What is your sense of business urgency? What is your level of commitment towards seeing your goals through to the finish line?
Some of my clients take a leisurely approach, sort of a business stroll in the park. Others operate in full-speed-ahead mode, their eyes on the horizon. They can’t wait to get where they are going.
When I conduct feasibility studies for small businesses, entrepreneurs and startups, I’m checking the pulse of their sense of business urgency. I’m determining whether founders and CEOs are operating at out-of-control 130 km/h speeds to get things going. Their passionate and often reckless abandon to rush to the marketplace can result in overlooking potholes and pitfalls which can derail their venture.
Have I just described you?
What I am looking for, in guiding you, is whether you and your partners truly believe in the cause you are pursuing. How you perceive this concept means the difference between creating a business that is a hobby or one which becomes your primary means of livelihood.
It all depends on your sense of business urgency: that passion and fire-in-the-belly stuff which makes you thrilled to wake up each morning and get down to business.
I offer 3 tips for creating a reasonable, feasible and sustainable sense of business urgency that won’t burn you or your team out.
Tip 1 – Understand the difference between achieving tactical versus strategic goals. That’s the first step to take into account when focusing your sense of business urgency on the right targets. When your daily business activities are comprised of exciting fire-fighting activities, you can completely lose sight of your strategic initiatives. If you go looking for them, you will find a lot of day-to-day disruptions preventing you from maintaining your sense of business urgency. Daily tactical fire-fighting provides an exciting adrenaline rush. If you go to work each day and wonder what’s going to happen next, it’s time for process improvement to anticipate and eliminate the root causes of these disruptions.
Tip 2 – Set reasonable and feasible strategic goals for your and your team to accomplish. Developing a sense of business urgency involves reprioritizing your time commitments to the tasks which will move your business forward. Keep your eyes focused on how each one of your commitments is related to your long term, strategic goals. In the process, you will find you are less distracted by tactical matters. Accomplish your strategic goals on time, as planned. Avoid adopting a “We’ll get to them when we can” attitude. That’s hobby-speak.
Tip 3 – Celebrate your accomplishments together. The little things you all do well, together, over time, can make the greatest difference to the sustainability of your business. Not everyone on your team works at the same pace. Some team members have mental hurdles of self-belief to overcome. Make time to recognize everyone’s accomplishments. It’s far more productive and profitable than rushing off to fight the next fire.
Decide whether you have a hobby or a business. Then get down creating a sense of business urgency. Let me know how it goes.
Babette N. Ten Haken, Founder & President of Sales Aerobics for Engineers, LLC, catalyzes revenue-producing business transition, startup growth and professional development, one millimeter at a time. She works with manufacturing and engineering firms and small business entrepreneurships. Download her newest White Paper at her Free Resources Page.