I believe personal development is what separates successful entrepreneurs from everyone else. We should always be striving to learn and grow. No matter what is happening around us, there is always something we can learn. We may not use what we learn immediately, but it just may benefit us at some distant period.
That reminds me of a story I heard from a friend. He and his wife were having fun with the top down on their classic convertible Mustang when all of a sudden, their was a loud snapping sound and some lights came on the dash. Pulling over, he opened the hood and saw the belt that went around the fan, the generator, etc. had broken.
Knowing that getting the car towed would be expensive (should have had it in his auto insurance), and it would be a long wait since they were in a desolate place, my friend remembered something he learned many years earlier. She wasn’t happy about it, but he asked his wife to take off her pantyhose. He tied the pantyhose tightly around the gears the belt would normally go around, and he trimmed the excess. The car started and they were able to drive it 20+ miles to a station where they had a new belt installed.
That was a lesson he learned during a personal development period.
“If you don’t learn something new today, it was a wasted day.” Unknown
As entrepreneurs, personal development should be a top priority. It can be done by reading books, watching videos, taking courses and utilizing a mentor.
In this post, I am listing 9 personal development musts that all entrepreneurs should focus on.
Maybe you have grown in some of these areas, but do not stop!
You can always learn more; you can always get stronger
I recommend that you plan a personal development regimen on a weekly basis. I have witnessed that when an entrepreneur works on their personal development, their business benefits in mighty ways.
Focus on these 9 personal development areas
This IS the top area that should be considered in personal development for entrepreneurs. After all, if your health is deteriorating, how effective will you be in your entrepreneurial journey?
Your health personal development covers a large area. Let me touch on several:
- Proper meal management. By eating proper diets with the nutrition that will supply you daily needs, you will be able to have the energy to handle your business. If you need guidance, I know several people who can help you get on a proper diet.
- Hygiene. I have heard many who say that since they work at home 70-80% of the time, they can do so in pajamas. Personally, I believe this is improper thinking. It has been tested and proven that we perform better if we like the way we look. Does that mean wear a suit and tie? No, but just keep your hair, beard or mustache, and other parts of your body neat, and dress in a way that you would be okay if the Governor of your State rang the doorbell.
- Physical fitness. Keeping yourself in good shape physically is also important. Set up a workout program and you will feel better and your business will be easier to manage.
These are just a few, but know that your health should be your biggest personal development category.
2: Stress management
This goes hand-in-hand with #1 but I felt I needed to separate it because stress is a major factor in the lives of entrepreneurs.
New challenges can create stress, but how you handle that stress will determine how that challenge plays out.
If you are feeling stressed, you may want to try:
- Going to a quiet zone and gathering your thoughts through meditation
- Delegate some of the responsibilities. Most stress comes from trying to handle everything yourself.
- Change your work area. Just simply changing your view can relieve stress.
- Take a vacation.
- Join a support group. Find like-minded entrepreneurs and have weekly get-togethers.
These are just a few ways to manage your stress.
No matter how good of a leader you are, you can always be better. I suggest reading leadership books, attending leadership courses and seminars and whatever else you can to grow your leadership capabilities.
As an entrepreneur, your top priority should be revenue… Sales!
I suggest using a similar approach as the leadership tip in that you learn as many sales strategies as possible. You may not use all these strategies, but understanding them can help you develop the best sales strategy possible for your business.
Building and marketing your brand is another key function that every entrepreneur should attempt to master. Since marketing is an ever-changing beast, as entrepreneurs we need to make marketing methods a part of our personal development plan.
As an entrepreneur, communication is a must. Be it face-to-face, via Skype or email or on the phone, you need to be able to communicate in a way that you will be understood.
One of the best ways to build your communication skills is with a Dale Carnegie course.
In today’s world, much of our business is done on the internet.
I.T., short for internet technology is a wise personal development plan for entrepreneurs.
There are plenty of books, courses and other means to learn more about the internet world.
8: Time management
You may be busy but are you productive? Do you work on the revenue building tasks or are you doing the tasks that could be handled by a virtual assistant?
I have discovered that one of the top reasons that entrepreneurs fail is because they did not use their time wisely.
I suggest a personal development plan should consist of a time management plan. Consider:
- Time should not be spent; it should be invested.
- Complete 1 task at a time.
- The best time to start is yesterday, but you will have to settle for today.
- By doing the most important task first, you will do something important every day.
Remember that time IS money. Entrepreneurs should not waste money, and much less… TIME.
I put this last because I believe it is the least important personal development item on the list, but still ultra-important.
As entrepreneurs, hopefully we have accountants who take care of our taxes, books and more. But it is wise that we know these measures well too. After all, who is going to check the accountant?
I suggest that you learn all you can about numbers. Ask your accountant if you can sit and learn as they balance your books. Take an accounting course.
It will do you good in your personal development and no one will be able to cheat you in Monopoly again.
Personal growth… Personal development is what takes the average entrepreneur to unbelievable heights.
I suggest that you set down right now with a paper and pen and develop a personal development plan to help you grow.
I want to help develop you personally and one of the primary areas I find many new entrepreneurs need assistance with is overcoming objections. And, I have learned to love objections because it gives me that moment to “shine.”
Let me help you “shine” too. I put together a report on how to deal with the 10 most frequent objections. It can be yours by clicking here.
I know this post will help you if you follow the precepts. Now why not share it with your team? Just post it in Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and other social media.