Working for myself one of the biggest challenges I seem to face is not understanding when I have done a good job. Why do I find this a challenge? By not acknowledging the good things I do I generally get caught up in the general problems of my world, where am I going to find the time to do that? Why hasn’t that person paid me yet? Where am I going to find the people for my next seminar?
Will I have enough cash flow to pay my bills? Will I be able to spend this weekend with my family or am I going to have to work again …. and the tail spin continues, day in, day out, week in and week out.
As any business owner will tell you, there is only one place you go when your head is in that type of tail spin and it isn’t a good place, I had one of these moments a couple of months ago, when a good friend of mine asked the question “when was the last time you acknowledged you did a good job?” on stopping to think about this I honestly couldn’t remember a time when I said to myself “well done”!! OMG I had become the type of boss I always hated, complained about all the problems but never acknowledged the good, the only consolation was it only impacted on one member of staff ME!!
My friend asked me how my business was going, how many new customers did I bring on board this month so far? How many quotes have I sent out? How many people have I talked about my business too? By the time I had answered his questions he turned to me and said “I thought you said there was nothing good happening in your business?” I felt so stupid, here’s me, motivator of businesses falling into the very trap I tell and show others how to avoid, I wasn’t practising what I preach!! To me this is one of the biggest challenges a business owner or sole operator faces, a lack of gratitude for the work they do!! So how do we over come this?
Regular Reality Checks
My friend had it sorted, although he worked on his own, he and his wife would sit down at the start of each week and do a reality check and discuss all aspects of the business. Having gone through this process myself, I can tell you it is a great way of acknowledging the work done as well as providing a focus for the work to come. Here are some of the areas I have looked at and acknowledged:
- I talked to 50 new people about my business helping to build its’ awareness in the market place.
- I secured 6 new customers this month so far.
- I have sent out 5 proposals last week for new business
- I outsourced an aspect of my business that I just could not do, I gave it to an expert who in turn helped my business!!
- I co-hosted a seminar last week to a group of people who had never heard of me whose feedback afterwards was great.
- I have been asked back to present to another like minded group of people the following week
- Most of my clients paid their invoice on time.
- I set aside some time to complete my admin for the month to date and completed everything I needed to.
It doesn’t matter how small the good thing is, it is worth acknowledging, keeping the positive in focus makes it easier to continue to drive positive results in the business and this particular exercise allowed me to sharpen my focus on all the good things I bring to the business and the good things the business brings to me!!
What do you do to stay positive in your business? Do you even find it an issue? Do you do something similar to this or have you other techniques that you use and if so what are they? Please let me know, if I can pass on some of what you do to make another business owners life just that little bit easier then it is another job well done.