If you’re not where you want to be professionally or personally…why?
Now I’m not talking about Utopia here.
Not perfection…just a spot where things are pretty darn good.
I think for most people it comes down to one of these things…at least on the professional side (but you’ll see a lot of crossover):
You’re not taking personal responsibility.
If you’re blaming your location, the economy, tire-kickers, your staff or anyone else for your plight in life – you’re not going to be happy.
While you can’t control every circumstance, you can always do something differently…and unless you’ve done all you can – don’t start pointing fingers.
I can think back to my time as a baseball coach and my time as a co-owner of my old companies and when I wasn’t happy, I could have moved on sooner even if I couldn’t change all the circumstances I didn’t enjoy.
I chose to stay as long as I did.
Life got much better the minute I owned that.
You don’t know what success really looks like.
It’s not some random gross revenue target or a number of clients.
You have to figure out where you want to go and why…otherwise you’ll likely build a success you don’t enjoy.
I know I did.
I wanted to build a franchise that was named to the Entrepreneur Franchise 500.
I built two.
It made me happy for maybe an hour when it happened. Then it was old news.
Nothing was different. I was still the owner of a business that wasn’t making me happy…regardless of any recognition it received.
Now success for me is more about doing an amount and type of work I enjoy with people I enjoy so that I can meet all my security and lifestyle goals.
If someone else wants to give me an award for that…great…but the real reward is being able to spend time with my family, enjoy our lifestyle and our experiences…and to get feedback from clients who are doing the type of work they want while meeting their own goals.
You don’t have guardrails.
You own your business. Not the other way around. Guardrails are the tools you use to ensure that.
I know for me, there was a time I rationalized that I was doing things or traveling 5 times as much as I do now in order to build something for my family.
If you’re still acting like a start up and doing everything – all the time – 10 years in, you don’t have a business you have a job.
And probably not a good one.
You’re not playing to your strengths.
You have some strengths, talents, skills and experiences that are uniquely yours…and most of what you do professionally should be spent on those as your business evolves.
Sure, early on, we all do everything.
But later…if you’re still spending a decent amount of your time doing things that you’re below average at…you can’t hope to build a great business.
I know that 80-90% of my time is spent in my areas of strength these days and I’ve never enjoyed work more.
You’re not working with the right people.
Maybe it’s the wrong clients. Maybe it’s the wrong partner. Maybe it’s the wrong team.
But you can’t have the right business with the wrong people.
I can’t begin to tell you how much a black cloud was lifted when I stopped working with one person…and I think we’ve all seen it when a cancerous client or employee left and the whole mood lifted.
You aren’t doing great work.
This one is tough to admit…but you can’t outrun it.
It’s not possible.
You can’t out market a bad service or an unpleasant experience.
You can’t build a great business…and if you’ve got the integrity I suspect that you do…then you can’t be as happy and successful as you want to be by offering an inferior service.
You aren’t getting new people into the business.
No sales = no business.
We can dance around lead generation and selling all we want…but if you’re not getting enough new people into the business you’re never going to build a business that gives you the lifestyle you want today and also provides you security for the future.
Whenever you see someone undervalue marketing and selling, you can be sure of of two things are happening:
Either they are broke or they have someone else doing all the marketing and selling for them.
You’re not keeping enough of what you make.
Most fitness entrepreneurs I meet didn’t come from a business background – so it makes sense that they don’t understand that the top line revenue isn’t nearly as important as the bottom line.
But as the owner – you’ve got to take care of you. You’ve got to pay you for today and put away money for your future.
If you don’t, no one is going to do it for you.
You’re not a good leader.
You’re in a leadership position…and for a lot of people, it’s a new experience.
But you set the tone for everything.
If you want your team and your clients to thrive, look in the mirror.
You set the tone.
When you see a business with massive turnover…either in staff or in clientele…it all points back to the leadership – or lack thereof.
So there are the 9 areas I’d look at if my business wasn’t where I wanted it to be.
I’d go one by one and do an honest assessment of where you are today and where you need to be in order to have your Ideal Business in place.
And I’ll be the first to tell you…I’ve screwed up every one of these areas. Every one.
And the only way I’ve fixed them is to first identify and acknowledge them.
So if you’re falling short of where you want to be…this is the place to start.