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10 Inspiring Things Entrepreneurs With Grit Do

10 Inspiring Things Entrepreneurs With Grit Do

Typically, when an entrepreneur has a good idea, there are at least five other people trying to do the same thing. What sets successful entrepreneurs apart from the unsuccessful ones is grit—the ability to continue working toward a goal no matter how hard it gets or how long it takes. Talent, intelligence, and even education does not guarantee success. Of course, talent, perfect skills and qualifications can help your entrepreneurial efforts, but experience tells us that entrepreneurs (and people in general) succeed because they demonstrate extraordinary grit to reach their dreams.

Calvin Coolidge, the 30th President of the United States, summed it up pretty well when he said:

“Nothing in the world can take the place of Persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan ‘Press On’ has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.”

Here are inspiring things entrepreneurs with grit do day in and day out that propel them to success.

1. They believe in themselves.

Let’s face it, entrepreneurs enter a world where there are vastly more failures than successes. To succeed, they have to believe in themselves. They have to believe that their ideas and businesses will defy the statistics and become success stories. This is not to say that entrepreneurs with grit have all the answers, rather it is to say that they have great self-confidence and belief that they have what it takes to make it.

2. They work tirelessly.

Entrepreneurs with grit work tirelessly day in and day out with an unwavering resolve to finish the task at hand despite the doubters, detractors and distractions. This tenacity to keep going even when the odds are stacked against them is the key to their success. It’s not about striving for perfection, but rather persevering when others quit. Work comes first and the payoff comes later… often much later.

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3. They demonstrate great courage.

Entrepreneurs with grit know that failure is an integral part of success. They, therefore, do not fear failure or shy away from trying new things and taking calculated risk. In fact, they are constantly trying new things, testing new systems, adopting new technology. Sure, they stumble sometimes, but they always get back up again. Risking takes courage. They risk because it is through trying that one learns what works and what doesn’t work. It is through trying that one gains experience and makes progress.

4. They remind themselves of their goals.

Entrepreneurs with grit constantly remind themselves of their purpose and goals lest they forget and lose their way. This constant self reminder of their core objectives is what motivates them to push past the cacophony of distractions and naysayers along the way. Positive self talk empowers them to push past failures, disappointments, fatigue and many other challenges on the way. This is how they manage to never lose sight of their mission, or what brings them true joy and happiness in business and life.

5. They maintain a positive attitude.

Entrepreneurs with grit choose to be positive no matter what. They are always brimming with optimism and see opportunities in challenges. A positive attitude allows them to let go of setbacks encountered along the way and move forward with hope and optimism that all will work out well in the end. Significantly, a positive attitude, bright outlook on life and hopeful enthusiasm is contagious. It is the glue that holds the operation of teams and businesses together when all is not going well.

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6. They single-task.

Sometimes we assume “more is more”—taking on more things produces more results, but it is clearly not true. Studies show that we are not the brilliant multitaskers we think we are. Our brains are simply not capable of handling multiple tasks at once as optimally as we would want, which is why entrepreneurs with grit pick one project at a time and work on it. Prioritizing and staying focused on one thing at a time boosts their efficiency and productivity tenfold. They get more done better this way.

7. They seek the counsel of others.

Entrepreneurs with grit have respect for other people’s opinions and judgments, especially those who have gone before them. They also have the humility and open-mindedness to seek the counsel, advice and help of others when they need it. Former Skype CEO Tony Bates says one of the most exceptional facts about Silicon Valley is that competitors frequently come together to solve problems and seek moral support. While this doesn’t necessarily mean that people should divulge intellectual property, says the UK transplant, entrepreneurs should never be afraid to ask questions of their colleagues.

8. They learn from every experience.

Every failure, every mistake is a learning opportunity for entrepreneurs with grit. They pick lessons from their own experiences and the experiences of others, both good and bad, and use those lessons learnt to inform their actions going forward.

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As Brian Chesky, CEO of Airbnb, emphasizes, “The most important thing you can learn how to do is to learn…”

Unfortunately, people tend to stop learning as they grow older. But not entrepreneurs with grit.  Entrepreneurs with grit never stop learning. They are constantly seeking new information and adding to their reservoir of knowledge for success.

9. They stay the course.

Entrepreneurs with grit toil away quietly, improving their skills, product and service through focused hard work. When others jump from one shiny idea to the next and are derailed from their core goals by fads in their industry, entrepreneurs with grit stick to their course. They don’t abandon ship halfway through the journey; rather they modify systems as necessary and try creative new strategies when one tactic doesn’t work. They make smart plans and follow through to completion.

