When we watch the most successful in any field—whether they are professional athletes, Fortune 100 CEOs, or anything in between—all we see is supreme confidence. We don’t perceive any doubts or fears. But everyone, from someone just starting out to the most accomplished and successful, has self-doubt. The key is overcoming them, and not giving in to them.
We Are All in the People Business
In some way, shape, or form, we’re all in the people business, no matter what your company does. You always have to think about other people: your customers, your employees, your partners.
Talk to Your Competitors
Change is a constant in every walk of life. As a quarterback, you have to adjust what you’re doing not only every season, but every game, every half, every quarter, and even every play! It’s a constant chess match, with offense and defense adjusting and counter-adjusting and evolving their strategies quickly.
Simplify Your Way to Success
The best way to achieve success in business—in anything, really—is not to look for complex, convoluted solutions. The best solution is to simplify. It’s counter-productive to go out there and try to make things difficult for yourself, to force yourself to do the really hard stuff. Instead, focus on doing what you know you can do—and doing it really well.
See the Signs
Bad news does not get better with age, and that is why it is so important to see the signs. The only way you can solve a problem is if you acknowledge it and look for a way to fix it—not waiting and hoping it will go away. This is true no matter what your business is, whether it’s a startup, a small family business, or a mega-corporation.
The Power of Partnerships
As an entrepreneur, it’s easy to think that you’re going alone. We often feel that the only person we can depend on is ourselves, because other people will disappoint. We all experience that feeling. But what we have found in our experience is that the only way to really grow a business is to have great partners.
Lessons from Bausch & Lomb
We all learn from our experiences. We learn from the things we see, the things we do, and the places we go. Many small business owners start in big companies, where they learn things that influence how they work when they are on their own.
Habits of Great Business Leaders
The owner of a small company has to do all the same things that a CEO for a mega-corporation does. You’re in charge of operations, marketing, technology, relationships, customer service—all of it.
Don’t Make Errors of Assumption
In business, it’s natural to be on the lookout for mistakes and errors. They are inevitable—and that’s ok. But the important thing is to learn from them and get it right the next time. Over time, though, you’ll notice patterns, the kinds of situations where you tend to run into problems. A particularly tricky area comes when you are assuming things—many of our errors are errors of assumption.
Big Businesses Come from Little Ideas
Entrepreneurs come up with lots of ideas. It might be lots of ideas for different businesses. Or they might be lots of ideas for things to try inside one business. But an interesting truth about these ideas is that it is very rare—if not impossible—for an idea that ends up in exactly the same place where it started.