Many of us solopreneurs start our entrepreneurial careers in some sort of MLM. Whether or not we succeed in that MLM, isn’t so much the point. More often than not, a lot of us come away with some pretty good experiences from being it in.
In fact, last night I was watching a movie with Maria where a small part of it at the beginning reminded her and I both of an MLM-like motivational speech at a convention. Sure, the commentary was a little more colorful than I remember, but it was interesting how close they got it. Surely, whoever came up with the scene had to have been at an event at some point in their life!
As I was thinking about that, I started remembering how when I was active in Amway and LTD, we would watch movies in a way that I hadn’t watched them before.
I started watching them not necessarily for entertainment but to also see if I could use them to help me define my why. In other words, I started using them to not only use as motivation for building a business but to see myself in the protagonist’s shoes.
So, getting to the point of this week’s post. I want to highlight a few movies that you can use as model of what you could do with your own passion based business, and maybe help you combat the questioning of friends and loved ones as you get started.
I’ve broken the list up into various subgroups.
The first group are movies that will help you fine tune why you’d be interested in starting your own business. Knowing your why helps you persevere when times get tough.
The second group consists of movies that will help you define what taking action in your business looks like. It’s always nice to have an idea of what someone else did to climb the ladder of success – even if it is fiction.
And the third group is of movies that discuss big names in the business world. Everyone has heard of these names and if you can express that you feel a need in yourself to do something similar to what they did but with your own signature, they might have a better understanding of what you’re attempting to do.
One of my favorite documentaries to date about unplugging from culture and seeing the world differently. Back in 2012, Pat Flynn mentioned that he had been interviewed for this movie. Again, being a fan of his since 2010, I figured that he knew what was up and that I should definitely check it out on Kickstarter. It’s a movie about being tired of the same thing over and over – day in and day out. But so many of us feel powerless to get out of the rat race.
As you guys know, in 2015 I made the leap to finally start my journey with building New Inceptions. I hope this movie inspires you to do something similar.
As a note, I did end up pledging enough that I got Maria and I into the credits BEFORE we were married in 2013. Needless to say she liked that present and I think you’ll really get a lot from seeing this movie
This documentary just came out just a couple of weeks ago and I was lucky enough to get noticed about it’s pre-launch where it was viewable by everyone and anyone for free!
Yes, just like many books are starting to be introduced for free so they can drive up the reader reviews on Amazon, so are these grassroot movies.
This particular piece touches on why people are fearful to leave the caged or comfortable life that society programs us with and some ideas to help us combat that fear.
The one tactic I think I’ll use for the foreseeable future is thinking about what I loved to do as a kid and use that as a vital part of my business.
If you’re struggling to figure out why you think that many entrepreneurs treat life as a game, then maybe you should check this one out.
This one is a classic. I really think that this is one of the movies that woke me up to entrepreneurship when I first started learning about it. I had this movie in the back of my head and it had always struck me how I was going to get out of a life like the characters had in it.
Doing my own thing was the answer.
This is a mainstream movie that starred many celebrities when it was released in 1999 including Jennifer Aniston and John C. McGinley (who is actually in the next mentioned movie, too!).
Examples of Taking Action
This recent mainstream movie didn’t get great praise by critics, but what does these days? It stars a whole bunch of well known entertainers playing the main roles all the way down to the owner of a shady motel.
The protagonists are young millennials with the world in front of them but they’re just squandering it playing video games and smoking weed. Well, life hits them quite suddenly when they lose their TV and are forced to go out into the world and “make it happen”.
If you’re a younger millennial or just out of college and wondering if you got what it takes to start your own business, then you might want to give this a look.
Two age ranges are dealt with here. The Baby Boomer and the older millennial / Gen X’er. I particularly loved this one because it shows that anyone at any age can learn something from someone else regardless of age.
While I really appreciate Anne Hathaway’s character’s tenacity for running her business, I love how they show the in’s and out’s of the life that she leads. While it isn’t perfect, it definitely is a sign of the new norm for professional women – including stay-at-home dads.
Robert DeNiro’s character does a really great job of helping hers find her center and, in the end, having a happier and more balanced life.
If you’ve ever thought about starting a restaurant or maybe you’ve had a career taken away from you and you’re having to start from scratch, this is a great example of how virally things can grow for you if you just go out of your comfort zone.
It’s important to note that your results will vary – you don’t have the reach that a world renowned chef has. However, I want people to notice how they had ideas and then implemented them fairly quickly that they made due with what they had available. Sometimes that’s what you have to do! It can’t all be perfect!
Another one of my all-time favorite movies AND it stars Will Smith at the peak of his popularity. In this “inspired by actual events” movie, Will plays the part of Chris Gardner who went from being homeless at one point with his kid to getting a job at one of the biggest financial firms in the country.
It’s pure Hustle.
Sometimes you have to hit bottom to truly be able to reach for the stars. When you hit bottom, there’s no other options than up. This movie (and book) are for people who think they have it bad and don’t see a way out.
Inspirational Stories of People Who Made It:
The story of Howard Hughes is pretty mysterious. But one thing is definitely true is that he completely subscribed to the theory of “Whatever the Mind of man can Conceive and Believe, it will Achieve”.
His vision was second to none and his OCD really helped him in carrying these visions to fruition. Purely remarkable guy.
Visionaries come in all forms and from all industries. If it wasn’t for Billy Beane and how he introduced the idea of using stats to put together a team, major league sports would not look anything like it does today.
This movie is a great example in understanding how metrics can be just as beneficial if not more so than instinct when we’re building something.
Ever wonder how Facebook got started? How it went from the idea of a kid at Harvard to being the hub of online communication that it is today? This movie does a pretty good representation of how it all went down. However, it isn’t completely dead on with the facts. (But none of these movies are. So take it in stride.)
Bonus: Pirates of Silicon Valley:
Before there was Facebook and the internet, there were actually still computers. They just did a lot less than their modern descendants and not everyone in the world relied on them as much as they do today.
That said, if it wasn’t for those old relics we wouldn’t have the connected world that we do today.
I saw this movie for the first time right around the time that I saw Office Space. I was blown away by the stories of the founding of Apple and Microsoft. Here you had two huge companies that essentially start out in people’s garages with a ragtag group of geeks. It was always my goal in college to meet people like that and learn hacking a bit more.
I never did meet my hacker community, but it did inspire me to Think Different.
If you’ve heard of a few of these and haven’t seen them yet, I’d highly recommend checking them out. Once you’ve seen one of them, ask yourself afterwards, what are some takeaways that I got from watching this? How can I apply them to my business?
Also, I’d like to hear about movies you’ve seen that you believe have added value to your business. Let me know in the comments below.