“When you see yourself as successful, you will automatically produce responses that move you towards actually becoming the highly successful entrepreneur that you see yourself to be.”
They say that you should dress for the job that you want, not for the one you have. Of course in this case, we are not just talking about switching out the jeans and T-shirt for a suit and tie. Conveying an attitude of professionalism and success comes from a deep belief that you are doing something truly important. Even if your business has not quite arrived at the level that you aspire to be, carrying yourself as a success will help to bring your vision into real-life fruition.
What Does Your Business Look Like?
Many business owners seem to take it for granted that their office or store will automatically exude a professional image simply because business is being conducted there, without attending to details. The point they miss is that anyone visiting your place of business will pick up on subtleties that you perhaps did not consider to be significant. Your office should not only look like an office, but the look and feel of it should impress any visitor. What would you expect to see, when you walk into the office of a successful, established company? It would be clean, for example, and laid out in such a way that it provides an orderly and simple experience for your customers, clients, etc. Your store or office should also be up-to-date and relevant—that means getting rid of outdated furnishings, broken fixtures, and the like. Have you ever walked into a Starbucks that has broken chairs? Not likely, because they understand that people notice details like that, and they want their patrons to know that everything is well-maintained.
Take Pride in Your Work
This idea of carrying yourself as a world-class entrepreneur is not meant to suggest that you “fake it until you make it”; the idea is to adopt the mentality and vision of the best in business. One important characteristic that you will find in highly successful business owners is taking great pride in their line of work. Whether you run a plumbing supply house or a web-based party planning company, you should conduct business as if the company you are running is truly important—and it should be important to you.
Inspire Respect for What You Do
If you do not hold high esteem for your product or service, then neither will your customers. In the same vein of taking pride in your work is showing that you really put stock in what your company is producing. Say you have a variety of products for sale on your website—would you buy them? If you have a quality product, then give your customers a chance to appreciate that quality by standing behind your product.
Convey a Professional Attitude
The way you interface with colleagues, customers, partners, etc. really matters. The owner of a Fortune 500 company would probably not take days to respond to an email from a partner, for example. Of course there will always be circumstances that get in the way, but your partners should be able to rely on you. It is also a good idea to schedule a meeting for sensitive or important matters, instead of holding an entire conversation via text message, or even email. Let’s face it—we all text probably more than we should, but having an actual sit-down, if possible, for serious business shows a higher degree of professionalism.
To Be Successful, You Have to Think Successful
Have you ever heard that when you set your mind in a direction, your vision will actually produce the results you see in your mind’s eye? This is not just blind faith. The power of suggestion is not an imaginary concept, but a legitimate one with real-world implications. In a recent article published by Psychology Today, author Polly Campbell affirms that “once you expect something to happen, your behaviors, thoughts, and reactions will actually contribute to making that expectation occur.” This is called response expectancy. The Association for Psychological Science backs up these claims, citing research which shows that “these expectancies set us up for automatic responses that actively influence how we get to the outcome we expect.” This can be applied to business, as to many other areas of our lives. When you see yourself as successful, you will automatically produce responses that move you towards actually becoming the highly successful entrepreneur that you see yourself to be.
Looking for some more inspiration? This list contains 6 must-read books for entrepreneurs:
6 Books Every Entrepreneur Should Read
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1. Polly Campbell, “4 Ways the Power of Suggestion Can Change Your Life,” Imperfect Spirituality, Psychology Today, April 21, 2015, https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/imperfect-spirituality/201504/4-ways-the-power-suggestion-can-change-your-life
2. Maryanne Garry, “The Power of Suggestion: What We Expect Influences Our Behavior, For Better or Worse,” Association for Psychological Science, June 6, 2012, http://www.psychologicalscience.org/index.php/news/releases/the-power-of-suggestion-what-we-expect-influences-our-behavior-for-better-or-worse.html