In life and in business, knowledge is power. Do you have all the powers you need to achieve your goals?
Creating a successful business is so much more than just having a great idea. In order to be truly successful — to create a life-changing, profitable, and sustainable business, there are some critical skills you and your team need to master.
Which skills do you already have? And which ones are you most excited to learn? Let’s learn the what and why of 30 critical skills that will help you make more money as a business owner.
Sales is all about picture-painting — delivering a vision to your customers about how your product or service is the solution to their problems, and doing it in a way that is consistent, trainable, and duplicable. If you don’t have a strong sales process, then you don’t really have a business.
Everything — and I mean everything — rises and falls on communication. All too often, business owners believe that everyone on their team understands what is in their head when it comes to the mission, vision, and values of the business. I’m telling you right now that they don’t.
You need to document every aspect of your business, you need to communicate the essence of those ideals in all that you present to them, and give your people frequent opportunities to communicate them, as well. Do this, and your brand will come to life.
If you’re not taking advantage of the capabilities of digital marketing, from owned tactics like your website, social media, email, and blogging, to earned and paid tactics like Google Reviews, media coverage, display ads, and retargeting, then you’re effectively letting your competition take your market share away from you.
Great digital marketing campaigns feature tactics that work together to bring customers into your funnel and move them through the funnel. We use these strategies at Cardone Ventures, and in just a few short years, have created an incredible, profitable business.
Have you ever heard the phrase, “Content is king?” Well, it’s the truth! And while there are many different forms of content outside of copywriting, having great written content is the core of having an effective content strategy for your business.
Great content means you’re delivering useful information to your audience, and you’re writing so that search engines like Google perceive your business as credible, authoritative, and worthy of ranking in search.
Listen, not everyone is playing mind games in business situations, but it’s not entirely uncommon! More importantly, you need to understand the motivations, desires, and needs of your audience.
A basic understanding of psychology will help you more effectively in your sales, marketing, and even financial-driven conversations.
Time. It’s the only resource we can’t make more of. That’s why it just might be the most valuable one. Create a clear-cut schedule for yourself, even on the weekend, and be disciplined about how you spend your time.
Every moment you spend screwing around or worrying about things you can’t control are moments you could have spent accomplishing the things that are in your control.
Reading Body Language
Not everything that we say is necessarily said out loud. In fact, some experts believe that over half of communication is actually non-verbal. This means that you really need to pay attention.
Is the person you’re communicating with making eye contact? What are their hands doing? Are they slumping or sitting up straight? Noticing these things, and knowing how to respond to them, can be the difference between a failure and a sale.
There are few things worse for a business owner than the inability to listen. Don’t let yourself get caught up in the idea that, as a leader, you know everything. Trust me, you don’t.
Actively listen to your team, your customers, and your mentors. Each and every interaction is filled with gold that can make you better at being a business owner. Close your mouth. Open your mind. And listen!
Having a strong sense of self-awareness and empathy will do wonders for your ability to make connections in business.
Being overly reactionary can sink a business before it has even had the chance to swim. The best, most successful leaders have mastered the ability to take in a situation, assess what’s happening, and react if and when the time is right.
You can’t control what happens in life, but you can control how you respond to what happens.
Sometimes people don’t see or understand what you are able to. Just like the importance of psychology, communication, and emotional intelligence, persuasion — the ability to create belief in others — is an essential component of your sales and marketing arsenal.
All great advertising is a case study in persuasion. Take a look at the most successful campaigns of all time, and you’ll better understand the power of persuasion.
Speaking Your Truth
Sometimes we hold back on saying what we really want to say because we’re afraid of hurting someone’s feelings, or we’re afraid that the things we want are an inconvenience to others.
The problem is, when you hold everything back, no one really understands our wants and needs. We become resentful, and feel that we’re all alone in a situation, when in reality it’s our own fault, due to the fact that we’re really not saying what we should.
Speak your truth. Be diplomatic. Be constructive. Stop holding back.
Stop saying, “Maybe,” “I’ll think about it,” and, “We’ll see,” when the answer is really, “No.” Just stop.
You’re not letting anyone down easy. What you’re really telling people is that you’re a pushover. And leaders can’t be pushovers. People need to know what your boundaries are, and you deserve to communicate them, so do it. You’ll feel better, and you’ll reduce the friction you’re feeling in life.
Come on, now. There was something inside of you that wanted to start a business. There was something there that gave you enough self-belief to pursue your dreams, right. Never lose sight of that.
People can sense confidence. Equally, they can sense self-doubt. You have an obligation to yourself, your business, your team, and your customers to exude confidence in everything that you do. Surround yourself with good people — mentors, friends, and team members who believe in your mission and will support you in achieving your goals.
In order to create the kind of business that you want, you need to align yourself with the people who have created the same type of success for themselves.
Get out of your bubble. Get out of your comfort zone. Social media has made the ability to connect with people easier than ever. Slide into those DMs and respectfully ask for their insight by telling them how they inspire you and what you’re going to bring to the table. What do you have to lose?
I know, I know. Some of you are terrified of this. But you need to understand the power of public speaking. When you have the floor, you have the opportunity to mesmerize, to inspire, and to sell!
