Fear pops up, sometimes, in the most unexpected ways. For me, it often looks like anxiety. I’ll worry in advance and talk myself out of opportunities. I might, for example, tell myself that there’s no possible way that a particular CEO would want to participate in an incubation program, so I don’t ever ask. At other times, it shows up as obsessive planning, and I’ll insist that I need to map out the entire process before I ever take a single step. Sometimes, it even shows up as extreme fatigue and I’ll tell myself I have to rest rather than do whatever it is on my to do list.
The truth is, in every instance, it’s fear protecting me from the possibility of pain, failure, or disappointment. And I say possibility, because there’s no guarantee that my fear is correct. That CEO might be looking for our exact program to catapult them to success. I may not get it quite right the first time I deliver a program, but that’s what pivoting is for. And it may be hard to ask a client to participate in a beta test, but I can guarantee a nap won’t make that seemingly daunting task any easier to face.
It is likely that fear is showing its ugly head somewhere in your business, too. When we try to grow, fear works very hard to keep us safely within our comfort zones. It’s a natural response, but one that won’t get you to the next level of business growth.
This week for Take Action Tuesday, consider how fear may be keeping you from moving forward:
Are you avoiding the truth?
Asking potential customers what they’re struggling with can generate fear for many of us. What if we we’re wrong? And our assumptions are incorrect? Logically, we know it’s better to ask and find out now rather than to run headlong down the wrong path. But, it’s hard to ask the tough questions. Find out how to make this process easier and more productive as CI mentor and angel investor Greg Bischak presents his workshop: Who’s My Customer – REALLY? Critical Customer Discovery Steps for Startups.
Are you flying blind?
This may sound silly, but how often do we close our eyes against the facts; afraid of what we’ll find. Hiding our heads in the sand is not helpful in the long run. Find out how to get comfortable using your company’s data to make good decisions and drive growth. Attend our upcoming workshop with new CI mentor and leadership expert Susan Dyer: Why Flying Blind Won’t Work: Using Data to Drive Your Growth.
Are you afraid of the big picture?
Some of us stay hyper-focused on what we know and avoid looking at the big picture. But, we don’t exist in a vacuum and neither do our businesses. There are very real factors that can impact our success or failure. Factors such as industry influencers, economic forces, buying processes and market trends. Join me May 22nd for our first ever Business Model Environment class to understand the underlying factors in your company’s industry and how to leverage them for success.
P.S. Save the Date for our upcoming entrepreneur event September 14-15, 2018. We’ll be sharing details in the coming weeks!