During a conversation with Lisa, a good friend of mine, who was feeling stuck in her position and career. She decided to go to her manager, Joan and ask her what she needed to do for her next professional career move. Joan responded “I don’t know, but good luck and let me know when you find out” She was devastated. Lisa’s first mistake was expecting her manager to give her some form of validation and let her know that she was on the right track. Lisa thought Joan would suggest a training or two. She thought perhaps the conversation would lead to a new project that would get her in front of the right people. Lisa thought her manager was capable of helping her get the next promotion. Unfortunately, Lisa, was looking for Joan to give her something she was not capable of providing. Joan couldn’t give what she didn’t have. How do I know Joan didn’t have what Lisa wanted? Because if Joan was an effective leader Lisa would not have needed to go to Joan for advice on what she needed to do to get to the next level.
An effective leader grows and develops their direct reports. Effective leaders are having next step conversations regularly with their employees. There employees are clear on where they are, and what they need to do in preparation for the next position or promotion whether it is within the company or outside of it. Just because someone has a leadership “position or title” does not mean they have effective leadership skills and abilities. Never give anyone the power to dictate your success and put timelines on when you would be ready for a promotion or a new position. Most companies today spend most of their training dollars, training leaders on guidelines, policies and how to maximize the bottom line. Very little resources are spent on how to become an effective leader. Most managers don’t know how to help you. Don’t hold it against them; you are responsible for your success and everything you need is either within you or accessible to you. Be savvy enough to find out where you need to go and how to get the information you need. Do your research, speak to various individuals in and outside of your company, read books and articles to help you chart your success. Ultimately, you are the driver of your career. Everyone else are passengers who can on occasion provide guidance and insights, but you decide the route you will take and when you will take it.
by Sandra Nettles-Lechebo, MS, CEAP SN-L Consulting
To further assess, ask yourself, “Do I Have What It Takes to Run a Business?
There are certain considerations that can give you insight and help decide if you have what it takes. Before you make this huge leap of faith and financial risk, first, answer this question. Could you imagine working for someone else if you were offered your dream job? If you answered yes to this question, you should spend more time looking for the job you truly want and less time dreaming about being a business owner.
Entrepreneurship requires managing a wide variety of tasks from planning, marketing and accounting to training, customer service and more. How are you with managing a wide variety of task?
Another Consideration: What’s your relationship with money?
Starting a business requires money initially, to operate and live on while the business scales. If you are a big spender and aren’t great at managing money, those bad habits are likely to follow you into a business. If you are usually unable to make worthwhile investments in the future of your business, for fear of ending up living in a cardboard box if things go wrong, then you may end up penny wise and pound foolish, as they say. Having a solid, non-emotional relationship with money will help you make wise business decisions.
Here’s something else to consider. Are you comfortable flying blind?
The only thing that is certain in business is that nothing is certain. Are you comfortable with being uncomfortable? Can you handle taking educated risks and surviving the constant ups and downs of owning a business? If you are looking for the certainty or a drama-free zone, you may find yourself terrified of the entrepreneurial roller coaster.
Are you ready to commit? Running a successful business is not just about having great ideas. It’s more about strong execution. Can you stay focused? Can you keep commitments? Can you work day in and day out on the same things?
Were you born for business? Were you interested in business as a child? Did you seek out entrepreneurial roles in school, in social organizations or even in your previous job? Having a natural inclination of past interest in entrepreneurship seems to be a good potential indicator of future success.
What is your motivation for wanting a business? Ask yourself if you would want to be an entrepreneur regardless of how much money you might make as you build your business. If your goal is simply to achieve an income, your chances of success, and more importantly, personal satisfaction is limited. Your real motivation must come from something inside you, not from external rewards like monetary goals or praise from others.
Ask yourself, who will my business benefit? Is your dream based on something you want to give, or is it more about something you want to receive? True entrepreneurial spirit includes a desire to do something that reaches beyond oneself. This is the reward that spurs the spirit of an entrepreneur.
How hard are you willing to work? One of the biggest misconceptions about becoming an entrepreneur is that life will be easier than working for someone else. Rarely is this the case. Becoming successful requires tremendous commitment and usually the hours reflect the level of dedication to your dream.
Are you prepared to take the leap? What are you bringing to the table? Even if this is your own company, you need to have the experience and knowledge required to succeed. Would you hire yourself? If not, spend time educating yourself regarding what you really want to do. It is my belief that you don’t have to necessarily have all traits in your genetic make-up, but if you have the drive and determination to work at obtaining what traits you may be missing, that’s a huge part of the success equation.
