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The Trap That Catches Most Entrepreneurs

trapMany people start a small business to replace a lost job. Many people already in business say they’re just trying to “make a good living.”

If you adopt the same mindset, you’ll end up in the trap!

BIGG success is life on your own terms. It’s about designing and building the life that fits you perfectly. The focus is on making a life, not just a living.

If you don’t think that BIGG, you fall into the trap: Your days are so full of “busy-ness” that you don’t have time to develop the business.

You can’t get out of the trap. You work for the business but the business doesn’t work for you.

Listen to this post, click the player to hear George & Mary-Lynn on The BIGG Success Show podcast.

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[haiku url=”http://traffic.libsyn.com/biggsuccess/00687-040711.mp3″ title=”The BIGG Success Show #687″]
How do you avoid the trap?

Don’t sell products or services. Promote a brand instead.

However, promoting a brand isn’t enough. Develop your business.

Even developing your business isn’t enough. Focus on building a life.

To make a life, not just a living, from your business:

  • You must have an exit plan.

    Your exit plan is your compass. It sets your direction. It’s the end you must have in mind at the beginning, according to Stephen Covey.

Yet most entrepreneurs we talk with never think about their exit plan. They object – they say they don’t ever plan to exit their business. Fine – but a business is a very illiquid asset. You need a plan for liquidity.

  • Select strategies that move you closer to your exit.

    Strategic planning is mostly about eliminating options. Get everything that doesn’t move you toward your end goal off the table.

Once you do that, you’ll only be looking at strategies that work for you. You want to select the one that you think will get you to your exit in the shortest amount of time possible.

  • Be prepared to adapt or abandon.

    Your strategy may not work. It may need to be tweaked. Or you may find it’s just wrong. You need to abandon it and try another one.

You never know what will happen when your idea hits the market. However, proactively pursuing an exit while reacting to market information quickly and decisively leads to BIGG success!

Do you want to make a life, not just a living? E-mail us at bigginfo@biggsuccess.com or leave a voice message at 888.455.2444. Maybe we can help you.

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file | podcast:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/biggsuccess/00687-040711.mp3

Image in this post from mrktwain

Your Personal SWOT Analysis (Part II)

Yesterday, we began this discussion of SWOT analysis. Today we want to continue it by talking about the last half of SWOT: Opportunities and Threats.

So far, everything we’ve discussed has been internal – focused just on you. Your strengths. Your weaknesses. Now we’re ready to bring in the external forces.

Take a tip from entrepreneurs when you’re trying to find your opportunity. Entrepreneurs know:

Where there’s change, there’s likely to be growth.
And where there’s growth, there’s opportunity.

So look for change to find your opportunity. For instance, the baby boom has been changing markets in the United States for years. Now they’re starting to retire. This is creating huge opportunities in health care, travel, and home services, among others.

In fact, many of the hottest careers in the coming years are centered on the needs of the baby boomers as they retire. Many new businesses will succeed bigg by serving them as well.

This is just one example of changes that occur that create opportunities. But opportunities are only half the picture. You also need to consider the threats.

Ask yourself, “What could happen that would significantly affect you if you choose this career?” Because here’s a little tip about change:

Change creates opportunities in new fields while destroying existing ones.

Let’s look at a famous example from early last century. If your chosen career involved nearly anything to do with carriages, you were in trouble with the advent of the automobile. Technological change is probably the main driver of changes like this. However, changes in industries also occur due to things like consolidation, outsourcing, and more.

Mary-Lynn shared her career experience. She loves radio, but with the internet and consolidation in the industry, it’s harder to find good opportunities than it used to be. Change is creating destruction.

At the same time, the internet and new media are presenting opportunities for people with skills like hers – opportunities to build your own content and brand. Change is creating growth.

Mary-Lynn found her path to peace of mind. She started with finding her passion. Then, with her core values in mind, she did a SWOT analysis, which prompted her to change careers, while still using all of her talents and experience.

Putting it all together
When you’re done with your SWOT analysis, you should have a number of possible fits. Don’t make the mistake of only looking at compensation. That’s part of the picture, but certainly not the only thing.

We have a friend who accepted a job because it paid so much. She told us that she knew it didn’t fit her passion; it was in an industry that she wasn’t particularly excited about. But it was so much money! Soon, she found she hated her job. She was unhappy all the time – even at home. Money isn’t everything!

You know where you are now. You’ve visualized your dream life so you know where you want to be. All you have to do is choose the best path to get there!

The Bigg Goal-Setters Workbook will help you do just that!
It’s free when you sign up for our free weekly newsletter!

Our Bigg Quote today comes from Douglas Everett.

“There are some people who live in a dream world, and there are some
who face reality; and then there are those who turn one into the other.”

The world needs more dreamers, but even more … the world needs more doers that make their dreams come true.

