Tim Ferriss and Gary Vaynerchuk are Complete Opposites, How are they Both Successful?


Tim Ferriss VS. Gary Vaynerchuk

You may be a little confused. Yesterday I wrote an article about Gary Vaynerchuk and how his constant hard work is paying off as an incredible business strategy. He works non-stop and is reaping the rewards. In the past, I have also written about Tim Ferriss who I would say is almost the exact opposite of Gary Vaynerchuk. Tim looks for any way to minimize his actual work and automate processes so that he does not have to be involved. The only thing they have in common with each other is that they are both huge success stories.

Opposite Strategies But Both Successful

Both Gary and Tim are huge successes in their own right and I would say that the reason is that they are both consistent. They chose a strategy that worked for them and they stuck with it. I don’t think Gary would consider closing down his brick and mortar store, stopping to vlog and quit participating in social media to automate an online store. At the same time, I know that Tim Ferris is careful not to spend too much time on social media. When he started using Twitter, he followed 0 people and was heavily criticized since twitter is a new media communication tool meant for conversation. He finally caved and started following a limited amount of people but still believes that he shouldn’t be spending too much time in the social media space.

Dabble and You will Flop

Too many people dabble in so many things and become somewhat of a jack of all trades and a master of none. This brings me back to people striving to be average when the only way to get ahead is to be above average. It doesn’t make much sense but many people use messed up logic such as “John has an online store and is successful, therefore if I open an online store, I will be successful”. They go and open an online store, flop and then wonder why they failed, not even thinking about what John does that they didn’t do.

Seth Godin Likes to be the “Best in the World”

Seth Godin doesn’t have a Twitter account.  Seth is one of the top marketing gurus out there and he does not participate on twitter because he will not participate in something that he cannot be the best in the world at. Seth has his own strategy and is successful as well.

Mixing Diets is a Recipe for Disaster

Imagine you are a few pound over your ideal weight and you want to start a diet. You look around for a diet and many times you start a diet because someone you know just lost a ton of weight on that particular diet. After suffering through a couple of months on the diet and not getting the results you’d hoped for you start to wonder “why didn’t it work?”. Chances are, you used some of the logic I spoke about earlier. “Well, the Atkins diet says I can have as much protein as I want but no carbs and the South Beach diet is very similar so it must be okay to have fries since they are ok on that diet”. People mix and match the parts they like and fail to stick to a single strategy.

Stick to One Strategy

You can be successful at almost anything but you need to choose a single strategy and stick to it. Don’t get sidetracked by shiny objects. You can work 20 hours per day like Gary Vaynerchuck or you can work 4 hours per week like Tim Ferriss and be successful. Just don’t mix up your strategy and you’ll be fine.

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  1. Amir – interesting topic. I suppose you know that many months after you wrote about Gary's unstoppable work ethic, he finally had to rejig the way he goes about social media. In other words, cutting back bigtime. Chris Brogan faced up to the same reality and admitted he couldn't keep up.

    On the issue of using one shiny object at a time, I disagree with you. What if the toy's a croc? In one program I'm in, the coach heavily promotes autoblogging and it saddens me to see fellow members with blind faith in the method, as if that alone will bring them their pot of gold.

  2. Thanks Stew. I have been following Gary and it was inevitable for him to eventually find a way to manage his popularity online. Although he has changed, he still tries to reply to all of his emails even if it may take months for him to do so. The main point about Gary and Chris Brogan too is that their main ingredient is caring. They wake up early and go to sleep late, trying to do what is right. There comes a time where everyone has to find their happy medium but once again, you have to find it and stick to the strategy.

    In terms of shiny objects, I never said to use one shiny object at a time. I'm not a big believer in shiny objects. What I said was not to get side tracked by shiny objects. I believe that you can be successful by following a strategy that works for you and fits with your personality. You have to create that strategy based on yourself, your strengths and interests. You can't keep adding shiny objects to the mix because you saw someone else doing them or you get back to the mixing diets example.

  3. Amir
    Agree with you about both Gary & Chris.

    My beef with your “You can be successful at almost anything but you need to choose a single strategy and stick to it” approach, is how is one to know that a single strategy will work?

  4. Using the diet as an example, you never know until you try it but you know for sure that a diet that makes you eat things that will make you gag won't work. I tried and was successful with a diet that allowed me to eat as much as I wanted of certain foods 6 days/week and as much as I wanted of everything on the 7th because I like to eat. If you love interacting with people, try a strategy that incorporates interacting. If you don't like people, find a strategy that will get the job done without interacting so much. The point I am making is find something you like and be consistent. It may be some trial and error but the most important thing is to be consistent. If you are not consistent, people won't know what to expect and will be disappointed. A great example is McDonald's… Many people feel that they can make a better burger than McDonald's but they are successful because they have a system and are consistent. If you visit a branch in Canada or Egypt, you will get the same burger. Their customers know exactly what they are going to get without any surprises.

    You can try out different strategies and see what works for you. Start out by trying strategies that include things you enjoy. Then be consistent and ignore pieces of other strategies. Mixing and matching doesn't usually work. Once you find something that works, be consistent.

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