13 November 2007

Avoid getting caught on the Steamship Misery.

I talk to a lot of small business owners around the world and interestingly enough, there seems to be a common misconception that small business is supposed to be tough otherwise you aren’t doing it right. I call this “Small Business Syndrome” and I believe that it really holds small business owners back.

Small Business Syndrome relates to all of the negatives of having a small business and yes, there are a number but in my opinion the positives far outweigh the negatives. And lets be honest, if they didn’t why on earth would you ever start your own business.

Anyone who has been in small business for any period of time will have heard all of the lines about how hard it is to run your own business. Staff are nothing but trouble, suppliers will let you down, money is always tight, the hours you have to work are crazy, the stress you have to endure will ultimately break you and so on. This mutual suffering is normally passed on in self pity workshops with other small business owners.
hese workshops a little later).

Personally I love my business. I describe it as exciting, energetic and stimulating. I come and go as I please, I get to make decisions on the spot about how we do business, if I work hard I earn more, I contribute to society through my business and get to build relationships with incredible people, many of whom work with me. Sure, I have all of the other stuff to deal with as well, but I don’t focus on that anywhere near as much as I focus on the good stuff.

Its easy to forget all of the good about own businesses. The grass is always greener and we think that everyone else’s business is better than ours. Well I have surprise for you – they are not! How hard can it be to run a restaurant? Cook a few meals, serve them up and the customers keep rolling in. I don’t think so. Ask anyone who has owned their own restaurant and you will hear a very clear story about running a hard business.

Every single business has good points and bad points. The difference is which points you decide to focus on.

What can you do today? Think about all of the positives aspects of your business. Write them down and when you find yourself feeling a little blue or depressed with what you are doing have a read through the list to remind you of just how good it really is.

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