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The Entrepreneurial Roller Coaster Ride

When you own your own business, you have your highs and you have your lows. And it seems like you rarely have any in-betweens.

George said  …
I never talked about this for years. I thought it was just me. Then I got up the nerve and mentioned it to my sister, who also owns businesses.

She said she knew exactly what I was talking about! So that encouraged me to ask other business owners about it. So far, every single person I’ve ever talked to about this knows exactly what it means. You can see it on their face as soon as you bring it up.

But it’s something I think a lot of entrepreneurs don’t talk about.

Mary-Lynn added  …
With Bigg Success, I’m experiencing business ownership for the first time. And I feel like I’m on a roller coaster. There are days where I feel exhilaration from the ride and there are days when I feel sheer terror and want to get off the ride.

Entrepreneurial terror

If you’ve never experienced it, count yourself lucky, but most people in business have.

You can feel terrified at times even with a job. You may fear you’re going to lose yours when you see other people’s jobs getting cut. But it’s still different for business owners.

George …
I remember one of the guest speakers for my class who talked about the number of mouths he had to feed now. A lot of the most successful business owners I know take personal responsibility for their people. They don’t look at just putting bread on their table; they worry about their employees as well.

That can keep you up at night!

Inc. published an article (way back in February 1987) called Entrepreneurial Terror. A portion of it has been republished on Wachovia’s Small Business site.

It was written by Wilson Harrell, a serial entrepreneur and author of For Entrepreneurs Only. He said:

“… the ability to handle terror, and to live with it, is the single most important
– and, yes, necessary – ingredient of entrepreneurial success.”

This company doesn’t love misery

He says that you shouldn’t share your lows with your friends and loved ones, because you’ll just pass the worry on to them. Unless they’re your partner in business.

He adds that you should always share your highs, though.

How highs turn to lows

The way you spend your time and money when you’re on a high often has a lot to do with how low you go. Let’s look at two examples:

  • Too busy for marketing
    When you’re so busy, you may even be running at capacity, and you know your business couldn’t crank out any more volume no matter how much you wanted to. So you slow down – or even stop – your marketing efforts.

    George …
    I’ve done this! It’s easy to do – there’s no time! But that insures the next down cycle because you’re not doing those things that you did to get to the up cycle.

  • Being careless with money
    A lot of times cash flow is at its peak during an up cycle. That’s part of the reason you’re on an emotional high. So you make that major expenditure. Or you add to your overhead. The next thing you know you’re on a low because business and cash flow have slowed down and you have little or no cash reserves.

You may not be able to avoid the highs and lows. What you can do is conduct business so that your lows are higher … and your highs are higher!

It may not feel any different, but you know it is. You’re reaching ever higher levels of success! Now that’s bigg success!

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Ben Franklin Got It Wrong

Change. A word that sparks fear in many people.

We work to get to that comfortable spot, and we want to stay there.

“Nothing is certain except death and taxes.”
Ben Franklin

We think he got it wrong, not in the message, but in the semantics. We think he should have explicitly included change as something that is certain, rather than making it implicit in his quote.  


Will you lead or follow?

Even when it’s change that we’re creating ourselves, it can be scary. But it’s especially frightening when it’s a surprise.

For example, picture Jane telling her boss that she’s accepted a new position. She’s going to experience change. But isn’t that more comfortable than Jane’s boss telling her that her job is being eliminated?

It’s better to be a leader of change than a follower.

Who’s in control?
However, you can’t always control change. What you can control all the time is how you choose to respond to it.

You can also try to anticipate it. For example, as technology continues to develop, change is occurring more and more rapidly. Isn’t it safe to assume that this will continue?

So you have a choice to make. You either develop the skills to anticipate change so you get ahead of it or you just respond to it, after the pain becomes too great to do anything else.

Bigg action item – Separate the change into fads and trends
There are fads and there are trends. Fads come and go, so don’t worry about them. Trends are long-term. Get on board with them.

Divide a sheet into two columns – one called “Fads” and the other called “Trends”.  In your chosen career, think about the things affecting your industry. Now start putting those changes into the appropriate column.

