BONUS CHAPTER: Robert’s 8 Principles of Entrepreneurship

Robert Reffkin

Lesson time 05:31 min

Robert shares the life lessons that have guided his work as an entrepreneur and have been integral to the success of his real estate technology company, Compass.

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Topics include: BONUS CHAPTER: Robert’s 8 Principles of Entrepreneurship


- What's it like to be a founder of a company, to be a tech startup CEO? Here's the way I would describe it. You are climbing up a hill. You've got your backpack on. You're climbing up the hill, and you're like, oh, man. This is so exciting. I'm going to go and climb up this hill. Getting tired. Like, wow, this is a big hill. We're almost there. You can see the top of the hill. You're like, yeah. You're with your team. We're almost there. Let's get to the hill. You're a minute away, and then you're on top. But then you just go over. You're like, yes, we did it! And then you see another hill. Because every success creates the opportunity for more success. [MUSIC PLAYING] There are eight entrepreneurship principles. These are the principles that we created several years ago which reflect the values of the company and how we build the company. These are the best principles that I have learned from my entire life, whether it's been work, in school, as an individual, of how to approach an entrepreneurial pursuit. These are principles that will live much longer than any individual, myself included, at the company to make sure that we're always being guided by the right values. The first is dream big. It's that you're never going to be bigger than your dreams, and so you have to dream big. It's the cap to your potential. And a lot of people are scared to dream too big because they're worried they're going to fail. You have to dream big all the time. That's what makes life exciting. Then it's move fast. So if you have a big dream, you've got to move fast to make it a reality. If you don't, someone else will, or you're going to lose momentum. You have to move fast. And then learn from reality. The answers are everywhere around you. All you have to do is listen and learn. And so learn from the best people and companies that have done what you aspire to do. Learn from your customers and ask them, what could I do as a company or an individual to meet your need, to learn from reality? Another one is be solutions-driven. You've got to be solutions-driven and not be the kind of person who says why something can't happen. Be the kind of person that says, I know it can happen. Unless you can prove it's impossible, it must be possible, right? It's kind of hard to prove something is impossible. And make it happen. And come up with ideas. Be solutions-driven. It's OK to say no. But if you're going to say no, you have to have a bunch of ideas of alternatives. You can't just say no and end the conversation. You've got to keep it going forward. Then collaborate without ego. You move fast, dream big. You learn from reality. You're solutions-driven. You know what to do. But no one succeeds alone. You're only as good as your team. And so how can you collaborate, without ego, with a great team to make that dream a reality? And then you have to obsess about opportunity, obsess. And that's the fun part too. When you're o...

About the Instructor

As the CEO and founder of Compass, Robert Reffkin has used modern technology to revolutionize the real estate industry in the U.S. Now he’s demystifying the ins and outs of the American home-buying process and sharing tools that will help you buy or sell a home with confidence. Learn how to approach your search, choose an agent, make an offer, and more. Your future home is waiting—let Robert help you find it.

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Robert Reffkin

Robert Reffkin, the founder and CEO of Compass, helps you get closer to finding your dream home by simplifying and demystifying real estate.

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