Tyler Jorgenson

One Entrepreneur's Journey To Find Greatness


The Seth Godin Pyramid

I’m a fan of Seth Godin. To me he is a lot more than a marketer and businessman, he is a thought leader and ‘agent of change’. I had the privilege of meeting him a couple of weeks ago when he spoke here in Southern California. There are a few major points that stuck with me and I’ll post about them separately.

Seth’s new book, Linchpin is about being indispensable. It’s a great read so far and I highly recommend picking up a copy. One thing he covered that stuck with me was a hierarchy of work skills. I’ve outlined them in the hierarchy below.
Taking a look at this hierarchy, where do you fit in? The lower down the list you get the easier it is to be dispensable. Just after returning from Africa I worked at UPS for 2 months. I lifted stuff, and I was easily replaced. If you are on the bottom 4-5 levels of the hierarchy you must take great strides within your company or market to become that one individual that can not be lost. I challenge you to find something that you can do in your work today that will set you apart from the partially cognizant cogs working around you.

Tyler Jorgenson and Seth Godin at the LinkedOC event at the St. Regis in Monarch Beach February 11th 2010



Yesterday I did my first 20 minute exercise in speed reading. The first step was to calculate words per minute (WPM) baseline.

Baseline – 244 Words Per Minute

I then did 6 exercises for a total of 11 minutes of reading.

New Speed – 350 Words Per Minute!

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Elevating Your Influence

“Man radiates what he is, and that radiation affects to a greater or less[er] degree every person who comes within that radiation” – David O. McKay

This has long been one of my favorite quotes and is the thought that comes to mind whenever I consider personal development. We’ve all seen the fruits of this concept in our lives, the smiling waitress that cheers up a gloomy table in an instant, the charismatic friend who can change a rooms mood just by being present, and even the ‘Debby Downer’ who can suck the wind out of the fullest of sails in the bat of an eye.

Yesterday I visited the Newport Beach LDS Temple because I felt my own radiation lessening. I needed to reflect, repent and recharge. I had a wonderful experience and felt a renewed focus to live my life in a way where others benefit from being around me. As a mortal man I make mistakes and the past couple of years seem to have had an extra load of trials and tough experiences. I know, however, that these can be a source of growth and learning and that the choice is mine.

A good friend reminded me through his example the proper level of priority Temple worship should be to an LDS businessman. That same friend then shared this video on his blog today.

What a great example of elevating your influence in the world around you!

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Organizing Chaos

“He who every morning plans the transactions of the day and follows out that plan carries a thread that will guide him through the labyrinth of the most busy life. The orderly arrangement of his time is like a ray of life which darts itself through all his occupations. But where no plan is laid, where the disposal of time is surrendered merely to the chance of incident, chaos will soon reign.”

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The Richest Man In Babylon – Intro

I am in the middle of reading The Richest Man in Babylon by George S. Clason. I have heard this book spoken of and recommended for years and recently came across a copy. I am deeply enjoying the simple yet sound principles of financial success.

The following two paragraphs are from freewld.

The Richest Man in Babylon is a book by George Samuel Clason which dispenses financial advice through a collection of parables set in ancient Babylon. Through their experiences in business and managing household finance, the characters in the parables learn simple lessons in financial wisdom. By basing these parables in ancient times, but involving situations that modern people can understand and identify with, the author presents these lessons as timeless wisdom that is as relevant today as it was back then.

The book began in 1926 as a series of informational pamphlets. Banks and insurance companies began to distribute these pamphlets, and the most famous ones were eventually compiled into this book.

Over the next few days I will share my notes and thoughts from each chapter. I am hoping that by writing out my thoughts and sharing the principles the book teaches that not only will I become more committed to the tenants but that others may learn of them also.

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Life gives to all the choice. You can satisfy yourself with mediocrity if you wish. You can be common, ordinary, dull, colorless, or you can channel your life so that it will be clean, vibrant, useful, progressive, colorful, and rich.”
Spencer W. Kimball

Kimball’s personal motto was ‘Do It!’ I guess the ‘just’ Nike added to it made it a bit more marketable.