What will affect your future income? Something will – for good or for bad!

Is it a short-term phenomenon? Or is it likely to continue? You can position yourself properly by seeing the change coming.

What opportunities will be created? What skills will be important? Do you have them? Can you get them?

Develop a plan for what you need to do to position yourself to take advantage of the trends.

Where do I get this information?

We’ll look at two examples. Search for the name of your industry followed by the word “association”. For example, “beauty salon association” yielded a half-dozen or so associations in Google.

You can also subscribe to magazines for your industry, or just about any industry you’re interested in following. They’re often free, supported by the advertisers. Amazon has an excellent resource that lists magazines by industry. It’s an extensive list!

So there are a number of ways to get the information you need so you can embrace change rather than begrudge it.

Subscribe to The Bigg Success Show in iTunes. 

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Reject This Fear And Succeed

 

reject_no

  

 Many people get mired in fear. There’s one fear, in particular, that seems to hold many people back.

The root of this fear often stems from childhood. Do you remember being made fun of, not being included, or not being one of the cool kids? As adults, this fear is manifested by not asking for the sale, not reaching out to people, or just not going for what we want.

You have to reject the fear of rejection to succeed bigg!

Be confident.
If you need a confidence boost, check out our blog on how to build confidence. When you’re comfortable in your own skin, you won’t flat out accept the rejection. You’ll keep trying – one more thing, then one more. That’s what you have to do to succeed bigg!

Understand that success is a numbers game.
You have to hear “No” a certain number of times to get to “Yes”. Ask any published author. Any successful salesperson. Job seekers. Actors and actresses. The list goes on and on. Come to see “No” as a positive – it means you’re one step closer to success!

Don’t take rejection personally.
The odds are VERY high that they’re NOT rejecting you personally. It’s the offer, the presentation, the design, the wording, their circumstances, or any of so many other variables we can’t begin to name them all.

Try to find out why the rejection occurred.
If you take it personally, you won’t look for the reason underlying the rejection. Then you get caught in a vicious circle – you’re more likely to get rejected again because you’re not learning anything from each rejection.

You want to understand why it occurred, so you can answer this question: Is the reason for the rejection something you can control?

Here’s the good news – you’ve learned something important either way!

If “No” – move on! If “Yes” – try again after you’ve made the necessary changes.

Recipes for Rejecting the Rejection Blues
Even self-confident positive-thinkers who have mastered the fear of rejection can succumb to the blues when faced with rejection after rejection. We’re all only human!

On the show, Mary-Lynn and George shared their recipes for rejecting the rejection blues.

Mary-Lynn: Rejection emboldens me. I’m very competitive and I don’t like being told “no”. When it happens, I turn to some good rock and roll. There are a couple of songs I particularly like: Keep Pushin’ by REO Speedwagon and Foreigner’s I’m Gonna Win.

George:
I find it helpful to do something life affirming, like escaping to bigg water. I feel calm when I experience its massiveness. It makes anything I’m facing seem miniscule. If water isn’t an option, nature in any form can be helpful. I also like to go for drives in the country. If I can’t do anything else, Little River Band’s Cool Change makes me feel free. I start dreaming again. Then I’m ready to get back to work!

How do you give yourself a lift when rejection is bringing you down? Leave us a Comment below!

Our bigg quote today comes from Louis Ferdinand Celine.

“I think all great innovations are built on rejections.”

So don’t get bogged down in the pool of rejection when there’s an ocean of opportunity awaiting you.

Next time, we’ll offer some interviewing tips for a first-time manager. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

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The Negotiating Table

We know a gentleman who’s bought and sold businesses for years. He closes a deal about every ninety days. He said that every time he buys, he feels like he paid too much. Conversely, when he sells, he always feels that he didn’t get enough.

Negotiating is a nerve-wracking process – whether it’s for a job, a car, a loan, or anything else!

So today, we’ll serve up some delicious tips for negotiating your next deal. Think of it as a three-course meal – an appetizer, the main course, and dessert.

There are two things to keep in mind before we get to our three courses.

