If you wake up uncertain of what the day holds for you and your business, or if you feel ‘stuck’ in the same everyday routine… you probably do not have a clear vision for your business or a plan to move it forward.
Almost every success in my life has come AFTER having a vision for it.
A clear, inspiring vision is the first requirement for a business to succeed. A vision gives you direction and clarity of purpose. It gives you a clear map for the future aspirations of your business.
As an entrepreneur, you should have a vision for your business that’s inspired by something you’re passionate about. A clear vision will assist you in turning your passion into profit.
“If you want to reach a goal, you must “see the reaching” in your own mind before you actually arrive at your goal.”
– Zig Ziglar
A successful business owner starts with end results in mind. Her vision is higher — more prominent and powerful — than any obstacles she might experience in her journey to reach her ultimate goal.
This is why your business vision is perhaps your most important tool for success. It helps you maintain the right direction and ensures that you have the proper focus needed not to be distracted. It also ensures that you don’t waste time, effort and money on ideas and opportunities that might not be right for you.
Your vision should be simple… and clear. It should be written down… and shared. It should inspire all who are involved in your business to run with it.
“Write down the vision; write it ·clearly [plainly] on clay tablets so whoever reads it can run to tell others.”
-Habakkuk 2:2 (Expanded Bible)
I’d like to encourage you to:
1. Set Aside Time to Pray for Your Business.
Sow a financial seed and pray for God’s guidance. Ask God to give you ideas and to open doors of opportunity for you in your business that no man can close.
2. Remember, YOU Are Valuable. Don’t Sell Yourself Short.
Don’t downplay your abilities. You’re capable of more than you know.
3. Create an Environment That Helps You Succeed.
How do you like to work? With music? Or in silence? When do you do your best work? Mornings? Or evenings?
Find out the answers to questions like these, and then create the conditions under which you perform at your best.
4. Be Clear About Your Values.
Make sure your values are part of your vision so your business becomes the perfect platform to create the lifestyle you want.
Fail to do this and you will just be building a business empty of passion and enthusiasm. And without these two things, you won’t be able to protect yourself from the setbacks – both minor and major – that over time will just wear you down.
On the other hand, if you’re passionate about what you’re doing… if you believe that you are making a difference to yourself, your family, your clients and your community, then you will be driven forward, able to shrug off the disappointments and get back to your feet when you’re knocked down.
5. Remember, It’s Not ALL About You.
For a business to exist and thrive, it needs to solve real problems. When you do this, you touch people’s lives, giving your business a reason to exist. And as you help others, they in turn will help you by being your customers and clients, so that your business doesn’t just exist… but flourishes.
6. Determine What Works for You.
Don’t base your success on what others want, or what others have led you to believe success is. If you do you won’t feel fulfilled… and any success you do achieve, won’t seem like success at all.
There’s no point setting up a business that neither fulfills your needs nor plays to your strengths.
If you like to work alone, don’t create a business that requires you to be hands-on with a team. If you’re a team player, don’t create a business that isolates you for much of the time.
Set up your business so that it works for you… where you love what you do.
“If you do what you love, you’ll never work a day in your life.” -Marc Anthony
7. Dream Big – Set BIG Goals – Identify Your Challenges.
Get excited about the possibilities! If you don’t have proper ambitions for your business, how can you get excited about the opportunities that lie ahead? Envision the products and services that you want to offer, and who you want your clients to be. Think both short and long term. Only when you are able to envision your future, will you have the clear map to drive your business forward. The more real you can make your goals, the easier and faster it will be to achieve them.
Set BIG goals for yourself and your business.
If you set your goals too small, you may hit them, but how will you grow? On the other hand, if you set your goals too big… you may fall short… but you will be further along than if you set your goals too small. So… DREAM BIG & Set BIG Goals!
Identify your challenges. Once you have your goals written down, you will need to determine what might be preventing you from achieving them right NOW. What challenges are you facing? Is it a lack of a marketing plan… lack of a good team… not attracting the right clients? Make a list of these challenges, and be as specific as you can.
Create an action list. Now, with your list of challenges in hand… create an action list. Address each of your challenges and what it will take to overcome it. It might be an action such as hiring an assistant to help with a marketing plan…
Again, be very specific with your action list. The clearer you are …the easier it will be to work through each item.
8. Consider the Importance of a Team.
Seek out the support that will help you achieve the clarity and objectivity you need. Share your thoughts with others, take advice from coaches and mentors, create a ‘think-tank’ whose judgement you trust and respect.
9. Stay Focused.
Make copies of your vision and post it throughout your home, but at the very least keep a copy by your work area. What you focus on, you attract. So being consistently, consciously aware of what you expect, will help you realize your vision faster.
And, whenever you have business decisions to make you can look at your vision and ask yourself, “Will this get me closer to my vision, or take me off-course?” Based on that answer, you’ll be able to make smart decisions that will continue to move your business forward.
10. Focus On the Big Picture… Create a Business Plan – Be Clear About the Kind of Business You Want to Create.
You must begin with the end result in mind. If you don’t, you’ll always be working IN your business… and never working ON improving it. You probably started your business for reasons such as making more money and having more freedom, not to be continually mired in problems. Without a business plan, problems will continue to arise.
You don’t have time to do this? You don’t have time not to do this. If you have to, hire a virtual assistant to create the thinking space you need to create a clear plan for your business.
Be sure that your business plan is the right vehicle to make your vision real. For example, if achieving your business goals means working so many hours that you never see your family… or that you never have the time to enjoy the other things you love to do, then perhaps you need to rethink things and rebalance your priorities.
Revisit your plan often. Don’t be afraid to consider changing the way you do business. If you’re business plan isn’t scalable for long-term success… maybe it’s time to consider a new plan.
~ Finally, once you have a clear vision and plan for your business, keep revisiting and refining your goals to avoid falling back into the ‘comfortable’ patterns of thought… and old ways of doing things that have held you back in the past.
Now get to it! And… God Bless You!
“You are capable of more than you know. Choose a goal that seems right for you and strive to be the best, however hard the path. Aim high. Behave honorably. Prepare to be alone at times, and to endure failure.
Persist! The world needs all you can give.” -E.O. Wilson