Daymond John’s Rise and Grind

Date: June 03, 2019

Rise and Grind in the Shark Tank

Daymond John, one of my favorite “sharks” from the reality show, Shark Tank, spoke to us at the International Hotels Group hotel conference in Las Vegas. I loved his enthusiasm, but, after an exhausting day where does Daymond find the energy to get up the following morning and do it all over again? That is the subject of his new book, “Rise and Grind.”

When most motivational speakers talk about their secrets to success, it’s all about their special sauce. That one ingredient that if you just sprinkle it over yourself – voila! Instant success. Instead, Daymond emphasized that his achievements are the result of a lifetime of hard work. He spoke candidly about a very un-sexy aspect of becoming successful – it is a grind to get where you want. His G-R-I-N-D looks like this:

Get on it. I agree with Daymond in that the first step doesn’t have to be a big one. Actually, big changes in your personality are extremely difficult. I tell my managers to be a better leader don’t spin your wheels fixing your big weaknesses, improve on what you already do well. If you are not an organized person, don’t make cleaning out your filing cabinet your goal. Seek collaboration for that. If you are a good communicator, make your goal being a better communicator. That’s how you can get on it and improve who you are.

Repeat. Success isn’t a one-off event unless it’s the unlikely winning lottery ticket. Develop good work habits and stick with them. Come up with a daily structure that allows for incremental improvements. Recently I decided I wanted to write a novel. I structured an hour of writing very early in the morning and stuck with it. Two years later I finished my first book. I’ve enjoyed the routine so much that I’m writing a sequel.

Insist on your very best. Daymond says only when you insist on personally being your best can you ask that of others. I belive this doesn’t mean you have to be the best, that kind of self-reflection can be paralyzing. Being the best means being the best you know how to be at this moment in time. When Trisha and I developed our first hotel, I did the best I could, but there were mistakes. I built upon that experience, so with the second hotel development I was better at it. When I build my next hotel, I’ll be even better. At each point in my career, I’m the best I can be.

Navigate. Daymond reminds us that even though sharks can swim with great bursts of speed and precision, they never remain still. You will have setbacks and failures. But you have the choice to learn from them and continue to navigate forward, instead of allowing them to become debilitating roadblocks.

Desire, drive and determination. Daymond says to clear whatever low bar has been set before you with plenty to spare. Do more than what is expected. Lean more than what others think possible. Love more than anybody can imagine. My desire is discerning how I can better support my general managers. That’s what gets me up in the morning.

I enjoyed Daymond’s entertaining lecture and his book. I agree with him in that every successful person I know has a killer work ethic. No matter if it’s managing a hotel, conducting a symphony or leading a non-profit organization. The best leaders are rising and grinding out every day. More at www.daymondjohn/