  • Know what you want. What are your taste buds craving? What’s your ideal deal? Have a clear picture of this before you start.       
  • Ask for what you want. It may not be on the menu. Ask for it anyway. You never know – the chef might be able to whip it up for you!

Appetizers
You won’t get filled up at this stage, but you will get a taste of what’s to come. During this course, you’re feeling things out. What are they looking for from you? What might they offer?

Will you be working together long-term if this deal is consummated? If so, focus on building the relationship. Look for win / win. And keep this in mind – if they like you, you may get a better deal.

Try to determine how much leverage you have. Why do they want to do this deal? How badly do they want it? Do they have to do it? Who’s in a stronger position – you or them?

Be careful not to put too much on the table during this course. For example, you’ll save things like your price and terms for the next course.

Main course
You may walk away before you get to this course. If you’re still interested, here’s a caveat. Negotiations often stall here. So if you like what you’re hearing, find ways to keep things moving along.

If you get stuck on a point, set it aside and come back to it later. Maybe if you chew on something else, this will be more appetizing later.

Don’t lose sight of the bigg picture because you’re trying so hard to win a point. You may get a morsel but lose the meat!

You shouldn’t concede unless they do so as well. This sets the tone you want. For example, let’s say you’re negotiating your salary. Maybe they can’t quite pay you what you want, but they are willing to give you some additional time off. You may accept that trade-off.

Dessert
You may decide you don’t want dessert – you know you can’t come to terms. But assuming you decide to stay, you’re ready to negotiate all the details. That’s one reason this course can be the most nerve-wracking of all. Plus you’re getting closer to actually committing.

You probably won’t feel fully satisfied at the end. Be happy if they’re equally unhappy!

Ultimately, they may reject your offer or you may turn them down. In either case, what are your options? Keep them open so you have a back-up.

What techniques do you use at the negotiating table?
Share them with us by leaving a Comment below.

Our bigg quote is by John F. Kennedy. We’re sure he had loftier ideas when he said this, but it’s still appropriate.

“Let us never negotiate out of fear. But let us never fear to negotiate.”

So, enter every negotiation knowing that, you don’t have to do it, but don’t be afraid to do it.

In our next blog, we’ll answer a question from a member who wants to know if she should keep her job or buy a franchise. Hopefully by then, we’ll be recovered from this bigg meal! Until next time, here’s to your bigg success!

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The Confidence Game

If you have owned your own business, you have probably struggled with self-confidence from time to time. You may even relate to and have suggestions for one of our listeners.

We received an e-mail from Beth, who is in the process of starting her own consulting company. She says her problem is that there’s a little voice in her head that keeps pointing out what she doesn’t know. It’s paralyzing her progress, and she would like some advice on how to get past this.

Don’t feel alone, this is a common problem. We congratulate Beth for having the courage to make this move. George has a theory that, as an entrepreneur, the highs are higher and the lows are lower when own your own business. So welcome to the roller coaster!

Here are some tips on how to get past the lows by giving yourself a boost in confidence:

Don’t expect perfection
Allow yourself to be human, by setting achievable goals. For instance, many people feel they don’t know the financial side of business. Read books, take a class, or find someone you can team up with. Do what you do well and let others help you so that you can get started and tackle your challenges.

Rebut the cruel inner critic
Counter your negatives with positives. For example, when that little tells you what you don’t know, tell it what you do know. When it tells you why you shouldn’t take a risk, tell it why you should. Focus on what you can do and what you know you will do.

Be Your Best Friend
Friends tell you what you need to hear, but when they do, it’s in a caring way. We help our friends get through tough situations in encouraging ways. So why not offer yourself suggestions in the same manner? Don’t get down on yourself and be critical just because you didn’t do something right or because you don’t know something.

Meditate
It’s important to practice thinking positive. Take a break, think about a task you completed that made you feel confident, and remember how good it felt. When you go to bed, focus on three good things that you did well that day. It’s a great way to end the day, by focusing on what you have accomplished.

Our quote today is by Stan Smith.

“Experience tells you what to do; confidence allows you to do it.”

Get out of your own way…you’ve got places to go! Tomorrow we’ll discuss getting the money off your back. We’ll share some recent research on monkeys that you’ll find interesting.

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