There are 5 foundations for a long term successful business, and, as in everything, no one is skilled at them all.
These are :
Your Vision – the big picture, your why.
Your Services – what you do, the services you share.
Branding – your professional face to the world.
Marketing – connecting with your perfect clients.
Lead Generation – creating a solid flow of new clients.
Being human we tend to focus on the bits we like and ignore the bits we don’t – which is severely limiting to the growth of a successful business. Over the next few weeks I will explore these foundations and pose a few questions for you to reflect on. Take time to put your reflections down on paper, it not only solidifies them and helps you to clarify the missing links but it also builds a strong energy intention to help you manifest your dreams.
We start with The Vision – a vision is simply essential for any business. Very often when we develop a skill or a hobby into a business (for example consulting) or are passionate about offering a service (for example natural health) we skip this step. We just want to get out there and do it!
To be successful though we need to follow the lead of a natural entrepreneur such as Richard Branson and take the time to develop a clear vision. Many people (and for a long time that included me) don’t take the time to do this simply because they don’t know the answers yet, however this cloudiness affects their energy and the energy in their business. It can make it much easier to get distracted, follow the red herrings that will inevitably pop up or even give up. No matter how clouded your vision is at the moment there are still things you do know – taking the time to get clear on what you know and then just adjusting it as you step forward will help you create a business you love.
Grab a journal and doodle, brain storm, write or draw as you reflect on these key components that will set the pathway for your business. This can be a lovely thing to do with your New Moon Wishing. Once you have this on paper you not only have created a basic business plan but you have also created an intention that you can tweak and play with over the next few years.
- Your mission – why are you doing this? What is it that will keep you going when everything else gets too hard? (Because at some stage it will.)
- Your strengths and weaknesses – what are your own strengths and weakness and what are the strengths and weaknesses of your business? How can you use this information to grow? NB this is often a bit of a scary evaluation because it gets us out of our dream and into reality – but taking the time to do this and follow up on your insights will help future proof your business. You might enjoy this blog post to explore it more.
- Cash flow – how much do you need to make? Consider things like holidays, sick days, ongoing training and self care, regular and emergency business expenses and superannuation as well as general living expenses. You may well not be earning enough to cover all of this yet but you can start the habit of taking an amount, no matter how small to start, out of each weeks gross and squirrelling it away from your spendings account. Then review and increase it every month or so and before long you will be comfortably caring for yourself into the future as well as in the now. NB If you are not earning enough to even put a small amount away regularly you probably need to seriously look at your fee structure and / or your marketing.
- Your business values – which may vary from your personal values but each will support the other. For example, a personal value may include something about generosity in helping others and a business value may be abundance and profitability. If your business is supporting you comfortably, then you will have much more energy to support others. Do you know your top 5? These will guide the development of your business over time helping you to create something that is authentic and enjoyable to own. You may like this blog to help you clarify yours.
- Your vision for your business – do you have a big vision – a 5 year view? Get as clear as you can on how you would like your business to look in 5 years. Become intimately aware of how each day will look from the time you get up to when you go to bed. Once you have a 5 year picture (as clear as possible at the moment – remember you can always adjust it) then consider where you want to be in 1 years time. Get clear on the specifics of that, client numbers, income, schedule, etc. Next break it down into what needs to happen to to get there and prioritise this weeks actions that will ensure you reach your big picture, i.e. if you want more clients and you have been avoiding doing something about it recognise that is the next big step and do whatever it s that you need to. Or change your big picture. An interesting thing is that most people underestimate what they can do in 5 years and over estimate what they can do in 1 year. So make sure you make a big, big 5 year vision and just keep on keeping on with this years – doing what you can. Even if you don’t achieve all you thought you could you will be well on your way.
Next time we will get into your offer and professional face in the world. In the meantime keep practicing choosing a priority and dealing with it, and step by step you will be creating your big beautiful vision.
Copyright © 2016 Gay Landeta. All Rights Reserved.