I said, “Does anyone have any questions for me?”
The response, “Yes Carrie I do. Since you’ve been in business for over ten years will you share the top three things that you believe have led to your success?”
It was a question I didn’t expect so I thought a moment … here’s the answer I shared. The top three things I did to grow my business.
1. Take myself seriously and get support. During the first six months I was in business I figured I could handle it. I thought I “knew” what needed to be done and could just do it. I also decided that, since I was my own boss, I could make all of the rules and have lunch with friends whenever I wanted. After all, one of the main reasons I started my own business was for flexibility, right?
A program I joined about six months after I started my business required me to have a coach. I didn’t even know what a coach was at the time. Since then I have ALWAYS had a coach. Some coaches have been better than others. Some were hired for a specific purpose. ALL have been business coaches. In addition to sharing great ideas, helping me get out of my own head, helping me see my business from the outside and providing me with incredible accountability, these coaches have forced me to take my business seriously. It forced me to take notice of myself and to see myself as a business owner and not a stay at home mom with a side gig. I was forced to think like a business owner. When a friend calls for lunch, there are times I say yes (flexibility is still important) and there are times I say no, because I have business responsibilities to take care of.
2. Ask for the business. It took time for me to get the confidence in my skills and myself, but once I realized that the only way to get business was to ask for it, things went a lot better. There are still times that I hesitate but, for the most part, if I sense that I can help someone, I invite him or her to have a discussion about it. Here’s the thing, unless you ask them to work with you they will still have the problem that they’re having and you will still have no clients.
3. Accept that nothing will ever be perfect. Wow, this one was a tough lesson. I have a Wall Street background. When I worked for the New York Stock Exchange people got fired for making mistakes. It was a very high-pressure environment. The information we shared with our clients and our prospects had to be right.
To be fair, the idea of perfectionism suited me too. I want the work that I produce to be more than just accurate, I want it to be perfect. I want it to look perfect, sound perfect and reflect me, and what I do, perfectly.
Here’s what I’ve learned about perfectionism. It’s an impossibility. I look back at the work that I created ten years ago, and even more recently and shudder.
Some of the imperfections are errors that I missed, but most of the imperfections are examples of things that no longer reflect me, or what I’m doing, because I have grown and changed. Perfectionism implies that there is no way for it to grow or improve. You know, I sure hope I’m not perfect right now. I couldn’t imagine not growing from here.
This does not mean that you should be careless and not pay attention to how things look and sound and do your best, but I also know that if I had not gone ahead with those imperfect things, I would not be where I am today. I would not have grown and the clients that I’ve worked with wouldn’t have had the experience of working with me.
So now I’m curious… what would your business look like if you incorporated the three things that turned my business around? Go ahead and let me know by clicking here and sharing with me.
My daughter graduated from high school this past week and will be going to college in a few months. It’s going to be a huge transition for her. It’s going to be a pretty big transition for me too.
Sammi did very well in high school. She learned. She matured. She made mistakes, hopefully learned from them. She met people and learned how to interact with peers, teachers and leaders. She learned to be a part of and how to lead teams. She learned a lot about responsibilities. It was a good place for her to be.
So why not stay put?
Nobody ever considers staying in high school beyond graduation because once you’ve graduated you’ve learned what you needed to learn there. How many times can you take the same science or math class? How many times can you write the same essay in English? High school was a vital stepping stone but it was just that…a stepping stone on a journey to another place. Sure moving on can be scary and there may be a few tears but unless you move on and take the next step you stagnate and won’t continue to learn and grow.
What does this have to do with you? Read more
I just hung up the phone with a group of my private clients. We get together as a group regularly for an open conversation about what’s going on. It gives them a chance to connect with each other and me outside of our regular coaching sessions. The minds of many are often so much more powerful than just one.
One of the things that came up today was procrastination and perfectionism. They are tied together. We joked (actually they joked and I cringed) about my own habit of procrastination when it comes to my newsletter articles. They always go out on time but why does it take so much effort to sit down and write them? Why does it seem like I never know what to write about? Why isn’t the inspiration there when I need it? Why do I have to do them anyway?
