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Four Principles For A Successful Life

I’m writing this article on a Friday morning on our way to Portland, which is stop seven of eight of a whirlwind investor meal tour. Dan and I have been to Denver, Las Vegas, Phoenix, San Diego, Los Angeles, San Jose, and we’re wrapping up today in Portland—then on to Seattle.

These gatherings are a treat for me, as although I have had the opportunity to chat with many of you on the phone, having a conversation in person over a good meal is far preferable.

One of the things we ask at each of these gatherings is “Why did you choose to invest with us?” And for those who have invested multiple times, “Why did you choose to invest with us again and again?” Apart from the ego boost of hearing why you are happy with our service and how we do business, it’s truly informative for us. We want to know what we’re doing right, what resonates with you, and how we can build on that in the future.

The most consistent piece of positive feedback we receive from you is how much you value our communication. How consistently and comprehensively we’re communicating with each of you; about your investment, the performance of the asset, current investment opportunities, and where our group is headed. Then, inevitably (and unfortunately), we hear about a far less interactive experience with another operator or sponsor, where many of you have been left wondering how the investment has been performing, when you’ll receive your distribution, and if that K1 will come in on time or if you’ll have to file an extension.

What strikes me about our conversations is that rarely do you lead with the returns that we generate for you. That is, of course, discussed, and we also hear positive feedback about the monthly distributions, strong internal rate of returns & equity multiples, and the strength of our underwriting and operations. But over and over again, communication is the first and most frequent thing mentioned. It always strikes me, because my first thought is, why would anyone else not communicate as we do. It’s so simple! That said, it’s understandable why they don’t because it’s not always easy.

As you might imagine, it takes a great deal of time and intention to provide the level and consistency of communication we do. There are many steps in the process, especially in sending out this newsletter you’re reading right now. It would be much easier not to do it. Monthly distributions take more time, quarterly distributions would be easier. The offering memorandums and webinars we host for each new acquisition take A LOT of time. It would be far easier to send a short e-mail and skip the webinar. A couple of quotes come to mind; you may recognize them:

“If you are willing to do only what’s easy, life will be hard. But if you’re willing to do what’s hard, life will be easy.” – Author and motivational speaker T. Harv Eker

“Do what is meaningful, not what is expedient.” – Clinical psychologist and author Jordan Peterson

That led me to think about principles, and what it takes to be successful, in business, personal finance, relationships, and life. Those principles are generally, very simple, but not always easy to practice…

If you want to build wealth: spend less than you earn and invest the difference.

If you want to have good relationships: treat others the way you would like to be treated. If you want to build a strong business or great career: work hard and be constantly learning and improving. If you want to develop a character trait: get around people who have that trait (you’re the average of the five people you surround yourself with).

None of these are principles and practices beyond the understanding of a ten-year-old. None of them are new concepts. They’ve been around for millennia. They don’t require an advanced degree or a genius-level IQ to implement. Yet, none of them are easy to put into practice consistently. If they were, then everyone would do them all the time.

What we’re doing here at PassiveInvesting.com is building a legacy business, one that will endure for many decades, even generations.  So, we’re committed to the simple, but challenging and timeless principles, to continue to build on the foundation we’ve established, and continue to build wealth alongside you for generations to come.

For those of you who we haven’t had the chance to meet in person, we value your feedback as well. So, the same questions to you: Why have you invested with us? If you’ve invested multiple times, why is that? What are we doing well? What could we be doing better?

Lastly, I hope this is a truly joyful season for each of you. Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year!