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Were You Born to be an Entrepreneur?

Were You Born to be an Entrepreneur?

Do you work a grueling 9 to 5 job that you hate, waking up every day thinking “this is not meant to be my life”? Do you dread going into work, hate your manager or your boss, hate working under anyone in general, and can’t wait to clock out and go home every day? Are you struggling to get by on your wages, and feel underpaid and under-appreciated? Do you long for freedom; freedom over your hours, your schedule, your vacations, and your income? Freedom over your life?

If you’re saying “YES!”, read on. If you have already started a business, sit tight. Do you feel like the black sheep in a flock of robots who are astoundingly content with working a dead-end job? Do you feel like you’re driving 100mph in the wrong direction the longer you keep working this painful j-o-b and aren’t taking your career into your own hands? Yes? Have you ever thought about running your own business? Have you ever tried?

Now answer these questions. Were you doing things as a child like selling your personal items to your family members and neighbors, creating a “store” in your room or on the street? Were you dreaming up business ideas and thinking about making money from a young age?

Are you a self-starter, and do have drive to accomplish things on your own without the need for structure and direction? When you want to achieve something and you are left to your own devices to do it, are you motivated, determined, and thrive in the total freedom? Do you have a fire in you that is hellbent on achieving success, living your dreams, and breaking the mould?

Congratulations. You were born to be an entrepreneur.

This is your destiny, your true calling, and how you’re going to manifest your goals and your dreams. By building, and successfully running, your own business.

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Imagine waking up every day excited; you love what you do, you have total freedom, you choose when you want to work, and decide whether you work 40 or 4 hours a week. You make more money than you have ever dreamed you could make, and your income is constantly increasing. You are your own boss, you call the shots, you run the joint. Powerful, right? If your mind was just running wild with excitement while reading this paragraph, it’s 100% official–you my friend, have landed on this page for a divine reason.

Whether you haven’t even come up with a business idea yet or whether you have already started a business (and maybe it’s not making enough money or you don’t love the industry you’re in), the answer that is written for you is the same. You were destined for entrepreneurship, and you are on the right path. And reading this article is propelling you forward down that path.

Now let’s play the devil’s advocate.

Say you don’t thrive when left to your own devices, you feel like you need structure and direction, and need someone to hold you accountable in order to get tasks done. You don’t enjoy a lot of challenge and would rather be comfortable, and stay safe from risk, failure and rejection.

You don’t think you would have enough determination, and energy, to run your own business, to pursue self-education where you need the knowledge, and to run with everything on your own, as a leader and not a follower. If any of this rings true for you, that’s okay! Not everyone is meant to be an entrepreneur, and many would not find success and wealth down this path.

In fact, 80% of businesses fail. One might say it was because they didn’t have enough funds, the right business plan, or the right resources. And that may very well have been true, but none of these things were the underlying cause. The cause, most of the time, is the person and their mindset. You not only need to be determined, persistent, diligent, resourceful and committed, but you need to have drive…passion.

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And, you need to be creative, a great thinker, and an even better doer. You need to want this so much you can feel it in the very fiber of your being. And once you figure out which type of person you are, and you go against what you’re meant to do, your life just feels wrong, like you’re on the wrong airplane holding someone else’s boarding pass.

Now that you know what you’re meant to do, how do you do it?

1. The first step is the idea.

If you’re just beginning your entrepreneurial journey today, your very first step is coming up with your business idea. All you need to do is pull out a pen and paper, and write down all the ideas you currently have. Next draw two columns; in one column list your passions, hobbies, and things you love doing. In the second column, write down a list of things you are good at, and the more excellent you are at it the better. Think of this list in terms of services or products you could sell.

This list may have your business idea staring right at you – if it doesn’t excite you however, we’ve got a problem. If you start with very little passion for your business, your motivation will die after you start having to put in the work. Compare these two columns and try to find any correlations.

Say you are excellent at cooking, and it happens to be one of your hobbies too. Perfect, the online cooking/baking industry is huge. Consider starting a food blog with a corresponding Youtube channel. Think up a unique angle, something original, and specific.

Next write down ways you could make money with this business. With a website or a blog/vlog, you can monetize it, and the more traffic and fans you gather the more you can charge for advertising space. Think services you could sell, like online cooking classes/courses, and products, like recipe books and ebooks, etc. Let your inner-entrepreneur run wild!

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To stand out, come up with a unique twist or angle on a product or service. Some great examples of this I found are hotel babysitting services for traveling parents, revolutionary health-conscious feminine care, and thinking big and outside the box like Airbnb and Uber did.

