It’s an old story.
Two friends, Joe and Dan, move to a new town. Both being entrepreneurial guys, Joe decides to open a pizza shop, and Dan opens a grocery store.
After a few months, they meet and start chatting about their new business ventures. Joe is distraught. His pizza store is not doing well at all, and he fears he’ll have to close his doors. Meanwhile, Dan’s grocery business is booming. They discussed what led them to create their businesses.
Joe says, “When I was looking to move to the area, I saw that there were no pizza stores in town, so I figured it would be a great opportunity.” Dan responds, “That’s funny, my thinking was just the opposite: I saw that there were a few grocery stores in town already, so I figured there’s probably room for one more.”
He sat across from me in my office, crying.
He had invested $400,000 into his new venture, and it wasn’t working. By the time he came to me to ask for advice, the only thing left to do was stop the bleeding and get out. What made this situation so much more painful was the fact that if this person had sought advice from someone sooner, he may have been able to turn the situation around, or at least cut his losses.
“How do you define growth?”
This is a question I posted recently on LinkedIn—and one I ask often when I’m speaking to audiences of businesspeople. And it always amazes me to see the diverse range of answers I get.
Most of my articles, as you’ve probably noticed, are geared toward business owners, managers, and entrepreneurs. But if you’re an employee at a company who wants to know how you can grow professionally, advance in your career, and boost earning potential, this one’s for you.
(And if you’re a manager who wants to understand how to help your employees grow, this one’s also for you.)
It’s 6:15. Your alarm clock goes off. But you have zero desire to hit snooze.
You are ready to tackle the day. Energized to unlock its opportunity and potential. When you sit down at your desk, you feel confident and hopeful. Unstoppable.
There’s a name for this experience. It’s called Momentum. Like rolling a boulder down a hill, beginnings are tough and slow, but once you start going down that slope, you can go faster and faster, progress becomes easier and easier, and it’s nearly impossible to stop.
How do you define success?
Some measure it in wealth. Some in intellectual accomplishment, in family size, in quality of friendships, or countries traveled.
But the truth, of course, is that there is no one right answer to this question. Because success is what makes you feel accomplished, what makes you feel whole.
Have you ever been on the verge of giving up? Have you ever hit a wall, looked in the mirror and thought, “I just can’t do this”? Have you ever experienced the pain of self-doubt, of believing with every fiber of your being that you simply don’t have what it takes to succeed?
It is a dark place to be. There is no doubt about that. And it’s in these moments where we can be our own worst enemy—where we can lose the will to keep going. And that would be a big mistake.
A friend of mine, the owner of a small business, recently told me that an opportunity came his way that he was very excited about. The only problem? He had a feeling that the potential client thought that his company was larger than it actually was. Should he accept the offer anyway? Should he explain that he’s actually a small company, and possibly risk them backing out?
When is the last time you hired a salesperson that you think is absolutely perfect for the job, only to find out they can’t close a sale if their life depended on it?
If this has happened to you, you’re in good company.
For a long time, I wondered why this is such a common scenario—why is it that someone can seem like a great salesman, but when it comes down to it, they have a hard time gaining the full trust of clients?
I have a question for you. Be sure to answer honestly.
Do you ever struggle with procrastination?
If you answered yes, then welcome to the club. And if you answered no, then, well, you may want to double check that you’re human. Because the truth is, we’re all guilty of it. We all don’t get the things done that we want to get done as quickly as we want to get them done.