3 Essentials for Business Success
9th November 2018
Starting a business is easy, growing it is where the hard work comes in. However you measure your success – profits, turnover, market share, awards, employee survey results, etc – there are a number of factors which are necessary for sustainable success (assuming you have a good product or service), which I will share with you here.
This is said to account for 80% of success. There are a number of elements to this which are important. One is self-insight. Do you really know yourself or do you think you do? The problem is that we all have blind-spots and we don’t know what we don’t know. Our blind spots may be skills not yet discovered, or they can be traits which are really getting in your way. And if you don’t know what they are, they are going to keep getting in your way no matter how good your product or service is. As the saying goes, you are only as strong as your weakest link.
Whatever your blind-spot, it is important to become aware of it and the two easiest ways of doing this is through a psychometric profile (I use several and they are incredibly enlightening and empowering), and/or coaching. As a coach I help individuals like you develop not only the awareness but what you can do about it.
Another trait of Emotional Intelligence is understanding and managing emotions. Many people feel that they are really good at this when what is actually happening is that they are suppressing their emotions. This can lead to a number of negative outcomes, one of which is outbursts that come out at the wrong time and often to the wrong person. How does this impact success? Because constructive conversations which yield the right results are not happening and working relationships are affected. This in turn affects morale and productivity, reinforces the wrong behaviours and creates a culture of fear. Suppressing emotions can have a huge impact on health which I do not have the space to go into here.
People tend to suppress or distract from negative emotions with activities like drinking too much, comfort eating, smoking, Facebooking, gambling, etc. They feel like they are helping with a negative emotion but really the opposite is true and the consequences can be dire.
Another element of Emotional Intelligence is the ability to understand and empathise with others. This increases your ability to build rapport, influence and motivate others, whether it is a member of your team, a prospect you want to convert or a client who is making a complaint. This skill really helps you build on what is good and grow from what isn’t working. Most people can benefit from learning how to understand others at a deeper level.
Emotional intelligence is one of those things where you need to have a lot of it to know if you have it but the important thing to know is that it can be built. It is also key to achieving stress-resilience.
How Can Your Business Be Healthy if You’re Not?
One of the ways I help people is to ensure that they have optimal health and energy because to succeed in business you need to be firing on all cylinders. Health is more than just an absence of symptoms. When you are healthy, in every sense of the word (physically, mentally, emotionally), you can enjoy:
- More stamina to deal with the challenges of business and life
- Greater clarity of thought and direction
- Improved ability to solve problems quickly
- Feel more motivated and less irritable
- Your immune system will be stronger to safeguard you from colds and flu so you are at the top of your game more of the time
Sometimes we just don’t know that we are being impacted so my stress and wellness assessment is a good way to know for sure.
Another by-product of emotional intelligence, the ability to positively influence others, is crucial for business. It affects your ability to have people buy into you, your business, your product and your ideas. It impacts your leadership style and your ability to build trust and credibility. Without it, any success you do have is on borrowed time. Understanding peoples’ motivational style is a key component to honing your message to them. For example, someone who is risk-averse needs a different approach to someone who is goal oriented. What you say may make sense but it may not have the desired result. There are many motivational styles to consider, whether you are talking to a customer, to an employee or to your investors. Really getting a handle on this can make a huge difference to your business and your enjoyment of it too.
Of course influence is much more than understanding motivational styles but what’s important is that you are positioning your message, formal or otherwise, to avoid negative consequences of failure and achieve the positive consequences of success. I have a whole chapter in a couple of my books because it is so important. If you are firing on all cylinders, develop your emotional intelligence, your mind is in a better position to influence effectively.