When it comes to achieving success in business, most entrepreneurs start with a goal. Typically it’s a revenue goal. Everything they do, from the products and services they offer to the way they spend their time is based on how they can achieve that goal.
What they don’t realize is that setting a goal is NOT the first step. In fact, if they start there they are less likely to get the results they want. And if they do, it will be harder and more frustrating than it needs to be.
The first step to achieving success in business is not choosing a goal, it’s setting a Vision.
But that’s not all. Even the most determined entrepreneurs who set a vision only complete 50% of the process. They only do half of it. Not because they’re incompetent, far from it. It’s because most goals and accountability experts fail to discuss one critical component of creating a vision.
Today I’m going to tell you about the 2 types of Visions you MUST create if you want to have a successful, long lasting business. If you’re in it to win it and you want to have built an amazing business that you will enjoy for years to come, then stick with me to the end of this episode because I will tell you exactly what you need to do first to set yourself up for success.
To begin, let’s talk about what is a vision in this context? Quite simply, It’s a mental picture of a future that you desire. More specifically for entrepreneurs, it is the future you desire for your business. A vision is important because it gives us a clear sense of purpose. It’s where we aim. It’s where we focus our time energy and attention. It provides a sense of direction and sets our intention of what we’re working towards.
Wrapped into the vision is our hopes and our dreams. It includes our desires of what we want to create with our efforts and how we want to improve the lives of others through our business. A vision includes all the noble reasons and powerful emotions behind those reasons.
It’s important that our vision is driven by our passions. Our passions are what compels us forward. Sometimes we are pushed forward towards something because we have a need that must be met. There’s an element of stress, strain and duress that happens when we’re pushed to move forward. When we are pulled forward we will run faster and with more enthusiasm towards what we want. That is what a Vision creates for us. The reasons that excite and energize you. It’s the mental picture in our mind that compels us to take action.
Why a vision is important for our business? As I mentioned, a vision is a powerful tool that helps us to achieve the results we want.
We create a vision so we can step into it. Our goals, the things we are aiming to achieve, they come from that Vision.
It’s important that we set a clear and specific vision because it becomes the rule book by which we make all of our other business decisions. When it’s time to decide “Should I do this?” we can ask ourselves “how does this serve, honor, or create the Vision?” Every decision, every action, every step along the way is to serve the Vision. A lot of times entrepreneurs can go off the rails because they forget what the vision is for their business and they set goals and make decisions without thinking of the big picture impact.
I did this all of the time and I still battle this today. I’m always coming up with ideas of new products and services to offer my audience. They are exciting and enticing. And when I didn’t check in to see if they fit into the vision I have for my business, they led me down rabbit holes that may have gotten me results but took me away from the type of business that I want to create. When I lose track of my vision, I find my business heads in a direction that I didn’t intend. When you hear me talk about constraint, this is what I’m referring to. I constrain my time energy and attention to only those endeavors that honor the bigger picture I have for my business.
WHY MOST VISIONS FALL SHORT
I mentioned at the start of the episode that most entrepreneurs who set a vision only complete 50% of the process. It’s to be expected because it’s not something most goals and accountability coaches discuss.
A Vision as two parts: mental picture of the future that we desire we have for our business and the mental picture of who we are as the leader in that business.
It’s the second one, the vision we have for ourselves, that often gets overlooked.
When you create a vision for your business, you have to also create your vision for yourself as the entrepreneur running that business. It’s your entrepreneur identity and it’s crucial because your identity is going to influence how you show up every single day in your business.
If your identity is one of empowerment, confidence, trust creation, problem solving, and competence, you will show up differently in the everyday moments than if your identity us is one of hustle and grind, depletion, desperation, confusion, exhaustion, scarcity or fear. The latter is a totally different entrepreneur than one who feels empowered.
When thinking about our identity as an entrepreneur, we must once again cast a vision into the future. What am I like when I am running the business of my dreams? When my business is amazing how do I show up every day?
The answer to these questions is really important because successful entrepreneurs are made in the everyday moments. Every success you see happens in the everyday moments. Major accomplishments aren’t made in those big grandiose ways that we often see celebrated by others around us.. They happen in the mundane minutes in between
Michael Phelps didn’t win 23 gold medals because he showed up to swim 23 races. He showed up with the vision of being an Olympic gold medal winner at every practice and every training session. His success was made in the races that no one besides his coach was there to witness.
When you hear coaches like myself talk about a business mindset or success mindset, phrases that are often tossed around but never clearly defined, this is the concept that we’re talking about. It’s your entrepreneur identity, and vision you have for who you are in that role, that determines your business success. We, as entrepreneurs, are the protector and creator of the vision in our own business. We are the ones who makes sure that vision becomes our reality. We do it by showing up as our Entrepreneuer Identity in the everyday, mundane moments.
