The last couple of years have been difficult for many people. People struggled with all kinds of issues. Some publicly and some privately. I was in the later group. I tried my best to keep a happy appearance, but honestly it was easier to withdraw and focus the little energy I had on my family. I don’t regret it at all. My friend Alan Stein Jr, author of Raise Your Game & recently Sustain Your Game, shared an incredibly powerful stat that changed my life perspective.

“When your child graduates from high school, you will have already spent 93% of the time you will spend with them over the course of your life.”

There will be 3 graduations in the Bryan Eisenberg household this year. My daughter graduates UT Austin and was recruited to Seattle post graduation. My oldest son will head back to the Northeast to continue his academic and athletic career playing baseball. My youngest will enter high school.

The Rice and Beans Millionaire: The Tale of an Improbable EntrepreneurSo I apologize I neglected those we have tried to serve for the past 25+ years in the business and marketing communities. I’ll try to make it up to you starting now. I’ve begun posting more regularly on social media. Jeffrey and I just released a new bestselling book (in case you missed it) titled The Rice and Beans Millionaire: The Tale of an Improbable Entrepreneur.

So first, I hope we can find ways to bring you new value in 2023 and beyond.

What is the new-ish perspective?

Many of you have have followed our careers over the past 2 decades know we have always tried to focus on innovation. How the internet was going to change consumer behavior. However, as we quoted Jeff Bezos in the our last book Be Like Amazon :

“I very frequently get the question: ‘What’s going to change in the next 10 years?’ And that is a very interesting question; it’s a very common one. I almost never get the question: ‘What’s not going to change in the next 10 years?’ And I submit to you that that second question is actually the more important of the two — because you can build a business strategy around the things that are stable in time. … [I]n our retail business, we know that customers want low prices, and I know that’s going to be true 10 years from now. They want fast delivery; they want vast selection. It’s impossible to imagine a future 10 years from now where a customer comes up and says, ‘Jeff I love Amazon; I just wish the prices were a little higher,’ [or] ‘I love Amazon; I just wish you’d deliver a little more slowly.’ Impossible. And so the effort we put into those things, spinning those things up, we know the energy we put into it today will still be paying off dividends for our customers 10 years from now. When you have something that you know is true, even over the long term, you can afford to put a lot of energy into it.”

What won’t change for business owners, CEOs and entrepreneurs?

Chasing the shiny, new object and experimenting with it is great. Have you played with ChatGPT yet?

It is pretty incredible but it won’t replace the fundamental need of creating remarkable, attention getting copy. The copy is pretty average right now, and it will get better. You should be investing some time in these great new tools. What we have learned over the thousands of businesses we have worked with that the majority of issues don’t come from their lack of using new tools. It can come from them neglecting customer centered innovation but those innovation have to deal with first principles.

First principles thinking is the act of distilling a process down to the fundamental parts that you know are true today and will be true 10 years from now and innovating from there. Be Like Amazon focused on Jeff Bezos flywheel for doing that.

Bestselling author, James Clear explains:

A first principle is a basic assumption that cannot be deduced any further. Over two thousand years ago, Aristotle defined a first principle as “the first basis from which a thing is known.”

First principles thinking is a fancy way of saying “think like a scientist.” Scientists don’t assume anything. They start with questions like, What are we absolutely sure is true? What has been proven?

When Jeffrey and I sat down to plan The Rice and Beans Millionaire we asked people to help us identify other books that teach these first principles of entrepreneurship and business owner mindset and skills and everyone struggled to name one. Maybe you can think of one and mention it in the comments below.

Every sports coach, chef, magician, athlete, or anyone who is elite at their craft knows what it takes to create “magic.” And it’s not what most people think! Sadly, it is most business owners, ceos and entrepreneurs who need to focus on this the most. They know the key lies in these fundamentals and first principles. We’ll enjoy exploring this with you.