Being successful in a new business is about achieving your goals, not about meeting other people’s expectations of your results.
The naturally successful business person is one who has created a plan for themselves and has continued to focus on their definition of success. To help make that focus easier, these four elements must be addressed before a business is started.
Element # 1: Earth
Having A Plan
The first step to creating any successful business is to lay down a solid foundation. Being represented by earth, the foundation of any business is not just about having the proper products or staff. Having a strong foundation is more about the research, direction, strategy and plans that have been create prior to the business being started.
Build the Skills
The second piece of this element is having the right skills and knowledge to succeed in your chose area. I once heard a line that said, “fake it until you make it.” I don’t agree with this statement. While I understand the need to shape the image you portray, real experts will soon discover your short-comings. Do business in an area that you understand or have a fundamental level of skill. If you need new skills, learn them. If you need to gain experience, use that as an asset and motivate yourself to a new level.
Element # 2: Wind
What’s Around The Corner?
Wind can come as a soft summer breeze or a hurricane force. The same is true of challenges (both good and bad) in your business. The key to understanding this element is to watch for the signs of trouble and be prepared when they arrive. Know your weaknesses (board up your windows) and don’t be scared to take some time to relax when the wind stops. One word of advice: If there’s no wind blowing in your business, just make sure your not about to hit the other side of the hurricane.
Be a Quick Change Artist
Have you ever heard the phrase, “Change is in the wind?” This isn’t just something that people say in old black and white movies; it’s a line that is crucial to understand in today’s economy. With each global technological or social change more dramatic and faster than the previous one, having a change management strategy is paramount for a business. In your venture, it means that you should stay informed on new tactics, techniques or tricks in the industry. Be prepared to change your approach and stay focused on your goals.
Element # 3: Water
Implementing Your Vision
If you release water down a hill, you will see it spread out looking for the path of least resistance – the same is true for most people. As the water moves downward, some will catch in pockets of low lying ground, some will evaporate with the increased surface area and some will simply seep into the ground and disappear. Eventually water will reach the bottom but in a limited and haphazard way.
Is this the way you would want your life and business to be handled? Would it not be smarter to take the time to make a vision then create a path that will bring the most water to the bottom? With your goals set, take the time to use them, talk about them, change them and implement their success. Everyone ends up at the bottom of the hill. The question is: how much water will you have when you arrive?
Keeping a Constant Message
Knowing this element of a successful business will strengthen your image and increase your market share and income. The water element signifies the flow of a business. This means that an owner must craft a public image that is constant and can flow throughout the organization. Develop a brand, unique value proposition, client expectations and goals with a common theme or message in mind.
Element # 4: Fire
Have the Passion
The last element is both the most simple to understand yet the hardest to have or create. The fire of a business comes down to one thing: the passion level of the business owner. Without the passion for what you are doing, it would be very difficult to succeed when there is a slow down or problem within the business.
Fire has the ability to destroy anything around it; however, when focused properly it also has the ability to create, forge and bind even the hardest steel. Use this element to your advantage. Take your passion and throw it all into your venture. Focus the energy you have to creating value, rather than as a destructive force. Bring people together, bend your environment to shape your needs and keep feeding the fire within you.
Like a good game of rock-paper-scissors, each of the elements are kept in check by the strength of those around it. If you have a balance between all of the elements, your business will stand out, work smart and your goals will be achieved. If you are lacking in any one area, it’s your responsibility to learn more and strengthen the problem.
For the Blogger
A great blog can use each part of the four elements to become stronger, provide better and more energetic information and develop a loyal following of readers. Being a blogger means that you want to share your information (you have the passion). Now you just need to build on your foundation of knowledge and maintain a flow of ideas and common posts throughout your blog. You must also have a strategy for time-management, marketing, goal setting and operations as well as being ready to change your tactics as new developments in your topic industry emerges. With these elements in place, your blog will have a much better chance for success.
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