WHERE YOU MAY TRIP UP
Let’s talk about what mistakes I see quite often when it comes to creating an Entrepreneur Identity. As I mentioned the first mistake I see is that most entrepreneurs have not clearly defined the vision of who they are in their business
The second problem I see, is that when they try to create the vision of who they are and who they want to be, they look outside themselves for that identity. I understand why this happens. Concepts presented in books such as The Alter Ego Effect by Todd Herman, which is a great book and worth reading because there’s a lot of valuable information, discuss this as a valuable technique. He promotes the idea that if you don’t have a character trait inside of you, adopt an external personality as your own. I disagree with him on this one point. I think that’s great for children who are learning how to be brave and need that extra help by bringing in their imagination to pretend they are batman. For you, I want more for you. I think you are capable of so much more than you know. I think the person you want to be already exists inside of you. You’ve disconnected from her. Embracing the strengths of someone else delays your ability to embrace your own strengths.
If there’s one thing I know with certainty about you, even if we’ve never met you, it’s that you have had to overcome some pretty tough circumstances. There’s not one person listening to this podcast who has not had to face a difficult trial and come out the other side of it. Grante, you may have come out battered, bruised, and worn down but you also came out stronger, wiser, and more resilient. When you search to find your entrepreneur identity, I encourage you to not pull from Wonder Woman or Beyonce or Michelle Obama. Instead pull from that fierce warrior inside of you. The person who is inside of you that is the powerful heart centered entrepreneur who pursues her dreams with unapologetic ambition. That is the heart of your entrepreneur identity, it’s not external, it’s absolutely internal.
Here’s the thing….we all have access to this part of ourselves at any time. This part of our personality, this part of our entrepreneur identity, the part that sets a compelling vision, the part that takes consistent and persistent action towards a goal, the part that can learn the lessons from disappointment and failure, it’s already inside of us. We can decide right now in this moment how that version of us is going to show up in the everyday moments, in the moments of unbelievable success and in the moments of disappointment.
Your entrepreneur identity is inside of you. It’s already there waiting for you. All you have to do is call it forward and step into it.
How do you know what your entrepreneur identity is? She is the highest, purest, best version of yourself as an entrepreneur. *She has already achieved the success you want right now. She’s already done it. She’s the one who dreams big, who pursues, who achieves. She doesn’t see the world in success and failure. She sees the world in outcomes and lessons. She either gets the results she wanted or the lesson she needed. She doesn’t let Dementor thoughts, thoughts that zap her enthusiasm and strip her of joy, she doesn’t allow them an opportunity to exist in her mind.
For some of you, this will come easily. For others, this will require practice. But you can do it. You have to decide be intentional about practicing your entrepreneur identity time and time again until it becomes your default way of being.
So, how do you create your entrepreneur identity? You start by taking the time to step into that role and ask yourself some questions: When I am her, what motivates and inspires me? What do I think about? How do I feel? What does this version of myself do from when I wake up in the morning until I go to bed at night? What does my business day look like?
How does the highest purest version of myself handle problems? Or unexpected crises? More importantly, how does that version of me handle disappointment?
Again, this is so important because your brain doesn’t know the difference between who you are right now and who you want to be. Your subconscious brain literally cannot tell the difference between imagination and reality. If you’re always thinking about how your entrepreneur identity handles these moments and then you step into that vision of her, you will become her. You will be her. She will protect the bigger vision because that’s who she is and what she does. She’s already inside of you, she’s not external, she’s in there, you just have to learn how to tap into her and to choose to be her. Especially in those mundane everyday moments.
The way I do this, is I imagine that my entrepreneur identity is like putting on a coat. When I’m operating from that part of my personality, I put on my entrepreneur coat. When I’m with my family, I take off that coat and put on my mom hoodie. I do this for every area of my life where I’m trying to step into the highest and purest version of myself.
I invite you to take some time today to fire up your imagination, write a vision for your business and also write a vision for who you want to be as the leader and visionary of that business.
Here’s a success tip: Once you’ve written your Vision, make it a point to reflect on it daily. Study it. Memorize it. Keep in touch with that vision because it’s the reason you’re here and it will be what keeps you going in those tough moments that are sure to come.
Your success, your results, and your experience along the way…is determined by you. It begins by setting a Vision for your business and for yourself.
Danielle's message is spot on with achieving goals. Not only does she practice what she preaches, but she's your guide to help YOU achieve the best version of yourself! A must listen!
Grow a biz & feel good! Danielle is really skilled at bringing both the actionable steps plus the mindset work so we can feel good as we grow our businesses while being present for our families. I look forward to listening every week!