In summary, I leave you with these thoughts. The entrepreneurial spirit isn’t about being like the rest. It is about being unapologetically distinct. This distinctness and uniqueness is an asset with value. Having an entrepreneurial spirit definitely has its advantages. Now more than any other time in history, becoming your own boss is possible. It is becoming increasingly easier to fill a need in the market place, no matter what your passion is. I believe the journey that one takes to becoming an entrepreneur is the ultimate personal growth journey. It will teach you lessons far beyond that of business. Even when you don’t achieve your goals, the biggest reward is watching to see the person you have become while trying to achieve your goal. If the time is right for you now, go for it. If not, consider taking your entrepreneur mindset to work in a company or organization and be an entrepreneur until the time is right for you. (You’ll get to exercise your entrepreneur working for someone else without incurring the risk and cost). However, If you decide to stay on the path, remember, living your dream can be scary. There’s always the opportunity that you might fail, that you might get it wrong or you don’t have a clue about what you’re doing. Use that reality to your advantage. Let the fact that you might screw up carry you forward into success.
I conclude by saying: Whenever that voice in your head tries to stop you, rather than letting it stop you, let it be the voice that pushes you into the light and asks you, what do you want and nudges you toward it. The fact that you keep trying is what will set you apart. Do your homework, be courageous, and move in spite of the fear. Persevere and always seek divine guidance regarding every decision you make.
And know that you were born with potential. You were born to do great things. You were born with wings to fly. You were not born to crawl, so don’t. Put on your wings and fly.
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Sandra Nettles-Lechebo is the owner of SN-L Consulting.
8. Lack of vision– Proverbs 29:18 (KJV) says it best, “where there is no vision, the people perish.” When a person is unable to visualize what their future could entail, it causes them to let life happen to them. They take the life that is given to them and settle for it. They don’t think about changing their life because they don’t have a vision for their life. They believe what others have told them they could achieve and not what God said they could have. When it comes to your future, if you can’t see it, you can’t have it.
9. Lack of planning– Every vision needs a plan to carry it out. The written plan serves as a road map, guiding you to your destination. A step by step plan keeps you motivated by allowing you to see progress and how close you are to achieving what you desire. Habakkuk 2:2 (KJV) tells us to write the vision and make it plain. Once you put your vision on paper it becomes a plan. A vision without a plan becomes a wish.
10. Laziness– Some people are just lazy. They have plenty of faith, but no works (faith without works is dead, James 2:17 (NIV). Laziness is often disguised in excuses. A lazy Christians will rarely have a vision, and they will never have a plan.
To read part 1 click here and part 2 click here.
by Sandra Nettles-Lechebo, MS, CEAP SN-L Consulting
How I discovered and unleash my entrepreneurial spirit?
I don’t believe that the ‘inner entrepreneur’ spirit manifest’s until you’ve put your heart into what you want to do (That’s when that naturally business savvy you shows up). The involvement of your heart will take you there because that’s where your potential lies. You must trust yourself, push yourself to overcome obstacles and believe in your capacity.
When times get tough, they will get tough! When financial security becomes questionable, it will surely be questioned! When you are pushed out of your comfort zone, you will be unbearably uncomfortable! When doubt creeps in, and it will; the thing that you believe in your heart is going to be the thing that compels you to stay the course.
Discovering your inner entrepreneurial spirit is about your desire to discover your true capacity. It about listening to the deeper you (That voice inside that knows it knows); It’s knowing who you are to the core and trusting your core self. Not the ego man made self. It’s about recognizing your true authentic self. This process warrants some soul searching. I suggest you seek divine guidance regarding your desire. Find out what you are passionate about. Know your gift (what you do effortless). Trust your inner truth. Ask yourself – what makes you come alive and build your business around it. Harness the power of your inner wisdom. Don’t fear what you haven’t tried. Push past the fear of putting yourself out there in the marketplace. Be willing to fail and learn so you can come back stronger each time. Use fear to carry you further. See the fear as the voice in the back of your head that pushes you into the light. See the fear as asking you what you want and nudging you towards it.
Remember that fear does not come from God. God gives us a spirit of power, love and sound mind. When I notice fear trying to creep its ugly head in my life, I remind myself at that moment, I have separated myself from God and I get right back on track.
Your business should reflect what you are passionate about and your gift; believe that your ideas have value. Don’t listen to naysayers. Use discernment; and get wise counsel. Take risks. Step out of your comfort zone. Be confident. The way you get confidence is by doing things that you don’t have confidence in. Step out on faith. Keep your business plan simple at first and grow it over time. Stay Focused and take one step at a time. The step you are taking is the most important step at that time. Be stubborn by not don’t giving up on yourself; the stronger your desire, the better your chance of succeeding.
Next: Find out if you have the inner strength to pursue being a business owner.
