Hello and welcome to my business basics series of posts about starting a business and my A – Z of what I consider to be the basics that you need to be working on. This is the second post in the series so obviously – B
B is for Behaviours
I don’t know about you, but I have taken more notice of my behaviours since becoming an entrepreneur and business owner. I think it just goes with the territory but to be honest I think it’s a good thing and here’s why…
By noticing my behaviours I can stop myself from doing certain things that I know will lead to dissatisfaction and less than great results. Let me explain that a little more…
I don’t like networking. In fact I hate it. I am a private person who likes to sit in my office on my own and just get on with things. But I know that in business it is important to network and build relationships. It is these relationships that bring about opportunities that would never have otherwise crossed my path.
Here’s a true story of how this played out in my real life and business.
I had been thinking about going to a networking event in my local area. I had been thinking about it for about a year. I knew I had to get out there and meet people and I had just been given a contract to support local startups so I needed to go out and find them so that I could support them and earn my keep.
I looked around online for a local group and found one that was just for ladies. I decided I would go to this one as it seemed smaller and friendlier than others I had seen advertised. I booked my ticket and blocked it out in my diary.
At the event I got talking to many small business owners and I did manage to get a few of them signed up to my funded programme so that was good BUT…
It was a random conversation I had with another lady that made the massive difference to my business. She told me about my local Chamber of Commerce and how instrumental they had been in building her business. She gave me a contact name and even introduced me to the contact on LinkedIn. That contact turned out to be AMAZING!
I am now involved in a joint venture with the Chamber of Commerce to deliver training to new businesses in our area. I am getting paid handsomely for my efforts and I thoroughly enjoy what I do with them. I have also met other wonderful new businesses through my work with them. None of this would have happened if I had not gone to that one networking event.
I know that I am like most people and that I will shy away from things I don’t like or that I am not comfortable with. This I know is not how to behave in business. We have to get out of our comfort zones if we are going to grow as individuals and business people.
Behaviours that are problematic
We all have hang-ups. One of mine is money. I don’t feel comfortable talking about price and costs and late payments. Another hang-up that many of my clients have is having to sell. They say “I’m not a salesperson” or “I don’t like selling”. But guess what? You have got to get over these hang-ups if you are going to succeed in business.
If we let these hang-ups play out this is what would happen.
- We would let our clients dictate the price
- We would not chase our outstanding invoices
- We would not sell our products or services and therefore make no money
Here’s the kicker…
It is so necessary in business that we do behave in the ways that bring about our desired results that we end up doing it almost by accident.
Like I said, I didn’t like talking about money, but I talk about it all the time now. I am confident in my pricing, I am confident in chasing late payments and I am confident in selling my products and services because I know they are unbeatable in terms of value and price.
I think the key word there is confidence. It took me a long while to become comfortable with all those things. I think I needed to practice for a while before I became good at it. Now I am confident about what I deliver and who I deliver it to, it comes much more naturally than it did before when I was still unsure of myself and my services.
You need to check your own behaviours. Is there something that absolutely needs to be done but you just keep putting it off? Why are you putting it off? Is it because you are not comfortable doing it?
You need to practice and the only way you can practice is to actually do it. Do you remember when you were learning to swim? You had to get into that deep pool even though you might drown because it was the only way to learn. Guess what? You didn’t drown, you are still here and going strong.
You have to be able to sell if you are going to be a business owner so you might as well practice it now.
You have to be able to talk about price if you are going to be a business owner so you might as well practice now.
Other success limiting behaviours
There are other behaviours you need to be on the lookout for too. These are silent but deadly behaviours. These are the ones that will doom your business to failure if you don’t master them. What are they I hear you cry…
- Time management
Let’s look at each one in turn.
Time management: Running a business can take over your whole life. There is literally so much to be done that there aren’t enough hours in the day. It is even worse if you are the sole person in your business. You have to be accountant, administrator, credit controller, sales consultant, client liaison officer, customer service adviser, coffee maker and cleaner.
If you are not careful you will not be doing the important things in your business because you are spending too much time on other less important tasks. Planning is vital to time management. If you need help with planning and goal setting you can download my free mini-course here.
Self-motivation: This one seems to be the one that kills a lot of businesses. If you are going to remain in business you have to learn how to motivate yourself. You need to know WHY you are doing this. You need to be able to overcome obstacles and hurdles and keep getting up every day and putting one foot in front of the other because you know that is the only thing that will lead to your success.
Many new business owners set their expectations too high or had unrealistic ideas of what was going to be involved in running a new business. I know because I deal with these business owners every single day. I know for a fact that this one behaviour is something that separates those that fail from those that succeed.
Tenacity: You have to keep going at something and not give up until you have succeeded. It doesn’t matter whether it’s creating your Facebook page or website, figuring out your auto-responder series, doing your accounts or running your latest promotion.
Every now and again we feel like we are just not getting anywhere. I do often. So, I find someone to help me. I don’t expect to know all the answers or have all the skills to do all the things I need to do as a business owner. I don’t see this as failure, I see it as success because it gets the job done and usually at a much faster pace than I would have been able to do it.
Persistence: You have to be able to keep going when things are just not working out for you. I have made so many mistakes over the years and I’m sure you have too. But I have learnt from those mistakes and I have used them to teach others. I persist with each and every task until I am either a master at it or I have found someone who is who can do it for me.
Persistence is just about not giving up. You never know just how close you are to achieving something so don’t give up, keep going and going until you make it work.
Patience: This is another behaviour that if not kept under control can quickly destroy a good business. You need to understand that in business everything takes time to start working. All too often my clients will assume something isn’t working and go off to find another strategy or shiny object to chase thinking that this one will be the one that works. Guess what? It isn’t because that will take just as long to get working as the last one did.
The thing is that unless you stick to something for long enough and have the patience to stick with it you will never get anything to work for you and your business will be less successful because of it.
Focus: Of all the behaviours I think this one is probably up there as one of the most important ones for business owners. We all know that we get what we focus on. If we focus on our accounts, our accounts get done, if we focus on getting leads, we get leads.
Being able to focus on a single objective for a long period of time is what will help with the success of your business. You will need to have one objective and give it your all. A lot of people find this very difficult and they try focusing on too many things at once and therefore nothing actually works out for them
I hope I have made you aware of some the behaviours you should be on the look out for, either to nurture or to get shot of.
If you struggle with patience, persistence or focus it might be beneficial to find someone to help you achieve the results you are looking for.
As part of my simple six-figure system mentoring programme I can help you identify the strategies that will work for you and help you to meet your objectives much sooner. I will also help you to find the quickest way to realise your goals by introducing you to tools and techniques that I know from experience actually work. I will also work with you on a one-to-one basis to make sure you stay focused on one task at a time and I will make sure you keep taking one step after another until you achieve your success.
To find out more about this amazingly simple six-figure system , and how to use it, get a copy of my free step-by-step guide by completing the form below.
That’s it from me for now, until next time focus on those behaviours and make sure they are serving you and your business well rather than jeopardising it.
I’ll be back next week with the next letter in the series “C” so make sure you look out for me, or why not subscribe to my blog and I’ll send you a quick email to let you know i’ve published it?