As we were talking about perfectionism I related a story about a woman I met at an event. I had my book, Chaos to Cash, with me. The book is a series of strategies about getting projects started and most importantly finished. There are about 250 strategies in the book and each strategy stands on its own. Personally I think some of them are better than others.
Typically when I meet someone and show them my book I have them open up to any page in the book and see how the strategy on that given page hits them. So back to the event. I handed the book to this woman and she opened the book. She read what was on the page and started to cry. I realized how powerful that strategy was for her and of course was curious what it said. I looked at the strategy that she had read and was shocked. It was one of the strategies I viewed as weak and uninspiring.
So here’s the thing. You never know how someone else is going to react. Get it done, get it out there. Let the people who need it have it. I’m so happy I included that strategy for her. It’s not about it being good enough for me; it’s about it being good enough to help someone else.
Here’s my advice…don’t wait for perfectionism. Don’t wait for divine guidance or that perfect inspiration. Do it and get it done.
There…this article is now done and here’s a shout out to my private clients who teach me so much every day and made this article happen (in 6 minutes).
Where has procrastination and perfection been stopping you? Please share with me…it may just help someone else, too.
It’s the end of May…we’re five months into 2011. Are you on track to meet your 2011 goals?
Join Carrie for a revealing 30-minute Take Action Teleseminar
Action 911: The Immediate Steps You Must Take to Stop Planning and Start Profiting in 2011.
*** Fill in the SHORT form below to register for this FREE program! ***
I keep hearing the same story over and over…
- The first five months of 2011 are over. I haven’t implemented any of my ideas and I’m not making money.
- I’ve been waiting to get all my ducks in a row but I’m not sure I’ll ever get there.
- I’ve been planning and planning…actually I’ve been planning to plan … I don’t have enough clients, I’m not making money…I just don’t know what to do.
- I’m afraid I’ll be looking at these same plans at the end of December!
This has got to end.
It’s time to stop planning and start doing. The bottom line is that unless you act nothing will happen. You and your business will not grow. You will continue to be frustrated. You will keep running around in circles. You will continue under-earning. Everything will stay exactly the way it is.
During this FREE presentation there will be no-hype and no sales. Just 30-minutes of pure content delivered quickly so that you can immediately stop spinning and put your plans into action.
You will learn how to…
- Take the plans you already have and act on them so that you can quickly monetize on the work you’ve already done.
- Focus your attention on the actions that will give you the biggest return on your investment.
- Let go of perfectionism and “just do it” so that you can get the clients you want.
And this is just a small part of what you’ll discover.
There’s nothing to stop you!
Go ahead and complete this SHORT form and register now!
P.S. Do you know someone else who would benefit from this program? Go ahead and forward them the link to this page but make sure to reserve your spot first!
In a recent Editor’s letter in Inc. magazine Jane Berentson wrote that she is impressed “…with the entrepreneurs who spend time, money, and careful thought creating great work environments. We know (though the outside world usually doesn’t) that entrepreneurs have a unique opportunity to fashion not just a product or a service but also a culture that reflects their attitudes and values.”
Yes, we entrepreneurs are lucky. We get to design our business exactly the way we want. We get to do what we want to do, when we want to do it and with whomever we want to do it. We get to make all the decisions and all the rules. Nobody can tell us what to do!
On the one hand it’s great but on the other…boy there’s a lot of responsibility. Sometimes, when faced with decisions to make or the consequences of decisions you may have already made, it may seem easier to have (dare I say it?) … a boss.
Being an entrepreneur means staying motivated and true to yourself. It means, waking up ready to go and do more than you planned to do. It means, doing the hard things and taking risks. It means, asking for help when you need it and absolutely giving help whenever you can.
As an entrepreneur you are in a unique position — you get to create the life you want as you build the business of your dreams. You don’t have to answer to anyone but yourself, but it’s vital that you’re asking the right questions and that you answer those questions honestly.
Here are three questions that I not only ask my clients but also ask myself as I approach ideas or tasks for my own business.
- Is what I’m planning on doing today in line with the vision I have for myself and my business?
- Is what I’m doing at this moment moving me closer to my goal?
- What are the results of the actions I’ve taken so far? Do I need to rework or reevaluate my plan?
