We all dream of success. If you’re like most people, you’ve spent quite a bit of time thinking about what constitutes success, how you’ll achieve it, and how good you’ll feel when you’ve achieved your goals.
The part that can seem elusive is the middle part – getting from dreaming about what you want, to having it and enjoying it. It probably seems like some people get to the pinnacle of success easily. How can you be one of those people?
The secret is taking 5 key steps that will help you reach your goals and accomplish what you’ve set out to do. Here, we’ll give you an overview of the critical steps of our process and how we get professionals and enterprises to where they need to be.
Step 1: Believe in Yourself
Being successful is as much about self-confidence as it is about anything else. People who constantly doubt themselves often can’t reach their goals because their negative thoughts act as saboteurs, preventing them from doing the things they want to do. That’s why the first step of the our process is working with your belief in yourself as a professional. This is often the most challenging step because it involves Planning for Success and taking the following actions to prepare for growth:
Dealing with Naysayers and Self Doubt
Identifying Your Strengths
Overcoming Fears and Negative Thoughts
Building a Growth Plan
Sometimes people fail due to a lack of planning. You’ll have a better chance of achieving your goals if you lay out a concrete plan for achieving them.
Coming up with a plan on your own takes time and effort. We help you uncover your specific goals and break them down into actionable steps. Decide what resources you’ll need and how you plan to get them, and create immediate, short-term, and long-term goals.
The benefit of this growth plan is that it will:
- Help you clarify your goals
- Make it easier to tell if you’ve got a goal that’s too ambitious or not ambitious enough
- Help you fine-tune your ideas
- Serve as a template for approaching investors, partners, and others to talk about your business
Step 2: Testing Ideas to Prove Them Worthy
You probably have tons of ideas. Some are good and – let’s face it – some aren’t. How can you tell the difference? By testing them! We’ll validate your ideas in the market before you invest your R&D capital.
Why Testing Ideas and Products is Important
Testing your ideas and products is essential – and it’s not that hard to understand why. Which would you rather do:
- Spend your time and money developing and launching a product only to find out that it doesn’t sell the way you thought it would; or
- Spend some time testing and refining your idea first before you invest your hard-earned dollars in launching it.
The answer’s clear, right? It’s a better use of your time to test things out first. Once you’ve tested, refined your idea, and re-tested it, you’ll have a pretty good idea of whether it’s going to work.
One way to improve your chances of success is to do market research before you spend valuable time and money trying to start your business. That might mean pitching your idea to a few valued friends or family members. It might mean asking your blog readers what they think of it. We’ll handle this for you.
Identifying Problems and Finding Solutions
You’re more likely to succeed if you identify a product or service that provides a solution to a problem faced by your target audience. People go online to find answers. They ask questions and look for products that will help them. It’s our job to make sure your product or service is properly positioned to answer their questions.
Planning for Failure
You’re probably thinking it sounds strange to plan for failure. It does – but it’s also a smart thing to do.
Step 3: Learning from Mistakes
Every cloud has a silver lining – and so does every mistake. It’s a bit cliché to say that mistakes are learning opportunities, but the fact that it’s a common saying doesn’t make it untrue.
Just like failure, mistakes show us who we are. We all make them. It’s what you do with them that marks the difference between success and failure.
Why Strategic Expansions & Digital Transformations Fail
It’s not easy to get an expansion off the ground. When this process fails, it can be for any one of several reasons. Here are some of the most common:
- Not focusing on customers and solving their problems
- Lack of focus
- Scaling too quickly
- Not building a success team
These problems happen when the leaders try to do too many things at once. The natural response for solving this problem is to bring in as much help as possible through hiring or outsourcing. However, scaling in this fashion is something that can send any enterprise into a tailspin. We’ll simplify your goals; focusing on one product or idea will help keep your eyes on the prize. This will allow your business to grow organically and scale only when you’re ready.
Step 4: Focus on Your Customers
The customer is always right. That’s a truism of customer service, but it’s just as important when planning for success.
Creating a Great Start-to-Finish Experience
A customer’s experience with you starts when they first learn about your company or product and continues for as long as they use your product.
When you think about the customer experience, think through every step of the experience. We’ll make sure you have the systems in place to provide exceptional service.
Customers who’ve received top-notch support remember it. They’ll mention it to their friends.
What’s the secret to attracting customers? VALUE.
Before anybody spends their money on your product, they’re going to want to know that it’ll deliver on its promises. We help your target customers feel better about that by positioning and clearly expressing your value to them even before they buy.
That means creating and delivering interesting, informative, relevant, and actionable demonstrations that’ll help you engage their attention. Of course, value must come from your product as well. We’ll position quality of the product, its usefulness, its longevity, and its price as the answer to their problems.
Customer support starts when a customer first visits your website. We help you determine what kind of support your customers need and how you’ll deliver it.
This can normally involve several different support tools and systems, such as:
- Email support
- Chat support
- Self-service options
- Social media support
We’ll give you an operational management suite with all of these options. Guiding you through testing of the various options to figure out what’ll work for your audience.
Step 5: Building Your Success Team
If you want to be successful, you can’t go it alone. There’s a temptation to do that, of course. Wearing every possible hat might save you a little money as you attempt to grow. But in the end, it’ll cost you more in time (and sanity) than the alternative.
Why You Shouldn’t Try to Do Everything
You might have a lot of skills. Perhaps you’re a great innovator with excellent communication skills. Maybe you’ve dabbled in accounting and flirted with marketing.
No matter how good you are, you’re not equally good at everything. If you try to do the things you’re not so great at, you might wind up settling for a less-than-perfect result.
A lot of entrepreneurs and new leaders do everything at first. Sometimes, you might need to. But once you’ve established your business and product, it’s a good idea to branch out and get some help.
Not only will you be able to do a better job at the things that ONLY you can do, you’ll also be able to live a balanced and productive life – and that’s part of goal.
The Importance of Delegation
How do you know what to do yourself and what to delegate? Delegation is an essential skill. You know you can’t do everything, but it can be difficult to let go of the things you’re accustomed to doing even when you have help. We’ll start by analyzing your operational tasks to prioritize and optimize.
Unless the task absolutely requires your input and skills, it should be open to delegation. We’ll spend time training your staff to do the task to your standards, and along the way usually end up uncovering gaps in your operational processes and provide you with the strategies to correct those mistakes.
The goal should be to maximize efficiency while also prioritizing accuracy. So, we’ll continually take an inventory of your team’s skills. They might have abilities you don’t know about yet!
How Far Do You Want to Go?
The 5 steps outlined here are what we guide leaders through with every consulting engagement – from entrepreneur to fortune enterprises.
The level of complexity and the exact steps taken during the journey will be as unique as the individual or business. To get an idea of how far you can go in your growth, start with a Planning for Success consultation.