How to grow your business in 2022 and beyond?
I wrote a lot of articles about leadership and behaviours in large organisations and in the corporate world. But how are we going to shape, grow or scale our small businesses?
Small business owners still don’t recognise the value of leadership or the impact of soft skills on their business results.
What would happen if we changed the old thinking and habits of how we do business?
Well, there are a lot of things to say.
Let’s think about the new research around leadership, emotional competence and soft skills. Over the past few decades, a lot of big companies have been doing research and measuring the impact of leadership skills and soft skills on their revenue. The impact on business revenue is has been measured in Harvard or Deloitte research.
But why do small business owners and sole traders think they don’t need to worry about those topics?
Why can’t they see leadership as important?
Well, the truth is, they should be the first in the row waiting for more education and training in these areas than anyone else.
Why is that?
If you are in a small business you need more resilience than anyone else. You need to be able to manage yourself, lead yourself, develop self-efficacy, self-agency, stay calm while making hard decisions, stay calm and balanced when business is going down. You must stay at ease and avoid amygdala hijack because that can ruin your business.
Now more than ever, you need to equip yourself with more resilience, leadership, emotional intelligence, self-management, strategic thinking and critical thinking. Now more than ever you should reach out to coaches and see how they work and how coaching and training can help you.
But where do you start, when you feel like you don’t have time or money? When you have these thoughts this is a signal you need to invest in your personal development. Hire a leadership coach or business coach is the great way to go. Business coach will prepare your personalised journey for growth.
You are the one who is always worried about your business every day and night; especially when you read statistics that 90% of businesses fail in the first 5 years.
You are the one working hard, 12 or 15 hours a day and being busy all the time. You are the one that misses all the great events and fun and still needs to smile and look happy for your family or friends. Isn’t it exhausting? Is this really what you’ve signed up for?
And you know what? The worst thing is, it is your choice! It is your choice to work hard. Sadly, we learned this from our ancestors. They worked hard and always said that if you want to be successful the only thing you must do is to work hard.
The good thing is, that is not true. Instead of working hard, you can work smart. You don’t need to be busy. You need to be productive.
I can tell you a secret. You can make more money when you stop being busy and start being strategic and smart with your time.
Start working smarter, not harder. Do something that other people won’t do. Here is something you start with now:
- Today, at the end of your working day, think about what activities you have done. Write down what you did today.
- Now, write down the time that each activity took you, the approximate number of minutes or hours.
- Now think about those activities. Did they move you closer to your goal or not?
- Mark activities that are distractions and moving you away from your goals with the colour red.
- Mark activities that move you closer to your goal and were productive with the colour green.
- Now think about those activities – Did you do anything for your well-being, your health, your self-care or balance?
- Write down what activities you want to keep doing and what activities you can stop doing.
- Write down one thing from today that you can improve by 1%
This is a very simple structure of evaluation and gap analysis that can help you to improve your self-leadership and productivity each day.
There are so many other things you can improve as a small business owner.
Today, I posted about the topic of questioning skills. I mentioned that correct questioning and active listening are the most influential skills for improving your business.
Did you learn that skill? Did you try to use it? This is something we all need to use in our business to become unstoppable and influential.
Ask of yourself questions like this:
How do you know your business is providing services or products in the right way?
Do you have a high-performing sales strategy?
How do you know your business is doing the best it can?
Do you have at least eight prospecting strategies?
What came up as a new opportunity in 2021?
Did you take this opportunity?
Does your business need to pivot?
Did you check if your business and life need to improve by changing some systems, structures, routines or processes?
When did you last check if you live by your values and standards?