If there’s one thing I’ve noticed over the years, it’s the amount of:
- fake entrepreneurs.
- Self-proclaimed business gurus.
- The number of lies and deception going on.
- And how easily the flashy lights mislead people.
Some of these self-proclaimed entrepreneurs have ended up in prison, on sex offender lists, and worse, when their real identities are discovered and exposed.
One example is Gordon G. Miller.
He was a self-proclaimed entrepreneur from Quora who gained 100’s of thousands of followers, and looked the part, but ended up being exposed for child p*rn and multiple counts of fraud.
Though many cases of fake entrepreneurs aren’t that serious when you find out the truth.
A lot of the time, it’s either blatant lies or outright manipulation to the highest level. To the degree that they get their start by ripping off the naive and dumb online.
Let’s talk about ALL of it.
1. They’ll say 9-5 is for losers and lames
This is one of the biggest signs and traits of fake entrepreneurs. This has been truer ever since the pandemic started, and people started scamming and taking advantage of those looking for shortcuts into having their own businesses.
From advertisements saying things like “If you work 9-5 you’re a little bitch”, followed by “buy my course”. Clearly targeting those who are insecure and don’t have much self-esteem.
Or the usual wanna-be’s in the comments sections of YouTube who say, “working 9-5 is for pussy’s” and anything equivalent to those words.
This also applies to YouTubers who’ve managed to succeed and reach a certain point but still choose to sh*t on people who work 9-5, putting them down at every chance they get to prop up their glass egos.
The same YouTubers who change their tune if their channel comes under threat.
This also applies to anyone online who can be considered an “influencer” who says the same nonsense.
I won’t tolerate slander of those who can’t defend themselves
These 9-5ers who get disrespected daily on the internet by these wanna-be fake entrepreneurs and those who are feeling themselves beasue of their subscriber counts, they’re the people who keep society functioning every day.
- The workers serving you in the supermarket.
- Your parents or family who take part in the workforce as employees.
- The nurses and doctors in hospitals.
- The ambulance staff and surgeons who save lives.
- The construction workers who essentially create new houses, offices, and work environments.
- The cleaners who keep the place neat and tidy, indoors and outdoors.
- The people you hire as a business owner to do work on your behalf.
- The pilots and drivers on public transport.
- The services you pay for to make life that much easier.
Without these people, you don’t even GET to be an entrepreneur in the first place, never mind claim you’re an entrepreneur or business owner.
This casual disrespect needs to be called out, and these fake entrepreneurs must be held accountable. They’re poison to the community and a bad influence all around.
2. Their business model is selling you overpriced books as a gateway
Some people learn the game and learn it well. They’ll look at the scammers, rip-off merchants, and scum bags who steal, cheat, and rob people online under the false pretence that they’re real entrepreneurs.
Then they’ll find a way to create an overpriced book with information you can find on Google, and persuade you into buying it as a gateway to making a lot of money (relatively) to start an actual business.
Nobody said the business world was spring clean and pure, but in this context, you must realize who you’re dealing with.
This is a telltale sign of a fake business guru who created an identity for themselves, put it into a PDF to present themselves as an expert, only to then convince you to buy their book in droves to actually make money.
That leads to my next point.
3. They have no real background, backstory, or history
The ONE thing about the internet is anyone can make an identity for themselves, present that idea as fact, and then run with it for months or years undetected to a degree.
Who’s stopping anyone from signing up to a social network, calling themselves “AmazonGuru”, putting pretty pictures on their Instagram, and influencing you to buy into their bullshit?
Social media allows you to be who you want despite NOT being anything of the sort in your real life. And having no backstory, background, or history attached to you is always sketchy.
It’s suspect and a telltale sign of fake entrepreneurs and business gurus you need to be wary of. In fact, this applies to anyone online despite their affiliation.
4. They try reeling you in with superficial videos or pictures (cars, houses, beaches, etc)
If I wanted to, even though I don’t and wouldn’t need to, I could start an account with a different name and profile picture, go to the local beach where I live and create a fake impression to lure people in.
It doesn’t matter where a person lives. You could have NO money and find an area swimming with wealth and pose next to a luxury car, or even ask the person if it’s OK for you to do it. And get away with that.
You could even interview certain people in these areas to give the impression that you’re “one” of them and you’re legit.
You could then use that as content and create the superficial image with corny shit like;
- The luxury of all kinds.
And things of that nature as a gateway to selling people on why they should listen to your business advice.
The illusion of the internet and the power we have in our hands (smartphones) allows us to do this if we’re disingenuous, insincere, and outright scum bags.
It happens a lot.
5. Their social media username includes the word “entrepreneur”, “Guru”, etc
The crazy thing about the internet today is you can create an image, get successful with that fake image, and then later apologize for it and become well off (relatively).
At least to a degree, anyway. Look at the rapper Rick Ross and how he got away with what he did.
Fake entrepreneurs and business gurus online do it all the time. They start the journey with a cringey username like StocksExpert, eBayPreneur, DaveTheHustler, Kindlepreneur, FacebookGuru, and things of that nature.
6. They don’t have an actual business
I’ve met and seen people like this. It’s embarrassing.
Guys who are 18 claiming they have multiple businesses and how they’re so successful. Only to find out they work 9-5 and don’t have a business at all.
On top of the fact, the “business” they claim is killing it isn’t doing anything because they’re still in the early stages.
What happened to honesty, truth, integrity, and modesty? If you work for a company, there’s nothing wrong with that. And if it’s a stepping stone, nothing wrong with that either.
On the other hand, you have “fake” entrepreneurs who sell you books and courses like “how to get rich” and try to use that as a gateway to getting their own money.
This is less prevalent today but is a telltale sign of someone claiming to be something they’re not.
You can’t take someone’s word if there’s nothing you can visibly see to prove they’re what they claim (like a functioning website that’s been running for years, etc).
Relevant: That One Time PayPal Stole £10000’s From My Online Business
7. They’ll claim you won’t succeed if you don’t buy their BS online course
This ties in with point #1 when so-called business gurus will use:
- Shaming tactics.
And character assassination to force you into buying their online course that claims to “solve” all your business problems. The saving grace in so many words.
If someone has to:
And put you down to make you buy their BS product through reverse psychology, you know something is wrong, and you should run a mile.
Good products and good people speak for themselves. Over-the-top persuasion is insecurity pretending to be confidence and self-assurance.
Relevant: What Influences Self Esteem? Here Are 7 Legitimate Answers
8. They’re too flashy
I remember in 2013 when I was part of a mentorship program (which was overhyped), and there was a guy in particular. After getting a £10K loan, guess what he did?
He asked his mentor to take care of his business while he was away. And he went to Spain and some other European country for a one month holiday.
Keep in mind this guy’s business had only just started, and once he got the loan, he tried pushing responsibility on his mentor.
Also, keep in mind he was more interested in being flashy and spending money than putting in the work and getting out on the field.
He didn’t wanna get his hands dirty (red flag).
The more flashy and superficial a person who claims to have or be in business, and the more they try to keep up with the Joneses, that is when you know you’re dealing with a fake entrepreneur.
I mean, it’s like a musician obsessing about what jewellery to buy instead of getting their ass in the studio and recording music.
You know something’s suspect.