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10. They distinguish good grit from bad.

Some people sacrifice too much in the name of working hard to improve the future such that their families and colleagues feel abused or neglected. Conscientious entrepreneurs with grit, however, balance things out so that more people benefit and fewer people suffer as the result of their efforts. And they always, always create time in their busy schedule to spend quality time with their family and close friends.

More by this author

David K. William

David is a publisher and entrepreneur who tries to help professionals grow their business and careers, and gives advice for entrepreneurs.

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Published on September 23, 2020

6 Effective Negotiation Skills to Master

6 Effective Negotiation Skills to Master

I don’t know about you, but many times when I hear the word negotiate I think of lawyers working out a business deal or having to do battle with a car salesman to try to get a lower price. Since I am in recruiting, the term “negotiation” comes up when someone is attempting to get a higher compensation package.

If we think about it, we tend to negotiate almost every day in a wide variety of things we do. Getting a handle on the important negotiation skills can be incredibly beneficial in many parts of our lives. Let’s take a look at 6 effective negotiation skills to master.

What is Negotiation?

First, let’s take a look at what negotiation is. Put simply, negotiation is a method by which people settle their differences. It is a process in which compromise or agreement can be reached without argument or dispute.

Anytime two people or sides disagree on something, they are almost always looking for the best possible outcome for their side. This could be from an individual’s perspective or someone representing an organization.

In reality, it’s rare that one side gets everything they want and the other side gets nothing that they are seeking. Seeking to reach a common ground of sorts where both sides feel like they are getting most of what they want is the key to being successful and maintaining the relationship.

Places We Negotiate

I’ve mentioned that we negotiate in just about all phases of our life. For those of you who are shaking your head no, I invite you to think about the following:

1. Work/Business

This one is the most obvious and it’s what naturally comes to mind when we think of the word “negotiate”.

When you first started at your current job, you might have asked for a higher salary. It could be that you delivered a huge new client to your company and used this as leverage in your most recent evaluation for more compensation. If you work with vendors (and just about every company does), maybe you worked them to a lower price or better contract terms.

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In recruiting, I negotiate with candidates and hiring managers all the time to land the best talent I can find. It’s very common to accept additional work with the (sometimes spoken, sometimes unspoken) agreement that it will benefit your career in the future.

Recently, I took over a project that was my boss was working on so that I would be able to attend a conference later in the year. And so it goes, we do this all day long at work.

2. Personal

I don’t know about you, but I negotiate with my spouse all the time. I’ll cook dinner with the understanding that she does the dishes. Who wants to mow the lawn and who wants to vacuum and dust the house?

I think we should save 10% for retirement, but she thinks 5% is plenty. Therefore, we save 8%. And don’t even get me started with my kids. My older daughter can borrow my car as soon as she finishes her chores. My younger daughter can go hang out with her friends when her homework is done.

Then, there are all those interactions in our personal lives outside our homes. The carpenter wants to charge me $12,000 to build a new deck. I think $10,000 is plenty so we agree on $11,000. I ask my neighbor if I can borrow his snowblower in the winter if I invite him over the next time I grill steak. And so on.

3. Ourselves

You didn’t expect this one, did you? We negotiate with ourselves all day long.

I’ll make sure I don’t skip my workout tomorrow since I’m going to have that extra piece of pizza. My spouse has been quiet the last few days, is it worth me asking her about, or should I leave it alone? I think the car place charged me for some repairs that weren’t needed, should I say something or just let it go? I know my friend has been having some personal challenges, should I check in with him? We’ve been friends for a long time, I’m sure he’d come to me if he needed help. I’ve got the #4 pick in this year’s Fantasy Football draft, should I choose a running back or a wide receiver?

Think about that non-stop voice inside your head. It always seems to be chattering away about something and many times, it’s us negotiating with ourselves. I’ll finish up that report that the boss needs before I turn on the football game.

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Why Negotiation Skills Are So Important

Put simply, negotiation skills are important because we all interact with other people, and not only other people but other organizations and groups of people as well.

We all rarely want the same thing or outcome. Most of the time a vendor is looking at getting you to pay a higher price for something than you want to spend. Therefore, it’s important to negotiate to some middle ground that works well for both sides.

My wife and I disagree on how much to save for retirement. If we weren’t married it wouldn’t be an issue. We’d each contribute how much we wanted to on our retirement funds. We choose to be married, so we have to come to some agreement that we both feel comfortable with. We have to compromise. Therefore, we have to negotiate.

