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Limiting Your Entrepreneurial Success?
No, this story isn't about Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak's
relationship. The tale is about a lesser known entrepreneur who had
the gumption to get one of the icons of the tech industry to join his
In his book Up Your Game, technology entrepreneur David Bradford
describes how he was able to convince Wozniak to join his startup
Fusion-io, a computer hardware and software systems company based in
While Bradford had all the faith in the world about Fusion-io,
Wozniak, who had already made millions from Apple, had no reason to
take a chance on a small company in the middle of the Rocky Mountains.
So, what stroke of luck allowed Bradford to convince one of the most
influential people in technology to take this chance?
Related: 3 Questions to Ask Yourself Daily as You Roll Out of Bed
Surprisingly, there was no luck involved. Instead, Bradford used a
technique that is critical to every single entrepreneur in the world.
Few have been able to master this technique, and many aren't even
aware of how essential it is to success. What is this magical
While some people may have been expecting a more complicated answer,
we often disregard simple solutions. Yet you'd be shocked at how far
you can go and what you can achieve by simply having the ability to
Whether you're asking for help, for an investment, a partnership or in
Bradford's case, asking a big-name entrepreneur to join your small
company, by just taking the step to ask, you've already accomplished
more than many of your competitors.
I've often heard entrepreneurs opine about their inability to get in
front of the right people or get the chances they need to succeed. And
when I probe deeper and ask those same entrepreneurs what they've done
to accomplish their goals, very rarely do they tell me they've
performed the asking technique.
Related: How to Ask a VIP for a Favor
If you need to meet with an influential business leader, it can be
difficult to walk right up to them or cold call them for a meeting.
But by taking this simple (but challenging) action, doors open. People
know other people.
One of the most useful things I've done in my entrepreneurial career
is network with other entrepreneurs. Then, when I find out that they
know someone I want to meet with, I simply ask them for an
introduction. This increases my chances of success immensely.
I myself receive requests all the time for introductions to people in
my network. And I can't think of a time that I flat-out refused to
make the introduction.
Similarly, Bradford used his connections to find people that were in
his network as well as in Wozniak's circle. Once he found this
connection, he asked for an introduction, then gave his pitch to the
creator of the Apple computer. The rest is history.
So, don't be daunted by the idea of having to ask someone for
something. The very worst possible outcome is that they say no. And
quite frankly, if you cannot handle hearing the word no, then you may
need to rethink your choice of careers.