The cycle of small business success

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Perhaps one of the most rewarding things a small business owner can do for himself is to set himself up for success as quickly as possible. And one very effective way to do that is to create a cycle of success that provides positive, recurring results, but also allows you to stretch to new heights.

When creating a cycle of success, you want to keep a few things in mind. One is to make sure it keeps you focused on both the action and the end results. Another is that it should allow you to have creative freedom, but still hold you accountable. Finally, it should be a repetitive sequence that allows you to change direction at any time, as well as continue to reach new levels of success over and over again over a long period of time.

So, for the small business owners I help, these are the six steps I teach to create the best cycle of success for recurring positive results:

1. Know what you want

Most business owners know what they don’t want: they don’t want to fail, they don’t want annoying customers, they don’t want employees who are unproductive. But this does not help you achieve your most important goals. So, be crystal clear about your goals and paint a bright picture of what your end results should look like. Income? How much? $ 100,000? $ 1 million? How about your workforce / employees? Do you want 5? 25? 1200? How much? The more detailed and clear you are about the end results you are striving for, the easier it will be to complete the rest of the cycle.

Keep in mind that if the goal is tied to a number, it is much easier to measure, track and achieve. Here is a list of possible areas in which to set clear and specific goals: (Remember, be as detailed as possible!)

  • Revenue generation

  • Employee engagement

  • Expand your workforce

  • Building the clientele

  • Expand your online presence

  • Sales funnel efficiency

  • Quality of customer service

  • Creating a new product

Related: 5 secrets to business success

2. Have a plan

Knowing what you want to achieve is always great because it gives direction. However, setting a goal alone is not enough. You need to know “how”. You need to know what actions you need to take every day and week to achieve the goal. So what’s your plan? Does it include daily, weekly and monthly action items? Looking at your business and industry. What are the smartest actions you need to take? What actions can you take that will bring you closest to your goals?

Here are some examples of action to get your creative juices flowing:

  • Block the time of your calendar

  • Planning and meeting with each team member

  • Pick up the phone and call 100 past customers

  • Send 500 personalized emails

  • Send 100 personalized letters or cards

  • Visiting every event of the Chamber of Commerce for one year

  • I remember: When you fail to plan, you plan to fail.

3. Have a teacher to help

Right here is the BIGGEST gap that business owners have. And the main reason they don’t have someone to help is that they never want to ask for help. In our society, it is always better to “do everything yourself”. Like Frank Sinatra’s old song “I Did It My Way!” As if asking for help reduces the impact of the results in some way, but it’s a lie told out of fear and ego. Don’t listen to him!

Mike Tyson, Evander Holyfield, Mohamed Ali – they all had coaches and they were all world champions. EVERY true champion has a coach, so if you don’t, well, just enjoy the battle.

But if you want to get a coach, where are you looking? Who would be a good coach? How do I ask someone to be a coach? Great questions. Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • A business owner in your industry who is more successful than you

  • A business owner in a different industry who is more successful than you

  • Experienced business coach

  • Accountant or lawyer (can help train in their areas of expertise)

  • See the Chamber of Commerce, B&I groups, etc.

Related: 4 reasons why every entrepreneur should have a business coach

4. Take consistent action

Usually this step is not so difficult. Most small business owners are contractors and can do things. The difference here is that now you will know exactly what you will do every day, because you have created an action plan in step 2. Every day you will just look at the list of action steps and then, well, do it.

But here are three: you need to stick to these actions for a long time. Doing something once or twice is not enough to achieve sustainable results, at least not when you are looking for a high level of success in the business world. Think of the boxers I just mentioned; none of them were overnight champions. They all had to train for years, had difficult battles that challenged them, and yet they continued to fight to succeed. This is what you need to do as a business owner.

Just remember: the secret to the success of this step is to focus on the word “consistent.” Everyone can take action, but not every business owner can stay consistent for long.

5. Review your progress

It sounds simple, but too many business owners almost refuse to look at the results they get. This is usually because they know the results are not good. However, this does not matter. The important thing is that as a business owner, you know where you are. When you know this, even if you don’t like the results, it allows you to better manage your action plan. Every business makes exchange rate adjustments from time to time, so honestly, it’s not a big deal. In fact, it is expected in today’s ever-changing environment if you want to stay ahead of the competition.

So, look at your results and start asking questions. Once you start asking questions similar to the ones below, you will find that the answers (new goals) will come faster and easier the more you follow this step!

Here are some questions to ask as you review:

  • Where are you now and where do you want to be?

  • How far are you from where you want to be?

  • What can be done to reduce the difference?

  • What additional staff do you need?

  • What additional funding do you need?

  • Who can help with this?

  • What new products or services need to be created?

  • What new advertising and / or marketing needs to be done?

Related: The best way to track the performance of your company

6. Renew your goals

Before you think this is the easy step, think again. To continue to climb the ladder of success of your business, you need to be as detailed here as you were in the first step. Be clear. Be brief. Be as detailed as possible.

This step is also crucial to running this cycle of success because it helps you avoid resting on your past accomplishments. Too many small business owners will make some achievements, achieve some results and then take a break … for about a year or two. Don’t let that be you.

So, be serious about the fifth step, review your progress, because if you do it right, then you will find your new goals.

Here are some ideas to help you make this easy and even fun:

  • Make the goal exciting.

  • Make the goal motivating.

  • Make the goal meaningful.

  • Make the goal impactful on a personal level.

  • Make the goal challenging.

  • Make the goal force you out of your comfort zone.

  • Make the target attached to a number for better tracking.

  • Give a deadline to the goal.

Professional advice: The cycle is just that, something that keeps spinning over and over. It is not meant to be a one-time thing, but something like a business lifestyle. So, be very clear about what you want, be clear about what steps need to be taken, and be extremely picky about who to help. But above all, be as persistent as possible when it comes to taking action and getting the results you are looking for.

Oh, one more thing: Have fun.

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