To succeed in small business doing meaningful work that makes a meaningful difference in the lives of others, you need to be productive, profitable and happy. It’s like the legs of a stool. If any one of them is weak, the whole thing doesn’t work very well.
While everyone is unique and the situation each person is in varies widely, there are three common areas that you need to address to have stability and success in your business.
Create a winnable (and fun!) game plan for growing your business
Imagine you are a professional athlete and your business is the game. Is it fun, exciting and do you have a reasonable chance of winning?
Often the things small business owners expect of themselves may not be realistic. Sometimes things get out of balance with too much focus on one area. Sometimes we set ourselves up for disappointment by trying to achieve goals that aren’t realistic considering our skills, tools and situation.
What changes can you make to increase the odds of winning your business game? What can you do to bring the spirit of play into your work?
Clarify your message to focus on your clients’ felt needs
Success in any business, especially when you provide professional services, comes from understanding you clients at a deep level.
What problems keep them awake at night? What results would make them jump to sign up? These things they want don’t always match up with what you know they need.
Understanding how different groups respond to your offers and what inspires them to work with you can be a challenging and time-consuming process. Often it helps to get input from others to support you in this process of discovery.
Even when you’ve been in business awhile, what people want or how they express it can change as a result of changes in culture and technology.
When you can speak in your clients language, not your own it makes a big difference. It’s the difference between offering a thirsty man a glass of water or coming across like a used car salesman.
Master your mindset, because certainty sells
It’s quite simple actually. Confidence is magnetic. It gets clients. If you’re confident and calm at a deep level about your ability to help people it changes everything.
It’s also complicated. People with more than twenty years of professional experience in a field sometimes say things like “I don’t have enough experience to be confident.” The gremlin or self-critic can really do a number on us sometimes!
Getting lots of practice at your craft and honing your professional skill is one of the best ways to develop confidence. After all, you can’t learn to ride a bicycle in city traffic by watching how to videos or taking only one bike ride down a country lane. Beyond this, receiving coaching is one of the best tools for mastering your mindset. Other things can be helpful too.
Optimize your energy, environment and tools so they’re playing on your team
If you’re playing to win the game of business, you can’t do it alone. Even solo entrepreneurs need a team
Your physical environment affects your focus attention and energy. Managing your energy is as important, if not more so, than how you manager your time.
Your tools, team and processes make a big difference too.
Whether you’re working in a basement closet with an old computer or in a nice office with state of the art equipment and several employees, the principles are the same, Whatever your situation, paying attention to these three areas is vital.
How much change is needed?
It depends on your personality, situation and your goals. Some people thrive on radical change, others find it difficult. Some situations, and goals, require more effort than others.
If you remember only one thing, remember this. Regularly making small changes can have a huge payoff.
Often having a thinking partner, a coach and strategic help in place can bring shifts that make everything easier.
If you want to grow your business in a way that feels comfortable and authentic, contact us for a free consultation.