To start a company is to believe in yourself.
It takes a great deal of self-confidence to swallow the risk and forego a job with a salary. We entrepreneurs all believe in our own potential to create a company that will last. It means showing enthusiasm that borders on fanaticism, and a drive to succeed. Your leadership style will impact the effects of your decisions. Here are my tips for effective and successful decision making.
First: There are pros and cons to the fanatical CEO mentality
Your entrepreneurial passion allows you to get out of bed every day without burning out – because if you don’t, then nobody else will. Just don’t forget to take your ego out of the situation when you’re actually making business decisions.
Did you make a bad hire?
Put your pride aside, own your mistake, and be kind to yourself while still not dilly-dallying about making the decision to fire them.
Are your profit margins low because you’ve been so eager to please others that you discount way too often?
Then practice calmly and kindly saying “No” to people in your personal life and watch how good it feels to take that newfound skill and apply it to your negotiating conversations.
This is the core of mindfulness mentality. It’s extraordinarily helpful for being a startup executive: don’t take anything personally, but accept responsibility for everything. Negative self-talk can cripple your ability to lead a team, so don’t pretend you have no demons, but also don’t indulge in self-shaming when you mess up.
Next: take this attitude and let the rest of your company embrace it
If you’re the only one taking responsibility for your mistakes while also taking your ego out of the picture, that’s good, but it’s only the start.
You need to teach others to show up and be accountable, while not beating themselves up after a failed project.
A sales rep is not necessarily a bad sales rep, or a bad (or lazy or stupid) person, because they burned a deal. If your bookkeeper messes up last month’s financials and you berate them for it, you’re not doing them or yourself any favors because they’ll learn to fear you, not work with you.
Show your team kindness while also offering coaching and explaining the importance of working as a team to improve skills.
Finally, many entrepreneurs let their ego get the best of them when it comes to sales and lead generation
The most common mistake is relying on referrals and word of mouth alone, because they either think “the referrals will never stop coming”, or they are scared of committing to a marketing strategy and losing their investment with nothing to show for it.
Well… the referrals may never stop coming if you have a great product, but since you’re dependent on your network for them, they aren’t always consistent! You need to also take prospecting into your own hands, to ensure predictable revenue growth.
Choose a lead generation strategy based on your average sales price, narrow down to a single tactic that you can execute well on, and have the discipline to see your plan all the way through, even if it doesn’t result in 3 new customers on Day One.
Efficient revenue generation is the result of consistent practice, the foresight to start prospecting and marketing before you need to, and a commitment to improve your skills and look at the long term even if not every campaign gets the ROI you wanted it to.
Having a confident yet reflective mindset when it comes to your own decisions, how you lead your team, and how you deal with customers all helps position you and your company for success.
About The Author
Alex Boyd, founder & CEO, RevenueZen
Leveraging his background in demand generation, tech sales and executive leadership, Alex is the founder and CEO of RevenueZen and its mission to deliver lean growth strategies that create revenue and demand generation success. Alex has led public companies and emerging enterprises, including building a successful sales team of 20+ reps in six months. Under Alex’s leadership, RevenueZen clients have realized up to triple-digit lead generation and revenue gains.