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How To Fire Like A #Boss (Without Getting Sued!)

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Firing an employee is often harder than hiring them in the first place.

Some entrepreneurs struggle with this so much, they do anything but pull the trigger.

Postpone.

Set up meetings that never deal with the problem.

If you’re Alexander Jarvis, that list of things might include feeling really pained and crying when you have to fire someone.

Let’s face it. Firing is hard. Even Hollywood made a big deal of this in 2009 movie Up In The Air, about a heartless, macho, corporate “downsizer,” who spent his days flying around the world and having to fire people. It didn’t hurt that George Clooney played the role.

You don’t have to be George Clooney though, or Donald Trump on The Apprentice, to get over your discomfort at firing people.

If you’ve struggled with firing in the past, Jarvis says there’s a better way to hire employees in the first place so you never struggle with letting them go.

As reported on the 50Folds blog, Jarvis’s experience with firing changed dramatically when he switched to hiring salesmen on trial only.

Rather than make an open ended hire, he agreed with the prospective hire on holding a trial run for 2 weeks or however long.

Jarvis and the hire both knew ahead of time what the salesman’s target number of sales to make for that 2 weeks would be.

If they were able to hit it, then they were officially part of the team. If not, well, they’d move on, and there were no hard feelings either way.

Can you imagine the kind of stress that would save you if you hired your new hires the same way?

For Jarvis, it made all the difference between not being able to look himself in the eye, and having people he was firing thank him. As surprising as it sounds, newly fired people would tell him stuff like, “Thanks man. We gave it a shot. Thanks for the opportunity.”

So, this stuff works. Jarvis says you don’t need to be hiring salespeople only in order to use this hack. You can use it for any other roles as well, as long as you set clear trial targets upfront and make sure both of you know what you are in for.

Good luck.

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Entrepreneurs

Last Openstage: 3 Brilliant Gems From Investor/CEO David Meltzer

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In case you missed it, last openstage featured an all-star crew of entertainers, DJs, and—of course—a super entrepreneur on the stage.

Just a quick 411 on what openstage is…

So once a month, WealthLAB hosts an exclusive, limited-capacity event in Brooklyn, NY with a rockstar entrepreneur on stage, basically breaking down their secrets to success. 

(Then there’s standup comedy, DJs, SICK cocktails and networking, but that’s another story for another time…)

 

This time, we had none other than legit rockstar entrepreneur, social media star and investor David Meltzer [instagram.com/davidmeltzer] on the stage, interviewed by WealthLAB founder Philip Michael.

 

David’s a Top 100 business coach, one of the most sought-after public speakers and host of Entrepreneur Magazine’s super podcast “The Playbook.”
(You may have seen him on Gary Vee’s stuff as well. That’s the guy he built his following with.)

And of course the talk was EPIC. Here are three brilliant gems dropped by David on stage. 

1) Say thank you every day 

One thing most people don’t do is appreciate the things around them. Of course, the vibration of gratitude triggers attraction, a 0.1-second strategy David said you can implement immediately. 

“It took me nine months to do,” he said. “But now that I do it, things that I want in life come to me faster, I’m happier and my life is abundant.”

The strategy? Simply say “thank you” before you go to sleep every night for 20 days. 

“It will change your life,” he said. 

2) What your parents need from you

“Your parents only want to know a few things,” David said during the talk, after which many became emotional. One, that you’re healthy. That you’re happy. That you love them.

“That’s all they want to know,” he says. “So take a minute to text them or call them and tell them you’re happy, healthy and that you love them.”

3) Building a following: why followers don’t matter

Of course, David’s managed to build one of the fastest-growing channels on social media, propelling to nearly 300K Instagram followers, seemingly overnight. 

“I didn’t know what DM’ing meant,” he said, bringing laughs from the crowd. “I thought it was saying your initials to indicate a message.”

When asked by Philip on how to build a following, his message was clear. Number one, know Gary Vee. “I was consulting for their sports agency. He became my mentor on social media,” he says.

Now, if you don’t know Gary Vee, you still have access to people who can help. “Never be afraid to ask. People would love to help,” he said.
More importantly, don’t worry about the followers. Just worry about building ambassadors. “Selena Gomez has 166M followers but can’t sell out a movie,” David said. “So what does that tell you?”

Instead, playing the long game, impacting two people who then impact two and before you know it, your reach compounds. Naturally. 

