Cover image for The 100 absolutely unbreakable laws of business success
The 100 absolutely unbreakable laws of business success
Tracy, Brian.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
San Francisco : Berrett-Koehler, [2000]

Physical Description:
xvi, 319 pages ; 25 cm
Format :


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Material Type
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HF5386 .T8139 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

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Why are some people more successful in business? Why do some businesses flourish where others fail? Renowned business speaker and author, Brian Tracy has discovered the answers to these profoundly puzzling questions.

In The 100 Absolutely Unbreakable Laws of Business Success Tracy draws on his thirty years' experience and knowledge to present a set of principles or "universal laws" that lie behind the success of business people everywhere, in every kind of enterprise, large and small. These are natural laws, he says, and they work everywhere and for everyone, virtually without exception. Every year, says Tracy, thousands of companies underperform or even fail and millions of individuals underachieve, frustrated by thwarted ambition and dreams--all because they either attempted to violate or did not know these universal laws. But ignorance of the law is no excuse!

Tracy breaks the 100 laws down into nine major categories: Life, Success, Business, Leadership, Money, Economics, Selling, Negotiating, and Time Management. For each of the nine groups he details the specific laws that govern it-laws such as the Law of Cause and Effect, the Law of Service, the Law of Increasing Returns, the Law of Compensation, and the Law of Independence. Drawing on a lifetime of observation, investigation, and experience, Tracy not only identifies and defines each law, he also reveals its source and foundation, whether in science, nature, philosophy, experience, or common sense. He illustrates how it functions in the world using real-life anecdotes and examples shows how to apply it to your life and work through specific questions and practical steps and exercises that everyone can use--sometimes in just minutes--to begin the journey toward greater business success.

Now for the first time in one volume, these key principles can be understood and put to use by business people of all ages and experience for better, faster, more predictable results. "When you know and understand them," writes Tracy, "you gain a tremendous advantage over those who do not. When you organize your life and business according to these universal laws and timeless truths, you find that it is much easier to build and run a successful and profitable business or department, no matter what external conditions might exist...You will attract and keep better people, produce and sell more and better products and services, control costs more intelligently, expand and grow more predictably, and increase your profits with greater consistency."

Easy to read, easy to understand, and easy to apply, The 100 Absolutely Unbreakable Laws of Business Success offers a straightforward, eye-opening, life-affirming approach to how the world of business really works.

Author Notes

Brian Tracy is chairman and CEO of Brian Tracy International. As a keynote speaker and seminar leader, he addresses more than 250,000 people each year. He is the bestselling author of more than eighty books that have been translated into dozens of languages. He has served as a consultant and trainer to more than 1,000 corporations and more than 10,000 medium-sized enterprises in more than seventy-five countries.



