Benchmark Business Group

Stop Blaming – Start Changing

April 5, 2010

“People are always blaming their circumstances for what they are.  I don’t believe in circumstances.  The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and if they can’t find them, make them”.
-George Bernard Shaw

In our work with hundreds of small businesses we have consistently coached our clients to step forward and take the action that will result in their success.  The action they take is within their control.  There are and always will be circumstances beyond or outside of our control – so I’ll tell you what we tell our clients; move on to what you can control.

There are far too many management opportunities to impact the way your business operates to waste any time on blaming things outside of your control.  Generally when something outside of your control significantly impacts your life or business it’s because you weren’t paying attention to what is inside of your control!  If you or others around you are spending even the teeniest bit of energy on pointing to things outside of your control for impacting your business you need to stop blaming and start changing!

As a leader being clear on what you are able to control is a road-map to your success!
Make a list of everything in your business you can controlI’ll help by providing you a short list – your accountability is to add to this list!

  • Being a student of your product and services
  • Your personal ability to lead and empower your team
  • Knowledge of your customer
  • Your Marketing Message - Distinguishing yourself from your competition
  • Lead activity taking place in your business
  • Creating extraordinary customer relationships
  • Delivery of your product and services
  • Understanding the numbers that drive your business

I challenge you to rate yourself on this short list – have you and your business mastered this short list?  Identifying what you have the ability to control and becoming a master of them will provide you with a strong business foundation to embrace with confidence the circumstances outside of your control.

The best way to embrace what you can’t control is to understand it.  Once you understand what you’re not able to control you can identify how profoundly it may impact your ability to successfully conduct your business. 
Make a list of everything in your business environment that is outside of your control.  I’ll help by providing you a short list – your accountability is to add to this list!

  • The financial market
  • My competition and their product
  • My community economic environment (actively engage by volunteering in local groups!)
  • Decisions made by my employees or clients in their personal life
  • Vendor product pricing
  • Gas and utility prices
  • World events

If you actively engage in the above activity of making two lists – one for what you can control and one for what you can’t control, you will quickly notice there are many more things in your life that you can control than those you can’t! You could spend the rest of your life becoming a master of what you can control.  In becoming a master of what you can control you are limiting the ability for circumstances outside of your control to negatively impact your business.

When a circumstance occurs outside of your control ask yourself;

  • What can I learn from this circumstance that will strengthen my ability to succeed?
  • What can I and my team impact given this circumstance has occurred?
  • What do I not know that I need to know about this circumstance?
  • How could this circumstance have been minimized through a best business practice?
  • How will I go forward to design my business to embrace this circumstance?

What does it mean to stop blaming and start changing?
It means you are clear on what you can and can’t control and will shift your energy to focusing on what you can control and let others rant and rave until their productive energy has been expended.  (Move past your competition who are blaming)  It means you need to know your options for taking action and you will take action based on solid information and reasonable deduction resulting from having clarity of those things within your control and knowledge of how those things outside of your control can impact you.

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