When I hear entrepreneurs complain about their business, they blame the economy, their staff, their locations, their education, but they rarely talk about their own effort. So, instead of helping them do more, I ask them to do less of everything.
Entrepreneurs are great at adding to their to-do list and terrible at eliminating items off their list. They are good at starting projects and bad at stopping performing fruitless tasks. Let me share with you 5 things you should stop doing today to turn your business around faster.
I encourage you to live 10 days blaming nothing or anybody. On the 11th day, I encourage you to blame everything bad on someone else. Do not take responsibility for anything, on the 11th day, resign your responsibility as an adult and live as careless as possible. Once you do that, report back, and tell me what do you prefer? Assuming responsibility or reflecting it? Do you like to blame others, or taking charge? Let your answer guide you through with you should do next.
Some people think their business is bad because their price is high, or because they do not have a great location. They think, “Can I lower my price, just this time? Can I lower my expectation to hire someone who is great but has some obvious character flaws, just this time?” If you make exceptions, where do you draw the line?
If you think lowering your expectations will make your life or your business better, do it. However, if you do it, you can not blame others for the outcome. People do not fail because they expect high, they cannot meet their high expectations because they are too busy meeting their low expectations.
Panic and success rarely meet at the same place. When things are not going well, you need to pivot and evolve. Do not overreact. Communicate with your team and your customers. If you panic, your team will panic. Customers sense panic as desperation and people do not do business with desperate people.
When people feel overwhelmed, they sacrifice their sleep. Some people believe that skipping sleep is the fastest way to succeed, and nothing can farther from the truth. According to J. Jeffrey Gish, “Most dedicated founders could best serve their fledgling venture by resting up. Science has proven when entrepreneurs sleep less, they make more mistakes. When your business or any aspect of your life is struggling, take care of yourself and self-care starts with a good night's sleep.
I know an entrepreneur who was struggling to keep his business afloat. He called me and said, “Let’s meet up and talk.” We met, and we talked for 4 hours. For the first 3 hours, we did not mention the word business, sales, or marketing. We talked about life, and in the last hour, we talked about business.
The purpose of our meeting was to reconnect, so he does not feel isolated. He needed to feel that he is part of a community that cares about him. He texted me a few hours after our meeting and said, “I regrouped and I can see the future better now.” Sometimes, you need to slow down and regroup, so you can move forward with more conviction. His business is better now because he knows that his work and his life matters.
Slow down, quit doing fruitless things, assume responsibility, take care of yourself, regroup, and continue to move forward. Keep your expectations intact, and act according to your plan, and see you at the top.
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