Today’s short little blog is simply a reminder that, as a small business owner, preparing yourself for success is something that should never stop. The thing is, there’s really not much of a difference between the end of one year and the beginning of the next.
When November turns into December for instance, things don’t instantly change. When December turns into January it’s the same. We tend to put more emphasis and weight on the change because a new calendar number arrives but the fact is that preparing for success shouldn’t be done once a year, it should be done every day.
Never stop growing, learning and working toward success.
It doesn’t matter what time of year that happens to be, working hard, educating yourself more about your business and learning as much as you can is the best way to be successful. Standing on your laurels might be okay for a day or 2 but not much longer. There is always more to learn, more to do and more heights to achieve. Expand your circle of colleagues and associates, take some risks and cut down on distractions are all excellent ways to do that. Focusing on your professional development by writing blog posts, attending webinars and seminars and reading up on the latest advances in your chosen trade are excellent ideas as well.
Focus, focus, focus.
The old adage about “being a jack of all trades but a master of none” just doesn’t hold water anymore. What you really need to do is focus on your strengths, improve your weaknesses and become an expert in a handful of things rather than average in a bunch. It’s okay to take risks and try something new and, occasionally, fall flat on your face too, but make sure to learn from the experience and keep your focus on the task at hand. Frankly, it’s okay today if you don’t know everything because the Internet has answers to practically any questions that a customer might have outside of your expertise. If you have specific and excellent skills you’ll find that people seek you out for those skills more than someone who knows a lot but can only do a little.
Set and reach a daily goal every day.
Sometimes the days can seem to melt into one another and, before you know it, weeks have passed and you haven’t accomplished anything that you set out to do. If you set a goal every morning to finish, accomplish or learn something by the end of the day, you’ll get a lot more done. While accomplishing everything in one day certainly isn’t possible and probably shouldn’t even be attempted, prioritizing one or two tasks a day and focusing on them until they are completed is much better than being unfocused and completing nothing.
Set yourself apart from the crowd.
Simply put, know exactly what you can do really, really well. Once you know what that thing is, focus on it and make it the backbone of everything that you offer to your customers. Know exactly what the most valuable thing you have to offer to your customers is and then own that thing.
The simple fact is that as a small business owner you’ve got a lot on your plate and, even though the numerals on the calendar are changing, your desire to achieve success shouldn’t change. As we move into 2014 use the advice above to differentiate yourself from your competition, engage more deeply with your customer base and build an affinity for your service, product or brand that truly sets you apart.