Category Archives: Winners

How to Escape the Crab Pot

Crab BucketID-100133778When a single crab is put into a lidless bucket, it surely can, and will, escape.  However, when more than one crab share a bucket, none of them can get out.  If one crab elevates itself above the others, the others will grab this crab and pull it back down into the pot to share the fate of the of the entire group.

~Urban Dictionary

You have heard this story and perhaps like me you smile at it and then move on.  Recently I have witnessed this effect with some regularity both in business and in my personal life.  Since my business is about helping the people create lives and business that they love, I find the “crab bucket” effect to be alarming.  Not only that, I find it puzzling as well.  Why do good people do this?

I am bringing this up so that you will become aware of it and put a stop to it, if this is happening to you.  It usually goes like this: someone decides that he wants to start a new business, one that will be fun and profitable.  He talks to his friends about it.  They think his new business is a fool’s folly.  They spend time telling him how it won’t work.  They wear him down with all of their evidence that the new business is an awful idea.  He leaves the conversation defeated and gives up the idea.  The crab bucket won!  Another crab is pulled back into the pot.

If this is happening to you, I recommend that you stop putting your self in the crab bucket. You have some great ideas and you can achieve what you want to do.  Surround yourself with people who you trust and want you to succeed.  Be selective about who you talk to you about your idea.  Walk away from the naysayers.  If you have no one like that in your life then seek some outside assistance.  The best and easiest way to get support for your idea is to talk with people who have already forged new businesses, people who went outside the norm to create something.  Research your idea on the internet, read everything you can about it.  Talk to your future customers to hear what they have to say about your idea.  There are also professionals who can help you develop an action plan.  One of the best organizations in the U.S to offer you support is your local SCORE chapter which offers free advice and mentoring to entrepreneurs.  To find out more about it and to locate a Score chapter in your area, click here http://www.score.org/

If you are in Canada look here http://sbinfocanada.about.com/

Now, its your turn.  What has happened to you when you found out that you were in the “crab bucket” and what did you do to get out?  I look forward to hearing from you!

 

Grit – Your Personal Predictor of Success

So what the is grit?  And how do I get some?

Grit_Web1According to Angela Lee Duckworth, a psychologist at the University of Pennsylvania: “Grit is passion and perseverance for very long-term goals.  Grit is having stamina.  Grit is sticking with your future—day in, day out, not just for the week, not just for the month, but for years—and working really hard to make that future a reality.”

It turns out it is not talent, good looks, intelligence, or amassing financial stability that make us successful—it’s grit.

Of course to develop grit you will have to operate as though failure is not a permanent condition—you may have to give up self pity—after all, you have not failed until you quit, until you have left the playing field forever.

I do believe if you are an entrepreneur, you already have grit.  It takes passion, stamina, and working hard, to be an entrepreneur.  Putting your self out there with a business that you created, and which depends on you to make it work, is grit.

One of my clients called me this week and asked  if I would take some time to “visit’ with him.  I knew that he recently suffered a devastating business blow and nine months of hard work had been crushed when his business plan was rejected by an important investor.  I assumed the “visit” was going to be about how he was quitting.  I was ready for the predictable fallout from this disappointment.  I was wrong.

He wanted to tell me that he had a new idea about how to make his business succeed.  And for the next, forty-five minutes we talked about his new idea for the success of his business plan.  He told me that he wasn’t giving up and that it was probably good that he didn’t get the loan.  He thinks his new idea is even better and will make him more successful.  This guy is a working model of grit. You see, he doesn’t believe that failure is permanent.  He has grit!

In the comments below, please tell me what you think about “grit”.  I look forward to hearing from you.

Why Vince Lombardi Was Wrong Once

Winners never quit and quitters never win.

~Vince Lombardi Vince Lombardi

Really? Really, Vince?  I beg to differ, depending on why and how you quit.  Let me explain.

Four years ago, I coached two people who were partners in a new venture.  We set up the business together and put together a doable, winnable action plan for their success.  After they launched the business they kept in touch.  They let me know about their triumphs, the television show episodes they were in, the really big sale they made.  It sounded as though they were on their way.

Then two weeks ago, I received a call.  They wanted to talk with me.  It was urgent.  Of course, I said “Yes.”

When they came into my office, they were jumpy and nervous.  Their business was bombing big time.  They could not stop the bleeding out of the money they had invested.  They decided to quit.  They both started to tear up a little.  They were thinking that I saw them as losers, while in fact, I saw them in an opposite light—I saw them as winners.  Here is why: they had applied all the principles of good business practice and yet sales were meager and were now, non-existent.  They forecast the probability of sales for the next 5 years and saw that the changed market did not support the level of sales they needed to keep them profitable.  I had to agree with them; the economy could not support there profit requirements.

I also saw them as winners because they were responsible about their employees.  Instead of leaving them to find other work, they found them jobs.  They also met with everyone who had supported them individually and let them know their decision.  That took “winner” guts since each person they saw reacted differently.

In the end, I sat with “winners” who had the courage to tell the truth to themselves and to others.  They had the courage to quit.  I am quite confident that they will start something new and win.

I am looking forward to hearing about your comments about this subject.