Business is tough and competition is fierce. But in all of human history, there has never been more opportunity available than there is right now. Given the possibilities that are available to businesses in the age of the internet. Only an extreme minority seem to be maximising it.
What is the situation of the majority of business owners at the end of their business career? In most cases, they are still just as dependent on the new client near the end. As they ever were at the beginning.
There are an embarrassing number of examples of teen millionaires. Who started in business one year and within the next, are more successful than 95% of other businesses. All of which used the internet to fast track their success and use resources which are available to everyone.
Jim Rohn once said:
“Successful people do what unsuccessful people are not willing to do. Don’t wish it were easier; wish you were better.”
The teenage millionaire examples I gave you didn’t have more experience. Most likely are not any smarter than the average business owner. The mind of the human being isn’t fully developed until mid 20’s. They simply did what other people were not doing, in order to get results most businesses don’t get.
Most businesses haven’t learnt how to plan and succeed, during a time where opportunity is at its maximum. Employees understand that you have to pay into a pension in order to be able to stop working at a particular age. So why haven’t businesses and business owners applied this principle?
It seems they are reacting to external events. Thinking things happen to them, rather than them creating circumstances for themselves.
So is there something which helps turn business owners from struggling at the end of their career, to having built something over that timeframe. So they are much better off at the end, than they were at the beginning?
I gave you the example of people being aware that when they are 65, they need to have paid into a pension in order to be able to stop working. Other examples might be mortgages that need to be paid off in a certain timeframe, or life insurance products for when the inevitable happens. So why is it that a lot of business owners haven’t thought about this?
A Business Plan sets out what the company will be, over what time period and how that business is going to get there. For some reason most businesses don’t have a business plan and if they do, it’s looked at very infrequently and often forgotten about.
Not having a plan is like going for a drive and not knowing what your destination is. There is no way of knowing where you will end up. The opposite is also true. If you set your destination, follow the directions and take action, you will eventually arrive at your destination.
At this point the amount of money raised by the creation of business plans must be astronomical, but the benefits of a business plan don’t end there. The business plan is a document which gives your business the structure, the equivalent of a pension, or paying off a mortgage. It’s the only formal thing that gives you the direction you will need to reach your destination, when you set off on your journey.
They are often criticised because life never plays out the way you expect it to, but if you have a clear end goal within your plan, the only way you don’t reach that destination, is if you don’t try and keep trying. You can never fail if you don’t give up.
Business plans work because if done correctly, they give you instructions of every part of your journey. Which road to take, the duration of the journey and the details of how you reach your destination.
If you hold that destination in your mind, take action and follow your plan, there is no way that you can’t reach it. The recipe for achievement is to focus on your outcome, not what gets in your way.
Focus is often referred to as “following one course until successful”, your business plan gives you focus and discipline is the bridge between your destination and your outcome.
Focus also applies to what you think is possible for your business. If someone else has gotten the results you have, you can simply model their behaviour in order to get their results.
Before Arnold Schwarzenegger became Mr Universe and then a famous actor, he used Rich Park as the person who gave him his plan and that was his roadmap. Everyone told him it couldn’t be done, but he followed the footsteps of Rich Park and then went on to be governor of California.
To quote Arnold:
“You must see it, you must believe it, and then you must never stop working to make it happen”.
But If what I am saying is true, why don’t more businesses create a detailed plan, stick to it and then reach a desirable outcome?
From what I observe from the behaviour of people on social media, often business owners think the answers are elsewhere and can be found in online teachers, high priced courses or expensive consultants – it’s all up to you. You as an individual have close to unlimited potential, decide what you want your business to look like, create your business plan and go for it. Then try and keep trying.
Every business is where it is in the marketplace because of cause and effect, if you don’t decide or change anything, your business will stay exactly where it is now. If you create your plan and work towards it, you are a successful business owner.
Success isn’t external validation that someone gives to you, it comes from deciding what you will be and progressively realising that outcome. Make your time on this planet worthwhile, if you believe, you can achieve.
There is however a cost you need to be willing to pay. So the question becomes, what are you willing to pay in order to implement your business plan successfully? Work out what it is you have to pay and decide if you are willing to pay the price. Is it continuous 12 hour days, is it working in the evenings and on weekends? Stressful and potentially risky? Is it really worth it? If so, exchange all of that and you will receive your outcome in return.
Zig Ziglar put it well when he said:
“there is no elevator to success, you have to take the stairs”.
If at all you feel fearful of planning your business out with a final outcome or exit strategy in mind, know this: Any limitations you set up for yourself, only exist in your own mind and if you don’t listen to them, they don’t exist.
To summarise, first decide what it is you are looking to achieve with your business over what timeframe, imagine and see clearly what it’s like when you achieve it, create your detailed business plan, have great courage and take continuous action.
You have nothing to lose by deciding what it is that you want, state it clearly. You have as much right to achieve the plan for your business as anyone else. Focus on your outcome, not the obstacles you encounter. Have a meaningful “reason why” to help you persevere during difficult times. If anyone tells you you can’t do it, it’s just because it’s not clear in their mind. Know the direction you’re going and the rest will fall into place for you.
James Allen said that:
“A person is limited only by the thoughts they choose”.
Choose wisely and the action you take will give you the rewards you are after. Act as though failure is impossible for you. Persist like you know you will reach your outcome. Don’t pay attention to worries, they won’t help. Just focus on your plan and don’t allow people to knock you off course.
How you go about your business plan will be the quality of your life. So enjoy the process and understand that your financial returns in life are in proportion to the ability to serve your customers. If you want more in life, serve more in business and the rest will take care of itself.
Earl Nightingale said:
“Your rewards, all the years of your life will be in precise proportion to your service. You are here to serve others, just as they serve you”.
Be the person first and your goal will come to you after. Be proud of yourself, start today, you have nothing to lose. And everything to gain.