[Ep#309] The ONE Letter That Changes Fear Into Power with Curtis Morley

The ONE Letter That Changes Fear Into Power with Curtis Morley

Starting a company is both a scary and exciting experience. As an entrepreneur, you want to make sure that you're delivering the best product or service in the market. But while striving for perfection, many entrepreneurs end up completely neglecting the company itself. It sets you up into a fear of the unknown and endless ‘what ifs' that you project into the future. But changing just ONE letter in this phrase can turn this fear into power.

In this episode, Annemarie Cross speaks with Curtis Morley to talk about overcoming the entrepreneur's  paradox. He highlights the qualities that make an entrepreneur a leader. Curtis delves into how business owners can replace fear with power and conquer setbacks through a simple success formula. He also shares a few of the 16 startup pitfalls that entrepreneurs should watch out for and how to address them.

Not all innovators are great entrepreneurs. If you want to learn how to become the latter, then this episode is for you.

Here are three reasons why you should listen to the full episode:

  1. Learn about the concept of the entrepreneur’s paradox.
  2. Find out the four elements that make the success formula for any entrepreneur.
  3. Learn how to mitigate the common pitfalls entrepreneurs fall victim to.


WATCH NOW (and check out the Resources and Episode Highlights below): 



Episode Highlights

[02:43] What if to What is

  • Entrepreneurs often project negativity and fear onto the future.
  • Perplexing in the past produces pain; fretting in the future fuels fear. Only the present brings peace and power.
  • The phrase ‘what if’ brings fright and anxiety. We need to replace its last letter with S; focus on the ‘what is’.
  • Doing so brings back your power and grounds you in the present.

[05:57] The Entrepreneur’s Paradox

  • Most entrepreneurs start their company because they're skillful and passionate about something.
  • But when they put all their attention into their offerings, they often neglect the business itself.
  • The entrepreneur’s paradox invites you to put more attention to the business side of your venture for it to thrive.
  • You have to stop being the best at building your product to be the best in building your company.

[08:09] Focusing on Building Your Company

  • If you're building the product, who’s building the company? An entrepreneur’s answer to this is often nobody.
  • You have to rip out the entrepreneur’s identity and reinstall it with leadership as a new operating system.
  • One of the first things you need to do as a CEO is to set the vision for where the company is going.
  • Curtis relates the entrepreneur’s journey to his ascent to Mount Kilimanjaro. He says that business leaders need to pick which mountains to climb.

[10:05] The Entrepreneur’s Success Formula

  • To succeed, business leaders must know how much, by when, for what, and why.
  • How much: Your financial goals.
  • By when: A specific target completion date for your financial goals.
  • For what: The event you envision will happen after you achieve your targets.
  • Why: What drives you to succeed. Listen to the full episode to learn about the entrepreneur’s success formula in detail!

[13:14] Working Towards Your Big Vision

  • It’s critical to reverse engineer your goal. Identify the typical growth rates in your industry.
  • Envision where you will be when that event happens.
  • Determine how many employees, customers, and products you will have by the time you reach your goal. Then, find out what you need to do year by year to hit that.

[15:37] Mitigating Risks

  • Almost 100% of entrepreneurs fail to mitigate the risks and challenges in their industry.
  • To avoid falling into the same trap, you need to separate yourself from your business.
  • Putting your identity into the company puts an incredible amount of stress on you.

[19:37] Identifying Pitfalls

  • Be wary of climbing without a map and wearing all the hats in your company.
  • Make sure you know where you are going and employ the expertise of others so you can focus on running your business.
  • One of the most immediate goals you should achieve is to create a system that works with or without you.
  • Another pitfall is believing in your fears. Throw these out by doubting your doubts.
  • Any business can succeed with proper business principles applied to the company and personal principles applied to the entrepreneurs.

[20:45] Don’t Be a Statistic

  • The US Bureau of Labor Statistics says that 30% of businesses will fail in the first year. 50% will be out of business within five years.
  • These numbers are true, but it is a faulty assumption. Companies don’t go out of business; entrepreneurs quit.
  • That happens because entrepreneurship is hard. However, you can avoid going out of business if you are flexible.
  • Even during the pandemic, you can start a business. That’s because change brings about opportunities.
  • Listen to the full podcast to hear how Curtis's client, Kylie Chenn of Acanela Expeditions, navigated the COVID situation!

[26:40] Stop Being Lonely at the Top

  • Many entrepreneurs feel lonely at the top. However, they don’t have to.
  • You can seek the help of coaches and mentors who have been in your shoes.
  • That way, you increase your odds of success.
  • Additionally, build your peer network. None of us has it all figured out, but we can get through hurdles easier together.
  • Doing business is similar to climbing a mountain; it would be a horrible experience all by yourself. Tune in to the full episode to hear Curtis' Mount Kilimanjaro story!

[33:27] Understanding Business Acumen

  • Understanding business acumen is often very difficult for entrepreneurs because they’re creatives.
  • In addition to knowing where you’re going, you need to understand the metrics and key indicators to get you there.
  • Having an annual financial trend can change your company. You will be able to predict revenue and counteract seasonal issues.
  • To become a true leader, you must see the big picture and understand the key drivers to make it happen.

[37:09] On Giving Up Too Quickly

  • Losing focus and giving up too quickly is prevalent amongst entrepreneurs.
  • Thomas Edison was the sixth person to create a version of the light bulb.
  • However, he is the one credited for the invention because he stayed focused on it.

10 Powerful Quotes

‘Oftentimes, the entrepreneur will be building a product and they'll neglect building the business.’

‘Even though I may be the best in the world at whatever I do, the paradox is I have to stop being the best in the world at building that product in order to be the best in the world at building my company.’

‘The job of the CEO is to, number one, know where the company is going.’

‘As the entrepreneur, that's one of the most immediate goals: to create a company that works with or without you.’

‘Any business can succeed with the proper business principles applied to the company and the proper personal principles applied to the entrepreneur.’

‘Companies don't go out of business. I think entrepreneurs quit.’

‘Grab a guide. Grab a coach. Grab a mentor. All of the statistics say that companies are dramatically more likely to succeed if you have a coach or a mentor.’

‘That's one of the keys for an entrepreneur to become a true leader: to be able to see the big picture and understand what are the key drivers to make that picture happen.’

‘I said, “I am the success or the failure of my company.” Both. It wasn't just the success. I am the failure too, which put an incredible amount of stress on me and most entrepreneurs that do that.’

‘Looking at your business, it needs to be separate from you. Similarly too, can you step away from the business, and can it continue to operate without you?’

About Curtis

Curtis Morley is the founder and CEO of The Entrepreneur's Paradox. He is a 5x entrepreneur, best-selling author, educator, thought leader, innovator, and patent holder. In his practice, Curtis helps entrepreneurs in various industries and verticals achieve next-level growth. He has helped build companies achieve 20x growth, acquiring 96 of the Fortune 100 as his clients.

Curtis is also an owner of eLearning Brothers. He has helped the company achieve the fastest growth in Silicon Slopes. Curtis has been awarded the Entrepreneur of the Year Award and is included in the 40 under 40, Hot 100, and Inc. 5000 lists.

If you wish to connect with Curtis, you may reach out to him on his website and LinkedIn.

Enjoy This Podcast?

Many businesses fail because of the entrepreneur’s paradox. Being an innovator does not guarantee you to be a great business owner, after all.

However, once you learn to turn your fear into power, you can transform from an entrepreneur to a true leader. If you enjoyed today's episode of Ambitious Entrepreneur Podcast, then hit subscribe now!

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