You want to be a successful person.
You want to own a successful business.
But can you really do both?
The combination of a successful person and a successful business isn’t the holy grail. Anyone can have this, but balanced success requires intentionality.
Intentional Balance, anyone?
Business success is easy to define: the company makes money and maintains a sustainable profit and predictable revenue.
I’ve seen some terribly unsuccessful human beings running successful businesses.
The real measure of achievement is becoming a successful person. So, what makes a successful human being?
As I’ve worked with individual owners of privately held companies over the years, I’ve noticed these three key attributes of successful AV business owners…
1. Being Self-Aware
Being a successful person starts by becoming self-aware.
We must be honest with ourselves about our strengths and limitations. We can then live into the areas where we excel and be more intentional about managing our struggles.
We also need to know what makes us happy (which is harder than it sounds).
Self-help gurus make millions teaching us about our insecurities and what makes us happy. But learning what makes you happy (and what you need to overcome to be happy) is a journey. It changes over time. But if you want to be a successful person, you have to figure it out.
2. Knowing Your Tolerance For Risk
Successful people also understand their tolerance for risk. This is another self-aware quality that changes over time.
Your tolerance for risk is the point where fear kicks in and takes over in the decisions you’re making. If you feel confident, you’re below your tolerance for risk and in your comfort zone. If you’re fearful, you’re out of your comfort zone.
If you know where your tolerance for risk is, you can spend as much time being fearful as is productive for you. For some of us, that’s zero. We want no time in the fear space. For other people, spending time in the fear space is tolerable so they’re comfortable taking bigger risks.
Successful people know their tolerance for risk and they don’t compromise on it. They don’t put themselves in situations where they’re not going to be successful on their terms.
3. Living into Your Vision
Vision is the number one, most obvious quality that any business advisor will tell you is a key ingredient to success.
Vision is also one of those nebulous, touchy-feely terms that’s overused.
What actually is vision?
It’s hard to define, but easy to identify.
Look at the most successful business owners and you’ll see a clear vision. They clearly understand:
- Who their customers are;
- How they make money;
- What they want to do to be successful; and
- What tactics they’re willing to take to fulfill their vision and strategy.
Vision is the single most important quality for business success. To be a successful business owner, you must have a clear picture about what you want your business to be and then be able to convey that vision to other people.
You may not make as much money as the next guy, but that’s not how we keep score.
This is about being a successful person and running a successful business. That means we need keep a score of success by different standards:
- Am I happy with the outcome?
- Am I doing what I need to do?
- Am I happy with my life?
- Do I enjoy going to work every day?
- Does my job provide things for me that I couldn’t have otherwise?
- Do I want to keep doing this?
When you can answer “Yes” to these questions — that, my friends, is success.