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Moving Beyond the Great Idea

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Using the B-I Triangle to build a successful business around your idea

Last week, I wrote about the importance of investing in systems, not products, when it comes to building a lasting and successful business. I used the B-I Triangle, which my rich dad taught to me, to explain why this concept is so important.

In 1974, I decided I was going to learn to build a business following the model of the B-I Triangle. Rich dad warned me, “Learning to build a business according to this model is high-risk. Many people attempt it, but few accomplish it. But if you do learn to build a business this way, your earning potential is unlimited.”

Fail to succeed

I still recall experiencing the highest of highs and the lowest of lows as I learned to build a solid business. I remember some of the old advertising copy I wrote that never sold anything. I remember some of the brochures I wrote where no one could tell what I was trying to sell. And I remember struggling to learn to raise capital and spend my investors’ money wisely in the hopes of building a powerful business.

I also remember going back to my investors and telling them that I had lost their money. I am forever grateful for the investors who understood and told me to come back when I had another venture for them to invest in.

Hard lessons are the pavers to success

However, through it all, each mistake was a priceless learning experience as well as a character-building lesson. As rich dad said, the risk at the start was very high. Yet, as I stuck it out and continued to learn, the rewards truly were unlimited.

In 1974, I was very weak at every level of the B-I Triangle. I think I was weakest in cash-flow management and communications management. Today, although I am still not a master of any one sector of the triangle, I would say that I am the strongest in cash-flow management and communications management. And because I can create synergies among all levels of the B-I Triangle, my companies succeed.

The point I’m making here is that, even though I was not strong at the start, I continued with my learning process. For anyone who wants to acquire great success and wealth in this manner, I encourage you to start, practice, make mistakes, correct, learn, and improve.

Give shape to your ideas

Many people think that all they need is a great idea to build a great business. Ideas are a dime a dozen. To build a successful business, you need more than an idea. You need to give shape to that idea through systems, processes, and a great team.

The B-I Triangle is a powerful force to accomplish this. As rich dad said, “It gives shape to your ideas. It is the knowledge of the B-I Triangle that allows a person to create an asset that buys other assets.”

Rich dad taught me that once you become good at taking an idea and building a B-I Triangle business around it, people will flock to you to invest in your idea. He said, “Then, it will be true for you that it doesn’t take money to make money. Instead of spending your life working for money, you will get better at creating assets that make more and more money—your money will work for you.”

Follow the way of the rich

When I look at the 10 percent of Americans who control most of the country’s wealth and big businesses, I understand exactly how they got their wealth. They found their spirit and their mission, built a business, and allowed others to share in their dreams, the risks, and the rewards. This list includes people like Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, Rupert Murdoch, Anita Roddick, Richard Branson, and others.

You can do the same thing, if you want. Just follow the same diagram rich dad guided me with—the B-I Triangle.

As Helen Keller said, “True happiness is not attained through self-gratification, but through fidelity to a worthy purpose.”

Find your purpose, give it shape through the B-I Triangle, and learn as much as you can along the way. In this way, you can be both successful and happy.

Original publish date: May 05, 2015

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