Ferriss is no ordinary guru. He has literally tens of thousands of followers who devour his blog. He has been described as a guru's guru and is most famous for having created what he calls the four hour work week. Before he put into practice what he preached, Tim was a typical entrepreneur working 80 hours a week. Of course this meant that he never had time to do the things he really wanted to -- apart from being an entrepreneur of course.

But Tim turned all of that on its head. He took action to revolutionize his lifestyle. He reckons that by devoting so much time to his business career and by procrastinating the decision to change his lifestyle he achieved next to nothing. His saying is quite apt. ‘Many a false step was made by standing still’. Here are five things for which Tim Ferriss is famous

1.You only have to be the best at one thing.

2.You are the company you keep.

3.Make your niche as specific as possible.

4.You can be an entrepreneur in your spare time.

5.Be a nice guy but not a doormat.

One mistake which many entrepreneurs make is that they try to be the best in the business at everything in the business. This is not the case because in order to be successful you need to be the best at one thing in your business. By trying to be top of the tree in a number of things you spread your expertise too thinly and finish up not being good at anything. This is a mistake. Choose the aspect of your business which you like the most or which you shine in particularly and then concentrate on that.

Tim believes that the five people you spend most of your life with are the people who will influence the person you are and will become. In other words choose your business partners and colleagues with care and due attention. Bright people, kind and thoughtful people will rub off on you. Their interesting and worthwhile characteristics will be passed to you. Unfortunately negative people, those who are aggressive and selfish are not the type of people with whom you wish to associate on a regular basis. You are the company you keep.

You cannot be too small in your particular niche as an entrepreneur. In fact Ferriss preaches that you should reduce your business and then reduce it again. The point he is making is that it is possible to become ultra-successful in a business which has a very narrow focus. You don't need to be a multi-tiered Corporation. In fact in so many ways the smaller you are the better you can become and you will certainly be a challenge to those in business who are bigger than you.

Many an entrepreneur has an idea and would love to put it into practice. They hesitate and this is not a bad thing. It may be that they have responsibilities and dependents and don't want to risk their financial situation on a speculative business venture. This is not a problem. You can be a part time entrepreneur. Many of the skills that you practice as a full-time entrepreneur you can put into practice on a part-time basis. You can certainly go networking as a part-time entrepreneur.

There is no shame in not jumping in at the deep end straightaway. Start your business on a part-time basis for any type of operation. As you build your business and as it becomes more successful you can then consider becoming a full-time entrepreneur. Many entrepreneurs started small and in a low-risk environment. Remember Ferriss himself was working really long hours and it was this domination of his lifestyle by his business which drove him to reassess his life. Finally it's important that you operate your business in an ethical way and that you are an interesting and enjoyable person with whom to do business but under no circumstances should you become a doormat.

Ferriss fights against the adage that ‘nice guys finish last’. You need to get that happy combination of being a helpful and friendly entrepreneur but not someone who will be taken advantage of. You need to know your rights and you need to know what you should fight for and stand up for your rights. To Ferriss it’s possible, even highly desirable, that you are a nice guy but that you definitely finish first.