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I found this poem in a notebook I kept while I lived in South Africa. I googled it but could not find it online. Here it is as I transcribed it nearly 10 years ago.


While other may tire or quit in despair,
or feel as if failure is too hard to bear –
I will keep going. Put failures aside,
If I can’t keep up, I’ll lengthen my stride.
I’ve made up my mind, Set my mind on a quest,
though many have tried, few gave it their best.
Trying my hardest is what makes me great.
Desire and determination, not fortune and fate.
– Judy Beck

I’m not sure if the grammar is correct, but I really enjoyed the spirit of the poem.

I am the master of my fate, and I am determined to make it great.
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Building vs Tearing Down

This poem came to mind as I was teaching a lesson at church this past Sunday. It seems to be a message that I needed perhaps more than the 25 or so men I was supposed to be teaching.

There are a few versions of this, but all with the same message.

I passed one day through a busy town,
and saw them tearing a building down.
With a “Ho, heave ho!” and a husky yell,
they swung a beam and a side wall fell.

I asked the foreman, “Are these men skilled?
The kind you’d hire if you had to build?”
“No,” he chuckled. “No indeed,
the common laborer is all I need.
I can easily destroy in a day or two,
what builders have taken weeks to do.”

I thought to myself as I went on my way,
which of these roles have I tried to play?
Am I a builder who works with care,
strengthening lives by rule and square,
shaping my peers to a well-made plan,
helping them do the best they can?
Or am I a wrecker who walks the town,
content with the labor of tearing down?

– Author Unknown

I just read an article where a team had mapped out the most stressful counties in America. The results weren’t surprising, but they were a bit disheartening. In some areas people are just stressed. I’ve been going through some business trials and have been more stressed than I’d like to admit in the recent past. As humans we tend to get short fused when we get stressed. Sadly, it is during these tough times when we should be pulling together as families, communities, congregations and the like that we find people allowing the stresses of life to allow them to feel ok with tearing others down.

I’m sharing this more as a ‘note to self’ than as somebody that has any authority to preach on the subject. A friend of mine shared a the first line of this quote with me while I was in South Africa:

You cannot lift another soul until you are standing on higher ground than he is. You cannot light a fire in another soul unless it is burning in your own soul.Harold B Lee

So this is my goal, to grow and develop and stand on high ground. To have a fire burning so bright in my soul that I can share that fire with those I have the pleasure of meeting.

Be a builder.

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Come What May, And Love It

Yesterday I shared some of the adversity I’m dealing with. I am very grateful for some words of encouragement that was shared by friends around the globe. Thank you. I was up late dealing with some of the business items that needed attention and decided to search the web for some encouragement and found this link. Youtube had part of this message on video, and I found it very inspirational.

This poem also comes to mind:

“When Things Go Wrong”

When things go wrong as they sometimes will,
When the road you are trudging seems all uphill,
When the funds are low and the debts are high,
And you want to smile, but you have to sigh,

When care is pressing you down a bit,
Rest, if you must, but do not quit.
Life is queer with its twists and turns,
As everyone of us sometimes learns,
And many a failure turns about,
When he might have won had he stuck it out.

Don’t give up though the pace seems slow –
You may succeed with another blow.
Success is failure turned inside out,
The silver tint of the clouds of doubt.

And you never can tell how close you are,
It may be near when it seems so far.
So stick to the fight when you’re hardest hit –
It’s when things seem worst that you must not quit.


So, whatever it is that you are going through (because we all have our own challenges right now) stand tall and stick to the fight.


Finishing the race

I usually blog with good news, and this one will end that way too. It’s been a tough season for me. A company that I had worked so hard to help build closed it’s doors last month. It’s never pleasant to see a company close, and it’s hard when I had to talk to so many employees about the end of the road. These aren’t the friendliest of job searching environments and I wish I could find jobs for each of the amazing people that worked with me. Additionally there is also the financial wake that is left behind to clean up when a company closes. My Father knows how hard its been on me and emailed me this today.

It’s painful, but with the help from the Almighty and caring family and friends the race can still be finished.