The only way to get good at public speaking is to get through the part where you’re bad at it. You can only learn by doing, so take every opportunity you can to speak in front of people.
Everything rises and falls on leadership. That’s what my friend and mentor John C. Maxwell says, and I believe him. 100%.
The people in your organization are looking for leadership. They’re looking for your leadership. But remember, leadership is exemplified through everything that you do, the good and the bad. Show them your best.
Do you know who is the “right fit” for your organization? Have you honed your leadership skills to the point where you not only know who to hire, but when to hire and why?
It’s your people, not you, that move your company forward, and it’s up to you to understand how build a great team by asking the right questions, understanding team chemistry, and creating the next generation of leadership in your business.
Firing, like hiring, is an artform. It requires instinct. If something doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t. It also requires a system for setting expectations, documenting the ability to meet those expectations, and decisively firing when those expectations are not met.
Don’t waste your team’s time. Don’t let their morale fall. Protect your culture and the future of your business by getting the drainers out the door as fast as possible. There’s a leader that’s waiting to fill their spot.
Your business’s vision is all about creating a picture of the future of your business.
Your mission is what you do today, but your vision is where you’re all capable of going together if everyone can band together and deliver at their highest potential.
It’s your responsibility to make that possible by inspiring your team to align around your vision by showing them how they contribute to the business’s goals through their work, and what it means when you all win together.
Running a business without a clear understanding of your finances is a disaster waiting to happen.
As a business owner, the financial health of the company is on your shoulders at the end of the day, so don’t become overly reliant on your finance team without ensuring that you know what’s happening in your books.
You should not only understand your business’s data, but you should be a leading figure in determining its key performance indicators.
Having good data is how you can make your business more profitable, more nimble in times of strife, identify potential new revenue streams, justify new hires — the possibilities are truly endless, but you’re going down a dead end street if you’re leaving the data to everyone else!
Words mean things. I know that’s not a shocking insight, but some business owners get so lost in their own trip that they forget how to use language to connect with people.
This is why some of the most effective marketing uses language that is at about a sixth or seventh grade level. Why? Because it’s relatable. It makes sense to a large group of people. It’s simple. And simplicity is powerful!
The most successful business owners understand that just about everything is a negotiation. This is because they have the long term view of things that can only be gained through experience.
Not everything in life is going to come to you in the most desirable form or at the most ideal terms. Your ability to be flexible and willing to negotiate will activate your mind to look for all the possibilities that exist within a potential deal.
You’re building a database, aren’t you? And regularly giving them great content that keeps them engaged? And your sales teams has a bulletproof process for organizing leads, communicating with them, and ultimately turning them into customers, right? Right???
Lead generation is the foundation of creating and maintaining a customer base. Treat it like that.
Some of you don’t want to hear this, but you didn’t build your business by yourself.
There are people who, through their willingness to give you their time, insight, and support, picked you up when you were down, believed in you when no one else did, and gave you the nudge you really needed when it felt like no one cared.
It’s time to pay it forward.
Help create the next generation of leaders in your organization. Help a budding entrepreneur achieve their goals through your unique perspective. Don’t let your wisdom go to waste.
Practicing a Positive Mindset
Even when things are bad, the opportunity for something good still exists. It might be personal growth. It might be a way of reimagining what the business can do.
The point is that these things can only happen if you’re open to those possibilities, and you can only be this open if you have a positive mindset.
There’s power in positive thinking, and your mindset has an effect on those around you, so it’s important to practice gratitude while staying positive, even in those moments where things might feel scary. Fear closes you off. Optimism makes your ability to catch the next great thing possible.
When problems arise, and if you’re a business owner, they are going to arise each and every day, the best and most productive thing you can do is look for solutions!
There’s no reason to dwell on the problem. Should you analyze the problem in order to understand what went wrong? Of course! But that’s a problem solving mindset. Reflect. Assess. Refine.
You want to create a successful business and you don’t understand marketing? Good luck! As I’ve already said, great business owners are visionaries, and they know where their audience is, how to get in front of them, and how to create an emotional connection with their brand.
Your marketing tells the world how your business can create change in people’s lives. Without great marketing, you’re just another business. The right message in the right place at the right time can entirely change the scope of your business.
At Cardone Ventures, every single one of our staff is required to know how to answer the phone and serve our customers. Everyone. Doesn’t matter how high up in the organization they are or what their primary responsibilities are.
One, it’s essential that our team members stay close to the needs of our customers, but secondly it’s a must that no one forget why our business exists in the first place. It’s because of them that we get to do what we do. It’s because of them that we have the financial freedom that we do. Stay humble. Be grateful. Serve your customers.
It’s not your job to do everything. Sure, you need to have an understanding of most things, but you need to leave the execution to the experts you have on your team.
Great leaders know that they’re not great at everything, and they know when they have too much on their plate to be an effective leader.
Your job is strategy. Your job is vision. Therefore, your job is delegation. Surround yourself with great people, communicate with them clearly, and delegate to them regularly. You won’t be sorry.
Want to learn more techniques related to creating a 10X life? Then you need to attend a Cardone Ventures event! You’ll join me, Cardone leadership, and driven business owners just like you. Seats go quick — Register now!