It is no secret that anyone in business faces both success, as well as challenges. When you are a business leader, there are challenges you face that your team members may not experience as strong as you: Distractions, also known as ‘shiny objects,’ fear of selling, and lack of a solid market plan. These are some ideas as to how to overcome the challenges and stop these obstacles from slowing down the momentum in your business. Establishing solid boundaries as a leader is critical to taking control of your business, speaking from experience!
1. Distractions, a.k.a ‘shiny objects:’ The best way I have found to overcome the daily distractions of social media, unplanned calls, emails, demands from vendors, clients, the delivery man, the refrigerator or coffee pot is to develop time management: plan your work and work your plan. Every Sunday I look at my week and decide what my priorities, projects, and goals are and list them out. Each day, I refer to that list and see what I can do each day. I write it all down each day. I block my time out on my calendar. I am a big fan of the ‘old fashioned’ day planner. When I travel, I just pull the Sunday page, and the pages for the week and bring them with me. I use Tony Robbins RPM planning system and have for several years now. I also have a business coach to help keep me on track with my goals and business progress.
2. Fear of Selling: I am lucky that I spent 23 years in sales and sales training management before I ventured into my own speaking, consulting, and sales training business. I found that owning a business requires sales skills, very fast. The good news is that you may already have many of the ‘sales skills’ I am referring to and you may not know it: Self-discipline, networking ability, accountability, customer service, and the focus on goal-setting and taking the action to make it happen. When it comes to selling your product or service, there is a process to follow, it is all about the customer’s needs, finding the need, and providing a solution. If you still need sales help, there are many great books you can read including my ‘From Zero to Sales Hero,’ www.fromzerotosaleshero.com to understand the fundamentals of selling. Other great authors include Jeffrey Gittomer, Zig Ziglar, Tom Hopkins, Tony Parinello. When I was new to selling, I read as many sales books as I could get my hands on-I recommend that to you, too! Subscribe to sales blogs online and follow your favorite sales trainer in social media. Hire a sales coach! I work with many business owners/leaders who struggle with sales and make it easier for them.
3. Lack of a Marketing Plan: Many of us are uncomfortable talking about ourselves much less our business. First: What is your elevator pitch? If you don’t have one, create one. Get comfortable saying it to others, especially because you never know who you may run into. Who are you, how long have you been doing your business, what do you do to help others? Newsletters, social media/blogs, advertising, products, word of mouth, podcasts, books, websites, e books, networking groups are all great ideas when it comes to marketing your business. If you still don’t know where to start with the marketing plan, hire someone that can help you. That is what I did and it has already paid for itself.
The challenges I shared may be different for all of us, but when I meet with business owners and entrepreneurs, there is a common theme; the more systems we can build, the easier the challenges become. I have learned to admit to myself where I am skilled and where I am not, I accept it – and get support here needed. One of my business mentors once told me ‘don’t wait until you are rich to hire help!’ I agree 100%!