The great opportunity of the Coronavirus

I’m sure you’re sick of hearing all the bad news about the Coronavirus.

So let’s reverse things.

What about the advantages of this pandemic?

Well if you play this right, you can totally transform your business during the quarantine period.

How?

By making sure you use the extra time working at home to get better at what you do.

Study new business development. Study sales technique.

Improve your time management skills.

Learn how to read a balance sheet better.

Learn leadership, or how to be an awesome manager.

Get better at pricing your services.

Get up to date on new digital channels and how best to utilize them.

In short, use this priceless time at home, when you have more freedom and often more time, to become a better You.

If you’re a company owner, the very best use of your time is to develop a better new business development system, as that will improve your future more than anything else.

Imagine this. By the time we all go back to normal life, you have built a highly effective, efficient and lucrative client attraction system. One that you can roll out powerfully and immediately.

If you did that, then later when you talked with others about the impact Coronavirus had on the world, you could honestly say, “Coronavirus was the best thing that ever happened to my business. I used the time to take myself and the company to a totally different level.”

Wouldn’t that be great?

Don’t waste this virus.

Use it to become a better You.

A POWERFUL WAY TO THINK DURING THE CORONAVIRUS

We’ve all been under huge pressure over the last few weeks.

And many business leaders have become depressed.

It’s understandable. Revenue has collapsed for most companies, and many clients have stopped spending.

If you are feeling down and disempowered, then today I’d like to show you a different way of thinking that is enormously helpful in turbulent times.

It’s a mental technique that almost instantly improves your business, lifts your mood, and gets you feeling like you’re back in control again.

Here it is:

Stop focusing on your company’s results (which are probably bad right now) and start focusing on your own personal performance each day.

Literally change the game, so that the primary thing you think about all day is whether YOU are performing well, not just your business.

Here’s how you do it:

Define what being excellent as a company leader looks like. What are the behaviors of a CEO who is superb? Write them down on paper.

Attempt to be like that person all day long. Keep coming back to that list through the day and do your best to exhibit the character traits of somebody who is a truly world class business person.

Evaluate yourself at the end of the day. How well did you be that person? Where were you strong and where were you weak? Which areas do you need to work on tomorrow?

At night frequently see yourself as already being that person. The mind is a mysteriously powerful thing. The more you act as if you have certain personal traits the more you develop them.

What’s great about this mental technique is that it improves your performance at work very quickly. Easily within an hour.

It also is a game you can win every day- you don’t need anyone else’s help, you don’t need someone to find a cure for the Coronavirus. You just need to be excellent, as you have defined it.

Make this your primary aim each day and you’ll start to feel amazing, and your business will rise to a whole new level.

Use this amazing technique from the Navy Seals to stay strong

Obviously things are pretty tough for us all during this Coronavirus situation.

So today I want to give you a technique used by the Navy Seals to help keep you fighting strong.

It’s a very subtle technique, and even people who have studied how the Seals teams work may not have picked up the importance of it.

Here is their brilliant technique:

The Navy Seals have an entirely different way of thinking about hardship.

They pride themselves on being tougher than any hardship. It’s literally conditioned into their minds to not only be ambivalent about their discomfort, but to actually take pride in it.

This highly unusual attitude is summed up perfectly in the Navy Seals motto:

‘The only easy day was yesterday’.

Think about that motto for a moment.

Of all the mottos that this elite fighting unit could have chosen, they picked one that was totally centered around their ability to handle hardship easily.

That motto basically says:

‘Tough times? Bring it on! Let’s make tomorrow even harder! I don’t care. I am so freakin tough it doesn’t phase me. I fully expect the days coming up to be even harder and I’m totally fine with it! In fact I’ll excel in it!’

Can you see how unusual that is as a way of thinking?

Can you also see how powerful it would be if you adopted the same mindset when it comes to your business, and your life, during this Coronavirus pandemic?

Look, these hard times aren’t going to stop any time soon.

So you have two choices:

You can complain and get depressed about it all.

Or you can start thinking like a Navy Seal, and say “Bring it on! I’m 100 times mentally tougher than this or any other disaster!”

This is a very, very effective way to think, and I urge you to adapt it immediately.

The big mistake you are probably making

Every week I mentor numerous entrepreneurs and business leaders, of all different types.

But they are almost all guilty of making a serious mistake when it comes to how they grow their company.

