As a business owner, you’ve probably read business and personal development books. You’ve probably attended seminars, taken workshops, and listened to podcasts—all in the name of improving your company, your life, and the lives of your employees.
However, did you ever stop to think that some of the best business lessons out there aren’t found in business books? What if you could learn how to become a rock star in business by studying… actual rock stars?
Infuse a rock star mentality into your company and culture
by hiring a motivational speaker for corporate events.
Business Lessons You Can Learn from Rock Stars
The music industry is ripe with lessons that you can use to improve your business and your life.
1. Let your failures educate you and feed your ambitions
Imagine that you’re Prince, the amazing musician whose music career spanned 4+ decades. You get up on stage, ready to give it your all, and you fail miserably. In fact, you’re so bad, you get booed off the stage.
That’s what happened when Prince opened for The Rolling Stones. But he didn’t let it discourage him, and neither should you. He kept playing and eventually became the superstar we’ll always remember. Hold onto your dreams and your core values. Stay focused, work hard, and you will reach your goals.
2. Seize the opportunities
Musicians and the record industry have often feared bootleg recordings and fans “stealing” music. Some even refused to allow recording devices of any kind into their shows. The Grateful Dead felt differently. They saw the cameras and recorders as an opportunity to develop deeper bonds with their fans and reach a whole new audience through their existing fans.
Is there something in your business that frightens you? Instead of seeing it as a negative, find a way to embrace the opportunity and welcome something new into your organization.
3. You are your own best product
Can you picture a time when Lady Gaga wasn’t the unique, outlandish star she is now? Turns out, she (like mostly everyone) suffered from some major insecurities.
However, she completely ignored those insecurities to strengthen her persona:
“I used to walk down the street like I was a f****** star… I want people to walk around delusional about how great they can be — and then fight so hard for it every day that the lie becomes the truth.”—Lady Gaga
Do you deal with insecurities or imposter syndrome in your business? Hold yourself with confidence. Dress with confidence. Speak with confidence… and eventually, you will be confident.
4. Create a vision
While Aerosmith is a group of talented and hardworking individuals, the reason they’ve become the legends they are is their vision. They didn’t just work hard; they worked toward something.
Do you have a unifying force in your business? Do you have a clear, common purpose that everyone works toward? If your vision is a clear one, humble beginnings, setbacks, and disappointments won’t matter.
Related: Setting Rock Star Goals
5. Commit to the long haul
If you’ve followed The Rolling Stones throughout their 50+ year span, you probably remember the well-documented shouting matches, public insults, and explosive interactions between Keith Richards and Mick Jagger.
Yet, the band is still going strong. Why?
“This thing is bigger than both of us.”—Keith Richards
Is everyone in your organization committed to doing what’s best for the “band”? When there’s a bigger vision and a bigger purpose, people must put their egos aside and do what’s best for the business.
6. Enact your own change
Since the early 1980s, Madonna has been wowing audiences with her performances on and off stage. She’s reinvented herself more than the average person cuts their hair. When other musical powerhouses are fading into the history books, Madonna has stayed relevant and popular. How?
She drives change. Rather than allowing the world to change around her while she stands still, Madonna has influenced our culture.
Are you changing the way your industry does business, or are you sitting back and waiting for the market to force you to change?
7. Find your fans
While you may not know the Dresden Dolls’ lead singer Amanda Palmer, her fans certainly do.
“Basically, our MO was that after every gig, whether we were a support band or if we were headlining a 2000 seat venue, or playing in a strange little venue… after a show, no matter what, we would always sign autographs.”—Amanda Palmer
Are you getting to know your customers? Do you take the time to build a relationship with them? This is how you change customers into loyal fans.
8. Be adaptable
Sometimes, things don’t turn out as planned. Sometimes, you have to adjust your course to see continued success.
U2 has been playing together for more than 30 years and have sold almost 200 million records worldwide. However, in 1989, they decided it was time to take a break, regroup, and rethink the music they were making. So they did. They returned with Achtung Baby! and found a new groove.
If you’re in an energy rut, or if the road you’re on isn’t leading where you want to go, it’s okay to chart a new course.
9. Rock your BHAG
Do you have a big, hairy, audacious goal? This concept dares people and organizations to set your sights on the very best possible outcome for yourself and your organization. Consider the band KISS whose BHAG is to rock their fans with a full spectrum experience that no other band can match… and they’ve been doing it for decades.
It’s okay to set smaller, more attainable goals throughout your journey. However, if you want to be a rock star in business, you’ll need to look at your Vision and then set a BHAG for your organization.
Related: Rock Your BHAG
10. Rehearse… Rehearse… Rehearse
Glenn Frey, lead singer of the Eagles, once said that they never played a song at a live concert until they had played it perfectly 100 times in a row during rehearsals. This is a rock star level of dedication and preparation.
Have you taken the time to learn your craft? Did you stop learning and practicing once you became “good enough”? If you want to build a rock star business, you need to practice every single day. To reach this level, you must commit yourself to doing whatever it takes to be the best at what you do.
11. Bring the energy
Business isn’t always exciting. But, you might be surprised to hear that the music industry isn’t always exciting either. In fact, even musical legends like James Taylor admit to having an off day every so often. When that happens, he suggests getting the fans engaged by focusing on your favorite parts of what you do. Once they are excited, you’ll get excited.
Can you focus on your customers? Can you get them involved in what you’re doing and so fired up that they, in turn, get you excited? Be grateful for the customers and fans in your business and show them your appreciation. You’ll be sure to get the energy boost you need.
You want the best for your business and for your employees. When you learn the lessons of the world’s greatest musical legends, you’ll improve your organizations and bring out the business rock stars around you.