For those of you in business, I wonder how many of these points you’d agree with me on and how many you’d disagree.
Score yourself out of 30 and if you’re scoring under 20 then we should talk because one of us is doing a few things wrong, and I’m happy if it’s me since there’s no failure in life – just feedback (which brings me nicely onto point 1.).
1. I can’t learn if I’m not willing to listen. I need to always be open minded enough to hear the feedback and open to further learning – always!
2. Sometimes my best effort still isn’t good enough to win me the deal. That’s just how it goes sometimes.
3. The best way to get other people to care about my services is to care about them first.
4. I’ll never find fantastic opportunities for success if I’m not receptive to all the ideas that flow my way. I’m a grateful receiver.
5. Just because social media is fun and free, doesn’t mean it will gets me any sincere results, unless I’m super cunning about what I post and how I interact. I need always remain vigilant about my public messages.
6. I find I have to alter the conversation before I can return to close the deal, even if it’s just small talk. It eases the tension.
7. The difference between success and failure can often be just the decision to keep trying and not give up… yet.
8. If I promote myself and my services like a “person” then I have a better chance of getting people to buy my services from me.
9. Just because other people in my industry are doing something, doesn’t necessarily mean I should do them also. In fact I try to think ahead of the curve and not be part of it. It’s always better to be the one who stands out as different, especially in a congested market. So what is it that I do differently and what is it that I do the best?
10. I don’t always have to build rapport to build trust, but it certainly helps!
11. Just pretending that I don’t make mistakes does not make it actually true. I can fake it until I make it in whatever line of business I’m developing, but at some point I need to produce the results. Success breads success, but mistakes do happen along the way. I deal with them as they come and I’m not broken by them.
12. Knowing how to work smarter is the result of plenty of hard work previously and not a replacement for it.
13. Large contracts usually come when I’m least expecting them and often before I’m ready for them. Learning on the job is the very best way since there’s no better education than personal experience. So when the question comes “Can you do this?” I had better stick my hand up and say “Yes”, even if I am scared out of my wits.
14. “Apologies” are always a great way to keep a conversation going with a potential client. So I refuse to get scared off just because the prospect hasn’t responded to my line of interaction so far. I apologise and try again. Also, expressing gratitude or saying “Thank You” is a really useful way to maintain the conversation. It’s always important to be polite and subtle though. Never be pushy and over bearing.
15. The more I give out, the more I get back. In simplest terms, the greater the level of service I provide to a client the more likely they are to refer the next client to me.
16. I’ve learnt to spend much less time networking and handing out business cards. This can be such a poor use of my time and resources. By simply being a genuine and reliable figure of authority on my subjects, people find me or are introduced to me.
17. Once I provide the answer people will stop listening. So I leave suggestions and clues throughout the conversation instead.
18. There is no easy way out for big problems; but there is always a way out. Sometimes these appear quickly and sometimes slowly, but the exit will appear eventually. I may or may not like the exit but I should always take it.
19. Avoid negativity and pessimism. It’s never attractive to potential clients or other practitioners from whatever industry you’re in, unless you’re a professional comedian.
20. I don’t need permission to start marketing to a potential client. I just need to be polite and offer them genuine value to solve their problem / challenge.
21. Being “Professional” is the real key to getting serious prospects to want to work or do business with me. I show up looking smart having shaved and never wearing clothes that scream “look at me”. This can be terribly off putting for any potential client who’s going to spend their money through me. It would be like shouting at them that if they purchase my services that I’m then going to waste their money on personal whims.
22. Sometimes bad things happen to good people, even when they’ve got great strategies and business plans. Shit happens. Deal with it and move on. I don’t get stuck in a rut just because I didn’t get my way.
23. Just because it hasn’t worked out previously, does not mean that it won’t ever work out in the future. I try different approaches and alternative methods to achieve the goal. Sometimes it can take a number of attempts.
24. Ironically, the quickest way to become an expert in any field is to defy the current industry experts. The other way is to offer something original. I’ve found this to be the easier, softer option. I like to be the pioneer of my services and be the first to go for them. People always copy, but I can always say I was the first.
25. The number of people who believe in me does not correlate to my chances of success. Hard work, smart work and accurate work does though.
26. Being the smartest person in the room doesn’t necessarily make me the richest or wisest. The same goes for other people too – just because they’re smart doesn’t mean they’re rich, wise or successful. Learning from personal experiences seems to be the real key overall.
27. If I haven’t failed a lot, I’m probably not going to win a lot. Experience is the essential ingredient of success.
28. Experience is what I get just after I really needed it.
29. I don’t have to be “up for the job” to get the job done. Often I just need to complete the assignment even when I don’t really want to stick at, because the client’s experience is more important than my own for my future success.
30. Writing articles are a fabulous way to distract me from what I really ought to be doing 😉