Creating wealth and being unrelenting in chasing one’s dreams was the constant echo at Tuesday night’s OWN Talks motivational conference, which featured two world renown presenters and local business mogul – Sebas Bastian.
Thousands of eager people – some of whom were stuck in an hours long traffic jam on Sir Sidney Poitier bridge – poured into the Imperial Ballroom at the Atlantis Resort yesterday evening, for ‘Fifty Shades of Success’ – presented by the OWN Bahamas Foundation.
It was the first of what is expected to be an annual event.
Under the theme, ‘Aspiration Given Wings’, the talk was aimed at encouraging entrepreneurs to follow their dreams, while also providing them with the keys to success.
Keynote speaker, world renowned motivational speaker and author Leslie ‘Les’ Brown, implored the audience to be mindful of their words because, “words have power”. He told his audience that this is “your winning season” and encouraged them to “go to the next level”.
“What are you hungry for,” Brown asked.
“What is your financial goal? Think about creating wealth. Think about your financial freedom number. Work on your mindset. Things are going to happen that you will not anticipate, things change rapidly. You have to be resilient. You have to have faith, family, finance and fun.
“You will have setbacks and failures. Persons you thought you can depend on will not be there. You have to create your own personal economy. Develop yourself, your mindset and your skill set. Knowledge is the new currency.
“What knowledge do you have? What skills do you possess? Hold yourself to a high standard. You can create an attractive Bahamas, with knowledgeable people, with innovation. A place where people look forward to coming.
“If you are causal about your dream, you will be a causality. Risk winning.”
Sebas Bastian, founder of OWN Bahamas and Island Luck chief executive officer (CEO), told the future business owners that in order to be successful, they have to be willing to give up sleep to see their dreams come true.
He said sleep is for the rich, “and if you woke up broke this morning you had no reason going to sleep.”
Bastian shared his “Business A, B, C’s”, speaking about his successes and failures, and stressed that technology is the key to any business success.
“While you were sleeping, successful people were up,” he said.
“Success is not owned, it is rented and rent is due every day.
“You have to be able to put in the time and the effort if you want to make that venture work. Ladies, don’t be the woman with the $1,000 purse with nothing in it and men, don’t be spending money every weekend when you live home with your grammy.
“We have to embrace new trends. Everything depends on technology. You also need help.
“If you want to go fast, go by yourself. But if you want to go far, you have to go together. You must build a team. Be smart enough to know you need help and brave enough to ask for it. To make it big, surround yourself with smart persons. You have to stay on top of what is in demand.
“Throughout my entire life, I have hit almost every single road block you can imagine. It was from my very own Bahamian brothers and sisters that tried to pull me down up to this day. One thing you must not let happen – never allow them to distract you from your vision or derail you from your goals.
“These bumps come dressed as friends, family and co-workers, but hustle so hard until them haters ask you for a job. Kill them with success and bury them with a smile.”
Motivational speaker and award-winning author Felicia Hatcher encouraged the audience to get creative and “never let your fears hold your back”.
“What I have learned is, there are a ton of people telling you no. Every way they can say no, they will tell you no. If you have a dream, do not let it go,” Hatcher said.
“You do not need experience, you do not need money. Let me tell you, when Oprah said, ‘when you go after your dream, the world conspires to assist you in your dream’, it is true. Ideas are worthless and execution is everything.
“You have to ask yourself, ‘what ideas are you sitting on every day?’ Starting out is ugly. You sometimes look ugly but you have to make it happen. If you can’t do something, say yes and then figure it out. Look past your circumstances and get creative.
“Put in the work and sacrifice.”