The idea of owning your own business is almost as much of the American dream as owning your own home. There is a thrill and sense of excitement about running a business that is all your own. But, if you have owned your business for any length of time, you know that the shine quickly comes off and you are stuck in the “muck.”
Seven Stages, Seven Emotions
So how do you get unstuck and float down the river of profitable bliss? I think it starts with understanding the phases of a business, or rather the business lifecycle. Chuck Blakeman illustrates the seven stages of creating an ideal business environment in Making Money is Killing Your Business. In his book, Blakeman describes what each stage means in terms of income, lifestyle, emotions and business focus.
The following is an overview of the emotions that accompany each of the stages Blackman outlines. By understanding these emotions, financial advisors can more properly navigate from one step to the next.
- “What Fun” – You are starting the business and building the concept. Now put rubber to the road and execute.
- “This is Tough” – You’re urgently driving sales to pay expenses. To get to the next step, you need to offload some production so that you aren’t working 70 hours a week.
- “If I Stop, the Business Stops” – Delegate what is not of highest performance or most value in the work that you are doing.
- “I Feel Like I’m On a Treadmill” – You are running hard but you don’t feel like you are getting anywhere.
- “Business Depends on Me Too Much” – You have delegated, but employees still come to you for decisions. Stop! Give employees support and the procedures in order to make their own decisions.
- “I’m Free” – You are now successfully managing others and are not responsible for day-to-day or week-to-week obligations. Hire an implementer to organize the vision that you have created.
- “Accomplishment” – You are now doing what you love and are providing the vision for the firm. You need to determine how you spend the money and how you spend the time you have outside the business.
At the start of running a business, we are often quick to see the benefits of actually owning it, but then our vision gets foggy because there are usually a bunch of hurdles to cross before you can achieve your desired goals. By understanding the seven stages and emotions that accompany them, you can be more successful in each phase and truly live the American dream.
So, what are your next steps?
- Decide where you are in the seven stages.
- Implement the business process to get to that next stage.
Also, be sure to check out Blackman’s book here: http://makingmoneyiskillingyourbusiness.com/