The Top Five Ways You Can Break The Mold In Your Business
When I decided to expand our corporate offices to the Atlanta area so we could better align ourselves with Atlanta’s booming film industry, many people said “Why now? Why when you’re doing so much right here in Panama City Beach?” But, just because business is good now doesn’t mean I’m done challenging myself!
It was simultaneously a difficult and an easy question to answer. Simply put, I wanted to do more. To do something different.
But others didn’t see it that way. They thought that because the business was so successful that I should hang on to a good thing—not risk changing it if “it ain’t broke.”
But you know what my answer to that was? Just because something isn’t broken doesn’t mean you don’t need to dig in there and find a way to make it better. That’s why I’m a firm believer in daily exercise, regular oil changes on my car, and going to the dentist every six months. I want to stay “unbroke” and get even better, right?
When people ask me what my secret to being a successful entrepreneur is, I could answer with a thousand different tips. But that would take too long. The most important principle you can believe in is that it’s okay to be different. It’s okay to do something like no one else has.
So, read on for my top five ways to Break The Mold within your own business work environment, wherever that may be.
Reason Five: Be Willing to Feel Uncomfortable in Life and in Business
Let’s face it: Whenever we venture into the world of the unknown, it’s physically uncomfortable! When my wife and I decided that it was time to move to Atlanta, it was a little scary. We both had to overcome that initial resistance that happens any time you decide to make a change. We just had to power through it.
In business – especially if you’re a CEO or leader in your industry – you know that if you’re not feeling uncomfortable, you might be getting complacent. That’s a bad thing. Our goal as providers of a service or product is to give our customers the very best, very latest there is. We must get out there and venture into the unknown. And yes—it gets unnerving. And yet, it’s incredibly gratifying.
Reason Four: Business Morals – Stand Up for What You Believe In
When I first made the shift from Hollywood actor and producer to Advertising Executive to Entrepreneur, there were too many naysayers to count. They all told me that I couldn’t possibly make the career shift because “it was too difficult”. They said I didn’t “know enough about the industry” and there were just “too many other marketing agencies” out there.
In short, people everywhere were telling me why I wouldn’t be successful before I even started my business venture!
You know what I did?
I didn’t listen to them. Instead, I combined my passion for film and marketing with my love for business. I read everything about both industries that I could get my hands on. I’d spend hours studying the latest trends, researching the latest marketing techniques, and figuring out how it all related to the creative world of film.
You might say I armed myself with knowledge.
Whenever anyone came to me and said I couldn’t do it, I gave them a little taste of what I knew to be true. And let me tell you – when you know what you’re talking about, no one can tell you that you can’t do it. They have no solid ground.
Do your research and then stand up for your beliefs.
Reason Three: Expect More From Yourself Than Anyone Else Does
You might not know this about me, but at an early age, The school system told me I had Dyslexia. They put that label on me, and immediately, it was as if no one thought I could achieve anything. Whereas I’d been the boy who had it all in front of me, after they finally figured out why I was reading and writing backward (literally, backward), my possibilities in life seemed to dry up.
At first, I was devastated. As a kid, when you’re told you can’t do something, that kind of thing sticks with you. It hurts.
But you know, after a while I was tired (and bored) of feeling hurt. I decided that I would work harder than everyone else and prove all of them wrong!
And that’s just what I did. In school and out of school. I still do it today.
I expect more out of myself every single day than anyone else does so that I always exceed my own expectations. Because really, if you aren’t proud of yourself, if you don’t feel pleased with what you’ve accomplished that day, what does it matter what anyone else thinks?
Be your own hardest critic and expect more from yourself than anyone else does.
Reason Two: Learn Something New Every Week
In today’s digital world, if you’re in a business that uses a computer (and really, isn’t everybody?) then you need to be learning every day. What’s new at this moment is old-hat five minutes later.
I make it a point to think about the possibilities for new and innovative ways to help my customers. Each day, when I’m in a meeting with a customer or storyboarding with my marketing team, I am always wondering “how can we create a better way to help this client?”
The bottom line here is that even if you have a system that is working for you and for your customers, that doesn’t mean that you’re done. In fact, if you have something good today, you need to be thinking about how you’re going to innovate, reinvent, and repurpose for a better way tomorrow. Your clients will thank you for it.
Reason One: Do Not Accept Failure
Most every business manual today talks about failure as a road-map towards eventual success. But you know how I break THAT mold? I don’t even use the F-Word. Some people might not agree with me, but that’s fine.
I know that I’m doing my best, and I don’t even consider that I might fail. Sure, I might decide on an alternate path, a new route, a different product line or fresh marketing strategy. But I never use the word “failure” when I talk about my work.
You know how I can get away with that?
Because I give my 100%, I research, I stand up for what I believe in, I educate myself, I put myself out there and am willing to get out of my comfort zone, and I’m always myself – with friends and customers.
Bottom line: If you are satisfied with who are, and if you’ve given your all and have done it the right way, then you’ve already succeeded.