I know. We don’t really think of it that way.
And yet, don’t you find that who you are and how you show up in the world is a key to how you run your business?
And haven’t you noticed that what you learn as an entrepreneur has a way of shaping the rest of your life, too?
It certainly has for me.
In fact, I often tell my clients that it is precisely the (sometimes uncomfortable, always exciting) growth they experience as business owners that will turn the rest of their lives around too.
Because how we do anything is how we do everything.
And for most of us, business really is quite personal.
So, even though I’ve been running one business or another for over two decades, I am still learning new things.
All. The. Time.
Here’s what I’ve learned (or re-learned) this year.
1. Pay profit first.
I’m great with strategy, vision and Big Picture ideas; but I can get stuck in the muck when it comes to numbers.
So on the advice of my accountability partner, I read a book called “Profit First” by Mike Michalowicz. Starting with himself, the author talked about how even millionaires could still be broke.
(Hard to imagine, I know.)
But they often are. And that’s because, he said, the traditional accounting formula of “sales – expenses = profit” doesn’t actually work.
Like, at all.
So he laid out a cash management system that actually made sense to me. And his basic plan was easy enough and clear enough that I could use it.
Bottom line? Beyond setting aside savings each month, set aside profit, too.
Because if you’re not making a profit, why are you in business?
2. My business is always evolving.
Sometimes my friends can’t resist a little teasing. “What are you doing now?” they ask, as if my business, like the weather, changes by the day.
And it does – but that’s perfectly okay
Because whatever your business looks like now, it’s going to change. What you do, and how you do it, will evolve as naturally as toddlers turn in to teens.
In my coaching practice, I’ve moved from working with people for 6 weeks to requiring a minimum of 6 months. That’s because I am serious about delivering real value to my clients, and I’ve learned that growth takes time.
How is your business evolving?
3. I get what I pay for.
This has been a year of enormous change. Not only did I completely revamp my counseling practice, but as word spreads, my business coaching and mentoring has taken off as well.
So I made the decision to work with Michelle Knox, the Visual Brand Specialist behind LoneRed.com. I’ve worked with many talented graphic artists over the years, but never at this level.
It was a serious investment in the future of my business. Not surprisingly, it led to a level of growth I’ve never before experienced.
(I’ll begin unveiling the new look soon. And I can’t wait!)
4. Mindset is everything.
I am super conscious of the role that mindset and language makes in how things work out for us. In fact, I am light years beyond where I used to be in my ease with concepts such as wealth, abundance and even profit.
And yet the lessons continue. This summer, I discovered that “rich” was a negative trigger for me, and had to make myself work with that word. Ugh.
The way we think is not just one factor among many for your forward momentum.
It’s THE factor.
5. I (really) need coaching to stay on track.
More than ever before, I’ve come to value the learning that I gain continuously from my coaches and mastermind peers.
Every time I talk with them, I leave with new learnings, new awarenesses, and new confidence. If I go too long without checking in, though, I can quickly bog down and find myself stuck.
Having that connection is so important, in fact, that I can’t imagine ever, ever being in business without it.
How about you? What has lessons has your business taught you this year?
Photo Credit: mendhak on Flickr