Success Is Predictable This is a wonderful time to be alive. There have never been more opportunities for more people to accomplish more of their goals, both personally and professionally, than exist today. And if anything, our situation is getting better and better with each passing year. Why is this happening? The simplest answer is that we know more today about how to achieve better results in more areas of business than we have ever known before. And this information, these ideas and insights, are like water, flowing everywhere and to everyone who is open to them and willing to use them. The wonderful thing about information and ideas is that they are infinitely divisible. If you have an idea that can help me to be more effective in some part of my business and you share it with me, we are both enriched. If I then share this idea with someone else, and that person shares it with someone else again, everyone who receives the new idea is better off. And knowledge is cumulative. Once it exists, it does not cease to exist. It becomes available to more and more people and it grows exponentially. Every new piece of knowledge reveals connections and interconnections with other areas of knowledge in a self-reinforcing and accelerating pattern. Each breakthrough in knowledge creates new opportunities that expand and multiply as that knowledge is exploited. The driving force behind the explosion of knowledge and the expansion of technology is competition. This competition is more aggressive, determined, creative, and ruthless than ever before, and if anything, it will be even tougher in the months and years ahead. It has been said that "business is war." Business books, articles, and courses are filled with references to "marketing warfare," "guerilla tactics," "counterattacks," and other military terms. And these are all true with one important distinction: the nature of the type of "war" being fought. Military warfare is aimed at the conquest of people and territory. Business warfare is aimed at winning customers and markets. Military combat aims at destruction and victory by the use of overwhelming force. Business competition aims at finding better, faster, and cheaper ways of pleasing customers in competition with other companies that are trying to please the same customers. This business competition is fierce. Many of the finest minds and the most talented people who have ever lived are thinking and working day and night to find ways to satisfy customers with new and better products and services. The race is on. Only those who can learn and apply the very best ideas and methods faster than their competitors will survive. The "Winning Edge" concept says, "small differences in ability can lead to enormous differences in results." Small differences in your own personal repertoire of knowledge and skills can lead to major differences in your income and achievements. Your aim throughout your career, for yourself and your company, should be to acquire and develop the winning edges in your field that can mean all the difference between success and mediocrity. Today, strategies and techniques for achieving success at every level of business, and in every activity of life, are more widely available and proliferating more rapidly than at any other time in human history. And we can all benefit from them by seizing them and applying them to our lives. The purpose of this book is to share with you a system of proven principles, or "laws," that have been discovered and rediscovered, practiced and implemented, by the most successful businesspeople everywhere, in every kind of organization, large and small, throughout the history of business enterprise. The practice of these laws will give you the winning edge. When you know and understand these timeless truths, you will gain a tremendous advantage over those who do not. When you organize your life and business according to these universal laws and principles, you can start, build, manage, or turn around a business or department faster and easier than perhaps you ever thought possible. The more you incorporate these principles into your daily thinking and decision making, the more effective you will become. You will attract and keep better people, produce and sell more and better products and services, control costs more intelligently, expand and grow more predictably, and increase your profits with greater consistency. Some of these laws may sound unusual or even controversial when you first read them. Nonetheless, they are timeless truths. They have always existed. They have always worked. They are natural laws. They are embedded in the universe. In the long run, they are inviolable. Thomas Henry Huxley wrote in A Liberal Education, "The chess board is the world, the pieces are the phenomena of the universe, the rules of the game are what we call the Laws of Nature. The player on the other side is hidden from us. We know that his play is always fair, just, and patient. But also we know, to our cost, that he never overlooks a mistake, or makes the smallest allowance for ignorance." In the same way, these laws are neutral, neither positive nor negative. They are indifferent to your personal beliefs, preferences, or desires. They have always existed in business and always will. As Johann Wolfgang von Goethe wrote, "Nature understands no jesting; she is always true, always severe; she is always right, and the errors and faults are always those of man. The man incapable of appreciating her she despises and only to the apt, the pure, and true, does she resign herself and reveal her secrets." If you want to cook, you study cooking and you follow the rules and principles regarding the combining of ingredients and preparation that have been found to work successfully in the past. You would not think to add or subtract key ingredients and expect the dish you are preparing to taste the same as if you followed the proven recipe. By the same token, you would not expect to achieve the same business results accomplished by successful businesspeople by violating the essential laws and principles that they practice year after year. There is a story of a man who decides to commit suicide by jumping off a thirty-story building. As he plunges toward the ground, someone leans out of a fifteenth-story window and shouts, "How's it going?" The falling man shouts back, "So far, so good!" Many people are living their business lives with this kind of philosophy, "So far, so good!" They are violating natural laws and principles that apply to business life, sometimes knowingly and sometimes not. Nonetheless, these truths are immutable and unavoidable. You violate them at your peril. And even if you think you are escaping their consequences in the short term, you will ultimately pay the full price that they demand. The good news is that when you organize your life and business activities around The 100 Absolutely Unbreakable Laws of Business Success, you are virtually guaranteed to enjoy success and prosperity in your business activities. Just as you reap what you sow, when you put good things in, you get good things out. Perhaps the most important quality of a successful businessperson is pragmatism. You are pragmatic when you are not necessarily concerned about the origin of an idea. You don't ask where it comes from or who thought of it first. You ask only one question: Does it work? You are successful in business and in life to the degree to which you find out what works and then apply that principle wherever and whenever it is appropriate to get a particular result. This book is aimed at giving you ideas and strategies that have been proven, over and over, to work. Universal laws and principles are similar to telephone numbers in that if you dial the right number, you get through to the desired party. But even if you are brilliant, well educated, sincere, determined, and intelligent, if you dial the wrong number, you won't get through. Year after year, thousands of companies underperform or even go out of business because either the key decision makers in those companies did not know these universal laws or they attempted to