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Compensating for Your Entrepreneurial Style-or Lack of Style by Glenn Beach

I recently took an entrepreneurial quiz which evaluated my answers and informed me I would do best as a hired hand! So why am I a successful home business owner? Because I've learned to fill the holes in my entrepreneurial style, and compensate for my deficiencies.

Let's start with a list of qualities that might benefit someone working for him/herself:

1. Ability to see the big picture and plan accordingly;.

2. Self-discipline;

3. Ability to use time wisely;

4. At minimum, a moderate drive to achieve;

5. Adaptability;

6. Autonomy;

7. Decisiveness;

8. A feeling of control over your own destiny;

9. Having (energy) drive and enterprise;

10. Motivation to grow;

11. Sense of intuition;

12. Ability to spot opportunities;

13. Perseverance;

14. Problem-solving abilities;

15. Risk-tolerance;

16. Self-confidence;

17. Social skills.

As an example, let's look at John Doe. John has an excellent nose for a good opportunity; he drives his wife crazy with always turning everything into a new business idea. He's not afraid to make a decision and take the risk. He has a huge drive to achieve; he wants to be rich! John is confident that he can accomplish everything he sets out to do.

Then the reality of the rest of John sets in. He's not real good in the follow-through; as a matter of fact, he starts one business only to come up with another, and yet another, idea over and over. He writes up proposal after proposal, and always stumbles over the concrete details, such as turning goals and visions into action plans, and projecting budgets. He starts and stops, never stopping long enough to evaluate and plan ahead for the success of the next venture.

John could benefit from postponing his next decision until he hones his problem-solving skills a bit. He needs to understand where he's gone wrong and plan for success the next time. John also could put his vision for his work and his life down on paper, and learn to use this vision to help choose opportunities that are in sync with his financial and career goals.

John is confusing working hard with getting ahead. He needs to continually evaluate the tasks he is engaged in to determine if he is, indeed, using his time wisely.

And lastly, John would learn a lot from finding a business opportunity that would combine teamwork, successful strategies and skill building to encourage him to apply his abundant perseverance to ONE business until he succeeds.

John can look at this list and see how one strength could compensate for another weakness. If he wasn't very decisive, he could be spared many a bad quick decision, and strong problem solving skills could bring an eventual understanding of the right path for HIM. What he lacked in self-confidence could be made up for with social skills that enabled him to work well with a mentor or a knowledgeable team. Lack of enterprise or drive could mean he isn't cut out for over-the-counter or door-to-door retail sales. But he might shine in the backroom day-in-day-out details of getting a job done, or in website-based business.

Oh yeah...and John could also listen to his wife, and just give it all a rest at least one day a week...

About the author:
Glenn Beach is a poet, writer and home business entrepreneur in Nova Scotia, Canada. Free newsletter, more articles, and business start-up info at:

Procrastination: How to Beat It   by  Linda McGrory

Now I reckon I'm an expert on this subject - procrastination? Could write a book about it! But no, I won't inflict that on you, just a few ideas, tips and hints that might help you get over those situations when a job has to be done, and you're really struggling to start. For most of us, what generally happens is that we put that task off, again and again, and then discover we are running out of time - panic sets in, the deadline approaches, and you end up having to do it anyway and probably not doing the job the best you can. Sounds familiar, doesn't it? Well, most of us suffer from this problem to some degree.

So what are some of the causes of procrastination? Putting off a task because we think it's going to be unpleasant; fear of failure; guilt; the wish to feel safe, avoiding risk; and, oddly enough, fear of success! Some, or all, of these will be recognisable to you.

So, basically, procrastination is caused by fear. And procrastination can pop up in various guises: indecision - if you can't decide what to do, you don't have to do it: sickness - migraine or stomach upset often precede an unwanted situation: or busyness - my personal favourite is list making! Hey, you can go on making lists - and lists of lists - endlessly.

Because of procrastination, you can end up waiting for things to work out, and by waiting and not moving forward, you run the risk of having to react to events in your life rather than being in control of them. In extreme cases, this fear can become an illness - an inability to perform any task at all because of the belief that it has to be perfect. And remember, when you are procrastinating, you are using up the present moment by doing absolutely nothing.

And this is really what it is about - our beliefs and thoughts about future events. But thoughts can be changed, they are not cast in stone, and a belief is just a thought.

So what can we do about it and how can we help ourselves? First of all, recognise what is happening, and once you identify procrastination, you can start to deal with it.

Just begin something, whatever it is you've been putting off - a letter, a phone call - but tell yourself that you'll only do it for five minutes, and then you will stop. You will find that you will actually finish the task once you start, because, of course, it's not nearly so intimidating as you had thought.

Stop thinking in the long-term. Everything seems so huge when you look at the whole of a task. Take, for example, writing a book - writing and finishing a whole book is a truly daunting prospect, but what if, instead, you decided to write for ten minutes today? That's all, ten minutes. You will probably find yourself writing for twenty minutes - hey, that's great, give yourself a big pat on the back.

Or how about, giving yourself a definite time to do that task you've been putting off. Put it in the diary, for, say, 10.00 on Saturday. It's there written down, just like any appointment, which of course you will keep.

And why not ask yourself, 'What is the worst thing that could happen to me if I do this task?' Write down the answer, read it through and the chances are that it really isn't that scary after all.

It also helps to recognise the words we use when we're immobilised by procrastination, 'I wish I had a new job' - well it's not going to arrive in the next post, so go out and get it! And the very insidious word 'should'. This is a word I have struck from my vocabulary and I suggest you do the same. It not only means that you are not doing a task, it also makes you feel guilty - a double whammy! Try instead to say 'I could do ...' and this then gives you the choice and the power.

Remember that we are not perfect, and that whatever we do is not going to be perfect either. We can only do our best, and that's all anyone can ask of themselves - so just do it!

This article was written by Linda McGrory, a professional copy-editor and proofreader, and webmaster of :


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