New businesses are never properly prepared for the plethora of problems that could come their way. This can result in owners becoming bogged down with day to day issues that negatively affect their health, well-being, and staff performance and prevent them from leading the business effectively.
I set up my first business in 1986 and ever since I have been observing and solving problems throughout the course of running them. For the last 15 years, I have been using my experience to support and mentor other businesses to achieve growth and success.
Below I have compiled a list of the most common things I have encountered throughout my 30 years in business. They are often the most frequent challenges that cause worry and concern for business leaders. I have also provided some counter strategies deal with them.
I often start by asking the question “Who are you?”. And you may be surprised to hear that most business owners struggle to answer.
The reason I ask this is because if we know the answer we can create a business and personal vision that not only gives real purpose and identity but aligns our personal and business lives. This, in turn, allows us to maintain focus on positive outcomes and continue to become more successful even through the hard times.
This is why the first thing I focus on is to develop, understand and invest in YOU to find and maintain that optimal mindset – no matter what.
The key to success is sorting out these areas both personally and professionally – not just in terms of business strategy, but as personal strategy too. This is where I spend most of my time to support businesses and make them successful.
Lack of Money is the major cause that leads to business failure. For a new venture, the entrepreneur is expecting an instant profit. Learn to align a timeline 2 to 3 years for success and understand profits rarely come overnight.
The word ‘time’ is a real challenge for business owners even though time does not exist. When you have no plan, solid structure, small chunks, KPIs, communication strategy or business strategy, in particular, time is represented within your mind differently. Emotions are something that we go through many of each day within the business for lots of different reasons, but where we live within our emotional wheel daily, determine the speed of time within your mind. Areas of development for leaders to become more productive lies within the 30 years of personal development I have undertaken personally. Understanding your Neurology, your mind, your triggers, your emotions run alongside modelling of business strategy.
3. Lack of Business Acumen
The biggest mistake I discovered back in 1987 was attempting to do everything on my own which actually put me in hospital. Because I model excellence of people who get the results I saw that the best leaders had mentors themselves and I realised I had to get myself a coach and you should too. Research your coach thoroughly – rapport, trust and honesty along with an aligned vision will create a partnership that will work for you. Having a mindset where you let yourself know daily “you know nothing” or ” everything you do needs work” will soon accelerate you down a path where you will acquire the right support around you. No matter who we are in life we can always find a better way, best strategy model, mirror, and get professional coaching / consulting support. You will quickly discover it’s an investment and likely to be the best one you will ever make
4. Over Chunking/Overload
In business with lack of strategy, we operate to Assumptions, which lead to overloading your mind with Over chunking which leads to anxiety and meltdown. When you operate in this frequency within, you shut down. An average heart rate of 100 plus causing the wrong type of emotions. What determines the frequency of your brain waves are emotions and any emotion affects your brain waves.
Let me define an emotion as I have come to use the term as it may be different from what you think. An emotion to me is any thought that has a like or dislike attached to it. The more we like or dislike something the more emotional we become. This then brings us to a conclusion that determines the frequency of our brain waves and to what degree our emotions are affected at any given time of measurement. The higher the frequency of your brain waves, the less your mind is in use and mastery of these are paramount to success. Let’s take two of the most common emotional states in business, anger and fear; Anger has a variety of degrees; anger could be an annoyance, irritation, resentment and growing higher on the scale, anger when not contained ultimately turns into rage, and fury. The higher up the scale, the more elevated the brainwave. So if, for example, your normal brain wave frequency is 21 and here this is felt as being a little angry what happens if your brainwave frequency rises to 30? Here you are likely to get irritated and so concentrative on the person or situation that made you angry you find it difficult to think about anything else. When anger turns into rage, up go the brainwaves again. You stop thinking altogether and you now use very little of your mind, no longer considering the consequences, which can cause big trouble…
Fear is similar as when fear turns into panic you also use very little of your mind. People in a state of panic run into walls, jump into oceans, and follow crowds to places they’re unfamiliar with; all because their minds stopped working.
5. Lack of Direction and Planning
Entrepreneurs get caught up in setting the business up that they are unaware most of the time in how to strategise the business plan. It’s important to go to the end and work back. Doing this will allow you to project financially the different milestones for growth. Another reason why to invest in coach, consultant or even a non-executive. This way you take breaks like stops at a service station to check you’re on the right course. Create a Business Canvas or Business plan and implement it so that stage changes can be made to coordinates and map out the path ahead.
6. Working in the Business rather than Working on the Business
A lot of the time this is down to cash flow, not wanting to delegate, or let go of the reigns, or even not knowing how to stop being so hands-on to make the transition into working on the business leading the strategy and anticipating the changes that lie ahead.
Then you have the question “when is the time right to change the psychology of working ‘on’ rather than ‘in’.” For a business leader, it’s important that you are the chess player and not a chess piece.
Companies tend to stick to what they know – the ‘same old’. But this can foster a lack of creativity and innovation. The way to change this is to introduce a culture where you discover and accept reality – a reality that is constantly changing so needs to be challenged. By expecting and embracing change we create an atmosphere where innovation can not only develop, but thrive. The creation of this culture has to be led by the front where leaders set the energy, passion and lead by example. Bring your people to your meetings, communicate with passion, install belied within everyone within your organisation and encourage them to share ideas and more importantly let them try them out.
8. Trying to Do It Alone
Fear. Thinking you are a failure. Believing you do not need help. Embedded Beliefs. These are just some of the areas that keep people in a place of trying to do it all alone. When you do this, as you grow the areas that suffer are quality, mistakes appear, deadlines are missed and you lose customers. Its far better to invest support and maintain successful growth, this way you are always in a peak state, held accountable – but fast-tracked to success. You hit your pillow at night and can “SLEEP PEACEFULLY”
People tend to only take action and get support when it’s too late. It’s like going to the dentist the painkillers or fillings when the pain is too bad are not easing the pain. Only then will you take decisive action for support.
9. Getting Clients – Your Elevator Pitch
For a new business, it is difficult to attract prospects and retain customers. This could be because of financial restraints in a marketing budget or even a lack of accounts or steady growth leads potential customers to go with bigger, sustainable suppliers as they feel its a safer option.
The secret to success in this area is knowing you when and who you pitch to and understand your strengths that are needed by them. Also, you must know your elevator pitch and business model inside out – from products to costs.
Can you execute a personal pitch and business pitch in 30 seconds. Having these qualities bring charisma, confidence, leads, law of attraction ……….
10. Think Big & Tell The World Through World-Class Marketing
No one knows about you as an entrepreneur or a business because you are not telling them. Quite often this is because projections and sales targets haven’t been thought through and planned out properly. If this is not your focus marketing falls down the pecking order.
I utilise a business canvas which allows businesses to illustrate the model, then at this stage, you can align a budget and strategy for marketing.
Another area of opportunity missed is areas and tools used to market, social media/digital marketing being one that is underutilised because its an unknown of knowledge, so businesses procrastinate.
If any of the above resonates with you its time to think about a different approach.
Why not take our free Wheel of Life assessment and claim a free ½ hour business and personal coaching session.