With a new decade starting, there’s never been a better time to reflect on where you’ve been and where you want to go next.
I don’t know about you but I’m feeling all sorts of nostalgia as 2019 is also the end of my first decade in Ireland.
Fate brought me to Ireland in 2009 (I followed my heart!). Immigrating to a country in the depths of a recession wasn’t an easy start. The only person I knew at that time was my wife.
…a lot has happened over the last 10 years. Serving a TRIBE of fantastic Business All-Stars, shining a spotlight on their success and inspiring growth – it’s been a great honor and I am truly grateful for that!
I did my last decade in review and made a list of incredible things, hard things, dumbest mistakes, proudest moments and some of the priceless lessons I learnt.
The best thing about being a human is that we are constantly evolving, so let’s take a look at the 18 lessons that were of the greatest value to me:
#1 It’s better to make progress rather than perfection. I have been guilty of this many times, doubting myself, waiting for days/months, that last colour change… it’s better to just do it and commit to keep improving than procrastinating and eventually killing your creativity and motivation.
“Quality matters to a customer. Perfection only matters to an entrepreneur.” – Unknown
#2 “You can’t microwave success” – Devon Franklin
It takes a while to grow anything worth growing. Ask any successful person if it was a piece of cake!
#3 Embrace the struggle. When I moved to Ireland in 2009, I had to re-start my career from scratch (after spending 10 years with fortune 500 companies). My first job here was an unpaid internship in Galway (daily Dub-Gal bus commute for 6 months!).
Looking back, that was the best thing that happened to me because that’s where I gained management consulting experience and a new perspective.
And without the struggle, would I feel I’d earned it?
#4 Your environment. Your office, people you hang around with, the magazines you read, the events you attend, your associations, directly affects your levels of achievement in business and life.
#5 Get out of your own way!
“The bottleneck is always at the top of the bottle,” — Peter Drucker
I struggled with delegation. You can’t and will never be able to do everything by yourself. As your business grows, the toughest decisions involve PEOPLE and their changing roles/priorities. Great leaders are excellent delegators.
#6 Start saying “NO” and begin to focus on less so you can FOCUS more! The reason we all feel so overwhelmed each day because of a huge to-do list staring back at you.
With a maximum of 2-3 main priorities on your plate each day, it removes much of the overwhelm, reduce stress and wasted time and help maximise how you spend your day.
#7 Your next BIG idea for your business will not come while you are at your desk.
#8 The Key to moving forward is to always ‘Control the Controllable’. I have stopped paying attention to Boris Johnson, Trump and negative media!
#9 Your fortune is always in the FOLLOW-UP. Make sure you have a regular time in your diary for ‘Follow up Monday or Friday”.
#10 When in doubt ask yourself – ‘What would (my role model/my Father/Guru) do if he/she was in your position?’
#11 The best investment is in yourself. In 2009, I didn’t know anyone in the country, didn’t have any track record, reputation…but I brought my MBA, knowledge and skills.
When you invest in yourself (books, mentoring, attending conferences, education), a world of opportunities will open up for you and will allow you to become the best version of yourself.
#12 What gets measured gets managed …and what gets managed gets done!
Scaling your business starts with learning where you’re at to find the gaps. The numbers show you reality…And for most entrepreneurs, reality stings a little bit!
#13 If you’re to escape the hamster wheel the only way to create more time for yourself is to build SYSTEMS in your business.
“Ahh, I don’t have time to create systems because I have other important things to focus on.”
I completely get it. We are busy. But think about all the time it will save you/your team in the future. The extra few hours, which you can then spend with your family and working on more important, profitable tasks.
#14 One thing that hugely affects your performance, your mood, your energy, your happiness is your HEALTH.
For years I suffered through the hustle, anxiety, stress and I completely ignored my health. Skipping meals, gym, late-night working on screen was almost a routiene. In 2019 Jan I took responsibility (still working hard on this!), started hot yoga, meditation and it has helped me immensely.
As a leader of your business your health matters. And if you take this for granted…good luck!
#15 If you inspire one person each day, your day hasn’t been a waste. It’s been a gift.
#16 Givers versus takers always win. – Robin Sharma
#17 If you’re not innovating and improving, you’re on the path to obsolescence.
Can you commit for at least 1% improvement in your business (any area sales, marketing, operations) every week?
#18 Last remember that there is food on our table – so sincere gratitude and thanks to God and the people you are privileged to serve.
What would you add to the list?
Once again I am very grateful for your trust and support and I wish you a very Happy Christmas and All-Star New Year?
With love and respect,