The Grind: Notes for A Master Plan!

Posted on, January 1 by EJ

These days everyone has an idea that is going to make him or her famous! Too often I encounter individuals who are just waiting for their moment. So the real question is: What does it take to get to the top? How do you turn that dream into a reality? How do the famous become famous?

Unlike the D list “stars” we see on reality TV shows, the road to success is not easy. Their fame is fleeting and fast burning. This MP post is about utilizing your 15 minutes of fame to turn your dreams into a success story. It’s about taking your success to the highest level! There are several key factors that play into the success or failure of a great idea. Let’s break it down!

We can start with “The Idea”. The tricky thing about an idea is that you need people to believe in your vision. The idea itself must have a concrete foundation. A bit of tangible advice for you to start on your journey is to keep a journal by your bed, start writing down the first few things you think about when you wake up. Whether it is clothes, people, video games, money, etc. write it down. This will help shape your scope for your vision, more than likely if you wake up thinking about it, it is something you care deeply enough about and can make it happen. Answer these questions to start building your idea from the bottom. What exactly is the idea? What is your mission or purpose? Does anyone else have a similar idea? Who will benefit from your idea?  Who is your target audience? When do you want to launch your idea? Where do you launch your idea? How do you achieve your goal to accomplish your idea? Answering these questions, will actually lead you to discover other questions and tasks that you must consider to successfully launch. This is how your plan builds and you develop convincing talking points. Your simple idea is transforming into a master plan, which is executable and measurable, bringing your dream to fruition.

Next … do your research! Find out what others are doing and if your idea is truly unique. Find out how other entrepreneurs and business icons made it in your industry. Learn from their mistakes. I personally recommend you review, “Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill, “What Color Is Your Parachute?” by Richard N. Bolles and “From Good To Great” by Jim Collins for doing some internal and company research. These books will help you organize not only yourself but also your ideas into perspective. Reading is the closest you’ll get to interviewing and discussing ideas with these acclaimed thinkers. Once you read these books you will find even more books that relate to the issues you are going through. As you grow, so will your library!

Let’s move on to the next section, The Work! This is your commitment to the plan; consider this your map to success.

A great idea is just that … an idea if you are not willing to GRIND! Sleep … You will get none! Just don’t even think about it! If you are serious, the last thing on your mind is rest! All of your energy will go into your idea. It should become an obsession, your best friend, lover, and boss! As a business consultant I often tell people to treat their ideas like a child; you want to nourish it so it can grow up to be the best it can! A simple ounce of neglect can turn your idea into a lifetime of regret and a waste of time. Stay on top of your kid and remember having too many can become costly.

So now you are thinking, “How do I dedicate my life to an idea?” It’s simple, Determination! Determination is essential, without it you will fail and allow closed doors to turn you away. For an MP a “No” simply means, “NOT RIGHT NOW!” When it seems as if you made the wrong choice your will to move forward will give you the motivation to keep at it. Think about it … if Steve Jobs gave up after being forced away, Apple wouldn’t be the technology super power they are today.


At this point you mapped out your idea, you haven’t slept for weeks, but you are motivated and grinding for the best. You have also realized that there are a few items, services, and resources that you do not have access to but the fate of your idea depends on them. This is where the good old cliché, “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know” comes in handy. Have you ever come across a successful, incompetent person and wonder …  “who left this guy in charge?” They were well connected! The Grind requires you to step outside your comfort zone and meet people. Your goal is to build professional relationships with individuals who can benefit from your services or product and vice versus.  You never know how a simple exchange of a business card with the right person can turn into the perfect opportunity for you and your idea. That 30-second speech you worked on for months could finally PAY off! Imagine you have the talent to succeed and the contacts; it’s a recipe for greatness. Remember this road is not easy. People will say no, people will say yes and fade away, and very few people will share your same desire to see yourself succeed, but keep at it. Determination doesn’t stop and neither do you!

Rule of Thumb: when networking and meeting people never ask for a job or a favor. That seems crude and comes off as if you are using them. Ask them for information. Information is invaluable and will help you build your relationship with that person into one day becoming a viable tool or resource of your own.

Lastly make sure you have a TEAM! My Made Product team consists of a variety of entrepreneurs and business owners who are working towards their goal of success. Call us the modern day rat pack! Your  team must have variety, select individuals who specialize in a skill that you lack. For instance, I do not specialize in graphic design. It’s just not my thing, but my MP team has a graphic designer who I recommend to people all the time. Warren Buffett is quoted as saying “If you’re the smartest person on your team you’re losing.” Assemble individuals who all feel that they can learn from you, the same way you feel you can learn from them. This is how teams succeed. The goal of the team is to capitalize on the group’s strengths and to build the team based on the group’s weaknesses. You all can work on projects together and serve as a reference for each other to potential clients. Eventually, your team becomes your support system. Hey you don’t want to spend every night alone grinding with just a MacBook and cup of tea! Build a team and grind as a group for the best.

Your road to success doesn’t stop with the end of this post. This is only the starting point and your competition is already two steps ahead of you. Get to work and Good Luck!

BY: EJ Calvin and William Bradley III 

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