Still struggling on deciding what industry you want to be in and what you would find the most success doing? Take the Entrepreneur Quiz, and find out what type of entrepreneur you should be based on your personality, traits, hobbies and skills.

2. The second step is the hardest part.

You need to take action. Massive, determined action. And you need to do it NOW. Not later, now. Otherwise you will lose the motivation and the momentum you just started to get going, and it will fizzle out. You’ll tell yourself that you’ll just put it on the back burner for now and revisit it later, maybe when you’re making more money, or things are less crazy, and less busy…yeah, things are way too busy right now, it’s not a good time, too much going on.

Guess what – your mind is lying to you! These are 100% made-up excuses your mind is generating in order to keep you in your comfort zone, to avoid risk, and potential failure. Basically, your limiting beliefs and self-doubt are trying to swindle you out of achieving your goals and living your destiny. But if you don’t leap, you will never fly. And if you don’t do it now, you will never do it.

So, next you will need to write up your business plan. And it is crucial you build your sales funnel.

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3. Build your online presence.

You will need a business name, you need to get incorporated, build your website, set up your social accounts, etc. And SEO (search engine optimization), is absolutely mandatory for every online business in order to get found online, rank in Google, drive traffic to your site, build yourself an online presence, and increase your sales. This needs to be one of your top ongoing priorities in any online business.

I have 11 years of experience in SEO, and I want you to walk away from this article with some actionable tips, so I’ll share with you the most important on-page factor in your SEO – optimizing your title tags. This one task alone can have a massive impact on your Google rankings.

What are you waiting for?

Get out there and take action. Once you have got momentum, there is no stopping you. You were born for this. It has been written in the stars, it is your destiny – creating and building a life for yourself, run by YOU and only you. Doing what you love and sharing it with the world. Basking in personal and financial freedom and independence, and most importantly, walking the path you were meant to walk.

Featured photo credit: Olu Eletu via unsplash.com

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Chloe Spencer

Online Marketing Specialist, SEO Expert, Millennial Entrepreneur and Professional Writer and Speaker

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Last Updated on April 11, 2019

How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

Possessing strong communication skills will help you in every phase of your life. This is especially true in the workplace.

I have personally worked with several leaders who were masters of communication. A few were wonderful speakers who could tell a great story and get everyone in the room engaged. Those of us in attendance would walk away feeling inspired and eager to help with what came next. Others were very skilled at sharing a clear direction and job expectations.

I knew exactly what was expected of me and how to achieve my goals. This was the foundation of an energized and vibrant role I was in. What I have found is strong communication skills are incredibly helpful and sometimes critical in how well we perform at work.

Here we will take a look at how to improve communication skills for workplace success.

How Communication Skills Help Your Success

Strong communication skills pave the way for success in many ways. Let’s look at a few of the big ones.

Create a Positive Experience

Here are two examples of how well developed communication skills helps create a positive experience:

When I first moved to the city I now live in, I began a job search. Prior to my first live interview, I was told an address to go to. Upon arriving at the address provided, I drove around and around attempting to find the location. After 15 minutes of circling and looking for the address, I finally grabbed a parking spot and set out on foot.

What I discovered was the address was actually down an alley and only had the number over the door. No sign for the actual company. The person that gave me those very unclear directions provided a bad experience for me.

Had they communicated the directions to get there in a clear manner, my experience would have been much better. Instead the entire experience started off poorly and colored the entire meeting.

As a recruiter, I frequently provide potential candidates with information about a job I’m speaking to them about. In order to do this, I also provide a picture of the overall company, the group they might be joining, and how their role fits in and impacts the entire company.

Time and time again I have been told by candidates that I have provided the clearest picture of a company and role they have ever heard. They have a positive experience when I clearly communicate to them. Even when the position does not work out for them, often times they will want to stay in touch with me due to the open communication and beneficial experience they had during the interviewing process.

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Strong communication skills will provide a positive experience in virtually any interaction you have with someone.

Help Leadership Skills

It’s certainly a skill all its own to be able to lead others.

Being a mentor and guiding others towards success is a major hallmark of great leaders. Another characteristic of effective leaders is the ability to communicate clearly.

As I referenced above, having a leader who can plainly articulate the company’s mission and direction goes a really long way towards being the Captain of the boat that others want to follow. It’s like saying “here’s our destination and this is how we are going to get there” in a way that everyone can get on board with.

Another critical component of everyone helping to sail the boat in the right direction is knowing what your portion is all about. How are you helping the boat move towards its destination in the manner than is consistent with the leaders’ vision?

