Never Celebrate Too Early
I meet entrepreneurial business owners all the time who have a surprising problem — their past success is standing in the way of their future growth.
I get it — anyone who has managed to stay in business for any significant amount of time has beaten the odds and overcome countless obstacles. Among those obstacles are a lot of expensive attempts at innovation or growth that just didn’t work.
It’s therefore easy for entrepreneurial leaders to grow so confident in their own decision-making and judgment that they become too protective of staying true to their own ideas and they get stuck in doing things the way they’ve always been done. This can hinder their growth by limiting new ideas or fresh thinking.
I thought of that particular phenomenon when I saw this video. It’s an entertaining reminder of how easy it can be to focus so much on celebrating your success, that your competition blows right past you:
Here are three ways that you can make your successes repeatable rather than being restrained by them and avoid celebrating too early in your own business:
- Choose the destination: Let’s face it, when you’re accustomed to running a business, it can be difficult to swallow the idea of having other people decide things for you. Allow yourself to ease into the experience of collaboration and delegation by taking back some degree of control and setting healthy boundaries. Make key decisions that define your vision and then allow fresh voices to fill in the details and help draw a path to how it will be accomplished. For so many of the athletes in this video, their painful defeat came about as a result of taking their focus off of the goal. In your business, you must help the people around you keep their energies aimed at the target by setting a clear vision that they can align with.
- Communicate transparently: If the people around you are going to be able to help you build a future based on the successes learned in your past, they need to understand not just what you think, but why you feel the way that you do about certain topics. Break the habit of resisting new ideas without offering an explanation — when you empower your team with your reasoning, they will better understand how to make decisions in the same way that you do.
- Set expectations: In sports, it’s critical that athletes always play to win. Winning is the expectation — but getting there takes more than just desire and drive which is why practice and good coaching are critical. When you are an entrepreneurial leader, your experience and history empower you to make better decisions about your business. Therefore, as you are approached with new ideas or innovations, be sure that you share insights about lessons that you’ve learned along the way and set clear and transparent expectations for a new project or strategy.
How do YOU repeat your successes? How does your business infrastructure ensure that you never rest on your laurels? How do you break the cycle of doing things ‘the way we’ve always done them’ in your business?
I would love to hear from you! I am a dots-connector who works with entrepreneurial leaders to connect their people and systems to their marketing. Let’s connect!