violate them and succeed anyway. Even more hundreds of thousands, and even millions, of companies fail to achieve their true potentials in sales and profitability every year because of their violation of one or more of these laws. Remember that ignorance of the law is no excuse. Even if you do not know the laws, you are not excused from obedience to them. Even if your violation of these laws and principles is unintentional, you will still pay the full penalty in failure, frustration, and underachievement. My Own Story My background was not very inspiring. My family never had any money, and I paid my own way with odd jobs from the age of eleven. I left high school without graduating. After working at laboring jobs for some years, I stumbled into sales. I struggled in selling for many months until I began asking the question that changed my life: Why is it that some people are more successful than others? The Bible says, "Seek and ye shall find, for all who seek findeth." When I began looking for the reasons why some people were doing better than I was, I began to find the answers everywhere. And when I applied the answers I found, I began to get the same results that other successful people were getting. There is a "10/90 Rule" in life. This rule says that the first 10 percent of time that you invest in finding out the underlying laws, principles, rules, methods, and techniques of successful action in any field will save you 90 percent of the time and effort required to achieve your goals in that area. Over the years, I have found that the smartest people are those who take the time to find out the rules of success in any area before they attempt to get results in that area. They do their homework in advance. In my thirties, I caught up on my formal education. I participated in an Executive MBA program at a major university and received a master's degree in business and administration. I invested about 4,000 hours of my time studying business subjects and business principles. Over the years, I read hundreds of additional books and articles in my search for the so-called Secrets of Success. When I was given an opportunity to build a sales force covering six countries, I asked the experts, read the books, listened to the audio programs, and attended the courses on recruiting and building sales organizations. Then I applied what I had learned and practiced the laws and principles that seemed to be the most effective. In one year, I went from walking the streets, selling on straight commission, living from hand to mouth, to building a ninety-five-person sales force covering six countries and generating millions of dollars per year in revenue. Later, when I got into real estate development, I followed the same procedure. I borrowed all the books the library had on real estate development and studied them, long into the night. I spent hours with other real estate developers, plying them with questions. Then I optioned a piece of land for $100, put together the necessary financial analyses and proposals, found a financial partner with the strength to underwrite the project, and went on to build and completely lease out a $3 million shopping center in the next twelve months. When I began importing Japanese automobiles, I followed the same procedure. Within one year, I built a sixty-five-dealer network through which I eventually sold more than $25 million worth of vehicles. When I became the chief operating officer of a $265 million development company, I applied to my new position the proven, tested laws, principles, and techniques that I had gathered. I completely restaffed, reorganized, and refocused the company, turning it from confusion to profitability in less than a year. Businesspeople began to hire me as a consultant and as a troubleshooter. In company after company, I used the same procedure. I immersed myself in the business until I had ascertained the underlying "success principles" of that industry or field, and then I applied them. As a result, I was able to save or make my clients millions of dollars time after time. I then began organizing these ideas and principles into talks and seminars for public and private audiences. Eventually, I created an entire series of seminars and training programs for individuals and businesses, many of which have now been recorded on video and audio. They are taught to businesses across America and throughout the world, in twenty languages and in thirty-one countries. The reason that these principles, and the seminars and programs based on them, are so successful is simple. They are built around practical, proven techniques that save people years of hard work in achieving the same results. My graduates have applied the ideas they have learned toward generating hundreds of thousands and even millions of dollars of increased sales, reduced costs, or improved profits. Over the years, working with hundreds of businesses and thousands of businesspeople, I have found that all the successful, happy, dynamic, prosperous, and growing enterprises practice these principles consistently in virtually everything they do. And when you do the same things they do, you will begin almost immediately to get the same results. Most success in business can be easily explained by the consistent practice of these laws. Most failure can be explained by the violation or ignorance of these laws. When you align your activities with these universal principles, you will find yourself getting more and better results with less effort. You will be more relaxed and confident. You will be more optimistic and cheerful. You will be more efficient and effective. Instead of working yourself into a state of exhaustion, only to feel frustrated and overwhelmed, you will go through enormous quantities of work quickly and easily and get far better results than other people who may be working twice as hard. There is a simple analogy for the use of these principles that I sometimes share with my seminar audiences. I ask the question, "If you purchased a treadmill and took it home, what would determine how much benefit you got from that treadmill?" Quite quickly, the businesspeople in my audiences reply that the amount of benefit they would receive from a treadmill would be in direct proportion to how often they used it and how long they stayed on it each time. Here is the point: There is never any question of whether or not the treadmill would help make a person fitter and healthier. Everyone knows that this is a given. The treadmill is a tested and proven device for physical fitness. This has long since been settled. It is the same when you begin to use these tested and proven laws and principles in your own business life. The question is not whether or not they will work. The only question is how faithfully and consistently you apply them to your activities. And like a treadmill, the more often and the more consistently you apply these laws, the better they will work and the greater and easier results you will achieve. One final point before we begin. The most common quality of successful people is they are intensely action oriented. They are proactive rather than reactive. They take initiative. When they hear a good idea, they act on it immediately. By taking action quickly, they immediately get feedback that enables them to self-correct and move ahead. They learn and grow from every experience. And they keep trying new things. When you see a good idea in the pages ahead that you can apply to your work, resolve to take action on it immediately. Don't delay. One decisive action or decision to do something different can change your whole life. The only question that should concern you is, Does it work? And these ideas work. They work virtually everywhere, under virtually all circumstances in our business system. And the more you use them, the better they will work for you. The more you align your life with these laws and principles, the happier and more successful you will be. There are no limits. Excerpted from The 100 Absolutely Unbreakable Laws of Business Success by Brian S. Tracy All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

