Success, Start With Humility
One of the biggest dangers I’ve seen with people and business is how they move forward when they have already experienced success. Not that success itself is the problem, but in some cases it’s the attitude it can bring. Many of those who have succeeded approach their business with a learners mentality. They want to find out about the business, try things out and if it works, they feel pretty good about themselves.
However, once some have had a taste of that success, they start to feel “overly optimistic” about their prospects, they forget about everything that gave them their initial prosperity and feel that they can do no wrong. They’ve already succeeded, the belief: “I can do it again.”
However, if your approach to business starts with a little humility for the success you’ve already had, I believe that you maintain and in fact GAIN and edge on your competitors. It helps keep you fighting for your business and allows you to stay in the game longer.
So how can you develop this attitude? Here are the 5 critical traits that you need:
1. “Listen, don’t just hear” – One of the best lessons I ever learned early on was to open up your ears and shut your mouth. If you listen to your customers and prospects, they will tell you what they want and need. By listening, you can shift and change what you may have thought to be the correct approach to your business , when in fact you may have been wrong.
2. “Yesterday’s lessons may not be helpful today” – Experience is one of the best forms of capital you bring to a business, however, just because something worked yesterday doesn’t mean it will work today. Ask yourself, “How can I bring it to the next level?” Think about the camera film manufacturers now that digital cameras are so popular. Does yesterday’s experience tell you that they should invest more money and build a better film or should you invest in trying to take advantage of the new digital camera craze?
3. “Take a look at your business with fresh eyes” – If you continuously review your business and pretend that you have to sell yourself over again, are you still relevant? Does your business plan make sense? If you continuously reassess your business you won’t be caught flat-footed if things change or you next venture is launched.
4. “Be grateful” – Have you ever walked into a retail store or a restaurant where you were treated as if was an honor for you to be giving them your money? I hate those places, and I only visit them once. I’ll bet I’m not alone either. If you were on the receiving end of your business, would you do business with you? Honestly, ask yourself that very question. If you don’t value your customers then forget about them wanting to help you.
5. “Ignore the kudos” – I enjoy being complimented for a job well done as much as anyone, but if you dwell on those things, what do you really gain? Ever walked into an executive office where the walls were covered with awards, plaques, photos of them with well known people and over the top “look at me and what I’ve done” trinkets? When you walk into an office like that you definitely form an opinion about that person. Personally, I think you’re better off appreciating the thanks, understand what got you there and moving on.
Every business owner’s goal is to become successful, once you’ve reached that goal make sure that you remember you’ll get to the next level and become even more successful without arrogance than assume you can do it because you’re behind the wheel.