One of the biggest improvements you can make TODAY in your business is in the way that you make decisions about your money.
Most owners think in terms of how much they “make” and how much they “spend”.
To build a business that attracts investment, though, you need to show that you are a good investment.
Being a good investment means using all of the resources you’ve got (energy, time and money) wisely – and then demonstrating how the resources you have invested are helping your business grow.
It’s all YOU
Your business grows as a result of the decisions you make, so you need to develop a habit of making decisions that continually move you closer to your goals. You might be surprised to know that one of the biggest blocks to making those kinds of decisions is…YOU.
Yes, identifying with your business, and seeing the results of your business decisions as a measure of your worth keeps plenty of us from doing what needs to be done.
So it’s crucial to create a frame of reference that allows you to make decisions using your stated goals and to view the results of your decisions as feedback, NOT as a judgement of your ability as a biz owner.
But there is a way to make it simple
One great way to do this is to practice seeing your business as others will see it – as an investment. If you’re like most owners, the mention of “investment” can freak you out. But that’s where using your Finance-Ability® and growing your PII™ can make your life much easier.
By asking yourself questions based on the PII™ framework when you’re in decision-making mode! And no, not questions like “Can I afford this?” or “Am I doing the right thing?”
Having a specific set of questions to ask yourself takes the “personal” out of the equation, and makes it easier to develop the habit.
So how does this work?
The next time you’ve got to decide to put money or time towards anything, try this method for making your decision:
Before you say ‘yes’ or give a credit card number, get all the data you’ve got about the investment you’re considering together. At a minimum, you’ll need to know:
- How much money and/or time will be invested,
- What specifically will happen (is this a 3-day conference, a new marketing campaign, etc.)
- What results you’re expecting and
- When will you be able to see those results.
If you aren’t clear about any of these elements (especially those related to results), you’re not ready to decide.
Keep hunting until you have all this information.
- How will this investment improve our ability to get new customers, or improve our relationship with existing customers?
- How will this investment help us build better products / services or reduce the time / money needed to create our products / services?
- How will this investment help us clarify our vision for this business or set better goals?
- How will this investment help us use the resources we’ve got better, or help us find new resources?
- How will this investment help us attract, develop and motivate the right team members?
- How will this investment help us develop processes and systems to keep things running smoothly?
- If you can’t answer at least one of these questions, you should reconsider the investment. Reconsidering isn’t an automatic “no” it’s more of a “let’s dig deeper to see why we should say ‘yes’.”
- If you can answer one or more of these questions, it’s time to set yourself some measurements to know whether you’ve gotten the value out of the investment.
Once you’ve decided to make an investment, you’ll want to find some small steps, or mini-results, that will show you that you’re on the right track along the way, and decide how many of those need to happen in order to justify this investment.
Those small steps will also be your measurements once the investment has been made, and to ensure you “get your money’s worth”, you’ll want to track them closely all along the way.
So what’s the bottom line?
Being a business owner means that you’ve got plenty of freedom, but also a responsibility:
To use all of your resources (energy, time and money) wisely
Having a system for making decisions about where to invest those resources will not only help you make better decisions, it will set you up for talking about those decisions with the Suits.
The Suits want to invest in owners who know how to make the right decisions. This system is a good place to start making (and documenting) your great decisions.
Ready to treat your business like an investment? Share this post with the hashtag #InvestingInMyBiz and tell me what you’re doing!