Table of Contents

Prefacep. xi
About the Authorp. xv
Introduction--Success Is Predictablep. 1
Chapter 1 The Laws of Lifep. 11
1. The Law of Cause and Effectp. 14
2. The Law of Beliefp. 17
3. The Law of Expectationsp. 19
4. The Law of Attractionp. 21
5. The Law of Correspondencep. 23
Chapter 2 The Laws of Successp. 27
6. The Law of Controlp. 32
7. The Law of Accidentp. 35
8. The Law of Responsibilityp. 37
9. The Law of Directionp. 40
10. The Law of Compensationp. 47
11. The Law of Servicep. 48
12. The Law of Applied Effortp. 52
13. The Law of Overcompensationp. 54
14. The Law of Preparationp. 57
15. The Law of Forced Efficiencyp. 59
16. The Law of Decisionp. 61
17. The Law of Creativityp. 64
18. The Law of Flexibilityp. 67
19. The Law of Persistencep. 70
Chapter 3 The Laws of Businessp. 73
20. The Law of Purposep. 78
21. The Law of Organizationp. 80
22. The Law of Customer Satisfactionp. 81
23. The Law of the Customerp. 85
24. The Law of Qualityp. 89
25. The Law of Obsolescencep. 93
26. The Law of Innovationp. 96
27. The Law of Critical Success Factorsp. 97
28. The Law of the Marketp. 101
29. The Law of Specializationp. 104
30. The Law of Differentiationp. 106
31. The Law of Segmentationp. 108
32. The Law of Concentrationp. 110
33. The Law of Excellencep. 113
Chapter 4 The Laws of Leadershipp. 117
34. The Law of Integrityp. 121
35. The Law of Couragep. 123
36. The Law of Realismp. 126
37. The Law of Powerp. 129
38. The Law of Ambitionp. 133
39. The Law of Optimismp. 135
40. The Law of Empathyp. 138
41. The Law of Resiliencep. 140
42. The Law of Independencep. 141
43. The Law of Emotional Maturityp. 143
44. The Law of Superb Executionp. 144
45. The Law of Foresightp. 146
Chapter 5 The Laws of Moneyp. 149
46. The Law of Abundancep. 155
47. The Law of Exchangep. 157
48. The Law of Capitalp. 160
49. The Law of Time Perspectivep. 163
50. The Law of Savingp. 166
51. The Law of Conservationp. 169
52. Parkinson's Lawp. 170
53. The Law of Threep. 172
54. The Law of Investingp. 175
55. The Law of Compound Interestp. 178
56. The Law of Accumulationp. 180
57. The Law of Magnetismp. 182
58. The Law of Accelerating Accelerationp. 185
Chapter 6 The Laws of Sellingp. 189
59. The Law of Salesp. 193
60. The Law of Determinationp. 197
61. The Law of Needp. 199
62. The Law of Problemsp. 202
63. The Law of Persuasionp. 204
64. The Law of Securityp. 206
65. The Law of Riskp. 208
66. The Law of Trustp. 210
67. The Law of Relationshipsp. 213
68. The Law of Friendshipp. 216
69. The Law of Positioningp. 217
70. The Law of Perspectivep. 219
71. The Law of Advance Planningp. 221
72. The Law of Perverse Motivationp. 224
Chapter 7 The Laws of Negotiatingp. 227
73. The Universal Law of Negotiatingp. 232
74. The Law of Futurityp. 234
75. The Law of Win-Win or No Dealp. 235
76. The Law of Unlimited Possibilitiesp. 238
77. The Law of Fourp. 240
78. The Law of Timingp. 242
79. The Law of Termsp. 245
80. The Law of Anticipationp. 248
81. The Law of Authorityp. 250
82. The Law of Reversalp. 251
83. The Law of Greater Powerp. 253
84. The Law of Desirep. 258
85. The Law of Reciprocityp. 259
86. The Walk Away Lawp. 262
87. The Law of Finalityp. 264
Chapter 8 The Laws of Time Managementp. 267
88. The Law of Clarityp. 271
89. The Law of Prioritiesp. 273
90. The Law of Posterioritiesp. 274
91. The Law of the Most Valuable Assetp. 275
92. The Law of Planningp. 277
93. The Law of Rewardsp. 279
94. The Law of Sequentialityp. 280
95. The Law of Leveragep. 282
96. The Law of Timelinessp. 283
97. The Law of Practicep. 285
98. The Law of Time Pressurep. 286
99. The Law of Single Handlingp. 288
100. The Law of Competencep. 290
Conclusion--Start Now!p. 293
Learning Resources of Brian Tracy Internationalp. 297
Recommended Readingp. 307
Indexp. 309