Mike Zeller's Secret to Running 8 Successful Businesses

On this episode of Proposify Biz Chat, I’m joined by social entrepreneur, Mike Zeller. Mike started eight different businesses in five different industries, producing over a hundred million dollars in sales. He’s been featured in Huffington Post, Business Insider, and Entrepreneur, and in addition to having his own marketing agency he mentors and educates other budding entrepreneurs.


What it’s about

Mike Zeller has ample experience and success in leadership and business ownership, founding multiple businesses at once. His involvement in each of his businesses pushed him to help others follow in his footsteps through his Rising Stars Mastermind mentorship program, and his Entrepreneur’s Roadmap to Freedom eCourse.

In this interview, Mike explains how to be a better business owner, leader, and how to not get caught up in the weeds.


Make time to focus on growth

It takes time to build a business, let alone to build eight, but for Mike it wasn’t a matter of finding time so much as it was strategically planning how to use his time.

Mike says that planning your time strategically allows you to focus on growth, and that step one of the process is simply to start learning. Figure out who’s doing something really well, then model their habits, model their philosophy, and model their decision-making matrices.

He says something he learned from Tony Robbins is that modelling is one of the fastest ways to accelerate your success, because it allows you to figure out your highest and best use of time.

If you can mimic what someone else is doing 80% as well as they are, chances are you will have similar levels of success.

Give yourself permission to delegate

When you first start your business, it’s common to have a do-it-yourself mindset; you want to have control over every task that needs to be done, and you want to save money.

As you achieve some level of traction in gaining customers and have a full schedule, it becomes daunting to keep doing everything on your own. Mike says you need to shift your DIY mindset and give yourself permission to hand stuff off to your team. This will give you the freedom you need to continue to grow the company.

Not sure how to start delegating? Try following Mike’s rule of delegation: If someone can do something 80% as well as you can, delegate it.

“I have certain activities that for every hour I do, I generate $4,000 or $5,000 of revenue for my business, so that’s a pretty good hour. That means it’s easier for me to delegate a $400 or $500 activity, which is like a sales-type role or some of these other things. As I delegate some of these things that are painful, or tedious, or that someone else can do 80% as well as I can, than I can create more freedom, and more energy toward the $5,000 an hour activity.”

You set the direction and vision for your team

Leading a team isn’t just about having the title, it’s about setting a direction, vision, and goal for your team so they can connect the dots from their role to the overall goals of the company.


If you’re part of a team or you’re building a company, whether it’s you and one other person, or it’s just you, you’re setting the direction or the vision. As a leader, Mike says you need to define where you’re going, and how you’re going to get there.

"One of your key responsibilities as a leader is to create meaning”

Mike suggests sharing stories with your team, explaining how certain roles are affecting the company or its customers positively to help show your team their value, create momentum, confidence, and joy.

Build and develop relationships

A key component in building a successful business, is building and developing relationships. When you first get started, you have family and friends, but you don’t really have any relationships you can leverage from a business standpoint.

Mike says events, conferences, and digital platforms like podcasts or social media, are where you can really start to grow your network and open yourself for the opportunity to be around more thought leaders.

Spending time with other thought leaders not only expands your network, but can open up doors for you and your business.

Show notes

Rising Stars Mastermind

James Carbary B2B Growth Show

Mike Zeller's Secret to Running 8 Successful Businesses

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