I left a great paying job in the corporate world several years ago to start my own business. It was an in-home senior care company. I learned a ton about starting a business from scratch, growing it quickly and eventually selling it. In this article, I will show you the 5 things I learned about how to be successful in your own business.
Hint. It’s all about setting big goals and then creating the right mindset to achieving them. If you can conquer this using these 5 steps, you can achieve amazing success with your online business, your freedom business or whatever type of business it is.
1. Set Big Goals
The first thing I learned is that you need to set big goals for your business.
Think about what you want to accomplish. Where do you want your business to be in 6 months? 1 year? 3 years? 5 years? Get real specific about where you want your business to be and what you want it to look like.
The idea here is to think bigger. If the thought of your goals don’t make you a bit uncomfortable, they’re probably not big enough.
Get specific with your goals. Include financial targets. Write down exactly how much you want to be earning during your first year. How much do you want to be earning after 5 years?
I set a financial target of $500,000 in revenue during my first year. I knew it was doable because other agencies had achieved that during their fiirst year. Did it scare me? Definitely. But, I’ll tell you how you can go about achieving it later in the article.
You should also create SMART goals. SMART is an acronym for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-based. You want to be very specific with your goals so that you know how you’re going to achieve them and when you have reached them.
2. Break Those Goals Down into Weekly and Daily Tasks
The next step is to break those goals down into weekly and daily tasks. The thought of getting to a revenue target of $500,000 in my first year seemed almost impossible. But, by breaking that goal down into tasks that I could execute on every day and every week, allowed me to chip away at the goal until I eventually reached it.
Now, this can get hard. But, it works. Start with your financial goal. If you know how much you want to earn after one year, you can start breaking it down by how many widgets you need to sell or how many posts you need to publish in order to achieve that number. In my case, it was a certain number of paying clients and billable hours that I had to achieve.
Once you know how many clients you need or how many widgets you need to sell, you can break that down into weekly and monthly goals. If you need 25 clients by the end of the year, that means you need to bring on board at least 2 new clients every month. Then, you will need to factor in attrition in case you lose clients. So, let’s say 3 new clients every month.
Now, what do you need to do in order to get 3 new clients each month? In my case, I knew that I needed to get 20 referrals or leads each month in order to bring on board 3 clients.
Then, what activities do you need to do in order to get 20 referrals? You’ll probably need to market your services. Network with referral partners, have a website and an online strategy, etc.
Break down your big goal into daily and weekly actionable steps that, if done consistently, will allow you to achieve your goal.
Track your progress every day and every week to stay focused.
3. Visualize Achieving Them
You have big, scary goals now. This is where you need to start thinking as if you have already achieved your goals. This is called visualization. Visualize, in detail, what it looks like when you’ve reached your goal.
How big is your new office that you need in order to accommodate all those new clients? What does the office look like? How many people do you have working for you? Are you traveling in an Airstream building a wildly successful online business from the beach?
As I was starting my business, I read as much as I could get my hands on to help me think like a successful business person. I know I’m probably not alone when I say that I’ve had limiting thoughts in my past. I tended to doubt myself. I had to figure out how to get past that.
Visualization really helped me. I used to visualize what my office looked like after I had 50 clients and 100 caregivers. I visualized the office humming with activity. I would do this visualization as I was exercising in the morning. I remember running around my backyard doing visualization exercises.
One of the best books I read on this was The Power of the Subconscious Mind by Joseph Murphy. It was originally published in 1963 but it is just as relevant today as it was then. He answers the question of why are some men successful, happy and rich while others are miserable, sick and poor.
Hint: It has to do with how they think.
If you haven’t read this book I’d highly recommend it. It was helpful in changing my mindset.
4. Affirm Your Goals
The fourth thing I learned was to use affirmation to support my goals and to help me make a commitment to achieving them. I still do this every morning.
One of my morning habits is to write 2 pages in my journal. I write down and affirm the following:
- I am committed to achieving xxxx by xx/xx/xxxx (fill in the blank with your goal and date you want to achieve it)
- Why achieving that goal is important to me (I.e., so I can live a freedom lifestyle)
- What I’m going to do today to get me closer to that goal
It’s really that simple. And, it keeps me focused.
Also, fill your mind with positive self-talk. This REALLY helped me. It was probably one of the biggest learnings I had while I was building my business. The thought of doing marketing and sales was terrifying to me. I knew I had to do it but I didn’t like doing it.
Here are some of the things I would say to myself:
- I am going to meet some really great people today who need the services I provide.
- I’m not really selling, I’m building relationships.
- I can do anything I set my mind to (and I have).
- I can handle anything that comes my way.
- I have the power to change my life.
- I have what it takes to be successful.
- The infinite power of my subconscious mind will bring to me everything I need to succeed.
- And, anything else I could think of that got me out the door.
5. Take Action
This is the mother of all success tips and will determine whether you are successful or not. You have to take action every day on your daily tasks that will help you achieve your goals.
I recommend writing your daily tasks (or goals) down the night before. Most highly successful people plan their day the night before. That way, they can hit the ground running in the morning. I usually spend part of my morning routine prioritizing what I’m going to work on that day.
Start with the big tasks or goals first. These are usually the ones that will move you closer to your goal and getting them out of the way first makes the rest of the day go smoother.
Another success tip is to finish your to-do-list. I know someone who does not go to bed until she finishes every item on her to-do list that day, even if it means staying up into the wee hours of the night.
Finally, celebrate small victories and reward yourself. Find a way to celebrate when you accomplish your daily and weekly tasks, knowing that they are getting you one step closer to that colossal goal you set.
Set big goals, get your mind right and take action!
I found that my success in business came from having big goals and then getting my mind right so that I could achieve them. There will be days when you won’t feel like doing anything. That’s ok. There may be days when you feel like doing more. The key is to consistently take action every day on those things that will get you to your goal.
I hope these 5 steps that I learned starting my business will help you as you build yours. Please leave a comment below if I can help you in any way.