I wouldn’t mind betting you are making the same mistake.

What is this error that so many make?

Not following up on sales leads.

The guy you met 4 months ago that seemed interested in what your company offered.

That girl at a party who said she knew someone who needed your services.

That lead that just went dark…and then you gave up on it.

That meeting that went so well… and then the opportunity seemed to evaporate.

These are all opportunities to bring in revenue, but so many of us forget about them and just chase the latest hot enquiry or opportunity.

Don’t do this.

If they haven’t said a clear NO to you, stay in touch, keep following up. Continue to offer them value.

Send them case studies, or educate them on what’s happening in your industry. Or make more offers to them. Or just re- connect and ask how they’re doing.

These leads are not dead. They are very much alive, and waiting for you to resuscitate them.

Right now there are at least 3 people you have not followed up with lately, who would give you money if you did.

Go get ‘em.

Stop being a slave to your clients

We all want to offer good customer service.

But too often I see business owners go way too far.

So many entrepreneurs treat the client (or potential client) as being superior to them.

When they phone us we feel we have to drop everything we’re doing and answer them.

When they ask us to deliver work within a ridiculous timeframe we gulp and say “Yes of course.”

When they ask for fee reductions we quickly give in.

We provide multiple solutions and let them choose, instead of telling them the best way to go.

And when we’re in meetings with them we let them lead the agenda.

These are all big mistakes. Behaving this way is not customer service, it is subservience and weakness.

(Even though I know you have the best intentions by doing it – you simply want the client to be happy.)

Now of course, we have to service clients well and efficiently. And deliver an excellent result in a reasonable time period.

But letting them take control and take the dominant role in the relationship does damage to your business in two ways.

Once they sense they are the ’boss’ of the relationship they usually increase their demands of you. You slowly end up doing more for less, much quicker.

Their respect for you diminishes.

Remember this: What they really want is a trusted advisor who is their equal. Someone who clearly knows more about a particular area than they do, and so can counsel them wisely, saving or making them a fortune, or at least making their life much easier.

You don’t earn their respect by bowing down to them all the time.

You earn it by being excellent, sure of yourself, behaving like a true industry expert, being strong with them when they are wrong and leading them throughout your journey together so that they get an optimal result.

Yes you are warm and friendly. But you are also elite- behaving as an eminent expert, not a sycophantic slave in need of their money.

Be strong with them. Lead them. And treat yourself as a true industry paragon.

Believe me, it will be far more attractive to them. And far more lucrative for you.

3 questions that will make your business much more successful.

If your business is growing slowly, There’s one thing you need to understand.

It’s not the fault of the industry you are in. Or the economy. Or the time of year. Or even what your competitors are doing.

The problem is you.

Now don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying each of those elements are not factors in your success. But the reality is there are other entrepreneurs in your industry that are experiencing some or all of these issues, but they are still growing their companies fast

So the first step is to look in the mirror and accept personal responsibility for your results. And the second step is to clearly identify and fix the issues, so you can start growing again.

When I coach entrepreneurs, I like to start by asking a series of questions to identify the weak points in how they are running their companies.

In today’s blog I’ll give you 3 of these questions to ask yourself.

Spend just 3 minutes on each question- don’t overthink it. And in under 10 minutes you will have a much better idea about what you should do next to grow your company’s revenue fast.

Question 1.
Do you have a successful, systematic marketing system to bring in leads?

If you’re relying on referrals, your revenue will always be up and down and you will spend a lot of time this year being stressed about it. You must supplement business from referrals with an organized marketing system.

Question 2.
Do you spend a meaningful amount of time each week on your own marketing?

Some people have a marketing system, but they just don’t consistently dedicate enough time to running it. You can have a $2 million Bugatti sports car in your garage, but if you don’t get in it and drive, you will be beaten to your destination by any Toyota Corolla. If finding new revenue is something you do only when you have some spare time, low growth is virtually certain.

Question 3.
Are you regularly refining and improving that system?

Perhaps you have a marketing system and it’s going okay, even pretty well. But if you don’t work on improving your results, you are leaving literally millions of dollars of potential revenue on the table.

I have often seen entrepreneurs double or even triple their results by making minor tweaks to their marketing efforts.

For now, these are the most important questions to ask yourself.