If you have a boss or a manager that can show you what it takes for not only you to be successful, but also how your performance helps the company’s success then you’ve got a winner. A boss with superior communication skills.

Build Better Teams

Most of us work in teams of some sort or another. During the course of my career, I have led teams up to 80 and also been an individual contributor.

In my individual contributor roles, I have been part of a larger team. Even if you are in business for yourself, you have to interact with others in one manner or another.

If you have strong communication skills, it helps to build better teams. This is true whether you are in an IT department with 100 other fellow programmers or if you own your own business and have customers or vendors you communicate with.

When you showcase your robust ability to communicate well with others while interacting with them, you are building a better team.

Now let’s jump in to how to improve communication skills to help you pave the way for your workplace success.

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How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

There are many tips, tricks, and techniques to improve communication skills. I don’t want to overwhelm you with too much information, so let’s focus on the things that will provide the biggest return on your time investment.

Most of these tips will be fairly easy to become aware of but will take time and effort to implement. So let’s go!

1. Listen

Ever heard the saying you have two ears and one mouth for a reason? If you haven’t, then here’s the reason:

Being a good listener is half the equation to being a good communicator.

People who have the ability to really listen to someone can then actually answer questions in a meaningful way. If you don’t make the effort to actively listen, then you are really doing yourself and the other person a disservice in the communication department.

Know that person who is chomping at the bit to open his or her mouth the second you stop talking? Don’t be that person. They haven’t listened to at least 1/2 of what you’ve said. Therefore the words that spill out of their mouth are going to be about 1/2 relevant to what you just said.

Listen to someone completely and be comfortable with short periods of silence. Work on your listening skills first and foremost.

2. Know Your Audience

Knowing your audience is another critical component to having strong communication skills. The way you interact with your manager should be different than how you interact with your kids. This isn’t to say you need to be a different person with everyone you interact with. Far from it.

Here is a good way to think about it:

Imagine using your the same choice of words and body language you use with your spouse while interacting with your boss. That puts things in a graphic light!

You want to ensure you are using the type of communication most relevant to your audience.

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3. Minimize

I have lunch with a business associate about 3 times a year. We’ve been talking for several years now about putting a business deal together.

He is one of those people that simply overwhelms others with a lot of words. Sometimes when I ask him a question, I get buried beneath such an avalanche of words that I’m more confused than when I asked the question. Needless to say this is most likely a large portion of why we never put the deal together.

Don’t be like my lunch business associate. The goal of talking to or communicating with someone is to share actual information. The goal is not to confuse someone, it’s to provide clarity in many cases.

State what needs to be stated as succinctly as possible. That doesn’t mean you can’t have some pleasant conversation about the weather too.

The point is to not create such an onslaught of words and information that the other person walks away more confused than when they started.

4. Over Communicate

So this probably sounds completely counter intuitive to what I just wrote about minimizing your communication. It seems like it might be but it’s not.

What I mean by over communicating is ensuring that the other person understands the important parts of what you are sharing with them. This can be done simply yet effectively. Here’s a good example:

Most companies have open enrollment for benefits for the employees in the fall. The company I work for has open enrollment from November 1 to 15. The benefits department will send out a communication to all employees around October 1st, letting them know open enrollment is right around the corner and any major changes that year. There’s also a phone number and email for people to contact them with any questions.

Two weeks later, we all get a follow up email with basically the same information. We get a 3rd communication the week before open enrollment and another one 1 day before it starts.

Finally we get 2 emails during enrollment reminding us when open enrollment ends.

There’s minimal information, it’s more of a reminder. This is effective over communication.

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5. Body Language

The final critical component to how to improve communication skills for workplace success is body language. This is something most of us have heard about before but, a reminder is probably a good idea.

When I am in a meeting with someone I am comfortable with, I tend to kind of slouch down in my chair and cross my arms. When I catch myself doing this, I sit up straight and uncross my arms. I remember that crossing arms can many times be interpreted as a sign of disagreement or conflict.

In general, the best rule of thumb is to work towards having open body language whenever possible at work. This means relaxing your posture, not crossing your arms, and looking people in the eye when speaking with them.

When you are speaking in front of others, stand up straight and speak in a clear voice. This will convey confidence in your words.

Conclusion

Possessing strong communication skills will help you in many facets of your life and most certainly in the workplace.

Good communication helps create better teams, positive experiences with those we interact with, and are critical for leadership.

There are numerous tactics and techniques to be used to improve communication skills. Here we’ve reviewed how to improve communication skills for workplace success.

Now go communicate your way to success.

More Resources About Effective Communication

Featured photo credit: HIVAN ARVIZU via unsplash.com

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