For the past decade I’ve worked with hundreds of thousands of entrepreneurs and businesspeople, helping them grow their businesses and invest their wealth. Over that time I’ve watched so many of these intelligent and hardworking people get stuck by the same three pitfalls that once upon a time trapped us in the stressful, underperforming, frustrating world of the self-employed.
The goal of this short article is to highlight these three challenges so that you know what you’re up against. Half the battle is accurately framing the question: What challenges will I encounter? This short article will help you do just that — frame the challenges you face.
The first challenge to overcome is what I call the Self Employment Trap™. That’s when instead of creating a business, most entrepreneurs merely create a job for themselves. They have achieved the satisfaction that comes along with their own businesses, only to find that this freedom has its price: Daily attendance is mandatory in order for the business to succeed and be profitable. In a sense, rather than creating their own business these entrepreneurs have instead created their own jobs, with all of the responsibilities that go along with it.
The second challenge successful entrepreneurs face is that while they have developed the business skills they need to grow their business, very few of them have cultivated the personal wealth skills they need to build their wealth independent of their business. This is extremely shortsighted and risky. They have all their economic eggs in the basket of their business. Plus, they lack the financial fluency to intelligently and effectively manage their wealth and invest it wisely.
For this group, a lack of financial fluency often leads to poor decisions after they no longer have their businesses. They wake up one day without their business, and with nothing to show for their years spent building their business.
To create the wealth you truly desire, you must understand that your business is a piece of the puzzle, an important piece, but not the only piece. You must develop your wealth skills in parallel with your business skills.
The final challenge you face comes years into your successful business when you wake up one day and ask yourself the painful question: Is this all there is? To truly be successful your business must be about more than the money. You must find a deeper meaning, and to have a sustainable business, you must help your employees and customers find that deeper meaning
Again my goal in this brief article was to frame out the big three challenges you will need to face as you grow your business and your wealth. The work of overcoming these challenges will occupy much of your focus in the years ahead.
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