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It’s been a long-held belief that 50% of businesses fail in the first year and 95% fail within the first five years. However, according to recent statistics published by the Small Business Administration (SBA), seven out of ten new employer establishments survive at least two years, half at least five years, a third at least 10 years, and a quarter stay in business 15 years or more.
While these latest statistics may pleasantly surprise you, it still holds true that a significant percentage of new businesses fail. And the reasons they do range from poor planning and insufficient capital to the wrong motivation.
I just celebrated five years of being in business in probably some of the worst economic times since the great depression of 1929! I am in that 50% that make it to 5 year mark! This is amazing to me but it is also the result of being committed to the fundamentals.
When I voluntarily left my 20-plus-year career in Broadcast Radio sales and management in Miami/Ft Lauderdale, in August 2006, to figure out my ”next,” who could have ever imagine what I was diving into! Regardless, I climbed to the top of the diving board and did a swan dive into the unknown in February 2007 and launched my consulting and training business.
My motivation: I wanted to help people and I wanted to do what I loved and what I was good at!
Over the last five years, I have been through many changes, challenges and transitions … more than I have ever experienced in my entire life! I have moved four times, including moving back here in December 2010. I have reinvented and diversified my products, services and brand consistently to keep pace with a relentlessly changing business environment. And, I have had many moments where I woke up and said “WTF,” Work Through Fear and keep going.
If you’re thinking about starting a business and are having difficulty overcoming the fear of career change or transition, check out Become Your Own Boss in 12 Months by one of my colleagues Melinda Emerson. It will help you focus on what is possible, if you are the right person for this job and a step by step guide!
What I have been able to accomplished over the past five years is a result of putting my intentions (what I wanted to happen) out there and then preparing myself for things to happen. I get ready and stay ready.
I made a plan and worked the plan.
- I wrote a book about Career Transition and told my story.
- I built a local and national niche and footprint through speaking and writing.
- I aligned myself with certain communities and people who I admired and respected.
- I put myself in the pulse of the business community by joining chambers and professional organizations.
Here are five insights over the past five years that have helped me to reach this landmark and develop the ‘next’ version of my personal brand.
Be sure that you are doing what you really want to do and are good at. Look back on all your job titles over the last 10 years and see what qualities and skills underlie them all.
Love what you do
If you don’t love what you do, then you probably won’t last. Find what makes you leap into each day and live there.
Give people reasons
What value can you bring to each day and what you do? Share your wisdom, kindness and human capital consistently.
Always be relevant
Live in relevance. Be current, up to date, and in the buzz of what is happening. Invest in yourself so that you can offer this. Lead, innovate and experiment with purpose and instinct.
Nothing is more attractive than a self-confidence and self-love that is cool, humane and authentic. Celebrate who you are and share what you know.
The successful people and companies, who I watch, emulate and admire all have these in common. They know who they are, what they do, and whom they serve, and they go about serving in a consistent, value-based way. They can be counted on and are always a resource.
Thank you for encouraging me, inspiring me, and standing by me. I couldn’t have done it without you.
Move your career and business in the direction you want it to go. Watch what can happen!
What are some of your success insights?
Deborah Shane is an author, media host, speaker, writer and branding strategist. She hosts her Toolbox Blog and is in her third year of hosting a weekly business radio show called Deborah Shane’s Metropolis that has over 32K downloads! She is a regular contributor to several national business, career and marketing blogs and websites. Her new book Career Transition-make the shift is available on Amazon.com and all major book sellers. Deborah delivers smart, no-nonsense ideas and solutions, which make her a popular go-to resource for clients, national media and influential blogs. Visit her at www.deborahshane.com.