Several years back when I started my first construction business there was a helpful article that put business in perspective. I do not recall if it was a building magazine like Home Builder or a business journal like Inc. The message was simple, when you are starting out you must be ready to face the opportunities that come your way. The analogy that the author used was that of pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters. When you start your entrepreneurial venture you are going to find a lot of pennies. Your opportunities aren't all going to be flashy or exciting but there is more than one way to make a legitimate dollar. As a savvy business person you want to work towards turning your pennies into nickels, your nickels into dimes and so on.
1. Don't curse your pennies, embrace them. Get your hundred pennies and make your dollar happily and honestly.
2. When you are starting out you cannot afford to step over pennies, you need them. Learn to identify, gather and master your revenue streams.
3. Take small steps forward. Keep your eyes open for means to turn your pennies into nickels. Grow consistently and effectively, it can be as dangerous to grow too quickly as it is to not grow at all, both can lead to a painful death.
4. Growth is essential. Smart growth is consistent growth. As you master the penny life and progress to the nickel life, you will build skills and systems that prepare you for the dime life and beyond.
5. Learn from those who have gone before you. You can learn as much from those who moved effectively into the quarter and beyond business as those who drowned in those same opportunities.
6. Even if you reach the quarter and beyond level, don't forget what got you to where you are. Revenue is not the same as profit, some high revenue projects can be low margin whereas some low revenue work can be higher margin. You can build wealth in any realm if you know what you are doing and how you positioning your team. Often it is best to diversify so your business isn't pigeon holed in a specific market segment.
Life is about opportunities not convenience, and you can quote me on that. Many of your opportunities will not arrive in majestic packages or sums that will make you rich quickly. If you choose a service industry like property restoration than those opportunities often come at all of the oddest hours of the day or night. Identify the opportunities that are best for you and your team. Structure yourself and your team to see, understand and meet the needs, values and opportunities that the market presents.
UFC star Conner McGregor was arrested for assault? The account sounds like he threw a vindictive temper tantrum to prove a point that his team can’t be messed with. Conner's decision to participate at any level is a reflection of bad judgement. Analyzing bad judgement in a fit of rage is an interesting exercise in armchair psychology. Some of these reflections are helpful and applicable to personal as well as organizational leadership.
If you haven’t heard yet, here is the initial story from ESPN on the news regarding UFC mega star Conner McGregor.
1. Is this a reflection of that person showing their true colors - it’s them being them culminating in a public display that they cannot deny? On a broader scale than Conner, when someone rages what does it communicate about that person? As a person in a position of leadership daily decisions reflect on character and build up over time to shape the perspective of who you are as a person and your effectiveness as a leader (PIAPOL). Leaders must remember that their primary responsibility is to lead themselves first. Effective leaders lead by example.
2. Is this a reflection of poor team choices? How many celebrities as well as those in a position of leadership choose to surround themselves with yes men? It is important to have complimentary and contrary voices in your inner circle, regardless of your position, so that someone can tell you, “This is a bad idea.” Effective leaders have to bring people into their teams that can build upon their strengths, supplement their weaknesses and are empowered to input especially where there may be blind spots.
3. People in a position of leadership often choose to deal with conflict in extremes - either disappearing from the picture or overreacting to an issue. Both extremes have consequences and can be equally detrimental to the health of a team. Conflict can be valuable and positive even handled correctly. There is not clear manual for these interactions but dealing with the issues in as calm and clear a manner as possible is key to productive resolution. Leaders have given away the luxury of looking around the room to see, “Who is going to deal with this issue.” Take the conflicts head on while you establish processes that build clarity, consistency and accountability.
4. The broader view for organizations such as UFC and president Dana White is to reflect on what behaviors were or were not addressed throughout their history with McGregor. I don’t know enough about their relationship to have an opinion about it but know that this will be part of the discussion. Leaders have the greatest point of power and influence at the point of hire - who you let in the door is one of the most important decisions you can make. Training, engagement, development and discipline are secondary to that primary decision. Dana is drawing a line in the sand on this incident, speculation will circle around whether that line should have been drawn sooner and if the organization did their due diligence in managing their employees prior to this public display.
Do you have more thoughts on this incident in particular as it relates to leadership?
Do you have more thoughts on this incident in context with personal and organizational leadership?
Some of the best business promotional tools are the simplest, ensure you are making the best use of these key items.
So, you want to start a business...
Oh, wait. You started a business...
Ok. Assuming you chose the right business structure, have secured the appropriate licenses and are operating in a field you feel you can have some success in, what do you do in order to get your business off the ground? We have written previously on breaking into a new market and the first steps in getting the word out about your new business.
A few key recommendations for getting your business out there:
Relationships are hard work. Two people making a life long commitment to each other, what could go wrong? Add kids to the mix and we're all doomed.
We share a few of our experiences and thoughts on making the best go you can at marriage and parenting. We are not professionals. We are nominal parents.
Perhaps one of the most important keys to parenting is realizing that you and your partner are different. You already knew this but nothing brings out what you love and hate about your partner like marriage and especially parenting.
How we work through our differences is key to our long term success. How we disagree is more important than when we agree as the process of working through that is what makes us stronger.
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In The DYOJO our goal is to help you discipline your mind and habits for growth. Use these concepts to help you build a strong organization by maximizing people, process, production and progress (The 4 P's). Contact us today to discuss how we can help you with leadership development, business coaching or freelance writing.