Walt Disney said, “All dreams can come true if you have the courage to pursue them. I define courage as moving in spite of the fear. When it comes to assessing whether or not you have the inner strength, I would ask you:
- Are you courageous?
- Are you willing to invest the time and energy?
- Are you OK being out of your comfort zone?
- Do you adapt to change well?
- Have you figured out what your gift is?
- Do you know what drives and motivates you?
- Do you know what interest you and keeps your interest?
- Do you know what you have to offer to the world that is unique to you?
* If you answered yes to these questions, you are well on your way.
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Part 1 of 3
by Sandra Nettles-Lechebo, MS, CEAP SN-L Consulting
Some of you may be in the infancy stage of thinking about owning a business; some may be further along in the thought process and others may have already taken the dive into being a business owner. Where ever you are in the process, I hope after reading this blog you will be encouraged, inspired, and motivated to take the next step to get your desired outcome.
I launched my business in 1992; however, my journey started long before 1992. My entrepreneurial spirit kicked in long before I recognized what was happening inside of me.
I was the kind of employee that did very well in every employment opportunity, but I found myself always getting bored easily. At an early age I was demonstrating leadership abilities and by the age 27, I had my first directorship. Soon after three years in a position, I would become antsy as I needed to be challenged more. The first year in a position, I was excited learning and observing. By the second year, I was putting my own spin on the position in terms of loving to create, develop, and organize processes and procedures. The third year, I could see the fruits of my labor, but by the fourth year I was looking to see what else I could do. I learned I was not OK just implementing; I needed to be creating, developing, and organizing processes and procedures. Not having a clue at the time, that my gift was hidden in what I loved doing. So by year four, I was looking to do something else and if the opportunity wasn’t available for me in my present position, I would change jobs. My friends thought I was crazy; but I didn’t care. I was following my spirit; not what was popular, or what was the norm, or what was safe, convenient or familiar. Then one day I got wise, I thought to ask for divine guidance. I literally asked God, “What do you want me to do?” It wasn’t revealed to me right away. I kept on working for others having the same antsy, itchy feelings.
Then in 1992, I clearly received my answer. I was to be a Trainer and
by jane rahmy,
Motivational Speaker. OK. So I took the leap; I stepped out on faith believing if God called me for such a journey, He would equip me.
I believe every person already has within them the capacity to be successful in whatever they pursue when discovered what they are passionate about, recognize their gift, and have the right spirit and mindset. If you marry the four, you have what you need already sitting within you to make your dreams come true. You just have to know how to access the potential that lies within you.
The word Entrepreneur is French in origin. I find it kind of humorous that the word entrepreneur if interpreted in its literal context means “between jobs”. It is interesting that a word that has come to project the very pinnacle of success should have such mundane roots as a means of describing “being unemployed”.
The entrepreneurial spirit can be applied and seen operating in a wide range of disciplines and professionals, but it is most closely associated with the world of business.
The entrepreneur spirit refers to a specific mindset which orientates a person’s conduct towards business, entrepreneurial activities and outcomes. An entrepreneurial spirit inspires you to become the best you can be. It’s an urge or itch to innovate and ultimately increase personal development and maximize potential.
Those with an entrepreneurial spirit
They have an unshakable focus and vision. It’s a mindset that goes against conventional thinking. You will see opportunity where others see dead ends. You will have a deep desire to achieve something that you don’t currently have. The awareness of this desire will provide the direction for you to take the necessary steps in order for the desire to be obtained. Entrepreneurs don’t get discouraged in the face of rejection. They have a different definition of failure than most and find a strong enough reason to stay the course through all adversities. Passion, positivity, adaptability, leadership, ambition resourceful, risk taking, and courageous are just a few of the traits that sets them apart from others. There are many other concepts that appear intrinsic to what constitutes entrepreneurial spirit. I am not going to focus on them in this blog because if you are reading this, you’ve probably already done your homework.
Tapping into your entrepreneurial spirit is a process not an event. Here are some considerations to help you assess if owning your own business is right for you at this time.
I propose to you the following questions:
- Does the idea you have for your business build incitement in you?
- Do you have a built-in desire to transform that idea into a successful business?
- Are you taking action and not wasting time thinking about it?
- Can you say that you are not put off by nonbelievers because you know there is validity and healthy profits in your ideas?
- Do you have a strong drive to accomplish, and enjoy putting unlimited energy in your desire to succeed?
- Are you OK with taking chances?
- Are you OK with limited income at times?
- Are you able to see past the obvious, and believe in taking gambles that others don’t?
- Do you want a sense of control of your destiny?
*If you answered yes to these questions consider taking the next step and further assess.
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