1. Thou shalt not lend money to friends.
You would think being nice is the right thing to do. When it comes to your money, and your personal things, you have to put your foot down. Too many times, the end result of me being nice, ends up me being horrifically rude, because the person I was nice to in the beginning doesn’t hold up to their word. Don’t take this with just a grain of salt either. This will save friendships, avoid frustration, and awkwardness. Unless it’s a business deal, stay out of peoples personal problems.
2. Thou shalt not focus on aesthetics before application.
This burned me bad this last year. I dropped way to much money in aesthetics. My focus was 70% worried about appearance rather than application. I was to caught up in making everything “perfect.” There is nothing wrong with perfect, but when you focus too much of your attention on design, rather than “application,” your doomed for failure. Application refers to your business plan, your marketing plan, and/or the core. Focus your energy and what really matters.
3. Thou shalt be an individual.
In 2010, I’ve been use to relying on people, whether a friend, or a professional company I hired for $16,000 or $50,000. Never rely on anybody. If you are about to make a big executive decision where you’re solely relying on someone or a company, you better have it in writing, and make sure the contract protects your best interest. Stop relying on everybody, and rely on yourself to handle the job.
4. Thou shalt read the fine printed lines.
I signed my life away last year to a company for $50,000, and I took their verbal word as a sense of security, even though the fine lines clearly stated otherwise. If the contract isn’t in your best interest, and I mean your very best interest, you better rewrite the contract, or hire a new company. Read the fine lines closely when you are spending any type of money. I really truly do understand now, why all business professionals say “make sure you have it on paper.”
5. Thou shalt never speak until finished.
I see this way too much, and even catch myself doing it a lot. This is one of the biggest mistakes you can make as a business professional. Not only is it wreckless, foolish, and down right pathetic. You’re giving people the right to laugh at you. So what do I mean by this. Don’t post blogs, tweets, or Facebook status updates about how awesome your new website is going to be, how amazingly famous you’re going to be, how you’re an awesome Internet Entrepreneur, how you’re this and that, and everybody just needs to know how amazing you or your product is. It’s fucking pathetic, and you’re a laughing stock who needs attention. I admit I did this way to much in 2010, but my lesson has been learned. Only promote or speak of something when you actually have something to show for. Which I believe we call marketing. Don’t talk about your awesome company, when your company is doing nothing. There is a difference between “faking it till you make it,” and talking like a douche bag. Fake it till you make it means believe in yourself and dress the part, don’t lie to others.
These were some incredible mistakes I made in 2010, but sure as hell made me realize what I have been doing wrong. Take these commandments seriously, and you will save yourself money, time, court, and embarrassment. If you liked my five commandments, please share it!
PS. On another note, I am going by Andrew Thompson again, until I start shooting again. Cheers.