That would be too easy, wouldn’t it?

Whatever you’re trying to figure out, someone else has tried the exact same thing and can give you the precise blueprint to succeed.

Pipe dream, my friend.

Late last year I started sharing some of my “ten lessons from ten years in business” here on the blog the past couple weeks.  So far it’s included Putting Values FirstPutting Yourself FirstTwo Types of FocusPower of Thank You,Strategy is Choosing, Plans aren’t as important as Adjustments and Give Freely Without Keeping Score.

One of my favorite books in recent years is The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz. It’s well worth reading cover to cover, but he gives away the punchline on page three – that complex problems have no clear answer. That nobody is going to be able to give you a specific, proven, guaranteed answer to your situation.

As I’ve grown our business over the past ten years, I’ve looked to numerous entrepreneurs and peers for input, experience shares and advice.

Even further back, when I was trying to decide if I wanted to step out and try to do my own thing, I talked with numerous folks who had already done it. I wanted to know why they did it, how they set themselves up for success, how they were successful.

I realized after several coffee meetings that I was looking for someone who would tell me it all would be OK. I was looking for someone to tell me exactly what to do in order to be successful. Nobody has that answer, and ten years later I don’t have that answer for other entrepreneurs either.

Everything we do is unique. We all operate in different markets, with a different set of customers, in a different internal culture. What worked for me might fail spectacularly for you.

Although there might not be answers, there are clues. If you take someone else’s success secrets and adjust for your unique circumstances (market, culture, etc.), you can still eliminate margins of error and increase your changes of success.

That’s the hard truth – that nobody has the answers you’re seeking, but plenty of people have clues, evidence and experiences to help you figure it out for yourself.