You’ve probably been to a conference where they encouraged you to “dream big”. Yet, statistics show only 1 out of every 300 people will reach their dream. The U.S. Small Business Administration has seen businesses come and, unfortunately, go. According to the SBA, over 50% of small businesses fail in the first five years. According to Bloomberg, 8 out of 10 businesses flop within the first 18 months. Why does this happen? I think the first problem is reduced to semantics of a “dream”. Dreams don’t build a business. A dream is usually something unattainable, and ephemeral. As a New Year approaches – that often invokes setting resolutions (like a dream). Most of which we either break by the 2nd day or forget about a week later. But, I know you want more for yourself personally and professionally. You want to make more money, make a difference in the world, and most of all have more free time to enjoy your life, right? So what’s wrong with a dream/resolution? Well, most aren’t attainable so when you don’t achieve a “dream/resolution” you’re left disappointed when you don’t reach it. Also, a dream is not broken down into a series of steps of how to achieve it – so you’re stuck, stranded, frustrated and feel overwhelmed as to what to do next. So you end up defending why it didn’t happen with excuses or simply let it disappear altogether. Stating a “dream” is an easy way out because you weren’t that serious about it anyway or you’d call it something other than a dream. A dream is a safe way of stating desires but not having to be responsible for attaining them. So what to do instead of just dream or declare a resolution? The first step is Know YOUR WHY behind what you want to accomplish and then establish tiers of steps as to what to do and how to get it done and/or who will help you get it done. HAVING and KNOWING your WHY first is what will drive you to accomplish what you set out to achieve. Your WHY has to be at the core of it all. Steve Jobs knew his “WHY” was to create a user-friendly personal ‘computer for the rest of us’ with color graphics and a keyboard. And he added, “People don’t know what they want until you show it to them.” You may know someone who went to med school because their parent suffered from a disease. Now, they want to help discover a cure. That’s a big “why” behind all the long hours of study.
Or maybe it’s gaining an additional customer in order to fund an orphaned child through an organization.