Next time, we’ll discuss freedom and security. Experts say that you can’t have both; you have to choose one or the other. We’ll ask the question … why can’t you have both?

Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

Related Links:

Your Personal SWOT Analysis (Part I)

Visualize The Life You Want

Live Your Dream With Purpose

Your Personal SWOT Analysis (Part I)

Today and tomorrow, we’ll discuss your personal SWOT analysis. In case you’re not familiar with it, SWOT is an acronym for …

Strengths
Weaknesses
Opportunities
Threats

SWOT analysis has been used for years by companies as part of their strategic planning process. More recently, individuals have seen the value for using it to plan their own lives, as well.

This blog is a follow-up to these prior posts:

Back To The Future: Visualizing The Life You Want (Part 2) 

We asked you, “If neither time nor money was an issue, how would you spend your time and your money? This is all about discovering your passion … your dream.

Live Your Dream With Purpose – Part I

We followed that series of shows up by talking about core values. What’s important to you?

So now we’re ready to go to the next level. Now we’re going to bring back the constraints – time and money. Back to reality!

Today, we’ll tackle the first two parts of SWOT analysis – strengths and weaknesses.

But first, a little tidbit …

Did you know that …
 … part of Albert Einstein’s brain was abnormally large?
… another part of his brain was unusually small?

Which part was larger than normal, you ask? That area used for math and spatial intelligence. You probably could have guessed that, right? Can you guess the part that was quite small? It was the area used for linguistics.

Most children start talking between the ages of one and two. Einstein, who is generally regarded as one of the smartest people ever, didn’t start talking until he was three!

He failed a language exam when he was 16. He was known to be a terrible lecturer. He was not a cunning linguist! So what’s the moral of the story?

Be thankful for your weaknesses because
they may be the source of your strengths!

How do you uncover your strengths? Answer this question:

What do you find easy to do that others find difficult?

If you find that question difficult to answer, you know that answering questions isn’t one of your strengths! Just kidding! Seriously, we often overlook those things that come easy to us. We take them for granted.

Ask your friends and family what they think your strengths are. Tell them you’re looking for an objective opinion to help you understand yourself better. You’ll find their answers quite interesting.

To discover your weaknesses, answer the question in reverse:

What do you find difficult that seems to come easily to others?

Once again, if you’re having difficulty answering this question, ask people you trust for their opinion. Assure them that you truly appreciate their counsel because you’re discovering how to improve yourself.

On the show, Mary-Lynn and George shared their strengths and weaknesses.

Strengths
Mary-Lynn said that “audio production” is something she’s always found easy to do.

George said he’s always been relatively comfortable with “money and finance.”

Weaknesses
Mary-Lynn acknowledged that “numbers” are not her bag. That’s why she pursued a career that tapped her creativity.

George confessed that “orderliness” is his biggest weakness. It’s nice to know that Ben Franklin confessed to the same shortcoming! He said it was the hardest of his thirteen virtues to get right! Read our recent article about that here.

Our Bigg Quote today comes from the author and poet Joyce C. Lock, who simply said:

“Build upon strengths, and weaknesses will gradually take care of themselves.”

Only the strong survive, but if you know your weaknesses, and utilize your strengths, you’ll not only survive … you’ll thrive!

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Next time, we’ll continue on this thread – we’ll talk about the second half of SWOT –

 Opportunities and Threats.

We’ll also discuss how to put all the pieces, including your passion and purpose, together.

In the meantime, Mary-Lynn is off to balance her checkbook. And George is cleaning up his desk! Until next time, here’s to your bigg success!

Subscribe to The Bigg Success Show in iTunes. 

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Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00041-010708.mp3

Related Links:

Visualize The Life You Want

Live Your Dream With Purpose

Ben Franklin's Thirteen Virtues

Ben Fraklin’s Thirteen Virtues Chart (pdf)

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The Bigg Success Show Expert Sessions – Engaging Your Employees

Expert Session - Engaging Employees

Featuring: Karen Evenson & Larry Kammien of Leadership & Organization Solutions, LLC

Get expert advice on "The 3 R's of Employee Engagement"


In This Session:

*The 3 levels of measurement for employee engagement

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*The most powerful motivator in recognition

*All this great information in under 20 minutes of your time


About the Hosts:

George Krueger & Mary-Lynn Foster are co-hosts of The Bigg Success Show,
a daily 5-minute lesson & laugh on personal and professional development.

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Larry and Karen have merged their talents to form Leadership & Organization Solutions, LLC. The partnership leverages their combined 50 years of comprehensive corporate and small business experience. LOS focuses on leadership and organization development through management consulting and strategic planning, designing and administering HR instruments including employee surveys, conducting customer satisfaction surveys, giving motivational speeches, as well as designing, developing and delivering corporate training materials. Find them online at betterlos.com.

Approximately 30-minutes of expert advice.

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