One last thought…
I’ve been in business for myself for eight years and I ask myself these questions often but, as powerful as these questions are, I find them most effective when someone else asks me them. I rely on a coach to help me make sound decisions. My coach is not my boss and does not tell me what to do but does offer some sound advice and more importantly an outside perspective and a reality check.
Imagine what a difference it would make in your business if you had someone available to you help you make decisions, brainstorm and help you grow your business. I’d like to offer you the opportunity to find out what a coach can do for you.
I have just a few openings in the CarrieThru Premier Coaching Program. I would like to offer one to you if you are an entrepreneur who is ready to take your dream and your business to the next level and beyond.
These spots are available by application only. After you apply you and I will have a private conversation to make sure that the program makes sense for you and your business and that you and I are a good fit for what you’re looking to accomplish.
Click here to apply.
There is no charge to apply or for the conversation. However, please remember that this program is only appropriate for you if you are a business owner who is ready to see your business grow by making decisions, taking action and investing in yourself and your business.
Applications are due by May 20th at midnight.
Click here to apply for one of the THREE CarrieThru Premier Coaching Spots.
I’m looking forward to speaking with you…
The biggest problem I see among the people I speak with is quite simple…they don’t decide. They allow themselves to “think about it” or “decide later”. The end result of not deciding “yes” or “no” is that nothing happens and they are stuck.
Last week was an incredible week. I opened up my calendar to you and gave you the opportunity to be “laser-coached.” I asked 30 entrepreneurs about the biggest challenge they were facing in their business. Each had their own answer but what it all boiled down to was one thing… Read more
Often to-do lists end up becoming “one of these days I hope to get around to this” lists. When this happens, the list become useless and worse, it makes you feel guilty and it can hold you back from taking action. You know there’s no way you’ll ever get through your list so why even bother. It’s ok to have a “one of these days” list but the list you look at regularly needs to include things that you are really going to act on.
Here are 10 questions to ask yourself BEFORE you put something new on your to-do list and if you’ve already got a to-do list that’s a mile long you can use these questions to help you lighten your load. Read more
I sent out an email last week about some openings in my coaching program. As I spoke with people about the program I kept getting the same questions so here’s a short video that answers them.
It’s just 3 minute long…enjoy!
To apply for the CarrieThru Coaching Program geared specifically for entrepreneurs send an email to Carrie @ CarrieThru.com. Let me know what’s going on in your business to day and where you want it to be. Make sure to include your phone number and email address so that we can talk and make sure this program is a good fit for you.
How do you manage time so that you can get what you want to do done? How do you manage to run your business and get your work done and also have time to live your life and have fun?
I have good news and bad news for you.
First the bad news, you can’t manage time. You have exactly 24 hours in a day, no more, no less.
Now the good news, you’re not alone, the Dali Lama, Mother Teresa, Thomas Edison and everyone on this planet also has exactly 24 hours in a day.
So what can you do to help you use that time to your advantage?
You see, it’s not about doing everything it’s about doing the things that will make the most difference and will help you move further along the path that you want to travel.
Here are five questions that my clients and I use every day to make sure that we’re focusing our attention on the most important things. Give them a try and see what happens. Read more
My sons, Eric and Josh, graduated from middle school last week. I had a conversation with them about moving onto high school. I expected to hear “I’m looking forward to high school,” “I’m nervous” and “I hope there isn’t that much more homework” but, after all of the complaints I heard this past year, I was surprised that what came out of their mouths was “I’m going to miss South Orange Middle School,” and “I really like my teachers.”
Middle school served Eric and Josh very well. They learned. They matured. They made mistakes, which they hopefully learned from. They met people and learned how to interact with peers, teachers and leaders. They learned to be part of a team and how to lead teams. They learned a lot about responsibilities. It was a good place for them to be.
So why not stay put?
Nobody ever considers staying in middle school beyond graduation because once you’ve graduated you’ve learned what you needed to learn there. How many times can you take the same science or math class? How many times can you write the same essay in Language Arts? Middle school was a vital stepping stone but it was just that…a stepping stone on a journey to another place. Sure it can be scary and there may be a few tears but unless you move on and take the next step you stagnate and won’t continue to learn and grow.
What does this have to do with you? Read more