[This post is the first of a four-part series on the 7 questions every business owner must answer to succeed. It is an excerpt from my free Cycle Business Impact Field Manual. Today’s post reviews Questions #1 & #2.]
“The plans of the diligent lead to profit as surely as haste lead to poverty.” Proverbs 21:5
“Make plans by seeking advise; if you wage war, obtain guidance.” Proverbs 20:18
As we close 2014, it is time to finalize our business plan for 2015 and beyond.
There are seven essential questions every leader must answer if their business is to succeed and prosper into the new year. Here are the first two questions.
Question #1: What are your Convictions?
Convictions clarify what you stand for in your business. They visualize and bring to life those fundamental ideals, principles, philosophies, values, attitudes, or beliefs upon which you desire to build, lead, and grow your company.
If you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything!
Convictions are the very foundation of a higher-level business, for they:
- Serve as the absolute moral, ethical, and behavioral base of your company.
- Represent unchanging guideposts upon which to attach and build your goals, priorities, and actions.
- Simplify decision making by forcing everyone to answer, “Does this decision/action align with our convictions?”
To help you uncover your convictions, answer the following questions.
- What the 4-6 essential ideals, principles, philosophies, values, attitudes, or beliefs of your business?
- What are you willing to take a stand for and never compromise…even in tough times?
- How do you want your company to be remembered?
- What past indiscretions/situations have you experienced that you would never want to occur in your business?
Question #2: What is your Purpose?
A purpose statement answers “why” your organization exist. Through reaching clarity on this question, you begin crystallizing your ultimate measure of impact – the long-term imprint you desire to make on your world.
Purpose answers “why” you do what you do.
A purpose statement need not be a world-changing, Nobel Peace Prize-winning reason to exist. Frankly, most great organizational purposes are simple yet eloquent, powerful yet doable, profound yet basic. And most are quite short.
Some great examples of purpose statements include:
- Walmart: To save people money so they can live better.
- Southwest Airlines: To give people the freedom to fly.
- Chick-fil-A: To glorify God by being a faithful steward of all that is entrusted to us. To have a positive influence on all who come in contact with Chick-fil-A.
- Dave Ramsey (Lampo Group): Provides biblically-based, common sense education and empowerment that gives HOPE to everyone in every walk of life.
- To a Higher Level – To impact eternity through business.
As you can see, using the verb “To…” is a powerful way to begin your purpose statement as a call to action.
To help you discover your purpose, answer the following questions.
- What’s the compelling reason you do what you do in your business?
- If your company disappeared tomorrow, why would your customers miss you?
- For what noble reason would you like your company to be known?
- What essential and necessary gap do you fill in your marketplace?
Convictions & Purpose
Please share below your company’s convictions or purpose so we can all learn and be inspired.
Tomorrow I will share Questions #3 & #4 of the 7 questions you MUST answer to succeed in your business.