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(WTF?!) Top 10 Highest Paid Instagram Celebrities

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No need to say that much. The picture speaks for itself. Check out, courtesy of BleacherReport.com’s Instagram account.
Ronaldo

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Business

This Mogul Became America’s 1st Black Billion-Dollar Businesswoman

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Sheila Johnson.

Where to start?

She’s the first black billion-dollar businesswoman. Before Oprah Winfrey.

She started as a TV executive, founding Black Entertainment Television (BET), the first TV network targeting African Americans. She then became a real estate mogul.

Oh, she also owns a stake in three major sports franchises, the NBA Wizards, NHL Capitals and the WNBA Mystics, the African American, period, to boast that claim.

In honor of Black History Month, let’s dive into her remarkable career.

FAST FACTS:

  • Born Sheila Crump in McKeesport, Pennsylvania, Johnson co-founded BET in 1979 with then-husband Robert Johnson. The couple sold it to Viacom in 2000 for $2.9B
  • Sheila Crump Johnson became the first African American woman on the Forbes’ Billionaire list in 2000—beating Oprah Winfrey to the distinction.
  • Per Forbes, Johnson has an $820M net worth as of 2019

 GIPHY

Foray into real estate…

After closing the sale to Viacom, Robert and Sheila pocketed around $1.5B each. Johnson used that windfall as seed money to build a hospitality real estate empire in 2005.

“There’s a disparity in paychecks between whites and blacks,” she told the Wall Street Journal. “I will never forget that.”

As CEO of Salamander Hotels and Resorts, Sheila controls a spectacular portfolio of six luxury hotels in Florida, Virginia and South Carolina. And she’s built it from the ground up—literally—in her own spirit.

“I’ve been to many hotels, not only in the US, but all over the world,” she told Forbes last year. “And I wanted to find something that was going to really make Salamander stand out beyond all of these hotels.”

So what does that mean?

“You have to understand, there are a lot of people, investment companies, with very deep pockets,” she says. “They can do it, but they don’t have the experiences that we’re able to bring. I am constantly trying to find a way to help Salamander Resort & Spa stand out head over heels above any other hotel — not only in the area, but in the nation.

“I want them to leave that resort wanting to come back and not just say, ‘I’ll be back in six months.’ I want them to come back all the time.”

And so far it’s worked. In fact, on Forbes Travel Guide’s 61st list of Star-Rated hotels, Johnson’s Salamander Resort & Spa outside of Washington, DC earned a Five-Star distinction.

Image Credit: Salamander Resort & Spa

Forbes: “Everything [she] touches turns to gold.”

That’s a real quote. From Forbes. Last year. It’s also true.

BET? Billion-dollar exit. Washington Capitals? Stanley Cup.

And Roma. Won 10 Oscars. Who showed it before a single soul started caring? Johnson’s Middleburg Film Festival. (Which, by the way, has 32 films and counting in Academy Award contention.)

Remember her golf resort at Innisbrook? Oh, yeah. Hosts the Valspar Championship, one of the PGA calendar’s most-anticipated tournaments.

Becoming a billionaire comes with a new level of clout as well. “When you don’t have money, you’re not invited to special events; you really don’t matter,” she told WSJ. “It’s a society thing.”

So instead, she’s turned to giving back. Her Sheila Johnson Fellowship’s paid for more then 40 scholarships at Harvard University for students who otherwise wouldn’t afford to attend.

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Breaking glass ceilings. 

There’s an alarming statistic in business and diversity—especially as it pertains to women. According to research by investor Richard Kerby, 18% of all VCs are women—and only 3% are black. In addition, less than 50 black women ever have raised $1M in funding.

“When I got started,” Johnson says, “I couldn’t get a loan. I had to use my own money to get Salamander Resort and Spa.”

She explained to WSJ last year that men can go to any bank with a bank proposal. And no matter how “wacky” the idea is, she said, “they’re going to get the financing. Women do not have that ability.”

Johnson’s taken it upon herself to do something about that, becoming one of the founding partners of WE Capital, an investment firm that invests in female entrepreneurs.

“I started out in a very unique position where I had my own capital to be able to get started,” she says. “But there have got to be banks and investors that believe in helping women who want to be entrepreneurs in the hospitality business.

“And it’s just really, really important that they really take a look at this.”

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