How are you Creating Space for your Professional Development?
Whether you want to take your career to the next level or want to start a business of your own, there is always room for growth!
Here, I’ll answer common questions I get from business professionals, share the questions I ask my clients, and lessons I’ve learned over the years.
- Are you focused on the right things?
- Are you spending your time on the tasks that generate/produce 80% of your revenue or impact?
- Ensure you have a strategy for your marketing, innovation, and touching existing customers.
- What are the biggest issues business professionals and entrepreneurs struggle with?
- Lack of focus.
- Not feeling like they have an impact.
- Consuming more than they produce.
- “Why do most businesses fail?”
- Not having a clear plan. Build a business plan. Know what you’re good at and what sets you apart. Use this great Business Model Generation Tool from Strategyzer.
- They don’t ask for help. No one is an expert in every aspect of business. Whether you need a mentor, consultant, or an employee, there is someone out there that can help you.
- Failing to be financially profitable. Test your product/service using the MVP principle. Never leave a job before you have a plan and you’ve proven it works. Ideas are great, but can you generate revenue?
- “How do I make more money?”
- TIME IS MONEY. Simplify and Automate.
- Focus on value-add activities.
- Market Your Sh*t
- Generate attention.
- Create a great funnel.
- “What’s one thing every business professional can do today to improve?”
- Know Yourself. We all need structure.
- When do you feel the most productive?
- What habits do you need to start or stop doing?
- Get curious about your routines and create positive ones.
- Know Yourself. We all need structure.
- “How do I more effectively utilize my time?”
- What are the 20% of things that produce 80% of your results? Do those more. (Learn more about the Pareto Principle.)
- Shut off the noise. Noise = mindlessly consuming without purpose: TV, social media, etc. If you need a break, take a break, but be mindful that it’s a break.
- Batch & Block Your Time. Group activities that are similar. Answer emails only between specific hours. Block time in your calendar for certain activities & projects.
- Stay focused. Don’t allow distractions to interfere with the task you are working on. Use airplane mode or shut off notifications. You can also use a Pomodoro Timer – I like Tomato One.
- “I want to take my career to the next level.”
- First, get clear on what level you want to get to. Do you want to be a better manager? Department head? Knowing your goal is the first step.
- Have you told your manager or a mentor within your company? Having support will help you get there more quickly.
- Have you taken on special projects or more responsibility beyond your regular role? This is a key way to gain attention and respect.
- “I want to shift my career.”
- Have you tried the new job/role/career before? If you have prior experience, that’s great!
- Have you shadowed anyone who does it? Spend some time volunteering or observing.
- What are the barriers to entry? Make a plan to overcome them or be willing to work through them.
- How can you develop skills now that will make the shift easier?
- Have you talked to a recruiter? Do you have a coach or mentor in the new space?
- Never leave a job before you have a new one.
- “But I don’t know how to _________.”
- Shut the Front Door. You didn’t know how to do the things you do now at some point – But you learned! And chances are that someone has already done what you want to do or executed a similar concept. Do some research and start trying things BEFORE you think you are ready. Experiment. Fail. Shift. Iterate.
- Make sure to watch your consumption vs. production ratio. Are you taking in more than you are putting out? At some point, consumption must stop and you need to start producing!
- “I don’t want to fail.”
- What is failure to you? Seriously. Define what it would mean to “fail” – it’s probably not as scary as you think.
- Use tactics to mitigate against failure:
- If you fail to try, you are already failing. You’ve got to put yourself out there in front of consumers/clients/customers to see how they react.
- “I don’t have time.”
- We all have the same number of hours in the day. You make time for the things that are important to you.
- Ideas to help you effectively use your time and overcome excuses:
- Set goals and deadlines.
- Get an accountability partner.
- Hire a coach.
- What’s the best advice you’ve learned or received?
- When in doubt, give more value.
- If you wouldn’t work with someone for 30 years, don’t work with them for a day.
- Set good boundaries – for yourself, in relationships, in all areas of life. Good boundaries allow for respect, productivity, and success to flourish.
- You learn by doing. Go execute.