The Biggest Weakness of An Entrepreneur
I am an entrepreneur. I could not imagine myself doing anything else. I love to make decisions and see ideas grow into reality. I get bored very easy with the same old daily grind and am always thinking how to make things better.
I know if I weren’t living the life of an entrepreneur, I would see less fulfillment in life. I would truly die on the inside.
This past year I have come to realize what has held me back from being a better entrepreneur and more successful business owner. The more I speak with other entrepreneurs, the more I realize that I am not the only one who suffers from this.
Strength or Weakness?
Like most entrepreneurs, I am continually thinking of new ways to fix a problem and make more money. Though this can be a strength, if applied properly, it is often a great weakness.
I have taught myself to think of new ideas for business and finding new opportunities to create. I have a mental list of potential business ideas, and though it remains a list, my focus can easily be stolen by entertaining a new idea.
Apart from a busy mind that wanders, there are those who struggle to stay motivated and inspired. It’s about finding what inspires you and activates you to act. Inspiration can be destructive by itself, but with focused goals and consistency, you will be on the path to success.
In the past year, I have really been thinking about what I would consider the single, greatest characteristic to any successful entrepreneur. Among the many positive characteristics that can lead to success, are leaders who:
- read and consume knowledge, growing in wisdom.
- realize the gifts and talents in others and draw those talents out.
- have a passion to be the best person they can.
- take chances and are not afraid to fail.
BUT I believe the single, greatest characteristic found among the world’s most successful, is FOCUS.
Multi-billionaires, Bill Gates and Warren Buffet were asked in an interview to explain in one word what the most important secret to their success was. Both men wrote the same word on their paper; FOCUS.
I believe it was Robert Kiyosaki who coined the acronym, FOCUS – Follow One Course Until Success.
The truth is, if you want to succeed at anything worthwhile, you need laser-like focus. A laser is and acronym for Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation. In easier terms, it’s an narrow, intense and amplified beam of light that is used to cut things like diamond, steel, wood and more. Lasers can be adjusted to etch glass, steel and other materials too.
Could you imagine if our focus was that of a laser? If we compressed and amplified our efforts into one thing, the outcome would be astounding!
A person who is “Jack of all trades” is often “a master of none.” To be a master of something, all focus must be directed toward that idea or business. I do not know any entrepreneurs who have started two businesses at the same time which led to great success.
Rather, they put all their effort, time and money into growing a single business. Once that business reaches a point where the owner can trust it to be managed by others, they are able to focus on another idea.
Become Laser Focused
A lack of focus will stunt the growth of any business. If you are a small business owner that seeks growth, take a moment to see where your time is divided. Are you entertaining new ideas too often? Do you have many rabbit trails that you chase? What is consuming your time?
Whenever a idea or opportunity presents itself, an entrepreneur immediately sees potential. They have a knack for seeing where things could be improved or ideas that could become widely accepted. Applying this to what you are currently doing can turn your weakness into a strength.
I truly believe that I could make anything successful. It may be that I am an optimist or maybe I am simply a legend in my own mind, either way I need to take captive those thoughts before I find myself boarding a bandwagon that wasn’t meant for me.
“If you see a bandwagon, it’s too late.” ~ James Goldsmith
I am not saying that you throw every idea in the trash, but rather that you put it on the shelf momentarily. Simply entertaining ideas can be a great time-suck. Take your thoughts and energy and refocus it into what you are currently doing. If the idea is still on the shelf in one week and it doesn’t excite you as it initially did, throw it out.
Cheating on your Business
Be loyal to what you are currently working on. Take time to think back to when you were so excited to get started on your new project. The countless hours you would spend brainstorming and planning out the details. How you were so enveloped by that project that you forgot to eat lunch or worked into the wee hours of the morning because you lost track of time. The time when you’d jump out of bed in the morning because you were so excited to get started.
Think about all the time and money you’ve invested. Walking away from it all to be with that younger, prettier idea somehow doesn’t make sense. Don’t forfeit your current project.
Instead, start again! Take a weekend away from your day-to-day work to re-energize, brainstorm and get a fresh outlook on what you’re doing. Get excited again and plan out a new strategy for growth. Set goals for the next weeks, months and years. Become focused again and watch your business take off! You’ll be glad you did.
revised Jan 26, 2019