One last thing:

When you get the answers, do something immediately to start addressing the main weak point you identify. Literally in the 30 minutes afterward.

Momentum is a powerful thing. And your revenue growth is a far too important issue to leave to another day.

Making this year better than the last

By now the excitement of a brand new year is beginning to calm down, and we are left with the day to day running of our businesses.

If we are not careful, everything will go back to what it was last year.

Same performance. Same attitude. Same financial results.

You must resist this, with all your might.

Hoping for a better year is not enough. You need to develop an actual plan that you can run day in and day out, that will not just increase your chances of success this year, but virtually guarantee it.

The plan is different for every business, but in today’s blog I want to give you some elements that you should use to create that plan:

1.Your Optimization list.

What are you already currently doing in your business that could improve?

Look at what you’re doing in every area of your company: sales, marketing, delivery, customer service, team, administration.

How could you make each area a bit better? Put your thoughts down on paper, then start work on the top 3 most impactful strategies. (The rest can wait until you’ve done the most vital ones).

2. Your Innovation list.

What totally new things could you try in each area of your business?

New product offerings, new staff, new regions you could sell in, new revenue streams you could test, new back office systems you could introduce, new advertising mediums you could try.

Collate your ideas, then again, pick the 3 most valuable innovations and take action on them.

3. Your Being list.

Now, what type of person would you have to become, for this year to be the most profitable of your life?

What attitude changes would you need? How would your self image need to be refined? What character flaws are holding you back that you need to focus on and eradicate?

You cannot achieve lasting major improvements in your business if you continue to function at the same level of being as you have been.

Your dollar earning potential is intimately related to your level of internal development, yet few entrepreneurs seek to improve their inner selves.

Creating each of these 3 lists probably only takes 20 minutes each. Yet virtually no entrepreneurs have ever done it. You will almost certainly be the only person in your industry that evaluates opportunities for your company’s growth in this comprehensive way.

But if you do this (and consistently move forward on the best strategies that you conceive) the chances of you having a magnificent year are exceedingly high indeed.

5 concepts for success in 2020.

How can you make 2020 your best year ever?

Recently I was interviewed by one of Australia’s top company board experts, Kylie Hammond.

She asked me, “What are 5 things people can do to have an amazing business year in 2020?”

Attached below is my answer.

If you are committed to excellence in your business life, I think you’ll find the interview very valuable.

The interview is below.
Kylie Hammond interview

The importance of keeping your belief strong.

Growing a business is very tough mentally.

You sometimes doubt whether you’ll succeed.

You often blame yourself for mistakes.

You regularly get frustrated by slow progress.

And then there’s the boredom – running a business week in and week out can get really tedious at times.

No wonder entrepreneurs feel down on many occasions.

And that’s why it’s so crucial to keep your self belief strong – to do the mental work each day that keeps you motivated, inspired, persistent and effective.

(Please remember, that self belief doesn’t just happen – you have to work at it to maintain it).

When I coach entrepreneurs, I teach them a whole arsenal of cutting edge mental techniques to keep their confidence and belief uplifted, but today I want to talk about just one:

Daily reading of your Supporting Reasons.

Here’s how this mental technique works.

  1. You write down every valid reason that you can achieve your business goals. (For example: ‘I have ten years experience in this industry. I am excellent at selling. I really understand my field’, etc.).
  2. Then every morning before you start work, you read this list and remember why you are so good at what you do.

It’s such a simple technique, but it’s incredibly powerful at keeping your self belief strong.

If we only just remind ourselves of all the genuine reasons we can achieve something, we are far less likely to lose confidence, get unmotivated or give up.

But we have to do this regularly or we’ll forget – and self doubt can creep in.

I challenge you to do this technique every morning for the next 7 days.

You will be amazed at how much more confident you will become.

This 3 minute exercise will absolutely improve your business

Here’s a 3 minute exercise that will absolutely improve your business.

Step 1.
In the next 2 minutes, re-arrange the following 5 business growth areas in order of importance, for you:

  1. Getting new leads.
  2. Improving what you offer.
  3. Working out how to make more money from current clients.
  4. Leading your team better.
  5. Re-contacting old leads/customers.

Step 2.
Pick your top 2 most important areas, then block 5 hours in your calendar to do each of them, every week for the next 3 weeks.

Growing your business is often simpler than you may think.

But you must spend meaningful amounts of time on the few things that really matter.