If we each lived on a planet by ourselves, we would be free to do just about anything we wanted to. We wouldn’t have to compromise with anyone because we wouldn’t interact with anyone. We would make every choice unilaterally the way we wanted to.

As we all know, this isn’t how things are. We are constantly interacting with other people and organizations, each one with their own agenda’s, viewpoints, and opinions. Therefore, we have to be able to work together.

6 Negotiation Skills to Master

Having strong negotiation skills helps us create win-win situations with others, allowing us to get most of what we want in conjunction with others around us.

Now, let’s look at 6 effective negotiation skills to master.

1. Preparation

Preparation is a key place to start with when getting ready to negotiate. Being prepared means having a clear vision of what you want and how you’d go about achieving it. It means knowing what the end goal looks like and also what you are willing to give to get it.

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It also means knowing who you are negotiating with and what areas they might be willing to compromise on. You should also know what your “bottom line” is. By “bottom line” I mean what is the most you are willing to give up to get what you want.

For instance, several years ago, I decided it was time to get a newer car. I say newer because I wanted a “new to me” car, not a brand new car. I did my research and figured out what type of car I wanted. I decided on what must-have items on the car I wanted, the highest amount of miles that would already be on it, the colors I was willing to get it in, and the highest amount of money I was willing to pay.

After visiting numerous car dealerships I was able to negotiate buying a car. I knew what I was willing to give up (amount of money) and what I was willing to accept, things like the color, amount of miles, etc. I came prepared. This is critical.

2. Clear Communication

The next key skill you need to be an effective negotiator is clear communication. You have to be able to clearly articulate what you want to the other party. This means both clear verbal and written communication.

If you can’t clearly tell the other person what you want, how do you expect to get it? Have you ever worked through something with a vendor or someone else only to learn of a surprise right at the end that wasn’t talked about before? This is not what you would call clear communication. It’s essential to be able to share a coherent and logical vision with the person you are working with.

3. Active Listening

Let’s do a quick review of active listening. This is when you are completely focused on the speaker, understand their message, comprehend the information, and respond appropriately. This is a necessary ingredient to be able to negotiate successfully. You must be able to fully focus on the other person’s wants to completely understand them.

If you aren’t giving them your full attention, you may miss some major points or details. This leads to frustration down the road on both sides. Ensure you are employing your active listening skills when in arbitration mode.

4. Teamwork and Collaboration

To be able to get to a place of common ground and a win-win scenario, you have to have a sense of teamwork and collaboration.

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If you are only thinking about yourself and what you want without giving much care to what the other person is wanting, you are bound to wind up without a solution. The other person may get frustrated and give up if they see you are unwilling to meet them halfway or care little for what they want.

When you collaborate, you are working together to help each other get what is most important to you. The other upside to negotiating with a sense of teamwork and collaboration is that it helps create a sense of trust, which, in turn, helps provide positive energy for working to a successful conclusion.

5. Problem Solving

Problem-solving is another key negotiation skill. When you are working with the other person to get the deal done many times you’ll face new challenges along the way.

Maybe you want a new vendor to provide training on the software they are selling you but they say it’s going to cost an additional $20,000 to provide this service. If you don’t have the additional $20,000 in the budget to spend on the software but you feel the training is critical, how are you going to solve that problem?

From what I’ve seen, most vendors aren’t willing to provide additional services without getting paid for them. This is where problem-solving skills will help continue the discussions. You might suggest to the vendor that your company will also be looking to replace their financial software next year, and you’d be happy to ensure they get one of the first seats at the table when the time comes if they could perhaps lower the pricing on their training.

There’s a solution to most challenges, but it takes problem-solving skills to work through them effectively.

6. Decision-Making Ability

Finally, having strong decision-making ability will help you seal the deal when you get to a place where everyone feels like they are getting what works for them. Each step of the way you can cross off the list when you get what you are looking for and decide to move onto the next item. Then, once you have all of your must-have boxes checked and the other side feels good about things, it’s time to shake hands and sign on the dotted line. Powerful decision-making ability will help you get to the finish line together.

Conclusion

There you have it, 6 effective negotiation skills to master to lead a more fulfilling life. Once we realize that we negotiate in one form or another almost every day in every phase of our lives, we realize how critical a skill it is.

Possessing strong negotiation skills will help you in nearly every one of your relationships at both the workplace and in your personal life. If you feel your arbitration tools could use some sharpening, try some of the 6 effective negotiation skills to master that we’ve talked about.

More Tips to Improve Your Negotiation Skills

Featured photo credit: Windows via unsplash.com

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