It’s not just advice for sick people.. but also motivation for people who are sick of the mundane. After I got married a few months ago, I decided that I would take out time to start excercising more.. I mean, I actually want to grow old with this woman, so I knew that a few things needed to change immediately. On Memorial Day weekend, we decided that we would visit one of the local parks and hit their jogging trail.. so I pulled out one of my freshest pair of basketball shorts and a crisp t-shirt with my super clean New Balances. After a few minutes of stretching and chit-chatting, we started our first jog as newly weds.. and about two minutes later, I was convinced that this chick was trying to go ahead and cash in the newly signed insurance policy. My legs felt like I had a brick in each shoe, I couldn’t breathe and slowly but surely, I started to fall back from my brand new wife. She slowed down a bit to encourage me, and that’s when I realized that I was WAY outta shape.. (and at the time, I was even playing basketball about 8 hours a week).
As entrepreneurs, it is easy to get so comfortable in the way that you’ve been doing business.. Especially if it WORKS. But the goal is to grow right? Increase income, reduce expenses.. You know? Is your business outta shape?? Sometimes you won’t even realize it until you’re put to the test. IT’S TIME TO GET IT TOGETHER. It should be the goal of every entrepreneur to get better. Continue to learn about the products/services that you offer your clients.. Stay up on the new technologies.. Subscribe to a magazine that will keep you sharp.. Follow people on Twitter who are in your industry or who will keep you motivated.. Download apps that will help you grow (Angry Birds isn’t one of them..) GET. BETTER.
PS: I have really stepped it up.. I have continued to jog periodically, and have maxed out at THREE miles straight.. considering doing a mini-marathon next year.. not necessarily with ambitions of winning, but moreso just to accomplish it.
Reading is Fundamental. I could end this post there, but I won’t. Whatever industry you’re in, there is someone, somewhere that has written the blog post, magazine article or book that will be the key to your growth.. The question is are you willing to search for the letters that create the sentences that gang up to become the paragraphs that will change your business (and possibly your life)? Or are you too busy watching reruns of Family Matters to invest the time in reading about what you have claimed is your passion? When you start a new relationship, you want to know ALL about the person.. the good the bad, the crazy.. ALL of that.. If your business is important to you, get to know everything that you can about it. Find out what others have done, as well.. Knowing their successes and failures will give you an advantage and save you some trial and error time/money.
My personal reccomendation for anyone pursuing entrepreneurship is Display of Power by FUBU founder and ABC Sharktank’s Daymond John.
This will sound REALLY odd coming from someone who is writing a blog post at 3:45am.. But in order for your business to succeed, you must have hours of operation. In the same way that I can not just jump up and go to Macy’s right now (unless I have a desire to be arrested for trespassing/breaking and entering etc.), there should be limits on how much you work, even when you are the only employee of your company. (Thank GOD that TheAIDG is more than one person!!) Some of you require more sleep than others to stay balanced, and that’s okay.. we really don’t want you to lose your edge or start going off on your customers.. Just figure out how much time you can realistically devote to developing your business and also schedule times to hang with your family and friends as well.. if your dream kills your quality of life, it will soon become a nightmare.
Set a daily sales goal & make it happen!! Major corporations/retailers operate this way & it WORKS. It forces you to be on your grind to meet these small goals, and will ultimately be stepping stones to your major goals.
The customer is NOT always right.. but the customer has the money. In the words of the ancient prophets of the Wu-Tang Clan, CASH RULES EVERYTHING AROUND ME.. C.R.E.A.M.. As a business owner, it is your job to separate the customer from his money.. so.. maybe he IS right afterall :)
Deciding to start your own business is a big deal. No one will take you seriously if YOU dont take yourself seriously.. and even if you do, they STILL might not. Take the necessary steps to legitimize your business.. #NoShortCuts #NoDaysOff