Being a Dad

I had a good Dad.

Now, I’m just trying to be one.


Play Big!

There is no passion to be found in playing small – in settling
for a life that is less than what you are capable of living.
Nelson Mandela

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Which Virtue Is Most Important To You?

I often reflect back on our Founding Fathers and the amazing example they were of how to be Men even during challenging times. One thing that I have always felt these men embodied was Virtue. Recently a good friend email the following to me:


Franklin sought to cultivate his character by a plan of thirteen virtues, which he developed at age 20 (in 1726) and continued to practice in some form for the rest of his life. His autobiography lists his thirteen virtues as:

  1. “TEMPERANCE. Eat not to dullness; drink not to elevation.”
  2. “SILENCE. Speak not but what may benefit others or yourself; avoid trifling conversation.”
  3. “ORDER. Let all your things have their places; let each part of your business have its time.”
  4. “RESOLUTION. Resolve to perform what you ought; perform without fail what you resolve.”
  5. “FRUGALITY. Make no expense but to do good to others or yourself; i.e., waste nothing.”
  6. “INDUSTRY. Lose no time; be always employ’d in something useful; cut off all unnecessary actions.”
  7. “SINCERITY. Use no hurtful deceit; think innocently and justly, and, if you speak, speak accordingly.”
  8. “JUSTICE. Wrong none by doing injuries, or omitting the benefits that are your duty.”
  9. “MODERATION. Avoid extremes; forbear resenting injuries so much as you think they deserve.”
  10. “CLEANLINESS. Tolerate no uncleanliness in body, cloaths, or habitation.”
  11. “TRANQUILLITY. Be not disturbed at trifles, or at accidents common or unavoidable.”
  12. “CHASTITY. Rarely use venery but for health or offspring, never to dullness, weakness, or the injury of your own or another’s peace or reputation.”
  13. “HUMILITY. Imitate Jesus and Socrates.”

Franklin didn’t try to work on them all at once. Instead, he would work on one and only one each week “leaving all others to their ordinary chance”. While Franklin didn’t live completely by his virtues and by his own admission, he fell short of them many times, he believed the attempt made him a better man contributing greatly to his success and happiness, which is why in his autobiography, he devoted more pages to this plan than to any other single point; in his autobiography Franklin wrote, “I hope, therefore, that some of my descendants may follow the example and reap the benefit.”[59]

I love that Benjamin Franklin didn’t attempt to fix everything at once. Anybody who has attempted certainly understands the frustration that can ensue. By “leaving all others to their ordinary chance” he was able to put all available resources into one and increase the chances of seeing change in his life. I’m not sure which one I’m going to pick to start on, but I’m certainly going to follow the plan.

Is there one that you want to work on most of all?

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Survival Guide

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Another Earthquake

It may be time to re-take the quiz I posted early 2008.

Post your score in the comments. Don’t be shy.

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View From The Federal Hall

While in New York last month my wife and I visited the Federal Hall where President George Washington was inaugurated as our first President of this great and free land. Standing on the steps of that great monument I felt for a moment the powerful strength of the Founding Fathers. They were men of Character and Valor. Standing on the tops of the steps one looks directly out at the New York Stock Exchange. It is an interesting juxtaposition of two of the great pieces of the United States. The last few years have seen what each the Federal Hall and the NYSE represent challenged, tested and beaten up. Our economy is in peril and the leaders in our government have in many ways let down the people they were asked to serve.

I came across the following quote from the magnanimous Thomas Jefferson:

“I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them.”

My view from sitting on the steps of the Federal Hall was clear. It’s time to stand up. Literally, the steps were quite cold and I didn’t need my back side getting cold. In a more meaningful sense it was time to stand up and start acting.

I am so grateful to live in America. This truly is the land of opportunity, and now is the time to seek out those opportunities. Fortunes are made in the Bear markets, the profits are usually just realized in the Bull.

It’s not the proper roll of the Government to come in and save all of the companies or to bail each of us out. It’s our job to learn from our mistakes and grow stronger. We can grow stronger. We can get smarter. We can prosper again.

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