What does it mean to have a Really Big Vision? Is it possible to have the most successful business you can imagine?
When I ask this question to my small business clients, most think initially in terms of earning a lot of money or prestige. But more and more I’ve noticed two significant trends among business owners. The first is the desire to achieve a well balanced, prosperous life as a result of a successful business. This includes not just material wealth and financial freedom, but free time, purpose and meaning, a loving and supportive community and family, physical and emotional well being and a business that reflects their passion and values.
On the other hand, I’ve also run across some who think they need to sacrifice ambition and dreaming big, and rationalize that accepting little or no profit from their hard work is okay as long as long as they like what they do. Recently I’ve encountered a number of highly creative women who left the corporate world to start businesses built on their artistic talent, selling products like hand crafted jewelry, accessories, apparel, hand painted tiles, clothing etc. Nine out of ten are barely breaking even. They’re not alone. Under-funded budding tech companies with innovative products but a lack of important business skills find themselves in the same boat. If you ask any of them if they’d like to be wildly profitable they answer with an enthusiastic “yes”! So what’s not working?
Most of us don’t have a Really Big Vision. I spent years not allowing myself to have one. Miracles occurred as I slowly let go of that bad habit. We allow all kinds of perceived roadblocks and counterproductive personal habits to prevent us from visualizing and creating exactly what our ideal business (and life) could be. If we’re uncomfortable even imagining it, how can we create it? Close your eyes and imagine how incredible it would feel, if two years from today, you could have the business success and fulfilled life you truly want. Could you triple your income? Could you make a bigger difference in the world? This kind of visioning, repeated daily, is a powerfully effective step in bringing your vision to reality. Big Vision Roadmap is about creating your Biggest Vision for your business, busting through current roadblocks, carefully mapping out how to reach your vision and then relentlessly focusing on following the map until you arrive at your destination.
Imagine that you want to drive to a wonderful vacation spot located hundreds of miles from your home. You’ve planned this vacation carefully, saved for it, and are tremendously excited about it. You get in your car and begin the journey. Oh, there’s just one problem. You don’t have a map. You know you need to travel west so you head in a westerly direction and hope you’ll find it. Sound ridiculous? Yet how many of us run our businesses without detailed mapping, planning, measurement, reflection and regular reassessment? Does IBM do that? I don’t think so. And how many of us take the quiet time to do the inner work which will make clear the outer actions we need to take to manifest the results we want?
Statistically 50% or small businesses fail in the first four years. Why? In working with scores of small business owners and in the course of my own experience, the reasons are: lack of financing and budgeting, fear, “I need to do everything myself” syndrome, poor time management, lack of knowledge about running a business (entrepreneurial skill set), lack of support, lack of confidence, focusing on the next sale instead of bottom line profit, or limiting personal habits that slow business growth.
Here’s what builds a successful business that serves your life (and not the other way around): laser-like focus, motivation, passion, sufficient funds to invest in the business and in expert outside help, careful budgeting, focused, savvy marketing, strong sales skills, the ability to delegate, self discipline, self knowledge, regular inner focus work, excellent priority based time management, extreme self confidence, the ability to work through your fears, strong business systems, an ability to take calculated risks and most important–clear, exciting, well defined goals.
Get started on your personal Roadmap! Make a list of situations you are currently tolerating in your business that are draining your time or energy. Does anything make you feel overwhelmed? Is there anywhere where you sell yourself short? Do you feel satisfied with what you’ve accomplished at the end of each work day? Would you like to feel empowered, enervated and full of possibilities? Take one minute to download the Big Vision Inner Focus Techniques Guide from our toolbox. Go to http://www.smartrack.net/BigVisionTool1.htm. If you can spend just 15 minutes each morning following this guide, you’ll begin an amazing Big Vision Journey!