Summary: Would you agree that Entrepreneurship could be a euphemism for Problem Solver Extraordinaire? The hard part is that these challenges can multiply faster than rabbits – and distract you from working on the business.
You spend your day putting out fires and reacting to what’s happening instead of strategically and calmly managing your business successfully.
There’s no silver bullet but here are three ways that will help minimize your business challenges.
Have you ever been questioned about your decision of going into business for yourself?
Have people ever enlightened you on the risks and statistics of failed businesses? [Most times you didn’t even ask].
They most likely are coming out of a place of love and concern [we can only hope, right?] but you are a bit different than the average folks. In a good way, of course!
It is not a surprise that with business ownership there will be problems, pitfalls, and challenges that you will face. Everybody knows the trials and tribulations that a business owner comes up against. We know that our best friend knows that, Becky’s Sister’s mother-in-law’s pet iguana knows that, but most importantly YOU know that! And yet, you did it anyway.
You started the business despite the risk.
We love that and even though not everyone might understand your decision, it’s okay.
Not everybody will agree with you but you still have to forge ahead and be ready to tackle each entrepreneurial challenge at a time because you have a dream to pursue.
Part of you even likes the thrill of it all. The risk and challenge excite you but with time the thrill wears off and somehow you activate firefighter mode. You are putting out fires left and right with no end in sight.
What if we told you there is a way to become that cool, calm, and confident leader that you idolize? Well, you can, our friend. We have three ways to minimize every business challenge and make you feel like you’re on easy street.
Before you throw your fire extinguisher into the wind, there will still be fires to put out [que all the sad firefighters]. We are not going to just *poof* all your problems in business away.
It’s just not possible. Trust us, if we could manipulate the world to avoid these problems, we would [but if we had one wish to be our superpower, this would be it].
We can’t control the world unfortunately but we can control how we handle ourselves when a problem in business rears its ugly head.
Story Time: “Ditch The Firefighter Role”
Let me tell you about a business owner named Leslie who was a master problem solver but would never be able to complete her own to-do list.
It’s a scary story.
Leslie started her first, fresh business with high hopes and a work ethic that was beyond impressive. She had her hands in everything, and if a problem arose, she was the one to handle it. Early morning, afternoons, or late at night she was putting out fires left and right, some days she even showed up to work wearing a fireman’s uniform on [she was starting to lose it there for a minute]. This master problem-solver guru turned into an unproductive business owner of her own accord. If she was honest, she liked solving problems, but there was one tiny problem with her fascination with putting chaos in its place.
The entire day she was only focused on solving problems, but none of it was on her to-do list. Not one problem that was solved was things that grew her business or were strategic in any way. Six o’clock would come and now it was time for her to start working on her checklist of to-dos but this charade would consistently cause her to fall behind.
Leslie felt as there was not enough of her to go around and it was exhausting, frustrating, and started making her think of some pretty crazy thoughts like, “I am going to shut my business down, get a job instead so I can be paid better, have better benefits, and take a vacation.”
*OH NO! THE HORROR!*
[we told you it was scary]
Luckily, Leslie realized her demise, she didn’t quit her business, she’s a thriving business owner and now teaches other entrepreneurs to not fall in the same chief firefighter trap *wink*. The reason for our storytime is to hopefully catch you before you get to that point or if you are already at that point that it’s okay! No need to panic. We can turn it around. We know it can be done because we have guided so many business owners to do just that with our three quick tips on how to minimize your business challenges.
Three Ways to Minimize Your Business Challenges:
1. Surround Yourself with Trusted Peers
You want to be around like-minded business owners who create predictable profits to grow and scale without burnout. Surround yourself with entrepreneurs that are like you. They are trying to grow in the same direction, not to be confused with growing in the same way because everybody has their own journey.
This community has shared goals, motivations, and reasons why they’re in business.
Why do you need this community?
