As small business owners we typically want more success, more growth or more market share.
“You will either step forward into growth or you will step back into safety.” Abraham Maslow
People often tell me they are serious about growing their small business but have no strategy in place to grow themselves. There are skill sets necessary to achieve whatever goal you have set out for yourself or your small business. All the positive thinking in the world won’t prepare you. Nor will sitting in a chair visualizing the final outcome. Are they beneficial activities? Yes but on their own they have served as pleasant distractions keeping people from actually achieving their goals.
I’ve tried both personal and professional growth methods – visualization/positive thinking and identifying specific skills sets and acquiring them. I’ve had success with both but the results were faster and with clear cut evidence when I took planned, measurable action.
You may remember from my small business marketing bootcamp I mentioned that I come from a background of being painfully shy. When I realized I needed to overcome that handicap if I was to take on a new, more fulfilling career I signed up for a Dale Carnegie Public Speaking program. I could have tried a less terrifying approach like sitting alone in a quiet room and mentally seeing myself as a confident speaker but I have a feeling that I would still be sitting there, waiting for results. Knowing the best way to learn something is by doing it, I faced my fears and participated wholeheartedly in the class. Because I took action to acquire a specific skill I was able to begin speaking for a living within a year of the course. I’ve used that skill set to deliver over 2400 workshops and seminars.
Take a look at your goals for 2014. If you don’t have them yet, pretend for now. What specific skill or skills will you have to acquire to see excellent results for your small business? Is it public speaking, writing, presenting, selling, networking, listening, etc? What strategy do you have in place to make it happen? The beauty of it is that they are all just skills that you can learn. Whether it is writing, speaking, selling, marketing, etc. it is just a learnable skill.
The average person is only one new skill away from doubling their productivity, business or income.
First step – identify what that skill is.
Second step – go get it.
Third step – repeat when needed.
What new skill, if you acquired it this year, would have the greatest impact on your small business, your life and your income? Go get it!