There are thousands of people selling on eBay, but only a small proportion are truly successful. What is it about these individuals that makes them different to everyone else?
Experts have been studying successful people for years and their findings show that successful people have a number of traits in common. Surprisingly, these similarities have nothing to do with unique talents, intelligence or even creativity. Rather, they are lifestyle choices that are available to all of us.
Loving what you do enough that you wake up in the morning eager to get started is a major reason why some sellers are successful and others are not. Loving what you do means you are able to put the time and passion necessary into your business to make it successful
If you don’t love what you are doing, you’re already on the back foot as you won’t be inclined to spend your spare time thinking about your business, thus limiting your creativity. Contrary to popular believe, Eureka moments come after months, sometimes years of thought around a particular area. Creative ideas aren’t just random brainwaves, but the result of the brain quietly sorting and filtering information in the background, sometimes over a long period of time, until it suddenly hits upon a new pattern.
However, often it’s not just creativity that’s important – good, hard work is unavoidable. You don’t need a scientist to tell you that working 15 hours a day is going to get you further ahead than someone working 8.
Common trap: Choosing a product to sell based purely on ease of supply, hype or a combination of both.
A successful eBay seller clearly recognizes their own strengths and weaknesses. They make the most of their strengths (often by choosing something they love to sell) and take steps to combat their weaknesses (either by hiring staff with the required skills or learning systems to counteract them).
A successful person uses the strength of their will power to make themselves continue to learn and develop new skills. Human beings are naturally lazy creatures. Once we’ve learned something we don’t like to change – even if it means a better outcome in the long term. But successful people force themselves to go beyond what most people are prepared to do. On eBay this is even more important as changes are happening practically every week. If you don’t keep up to date, you’re at a huge disadvantage.
Common trap: Believing ‘common sense’ is enough and that reading and research is a waste of time.
There’s no avoiding it. To be successful at anything requires a significant time commitment. Successful business owners are prepared to put in 16-18 hour days to get the results they want. Many start out working on their business in the evenings while holding down a day job. It’s tough but that extra effort is what sets a successful person apart from a non-successful one.
Common trap: Laziness, procrastination and poor time management.
Hard work is nothing without a good plan. Successful people constantly visualize how it would feel to be successful. They imagine making $10,000 a week profit and visualize that money appearing in their bank account. But this doesn't just remain an airy-fairy image in their heads. Successful people take the time to create a sound business plan detailing every step along the way to success. They have a roadmap and they follow it.
Common trap: Not bothering to make a plan and believing everything will fall into place.
Commitment means not giving up on your dream at the first hurdle. Successful people don’t consider failure as an option. They certainly don’t drop an idea when it doesn’t make them millions in 3 months and move onto the next get-quick-rich scheme! Often we don't stop to consider just how much time successful people have spent on the job before becoming successful. To us it seems 'overnight', yet in reality, almost every major success story out there was years in the making. eBay, Microsoft, Google - these companies are the great successes of our age, but they all started small and all required 3-5 years of hard work before they took off.
Commitment also means making tough decisions such as choosing to finish packaging up parcels for tomorrow’s post over Friday night drinks. Successful people realize that they have to make sacrifices in order to get ahead.
Common trap: Letting a crisis overwhelm you rather than seeing it as a challenge to be overcome.
Successful people take full responsibility for their business. They don’t blame too little time, family responsibilities or a bad childhood experience for why they aren’t successful. Successful people live in the moment: they realize it is how they think now that counts.
Successful people literally create their own success – they deal effectively with life’s problems from the bullies and time-wasters at work, to the demands of family and finances.
Common trap: Blaming events, other people, bad luck and bad timing for failure.
Remember: success doesn’t just happen, it’s a lifestyle.