Whew…these past two weeks have been nothing less than hellish. With the burial of a young relative and the emotions that come with such circumstances, it has been challenging to say the least to resume my normal schedule. While watching a movie with my oldest child, Paul Blart Mall Cop, I was excited to recognize Schussler’s work as the film was set in the Mall of America. In fact, when a chase ensues in the shopping center, much of it takes place in the restaurant Rainforest Café, which Schussler discusses at great length throughout his narrative. In any event I was encouraged (as if being given a sign from God) as I continued to read Steve Schussler’s It’s a Jungle in There and prepare for my next assignment on entrepreneurship and my next steps in life as well.
Schussler continues in chapters 13-16 to further educate future entrepreneurs on the many pitfalls that can unexpectedly befall the novice businessman or woman. First and foremost, he stresses the need to be upfront and honest with investors regarding all financial responsibilities and promises that this show of integrity will pave the way for improved communications throughout the longevity of the project. As with any relationship, Schussler highlights that honesty is key; and, being able to maintain trust within all partnerships is a strategic way to ensure quality products and services. Schussler affirms, “strategic relationship building can help to facilitate the creation of a product or service, enhance its quality, and improve your profit margin at the same time.” Because of this, future entrepreneurs must consistently practice excellence and always be mindful of all exchanges whether public or private. As Schussler states, first impressions are often lasting impressions and will oftentimes influence any interactions that follow. While this is terrific if the first impression goes off without a hitch, it can be unfortunate and detrimental to business if the initial interaction is distasteful.
After all we are marketing ourselves in order to market our products and services, right?
Newt Gingrich once stated, “Perseverance is the hard work you do after you get tired of doing the hard work you already did.” In addition to being mindful of marketing ourselves, Schussler also emphasizes the importance of learning the art of persistence; demonstrating a level of diligence and tenacity unparalleled by even the most ambitious individuals and having the ability to acclimatize yourself to the ever-changing dynamics of the business world. He asserts, “at the end of the day, those who succeed are those who are flexible and can adapt to unanticipated circumstances, and even turn unexpected situations to their advantage.” Undoubtedly, if this process is implemented into your routine practice, you will be on the road to success! Furthermore, sky’s the limit on the businesses and subsequently profits that will be generated from your exceptional work ethic alone. Personally, I’m preparing for these moments every day I wake; and, appreciating more and more that God has given me another day to work hard and bring my dreams to fruition.
Learning and retaining knowledge from Schussler makes me ecstatic about the future entrepreneurial ventures I’ll be a part of as he alludes to the sweet taste of success from dogged determination. “The apple highest on the tree always leaves the sweetest taste.” While I’ll certainly be shooting for the top, I will be pleased and humbled nonetheless by all of the small victories (or apples) that are obtained along the way… Presently, I have to remind myself of the verse Romans 8:28 and know that as we speak (or better yet, as you read) all things are working for the good.
As Aubrey Graham (better known as Drake) raps in his hit Successful, “I know that it’s coming, I just hope that I’m alive for it….”

RIP “Chief”
References
Schussler, Steven, and Marvin Karlins. It’s a Jungle in There: Inspiring Lessons, Hard-Won Insights, and Other Acts of Entrepreneurial Daring. Union Square, 2011

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