What Are Your Guiding Principles?
A well-defined set of Core Values can guide you through rough entrepreneurial waters and steer your business to success.
Defining your beliefs and guiding principles is important to running a successful business. If you don't define your beliefs, others - be it friends, associates or the marketplace, will do it for you. By taking ownership of your own values and defining what is important to you, you are setting up a system that will guide you through the rough waters of entrepreneurship.
The real value in Core Values is the act and process of developing your own. However, you can use these 14 points as a template for deciding what principles will guide you in running your business.
Organised minds are clear, and clear minds take action towards clear objectives. So get as organised and as clear as possible in your life and business affairs. Start with your desk and work area, then with your plans and actions. Schedule a written plan of your activities and objectives and stick with it the entire day. Do this the night before and you are ahead of 90 per cent of the rest of the population.
Every day, do at least one thing you have been putting off. As the great Jim Rohn said: "There are two types of pain you will go through in life - the pain of discipline and the pain of regret." Successful people know that the pain of discipline is the price of their success. Start making it the price of yours.
Feel as good as possible and achieve a sense of well-being by just being quiet and contemplative for 15 minutes every day. Also, find a way to exercise at least 45 minutes daily. Both will boost positive feelings about yourself.
Tell your family, friends and business associates how much you appreciate them. Be generous with praise and compliments. Find more things people are doing right, rather than doing wrong.
Leave past failures in the past and focus positively on your future. If you are a glass-half-empty person, start seeing the glass as being half-full. Life and business is more enjoyable that way.
Read something that improves your mind every day. Keep yourself away from unproductive people, activity and news. Become a master and an expert in your industry, and more business will flow to you.
Learn to do more with less. Measure and increase productivity in whatever you do. Make every rupee work harder for your business. A word of caution - don’t be “penny-wise and pound-foolish”.
Be charming and agreeable. Never speak badly of anyone. You never know if your next big client or customer is within earshot of something you have to say. Make it positive, and you will never have to worry about negative consequences.
Open yourself to new ideas, experiences and people who can teach you something new. Stay out of ruts and routines. This is one of the best ways to be aware and focused on new opportunities. Remember, some of the greatest product breakthroughs have come from people recognising value of interesting and unique innovations.
Meet all of your business, social and moral obligations punctually, honestly and honourably. If you are the “go to” person or the “go to” business, you will never have to worry about having to generate extra leads.
Make a decision right now. My general rule is that if I am 80% certain, the 20% of my indecisiveness is a mixture of emotions based on excitement and fear. My attitude is to let excitement win more times than not. Is it 100% successful? No. But then again, nothing ever is. All I know is that I have had a lot more fun when I have let excitement win.
Remember to experience the journey as well as the results. It is absolutely necessary to be focused on your goals, but don’t miss out on the great experiences going on around you. After all, when you get to your destination, you will realise that some of the greatest lessons learned and values gained were found in the trip there.
Demand only the highest and best standards of everyone around you. Remember that as the leader does, so does the organisation. And if you are truly leading, you have to be firm and consistent in setting, establishing and following your own “rules of the game.”
Give and you shall receive
Give the thing you want most and you will be amazed at what you get in return. See all opportunities as a way to give and share and add value, and see your efforts multiply in ways you could not have imagined. Over time, you will discover that to truly build up your business, you have to build up yourself as well. Think of your Core Values as guiding principles that will help steer you toward success.