2019 has been an incredible year, full of joy, laughter, challenges, and successes. With only one day left of 2019, we would love to share with you 5 lessons we have learned in 2019.
Business is created from a place of joy.
We often hear from business owners, coaches, practitioners – “I want to help people’ and they build the business on this one premise. What happens after (and that surely happened to us), clients to do not come, or they say ‘no’ after all that hard work on lead generation, sales conversations and discovery calls.
If the identity of the business is built on that one premise ‘I want to help’, the self-worth drops, doubts cripple in and the inspired entrepreneur loses the connection with his or her purpose.
This is what we’ve learned:
We are not here to save anyone.
We are not here to save ourselves.
How many businesses are created by running from something (when the business is created to escape 9-5 job) or run towards something (when you see others having success and wanting to copy that)
We create a business and we do it because it lights US up.
We have discovered this when writing out our WHY after reading a book by Simon Sinek “Know your WHY’
We have done an exercise to uncover ur why that got us to go through our childhood and find common trends, common intentions, common drivers for both of us.
Combining them this is what our why looks like:
- To ignite freedom and aliveness in ourselves and others so that life is filled with unique self-expression, growth, love, and evolution.
This is our essence, our gift. This is who we are.
And what lights you up?
What are will you continue doing even when no one needs it or wants it?
What would you continue doing if you had all the money in the world?
Our guess – the thing that lights you up!
Not only one should have it all, but one must have it all.
It’s common that business takes over a business owner life. Going on holidays while you are running your own business can seem overwhelming even at a thought of it.
As a result Over 30% of business owners experience a burnout. I (Ksenia) was one of them with the first company that I opened in 2009.
We have learned the importance of recharging. Within the last 4 months of this year, I (Ksenia) have snorkeled in Koh Tao, hugged an elephant in Chiang Mai, had monthly nature getaways, had a complete unplug at a 10 days silent meditation retreat. All that while running a brand new business and sales consultancy company.
While we were running our 12-week Online Sales School, delivering live workshops and one-on-ones while Anastasha was traveling for 3 months across Europe, USA and Canada. It was a massive mind shift.
What if you adopt the attitude ‘I can have this AND that’ rather than ‘I can have this OR that’. I can have a growing business AND travel for weeks. I can have a large business AND have a family AND amazing relationships in my life.
Analysing trends of hundreds of businesses, it was found out that the businesses that there was a link between the number of holidays a business owner took and the company’s growth. 4 weeks a year was a minimum and anything over 6 weeks was ideal for a strong growth trajectory.
So, How many holidays have you taken this year? And when you are planning 2020 are you putting holidays in your calendar first and plan your work around it or you for us on your business meetings, goals, rocks and objectives and oversee holidays? Start with holidays. Your business will say thank you.
How to cultivate a Creative Business relationship.
According to the statistics, over 70% of all small businesses are owned by one person—a sole proprietorship. However, we found that combining our skills, we can achieve synergy where 1+1 =3.
We’d like to share our core fundamentals of a creative business relationship. (Other fundamentals, such as establishing a legal entity, having agreements about financial contribution and profit allocation, structure, roles and responsibilities is another conversation.) They are:
- Honesty and Trust.
- Alignment of Core Values
Steps that we took and you can use to cultivate creative partnerships:
- Get to know each other – each other‟s likes, dislikes, quirks, hopes and dreams
- Know the strength and weaknesses of each other
- Commit to the common goal
- Keep each other safe (to be who you are, to fully express yourself)
- Everything is valid. Allow the freedom of ideas, and later take time to sort them out and prioritise
- Increase the effectiveness of communication through utilising awareness, self-responsibility, consent and empathy in communication.
- Engage in empathic listening.
What is empathic listening? It means is putting your values, needs, and preferences aside for the moment, and trying to empathically sense what your communication partner thinks, feels, needs, and perceives now without judgment.
Acknowledge and Celebrate!!
The importance of having conscious and critical conversations.
Who likes confrontations? And who would prefer not to have a difficult conversation with your team members, business partners or family?
You know the conversions I am talking about. Where you have to speak up, where it is uncomfortable, where you are afraid of upsetting the other person. You know it will erupt things. You know it will not be taken lightly.
What we have learned is that Business (as a matter of fact our personal life and any relationships as well) cannot be healthy without open, difficult, straight, critical conversations.
Not speaking up, sweeping things under the carpet, saying it’s ok, it’s just them, it’s just me reacting, it’s just one time, talking to everyone else about the situation but the person involved, lead to creating resentment, walls and eventually break down in relationships.
Few tips on how to have these conversations:
1. Get honest with yourself. What are you feeling?
2. Get objective. What is it that you are observing?
3. Have courage and just start the conversation.
4. Stay compassionate to the other person and give an opportunity to tell their side.
5. Come up with solutions to prevent it from happening again.
Difficult conversations build the strongest relationship.
In fact these conversations most of the time show you areas that need to be improved. It’s positive. It just doesn’t feel like it at a time.
Opportunities will present themselves.
Have you ever had to pivot in your business?
The truth is, when you start a business, it will start leading you in a certain direction, and things will start unfolding. Sometimes to the directions you could not foresee.
These changes and pivots can be taken as disruptions that cause stress and feelings of guilt and dissatisfaction, or they can be seen as opportunities that lead to incredible expansion.
It depends on the perspective. It depends on your attitude towards it.
An experiment conducted by Professor Richard Wiseman showed that perfectly.
The first group of ppl who considered themselves unlikely and had high anxiety were shown a newspaper and they were asked to count the number of photographs in it. It took them about 2 min.
The second group of people with a positive attitude and who considered themselves lucky took only seconds to complete the task.
How? Cos they noticed that at the top of the newspaper it said stop counting. There are 43 photographs in the newspaper.
The unlucky ppl kept counting …
The ability to recognize an opportunity and go with the flow of your business is a crucial skill to have.
That was a lesson we’ve learned when we started Fall in Love with Sales from one simple idea to create an online course.
So many opportunities have opened up, and one of them to expand into business consulting, which has been outlined as a strategy for 2020.
We invite you to reflect on 2019 befoe you start setting intentions for 2020.
Ask yourself the following questions:
What are the 3 things that have worked for you this year?
What are the 3 things that did not work?
What would you do differently this year if you could do it again?
Have the best time reflecting and happy new year! We wish you a year full of recognised opportunities, deep and meaningful relationships, and joy!
Ksenia and Anastasha.