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On The Road to Success: How Do You Know What You Don’t Know?

–and are you willing to ask for help?

Do you remember being a kid and wanting to grow up and know everything about everything, the way so many adults appeared to be?

Did you think or grow up to believe that once you crossed some magic threshold of age, all those mysteries about how to live, how to get a job, how to drive a car, or operate a phone would be a part of your life – without your having to do anything about it?

Did you think that by knowing everything about everything – long before the IoT came along — that you’d be strong, powerful, and all-knowing?

Are you still stuck in that idea?

I know many are, because I hear so much reluctance in adults/professionals about asking for help in any way, even with things clearly outside their specialty. It can feel embarrassing – even shameful – to “have” to ask for help, even in areas that take years of studying to know the tiniest bit about it. I have certainly felt that way!

One place we get stuck is in our business/career lives. And I think it happens as we gain some success, as we make decisions that do work out, that we gain clients and customers who think we’re wonderful … until something changes and we realize we don’t know everything after all.

A great friend and my social media mentor, John White, MBA, recently took a huge leap of faith and flew to California for a two-day executive session on growing your business. He admits it was tough to be showing what he’s done and getting the feedback about what needed to change.

I asked John for some thoughts on what propelled him to seek that kind of help:

SR: John, since I know you’ve been successful in growing your connections worldwide to nearly 50,000, and your business to include some international clients, what spurred you to think of applying to 2xgrowth in the first place?

JW: When you’re running a business, it is easy to get too close to it from running the day-to-day that you lose focus on scaling. Simply put, you get too busy running the business to be able to objectively critique it. That’s when stagnation sets in. I felt like I had hit that point in my business but wasn’t sure what to do about it. I needed a different set of eyes on my business that could see it from an external perspective. I have been following Austin Netzley and his team at 2x for a while now. So, when I got the chance to attend his mastermind, I jumped on it.

SR: How hard was it to stand up in front of all those entrepreneurs and ask for help?

JW: Being on “the hotseat” in front of 20+ successful entrepreneurs and growth coaches from @2xgrowth was stressful and scary.

I stood up there for 30 minutes as we went over the numbers in my business, and they picked apart my operations to uncover the bottlenecks that are preventing growth from happening faster.

It was an experience I will never forget. Sometimes we have to go through exercises in life that are scary and painful on the surface. We have to move past those fears and work through the pain in order for growth to happen.

Never let your fear of uncovering the truth behind your shortcomings prevent you from finding the best possible version of yourself and your business.

SR: What was your biggest takeaway?

My biggest takeaway is that I need to develop systems in my business, so that I can build out a complete team. I have been doing too much of the work myself and taking on simply too much responsibility. I have this false belief like so many other business owners that “nobody can do it like I can.”

This is only true if you don’t train your employees, and you don’t have systems in place that your employees or contractors can follow.

As the head of the company, I need to build out a fully sufficient team, so that I can free up more of my time. That way, I can focus on bigger-ticket items like strategy and scaling the company. It will also allow me to work fewer hours and spend more time doing the things I love outside of work.

All in all, I see John’s experience as a huge positive. It surely can be daunting to show what you’ve done – and much was done right! – and allow others to show you where you need to change in order to succeed on an even higher level.

Have you attended anything like this program? What are your thoughts on this type of exercise?

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Susan Rooks
Susan Rookshttps://grammargoddess.com/
With nearly 30 years’ experience as an international workshop leader, Susan Rooks is uniquely positioned to help people master the communication skills they need to succeed. In 1995, Susan formed Grammar Goddess Communication, creating and leading workshops in three main areas – American grammar, business writing, and interpersonal skills – to help business pros enhance their communication skills. She also leads one-hour LinkedIn workshops (Master the LinkedIn Profile Basics) via Zoom to help business pros anywhere maximize their LinkedIn experience, offering it to Chambers of Commerce and other civic organizations free of charge. As an editor, Susan has worked on business blogs, award-winning children’s books, best-selling business books, website content, and even corporate annual reports (with clients from half a dozen countries), ensuring that all material is professionally presented. In April 2022, Susan became the Managing Editor of the Florida Specifier, a bi-monthly trade publication covering Florida’s diverse environmental industry. And although the focus is on Florida’s issues, many of these same challenges are found elsewhere around the world, so the readership isn’t limited to just Floridians or those interested in that state. But in all these endeavors, Susan’s only goal is to help everyone look and sound as smart as they are.

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