Forbes Coaches Council
It probably isn’t on your calendar, but it should be. National Small Business Week is May 5 through May 11 this year.
It’s a bigger deal than you might think. This has been going on for over fifty years, ever since President Kennedy signed the first Presidential Proclamation in 1963. Naturally, as the founder of a leading alternative career coaching franchise, I think it’s a holiday worth observing. So if you’re looking for ways to celebrate National Small Business Week, let me suggest a few ideas.
Study your craft. If you’re already a business owner, spend some time working on your business rather than in it. Instead of putting out fires and focusing on the day-to-day duties that you have — and, of course, that’s all very important — spend some time during the week examining ways to improve your workflow, or cash flow, or how you hire and train employees. In other words, are there ways you can improve how you run your business on a daily basis?
If you are not a business owner but want to be, then take this week to think about what you want your income, lifestyle, wealth and equity goals to look like and explore the possibilities of how business ownership can help you accomplish these goals.
If you’ve considered investing in a franchise, take time to explore all the possibilities available to you. It is important to keep an open mind when looking at models, as 95% of my clients end up discovering a business they would have never looked at on their own or would have prematurely dismissed. Or consider taking a business class, perhaps at a local college or a civic center, if you feel like you need something like that first. Just do something that will eventually lead to the outcome you’re seeking.
Find a coach. Whether you’re an established business owner or somebody who is just starting out, we can all benefit by learning from someone else. (Even coaches can use a good coach.) Granted, this is my area of expertise, and I know it isn’t surprising that I’m suggesting this. But just as a tax preparer is naturally going to stress the importance of a business owner doing his or her taxes, as a career transition coach, I believe in the benefits of talking to somebody you trust and brainstorming with them. It doesn’t have to be a coach. Just talk to someone you respect and admire about your goals, needs and expectations. Discuss where you want to take your business or what business you want to explore. We all need someone to bounce ideas off and to give us inspiration and direction.
There’s another reason to talk to people. You never know what connections they may have and who they can put you in touch with who can help you achieve your dreams. Networking is an important part of starting and growing a business.
Start your discovery journey. That’s what starting and running a business is all about, and National Small Business Week is a great time to go through the education, awareness and discovery process to explore your possibilities. It’s hard to not make progress in your life if you try to shake things up every once in a while, and if you don’t make a decision to do something different … well, doing nothing is often a decision.
So, please, in honor of National Small Business Week, honor yourself and your possibilities, options and dreams. Stop thinking about eventually getting around to starting a business or taking your business to a new level — and take a step that leads you to the life and future you desire. I’m not saying that by the end of National Small Business Week you should have changed your business or life completely. I’m just saying that the next several days give you a nice excuse to finally say, “No more excuses. I’m going to take the first step toward changing the direction of my life.”