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Dan Kennedy: Seeing What No One Else Can

Dan Kennedy

Dan Kennedy, The Millionaire Maker

“Wealth comes to the man who can see the potential for wealth.” – Napoleon Hill

Does this seem goofily obvious? Maybe it is. But then why are so few people rich in a place and time of virtually unlimited opportunity? The fact is, most people see things only as they are.

I live in a luxury resort community developed by a guy who made his mark and his fortune creating such communities in areas of cities no one else saw as a valuable; in low income areas, up the sides of craggy mountains with no flatland to build on. The great visionary entrepreneurs like Walt Disney and Bugsy Siegel and Sam Walton had few personal characteristics in common, but they all had this prized ability to see what others could not even imagine.

I think the first place you have to be able to see potential for wealth is in the mirror. Most people look in their mirrors and see someone destined to finish as is. They do not see a millionaire waiting to hatch. There is no doubt in my mind that the picture you see of yourself virtually governs what you become. If wealth is on the agenda, you’d better see a wealthy person, a wealth magnet, a person deserving of wealth in the mirror.

Then comes the ability to identify the opportunity in a given set of circumstances where most others are unable to spot it.

There are “formulas,” by the way, that keep getting applied in slightly different ways, over and over again.

Consider the trend of the past two decades or so, largely led by just a couple of development companies, of going into decrepit downtown industrial areas, converting warehouses and abandoned docks into entertainment areas full of restaurants, night-clubs, offices – like The Flats in Cleveland, Inner Harbor in Baltimore, etc. I’d call this the “Ugly Duckling Model”, getting rich by turning ugly ducklings into swans.

Conrad Hilton started out by taking on aged dowagers hotels and transforming them. Al Davis did it successfully during the glory days of the Raiders by taking on “outlaw” players nobody else wanted. A few years ago, I was walking through an arts-and-crafts show somewhere and stumbled across a guy doing a pretty brisk business selling planters made out of old, worn out cowboy boots he’d rehabbed and decorated – as I recall at about $100 a hit. Look around, you’ll see this Formula at work.

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