The TRUTH About Managing a Million Dollar App Business. Creating Goals, Staying Focused, and Daily Success Habits

To avoid getting sucked into the vortex of being unproductive, you need to set structure and routines that get results for your business (and life)!

High-level organization and productivity skills are the #1 factors for huge profits and losses.

Over the last decade, I've developed thousands of apps, managed million dollar businesses, and found a way to take care of my own health and sanity in the process.

Below is my personal regiment for building motivation, focus and discipline + the daily success habits I perform to stay on track.

Stick to your Natural Strengths and Tasks that Excite You

When it comes to productivity, I've found that it's really about who you are and what makes you tick.

Focus on tasks that you are good at and excite you.

It could be coding, management, sales…ANYTHING you are good at and love doing.

For everything else, partner with someone or outsource it.

Create a 5 Year Plan

A yourself, “What do I want 5 years from now?”

If your 5 year plan is to only be working 10 hours a week or running your own app gaming studio, define your objective and build your strategy backwards.

  1. Define your needs and wants (vision boards work great)
  2. Create a plan
  3. Believe in your plan
  4. Stick to your plan!

Not sticking to your plan is a really good way to burn through a lot of money and energy.

Set Daily, Weekly, Monthly & Yearly Goals

This sounds like overkill, but if I don't set short and longterm goals I end up getting flustered doing a million things at once.

Daily Goals:

What are the 3 things you NEED to get done today. At the end of the day, completing these 3 tasks will push your business forward.

NOTE: Your work day is not complete until you cross these 3 items off the list.

Weekly & Monthly Goals:

Same deal.  What are the 3 things that need to get done to improve your business.

Yearly Goals:

These are the skills and processes you need in place to accomplish your longterm plan.

So if your objective is to make $800,000 a year, you need to set the skills and processes needed to accomplish that goal.  Next, breakdown your objective into action items in your Monthly, Weekly, and Daily goals.

Lastly, make sure the skills and processes you dedicate your energy to are scalable, repeatable, and profitable.

Set Personal Goals and Health Goals.

For me, setting personal goals has been 10X more important than business goals.

I don't respond well to goals like generating $6M dollars income, or getting 500k MAU in my app.

But achieving a fitness goal, or reducing stress/anxiety through daily meditation, or traveling 2 months of the year keeps me motivated to live a healthier more productive life.

Similarly, I've been on the pizza and cheeseburger diet.  Eating healthier has reduced the digestive stress on my body and increased my productivity.

Same goes for sleep.  I'm a huge proponent of sleep.  I know when I work long hours, I have difficulties sleeping if I don't take the time to switch my state of mind.

Personal goals translate into much bigger successes for both business and life.

Remember, small actions can lead to big results (Slight Edge).

Organize & Prioritize your Tasks

A couple years ago, I was managing over 2,000 apps at once!  Different accounts, different app platforms, different coding languages…

Even thinking about it makes my eyes twitch.

Click Here to get my App Organizer Sheet [Free].

Presently, my management style has flipped from mass-management to only managing a few projects at once.  I use tools like Asana to keep record of my projects and tasks (I like Asana because their Project Management tool works great on both desktop and mobile).

Don't focus on the apps themselves, focus on the systems.

Recognize Your Weaknesses


I have a lot of weaknesses.   I love having SportsCenter on in the background, if it's sunny out I'm headed to the beach, and Tuesday are for tacos, not TPS reports (OfficeSpace shoutout)…

You have to own your weaknesses.

Recognize + monitor your weaknesses by:

  1. Download Chrome extensions (for Facebook and other distractions)
  2. Get a time-tracker (RescueTime works really well)
  3. Schedule every hour on your Google cal (I do this for 1-2 days a week)
  4. Accountability partners
  5. Change your working environment

Finally, change your mindset.  You deserve success.  You deserve more cashflow.  Don't let fear of failure (or fear of success) dictate your work and life behavior.

*Stay Focused*

Spend 30 minutes prioritizing before your work day and at the end of your work day.

Put your phone on silent, turn off Skype, Slack, FB Messaging and anything else that will sidetrack you.

Daily successes that keep me focused include:

  1. Morning meditation and routine
  2. Spending 30 minutes writing down my goals for the day
  3. Swimming and stretching
  4. Salads > Pizza and burgers
  5. Drinking a ton of water
  6. Helping 1 person a day who did not expect it
  7. 1 epic adventure every 2 weeks (travel)

Next Steps…

Put your effort in the right place.

Guarantee that your daily actions are the best investments of your time.

The more you can justify your actions and prove that they have a positive effect on your business, the more realistic your 5 year vision will come true.

Lastly, believe in yourself and in your plan!


See ya,



PS: Don't forget to leave a comment and share your daily routines to stay organized and productive!

PPS: Check out our SOP mini course in the Bluecloud Select portal for a step-by-step plan to organize and outsource your app business.  Tim Ferris's podcast is also huge on productivity.  Especially the episode on Noah Kagan, the 30th employee of Facebook and founder of AppSumo.


  • Herbert Semler, MD, FACC February 24, 2018

    Well done! As a Cardiologist dedicated to preserving life, I wholeheartedly agree with your ways of managing your life!
    Take care of your heart it has to last a lifetime
    With admiration and respect.
    Herb Semlet

  • Dennis Bartow February 24, 2018

    Enjoyed your video, Mark. You have an outstanding work and life ethics. I am just now developing my first app. I will secure your book for I need all the help I can get. Keep up the good work. Dennis

  • Mark Nagelmann February 24, 2018

    @Dennis – thanks for the pat on the back! Very excited for your app development journey and that you are pulling the trigger on your first app. That’s awesome! If there are any questions you have or things I can do, don’t hesitate to ask ( -Mark

  • Mark Nagelmann February 24, 2018

    @Herb – appreciate the feedback! It’s no surprise that a lot of the most successful people out there are also the healthiest.

  • Manish February 25, 2018

    Great write up Mark as always! Lots of nuggets in this blog. I already installed 2 chrome extension recommended in this blog. Looking forward to following other tips and tricks. Thank you once again!

  • Andy February 25, 2018

    Thanks for your sharing. I’m in Vietnam until Mar 6. If you have sometime, we can catch up here.

  • Adrian Parkes February 25, 2018

    Hi Mark,

    Inspiring stuff! Thanks for sharing your app Organiser template too thats very cool!

    Can I ask what do you use for Meditation yourself? Calm? Heaspace or one of the other smaller ones?

  • Mark Nagelmann February 25, 2018

    @Adrian – thanks buddy! For my morning meditation, I’ll put some relaxing jams on (usually reggae) and just do 2-3 minutes of deep breathing exercises. Focus on getting some fresh air in the body and all the things I’m grateful for. I don’t use an app, just good ole fashion breathing 😉

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