You’re here because you have big dreams. Am I right? There is a business you either want to start or want to grow. But sometimes, it just seems so hard. I’ve been through it, I’ve seen it happen with my clients. These are the three common obstacles to business success. And they’re definitely not what you think they are.
Now before I drive into these three things, I just want to point out that they are not in any particular order. They’re not listed in order of largest to smallest or smallest to largest. The obstacles affect people in different ways. And these are dependent on you, your personality, skills, experience and your individual business. Ready? Let’s dive in.
Obstacle #1 – Not know where to start or what to do
This is definitely very common among entrepreneurs and small business owners that are in the early phases of their business – either still thinking about it or having just started out. Of course, it’s also quite expected. Starting a business can be daunting, and knowing what needs to be done isn’t something any of us are born with.
But this isn’t an issue reserved only for those starting a business. Many of my clients already have businesses. They need help figuring out their next move – which is mostly around how to grow, expand, launch in a new market and get more customers.
So not knowing where to start or what to do can be an obstacle for you at any stage of your business lifecycle. And when this happens, people tend to fall into the trap of getting overwhelmed…. and then paralyzed.
Sometimes, when you don’t know where to start, it feels like looking up at a huge rocky mountain that you need to get to the top of. Or worse yet, a deep dark hole that you need to jump into. And then, if and when you start looking into how to do the thing you need to do, whether that’s start your business or scale it, you get hit with information overload. And that is when the overwhelm kicks in. And then the paralysis as you look at all the different pieces of advice and “pathways” and courses and programs and you just can’t be sure which one is the “right” one.
Let me fill you in on a little secret. There is a reason people hire coaches, take courses, get mentors and join programs. It’s so that they only follow ONE path. Because the truth is, there are many paths to success. In fact, if you keep working towards your goal, you’ll get there. But what you don’t want is to be jumping from one path to another. Because then, you’re not really on any path, are you?
“There are many paths to success”
But there’s also the overwhelm because of all the questions racing around in your head. So maybe you haven’t started your research, maybe it’s not even information overload. It could be questions overload – questions that you have and for which you have no answers (yet!).
So whether you’re overwhelmed with all the information you collected, or you’re at a loss because you haven’t started yet and you’re just not sure where to start, rest assured that this is a common obstacle that pretty much all business owners face at some point in their businesses.
Obstacle #2: Lacking confidence
The second obstacle that business owners face is having to put themselves “out there” in order to start or scale their businesses. And this can be very uncomfortable for many people. I have personally seen that even those with incredible skills and who are mind-blowing at what they do often struggle with this. And on some level, it comes down to confidence.
Set’s look at what happens when you lack the confidence needed to move your business forward. When you lack the confidence you need as a business owner, you end up playing small. Your subconscious kicks in and the steps you take across product/service development, marketing, sales and anything else in your business are such that they are aligned to the level of confidence you have. Or to the level of visibility you think you deserve to be at. So when that level is low, your outward activities will be smaller than if you were truly feeling confident.
The good news (yes there’s good news!) is that you can easily overcome this with a good cheerleader (or cheerleading squad) in your corner. You can try these options, which are 100% free: find an accountability partner, create an accountability group or put together a mastermind of like-minded people. Use your person or your group to keep each other motivated, accountable and moving forward. Ask questions, offer perspectives and explore ideas together. You’re going to get an output that is equal to the effort you and others put into the group. So make it worth everyone’s time and give it your all.
Of course, you can always join a program, hire a coach or find a mentor. The truth is, you will naturally be more inclined to put effort into something that you’re paying for. But more than that, you’re more inclined to put effort into something you believe in. Something that makes you feel good. Something that you truly and genuinely enjoy. So if you are going to hire a coach or a mentor, or if you’re going to join a program, make sure it’s with someone who has a positive effect on you. Someone who motivates you. Someone who pushes you to be the best version of you that you can possibly be.
Obstacle #3 – Having only one perspective
And that brings us to the third obstacle. Being just one. Just one person with just one perspective. The best ideas come from exploring, dissecting and combining other ideas. And that is very difficult to do when you’re a solopreneur.
So yes, joining a group like the ones I talked about in the previous section can help you with this obstacle, too. But there’s also some inner work that needs to be considered.
Often, as business owners, as people building our own businesses, we tend to think we know best. It is, after all, our own business that we’re building. These are our thoughts, our dreams, our hard work. But I have found that taking in other people’s perspectives, considering them, and then objectively (not emotionally!) deciding whether they could work for me and my business has always taken me up a notch. It’s always given me something more, something better, something stronger and more powerful to create and provide my clients.
So even if you are part of an accountability group, a mastermind, or if you have a coach or are part of a program, stay open to other perspectives. You don’t ever have to change your goal, but the path to get you there can be lined with opportunities you had never thought of. And it’s those opportunities that could help you hit your mini-goals, your milestones and open up new doors for you along your path.
Do any of these obstacles resonate with you?
So you have a dream. There is a business you either want to start or want to grow. Now that you’re aware of these three common obstacles to business success, what will you do differently?
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