The drawing you see here is a tool I use with my coaching clients to provoke thought. The starting out represents the beginning or having to go back to square one, which many businesses face. The middle part is just what it says: You are right there in the middle, and this is when you have to do all the hard work that leads to finding your Nirvana. When you’re in the middle, you know what you want to do. You know what it will take to get you there, and you can see it in the distance.
Nirvana is the goal you’re working toward. Everyone’s Nirvana is different, so it’s whatever that means to you.
The problem is, most entrepreneurs get stuck in the middle and stay there. They managed to get the business to take off okay, and they know what their Nirvana looks like, but they’ve stopped moving toward it.
Reasons why entrepreneurs stall in the middle:
- Their own mindset keeps them stuck. They SAY they want growth, but their actions keep them running in place, and that’s where they stay. They don’t make the changes necessary to expand, so they’re trying to build a bigger business with a small-business mentality. This usually results in unmet goals and spinning wheels.
- They are too tired by now. By the time they reach the middle, they’re already tired of the climb. You have to be strategic, committed and thorough. What’s more, you have to do all this when you are tired and feeling a little beat up. When you start a business, though, you are low to the ground, so you have no place to go but up. This is the easy part if you can believe that. The hard part comes when you actually get to a place of profitability in your business and still have to reach to grow.
- No plan. Without a plan for growth, they’re just submitting to the business, and many get stuck in the planning stages. These “perpetual planners” enjoy designing a plan; they just never implement it. Planning doesn’t grow a business; implementation of a plan does.
- No accountability. There is no one holding the paddle and saying, “Okay what’s up? Why are we off track?” This happens often with a solopreneur business because it’s very difficult to police yourself. This is where investing in a business coach is worth their weight in gold. Everyone needs to be held accountable, and if you are unable to do it for yourself then you need to be smart enough to get the help you need. Without accountability you will stand still.
- Not brave (fear). They don’t invest in their businesses and expand. They usually have one person wearing multiple hats. That’s okay in the beginning, but at some point you have to take brave steps for growth and invest in smart, intelligent people who can help you take it to the next level. Having people wearing multiple hats creates the “running-around-like-a-chicken-with-its-head- cut-off” situation. Unfortunately, these businesses rarely experience Nirvana.
- Lack of knowledge. They may know how to run a business, but that’s about it. They don’t have an understanding of marketing strategy, and they either don’t take the time to learn, or they don’t invest in someone who does. In today’s world of Internet growth and digital technology, it’s crucial that entrepreneurs understand how to leverage those resources for the growth of their business.
Over the past several years if I had to pick the most common things that prohibit a business’ growth, it’s indecision and standing still. You will never come across a business owner who doesn’t want to grow and make more money. However, there are only a few select entrepreneurs who are willing to step up their game and give it their all. We all want it – but only a few are willing to do something about it.
One thing I know for sure is if you’re going to see real changes, you have to be willing to make some. What does your Nirvana look like? Are you taking steps toward it?