Investing lessons from Donald Trump

Having just got back from the National Achievers Conference in Sydney where we saw 14 different speakers on a variety of business and personal achievement topics, there was one speaker that trumped the rest with his presentation style and hard hitting message on what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur – Donald Trump!

Jennifer Hawkins Introducing Donald Trump

It was his first time in Australia and he had 22 hours on the plane to gather his thoughts on what to share with close to 10,000 entrepreneurs packed into the Sydney Entertainment Centre, his key message was not what I was expecting to hear…

“Not everyone is cut out to be an entrepreneur, very few can handle the pressure and be able to bounce back from making mistakes. Don’t take things too seriously and get used to making mistakes… You can change but never ever give up”, said Donald Trump.

It made me see the investing mistakes I have made in a completely new light, and not be so critical on myself.

Sure, I have made mistakes. I’ve purchased properties at the wrong time in the cycle, I’ve been caught out by the Global Financial Crisis holding too many negative geared properties, I’ve spent too much on some renovations, I’ve turned down offers only to have the market pay $50,000 less 6 months later. However by taking action I’ve also made a lot of money and I have learnt more than any book or speaker could ever teach me.

Making mistakes might be difficult but what price can you put on gaining the life experience and then being able to help others. So how do you handle mistakes and what have they taught you?

Here are the main areas Donald Trump covered in his speech on how he has become a successful entrepreneur:

  • How you see yourself is everything- “So much of success is seeing yourself as victorious, to be a winner you have to think like one.”
  • Common Sense- “Business is all about common sense, if you don’t have it give up now.”
  • Luck is extremely Important- “The harder I work the luckier I get, if you are not lucky you may as well stay at your job because starting business is a bad idea”
  • PassionYou must love what you do.”
  • Momentum is your ally- “Play with momentum, it is your biggest ally, it is very difficult to do anything when you don’t have it.”
  • Go against the tide- “Go against the tide if you have a gut instinct, things are a lot easier when you have no competition.”
  • Trust- “Hire the right people and don’t trust them, they are after your wife, dog and money.”
  • Get Even– “If someone screws you, screw them back 10x harder in spades.”
  • Focus- You want to be totally focused, I wasn’t. Taking nothing for granted.”

I may not agree with all of Donald Trump’s views but I admire his confidence and the fact he speaks his truth, holding nothing back… There is a lot to learn from that!

I would love to get any feedback on how you have handled mistakes and what Donald Trumps views on success mean to you, so please post your comments below.


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