Top 27 Michael Masterson Quotes: Advice for CEOs

In today’s post, I’m going to share some of my favorite Michael Masterson quotes, from his best-selling book “Ready, Fire, Aim: Zero to $100 Million in No Time Flat.”

I have tremendous respect for Michael Masterson.  Although I’ve never met him personally, I’ve read several of his books and subscribed to his email newsletter.  He is one of the good guys.  I like to think of his as an entrepreneur’s coach. During his career, he helped build two businesses past the $100 million mark.  Now that’s impressive!

I give his book “Ready, Fire, Aim” a 10 of 10 and consider it a must read for any aspiring entrepreneur. My copy of the book is loaded with underlined and highlighted passages.  I’ve read the book several times now and every time I re-read it I pick up something new.

Listed below, you will find some of my favorite Michael Masterson quotes from the book. They are listed by where I found them in the book.  Each quote is in bold and italics.  After each quote, I share my own two cents on the idea.

Top 27 Michael Masterson Quotes

# 1 Creating a multi-million-dollar business is a lot easier than becoming a professional basketball player.

Very few people are born with the skills or talent to become a professional athlete of any kind, but anyone can develop the skills to start and run a successful business of their own.  They can learn from books, mentors, and by trial and error.

# 2 Without sales, it is very hard to sustain an ongoing business.  Consider this to be Rule Number One of Entrepreneurship.

When you have your own business, your number one responsibility is to make the cash register ring.  Lots of new entrepreneurs mess this up. They think their product or service is their business, where in reality, SELLING that product or service is their real business.  For example, if you own a restaurant, cooking good food is not your business.  Instead, filling the seats of your restaurant is your real business.

michael masterson quotes# 3 Business is about providing value to the customer.  And that value can be determined only by the customer.

Without satisfied customers, there is no business.  It doesn’t matter how great you think your product or service is.  If your customer doesn’t get more value from your product or service than they pay for it, they won’t do business with you again, and your business won’t survive long.

# 4 To me, the most important job of any entrepreneur – and the role you should not give up as your business grows – is to be in charge of marketing your products.

Your real job as a business owner is to market and sell the products and services your company offers.  Every else is busy work.

# 5 Nothing will grow a customer base faster than drastically underpricing the competition.

As a brand-new business, you might have to initially compete on price.  If that’s the case, cut your prices as much as possible, but keep them high enough so you can still make a small profit.  As you build up a loyal customer base, you can gradually raise your price.

# 6 The big problem everyone has when beginning a new business is ignorance.

Let’s face it.  You don’t know what you don’t know.  Surround yourself with talented people whenever possible. Seek input from qualified advisors and learn from other people’s mistakes.

# 7 In the long run, I believe, a customer-oriented business will be more profitable and easier to run.  That is because when customers are treated well, they stick around longer, buy more products, and recommend your business to their friends and colleagues.

Make your customers a top priority.  Treat them well.  Over deliver with your customer service. Provide value.  Do what you can to keep your GOOD customers happy.

# 8 Ask for advice from smart people.

You will never know it all.  Hire talented people whenever you can and pay them fairly.  Look for people who can help offset your shortcomings.

# 9 Spend 80 percent of your time overseeing marketing and sales.

This is the best time management advice I could personally share with any CEO or entrepreneur.  Your job is to grow the business and make the cash register ring.  Everything else is low priority.

# 10 The purpose of a front-end sale is to acquire a new customer.  The purpose of a back-end sale is to produce a profit.

Acquiring new customers is time consuming and expensive.  In most cases, you will lose money to acquire a new customer.  However, you can make up for that by having up-sells and encouraging your customers to become repeat customers.

# 11 I believe that almost every business should have a direct-marketing component.

Don’t make the mistake of trying to “brand” your new company.  Leave that for the big companies with deep advertising pockets.  Your job is to market directly to your ideal customer and entice them to buy something from you.

# 12 Every great idea needs great people to make it succeed.

You’re only as good as your team.  Surround yourself with talented people.

# 13 Getting things going quickly is more important than planning them perfectly.

There will never be a perfect plan.  Collect the facts, make a plan, and do it quickly.  You can always make adjustments along the way.  You will never have “all” the information. Do not procrastinate.

# 14 Building a successful business is about building a long-term relationship with your customers.

Keep your customers happy.  Stay in touch with them often.  Provide great customer service.  Create an environment and culture they want to be part of.

# 15 Treat your customers as you like to be treated when you are a customer.

Follow this simple rule and you will retain more customers.

# 16 If the product fails to sell well, trash it.  If it does sell, improve it.

Don’t try to turn a bad product or service that no one wants into a winner.  Instead, come up with a good product or service that people WANT to buy and then find ways to improve upon it, so even more people want it.

# 17 As the CEO, revenues and profits are your job, even if you don’t handle them directly.

Enough said.  I hope you get the point now.

# 18 Your customers don’t care about you or your business.  They care about themselves.

Figure out how to solve your customers’ problems and you will get more sales and make more money.

# 19 A small portion of your customer base is giving you the lion’s share of your corporate profits.

Remember the 20/80 Rule.  Twenty percent of your customers will be responsible for at least 80 percent of your profits.  Go the extra mile for this 20 percent group and do what you can to keep them happy.

# 20 If you convince a customer to buy your product when he needs it, you will have a loyal customer.  But if you can persuade him to buy a product from you every time he wants it, then you have a human ATM.

People are emotional creatures.  We need to focus on people’s emotions when we do our marketing and advertising, rather than focusing on logic.  When people WANT to buy your product or service, because they just have to have it, you will have the foundation for a solid business.

# 21 The single fastest way to turn your ordinary business into a cash machine is to redesign your sales and marketing strategies to focus on stimulating buying frenzies among the top 20 percent of your customer base.

Identify your best customers and then spend your time and money to find more ways to reach people in that specific demographic.  All of your advertising and marketing should focus on finding people in your target market: your best customers.

# 22 Corporate executives are good at solving problems.  But they are bad at creating growth.

Managers are good at managing things, but it’s up to the CEO to keep the vision of the company in front of everyone and to keep growing the company.

# 23 Just because it’s not your way doesn’t mean it is not a good way.

There are millions of ways to do something.  Keep an open mind and seek input from your trusted advisors.

# 24 If you hire the right people, hiring and training and motivating them is almost no work at all.

Take your time when hiring people and look for people with the personalities, attitudes, and skillsets you are looking for.  Be slow to hire and quick to fire.

# 25 Very good employees don’t need to be motivated.  They come to you hardwired with all the motivation they will ever need.  All you have to do is provide them with a goal and step out of the way.

When you hire quality people, they’re easy to work with.  Share your vision, give them a goal and stay the heck out of their way. They will require little guidance and less supervision.

# 26 One of the best things about owning your own business is that you can make it into anything you want.

This is one of the primary reasons I work for myself.  You can create something you can be proud of, something that even outlives you.

# 27 Starting and owning your own business is – and always will be – the best job in the world.

I love working for myself and I feel the exact same way.

About Michael Masterson

Michael Masterson is a respected entrepreneur, author, speaker and consultant.  He has built two companies past the $100 million mark and several other companies past the $10 million mark.  He is the publisher of the Early to Rise email newsletter, which is loaded with great tips and information for entrepreneurs and businessmen.

Final Thoughts

There you have it folks.  These are my top 27 Michael Masterson quotes from his popular book “Ready, Fire, Aim”.  Which quote on this list is your favorite and why?  Leave a comment below to share your thoughts.  I look forward to hearing from you.

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