When you face these challenges, whether big or small, you want the people you are talking to, to understand the struggle you are seeking to resolve. You want those, “Been there, done that, I have the shirt” type of people in your corner. Their understanding of your challenges in business gives them the ability to hear your story and support you.
Other business owners will understand your frustrations and be willing to hear what you wish was happening instead. Their wisdom and understanding will help guide you to choose the right solution and hold you accountable because sometimes we are our worst enemy.
This is exactly why we formed the Profitable Growth Incubator. We wanted to provide that space of connection. Encourage conversations where you can ask questions you wouldn’t dare post on social media. Sometimes you simply don’t know who to ask because you don’t have trusted peers. Having this community will give you the ability to lean into them.
2. Create the Space to Think
Whether it’s a walk-in your neighborhood or in your yard sitting with a cup of coffee and a journal, you need to create a calming space to think and solve the problems you are facing.
If you are always reacting to problems then you won’t have time to think. When you create that space to think, your brain chooses better solutions. Period. This gives you the space to think about the implications and you can think completely. Need proof? Sure! Let us ask you a question. Where do you come up with your greatest ideas?
Perhaps when you are in the shower, falling asleep, or waking up in the morning? Why is that? It’s because you are not doing anything else, and you are giving your brain time to process. Don’t think you need to put aside an astronomical amount of time aside for this, but the more you are in this firefighter mode, the more you need this quiet space to stay clear and to give intention. During this time, you can set goals, and you can think through things. Create that space to be able to do that.
3. Adopt a More Strategic Role
For some reason, when the word “strategy” gets mentioned, people treat it like it’s the Oogie boogie man. A strategy does not have to be this crazy over-complicated array of events. Strategy is simply connecting the dots. For example, you are at point A, and your goal is to be at point B, so the journey between point A and point B is the strategy.
Sometimes people get malaligned between the strategy and their goal. The strategy they choose is not in alignment with their goal, who they are, and all that secret sauce stuff that makes their business so good.
Through mentoring, the advisor’s job is to help make those connections to show the probable paths you could choose. Mentors or advisors ask you the hard questions that get you to think, choose the solution, and get you to focus. Sometimes you need that outside set of eyes to raise questions, and the average person might not know how to help you because they don’t know what it’s like to run a business, have a team, or just simply haven’t been where you are. That is what advisors and mentors can bring to the table. They can bring a bit of experience, accountability, and a lot of leaning in so they can continue to help guide you so you can choose the best path for yourself.
How to Put These Tips To Minimize a Business Challenge to Work in Your Business
Taking these steps will start you on this path of intentional problem-solving. It will make you see that these situations are normal, sometimes it’s part of the journey, and sometimes all you need are outside eyes to think of new ways to solve a problem.
We talked about it plenty of times before, that doing the same thing over and over again is the definition of insanity. Sometimes you need a guide that can help you get through that repetition of no return. A space for yourself to think is non-negotiable for you to become that cool, calm, and collected leader that we talked about earlier.
The one thing our clients always say at the end of taking time in their space to solve a problem is that “They never thought that I would have such peace and calm in making a problem-solving decision.” It’s not that we think that we will never have a problem, it’s just that we now have the tools and the confidence to handle them better.
If you are looking for a community or a mentor, we would love for you to reach out to us so we can help!
Leslie Hassler is a popular author and speaker who spends much of her time coaching business owners on how to run their growing businesses by their rules. Delivering high-touch, personalized service, Leslie works with her clients as a partner, not just a consultant (who would pop in, tell you what to do, then leave).
Leslie teaches her clients a structured way to decide what to do first, second, next — and never – in their businesses, so that they can learn to do it for themselves.
Leslie lives in Dallas with her husband and two kids, so she knows it’s not just about growing the business – it’s about getting the business ship shape so it grows and you can be home in time for dinner.
Leslie speaks on topics such as business leadership, prioritizing the business owner’s To Do list, and how to create and implement a strategic plan for growth.
If you’d like to have Leslie come speak to your group or organization, or present at your event, inquire here.