When you are in the midst of launching and growing a business it can be tough to figure out exactly what you want your business to look like. I
t’s easy to get distracted by what other people in your industry are doing and how they are structuring their business.
It can also be tough creating a routine in your business to help you move forward when you feel drained or overwhelmed.
Getting really clear on how you operate most effectively will help you launch and grow a fun and successful business.
When you crack this code, daily tasks are interesting and engaging instead of draining. It allows you to operate at your best and serve your clients in a way that feels authentic and fun.
Here are 5 steps to help you create an actionable plan for your business.
1. Create the conditions for success
The first step I always recommend to clients is getting really clear on how you operate most effectively.
Take the time to figure out what's worked for you in the past and then create those conditions in your business.
Think about a time that you were successful in your personal or work life in the past. What conditions were present for you during those times? What motivated you and excited you about the journey? Who were you working with? What type of work were you doing? What did you excel at during those times?
Once you identify patterns in your past successes you can figure out how to build those into your own business.
These questions take a little bit of time to really dig into, but they can lead to great insights into how to shape and structure your business.
Here is an example that I worked through for my business.
I know I work best on projects where I can take the lead, I enjoy writing and speaking, but I hate detail work. I like to create ideas and execute quickly, but often lose focus on the tedious details and get bored quickly. I like helping people, but sometimes get tasked focused.
I work best by myself or in small groups where I can influence the decisions and the pace of action. I am most successful when I'm working towards goals and action items that I can check off my "to-do" list. I am drained by large groups and am frustrated by group projects.
Knowing these things helped me set up a business that tapped into my natural interests and strengths.
It gave me clarity around the services I wanted to offer and how best to serve my clients.
2. Identify the skills and talents you bring to the table
When we are operating within our natural skills and gifts we feel excited and unstoppable.
The challenge is sometimes we discount the things we are good at and ignore them because they feel easy to us. We assume if they are easy to us they are easy to everyone else.
Take the time to figure out what makes you unique and how you can bring those skills to your business as much as possible.
This is your zone of genius, and if you can tap into that zone your business won’t feel like work.
It took me a while to realize that my zone of genius was teaching, but once I really tapped into that area of expertise my business grew exponentially and felt a lot less stressful.
What skills and talents do you have that come naturally to you? How can you use those skills in your business? What do people always ask you for help with?
Tap into those strengths and make them a core part of your business.
If you find your business, requires you to always operate outside of your zone of genius, you may want to shift your focus.
3. Just keep going…
Running a business takes a lot of mental energy.
You will spend hours thinking about new ideas and figuring out how to implement what you want to do. You'll do research and slog through hours of articles and videos trying to figure out all the things that don't come easily to you.
That’s okay! It’s part of the process.
There will be moments of exhaustion and overwhelm with your business.
Just knowing those moments are going to show up can help you navigate them. It’s so easy to think you made a mistake when the business starts to feel tough.
Just remember the difference between a failed businesses and a successful business is the perseverance of the owner.
You have to make a commitment to just keep going even when you aren’t sure you’ve made the best choice.
Taking consistent action will allow you to achieve great results.
4. Baby steps
As you get ready to launch your business, it is important to figure out what you want it to look like in a year or two years, but understand you can’t do it all at once.
You absolutely have to know where you want to end up so you can create a plan to get there.
But the challenge with having a big vision for your business (which I think you all should have!), is that it can distract you from what you need to be working on today.
A lot of my clients struggle with wanting to do too much too quickly. Honestly, I still fall into this trap from time to time.
It’s so exciting to think about our vision of a successful business. We have ideas about programs and products we want to launch, but it’s important to slow down and start with step one.
As you are moving forward in your business, it’s important to ask yourself, “what’s the next best step.” There isn’t always a clear answer, so just pick a direction and start taking action.
It’s great to have a long-term plan, but there also needs to be day-to-day action.
5. Remember to have fun!
If you are like most of my clients, you launched your own business because you loved the idea of escaping the 8-5 grind and were excited about serving your niche and using your skills to build a business you love.
The problem is that once we launch these businesses we are so passionate about it’s easy to get lost in the day-to-day operations and lose sight of the things we love.
Here’s my best advice…hold on to the fun parts of your business.
Don’t get bogged down in all the “shoulds” around your business. Do the things that excite you and engage you. Try and minimize the amount of you time doing the things that don’t come naturally and aren’t exciting.
I believe if you hold onto the fun and take consistent action you can create an energizing, exciting and profitable business doing the things you love.
Your goal should be to build a business that serves your clients and feeds your soul.