As far as business growth strategies go, one we always come back to is marketing. The reason for this repetitiveness is that marketing has many facets. In fact, marketing is often THE sole system that holds business growth back. It’s also the one system that can propel your business into dynamic growth.
As a business owner and entrepreneur, you have many responsibilities. One of the most important is the successful execution of a sales process. One of your main goals as a business owner is to make a profit…and you can’t make a profit if you can’t make sales! However, this is easier said than done. When it comes to successful sales, business owners have 2 key responsibilities.
“Most folks are about as happy as they make their minds up to be.” – Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln was right. Your happiness and mine depend largely on how willing you and I are to be happy. And our willingness includes the time that we are willing to dedicate to stepping away from our business, having fun, and simply enjoying life.
However, if you are like most business owners, you probably don’t plan for and schedule out enough time to have fun. And if you do get a chance to have fun, it happens in the margins, every once and a while, or not even at all. You may end up neglecting your hobbies, your family, your friends, your pets, and – most of all – yourself.
Most owners I meet are striving for some kind of balance in their lives. But you have most likely realized that if you do not make time for fun, if you don’t intentionally plan for time off, the balance in your life will not happen on its own.
Identifying and hiring talent has been a passion of mine. Over the years I’ve interviewed and assessed literally hundreds of very talented professionals. I continue to be fascinated by every individual that I meet and get to know. There is so much human talent and potential in the world that I find this part of my work extremely gratifying.
But as employers, when we assess and interview, what are we looking for? How can we be more effective in hiring talent? Of course, we all look for a good first impression – Does the individual present themselves well? Do they have a neat appearance? Do they communicate well? Do they have an appropriate and/or professional manner?
If we’re wise, we also do a background check and we check their references – Are they honest? Are they dependable? Do they work well with others? Are they teachable? Do they have a good reputation?
But how do you know they can actually do the job for which you are hiring them? I like to look at 3 aspects of each individual person.
A few years ago, I had the privilege of speaking to the Katy Young Professionals, a group of younger business leaders in the Katy Area Chamber of Commerce, Katy, Texas. I always enjoy speaking to young professionals groups! Our topic was “Failing Forward.”
One of the most common fears people experience is the fear of failure. Our mindset about failures can be a major game-changer in our business and our life.
Over 10 years ago I was inspired by the book of the same title, Failing Forward, by John C. Maxwell. In it John says:
“The difference between average people and achieving people is their perception of and response to failure.”
I agree. People who don’t care about success and failure are not going to be high achievers. Neither are people who care “too much” because they will be paralyzed by the fear, thus unable to accomplish great achievements. How we view and respond to failure will determine our level of achievement.
Yesterday I led a Strategic Retreat for business owners where we talked through this topic. These retreats take place every 90 days. It’s a full day away from your business to work “on” the business instead of “in” the business.
Every quarter we assess where our businesses are and where we are as strategic business owners. We set goals and we hold each other accountable to our goals and vision. We create a written plan of action for the next 90 days, and then we come back in 90 days and do it again. Each quarter we also work on some strategic system in our business. Yesterday this group had great accomplishments to share and they engaged our process with passion.
Everyone assessed where their business was in the small business lifecycle. Good business management is essential as small businesses move through the cycle. Here are the 5 stages that small businesses go through.
Too many small business owners are by default small leaders, and this costs them dearly! However, it doesn’t have to be this way. Too many of us excel in “doer-ship” instead of “leadership,” and unfortunately, it shows in our businesses and our lives.
Too many owners of small businesses are micro-managers who like to touch and control everything. They trust no one but themselves. They believe “no one does it as well as me.” As a result, they seldom delegate, if they delegate at all. They mistake such busyness for business leadership.
Instead of thinking and leading like “owners,” many (if not most) of us think and behave like employees.
Practically every business leader can increase their personal productivity by managing their time better. There are a lot of ways to be more productive, but here are 10 ways I’ve seen can make a big impact. Put these to work and you too will be able to increase your personal productivity.
Every small business needs a current and actionable marketing plan! However, it is easy to feel overwhelmed by the task of writing one. Most software programs designed to help you are often too comprehensive; to the point that many business owners give up, or never even start.
Marketing plan software can be very helpful, but I want to offer you a quick, simple way to create an actionable plan that will get you results! After all, results are what we’re after!