Updated: Aug 26, 2019
Working with many VAs over the years, I have found it incredibly interesting to notice how a Business Mindset (or lack of it) can be THE key contributing factor that defines their business’s success (or not).
You see, our mindset is something that we are often unaware of BUT the ability to develop a sound business mindset is profoundly critical to your success. Ultimately, the ability to succeed starts and ends with YOU.
I’ve put together a list of traits that successful VAs with a sound Business Mindset display – and to be honest, these apply to all businesses, not just VAs.
Listen up because this is really important, and once you ‘get it', you will never look back!
Great VAs have Mastered the Ability to Think Creatively and “Outside the Box”
Employees are used to following procedures and protocols set up by the organisation they are working for… they don’t have to think too hard, and if something unusual occurs, 'someone else' or 'another department' will usually be responsible for adapting the process or procedure.
When you are a business owner, you become that 'someone else'! You need to be able to ‘think outside the box’, challenge the status quo and question if there are better, faster or more efficient ways to achieve the results for your client.
It also goes without saying that business owners need to be willing to step up to the plate and take a risk.
Great VAs Understand and Embrace Failure and Mistakes
Employees who continue to make mistakes generally don't get far in their chosen vocation.
However, business owners learn that failure and mistakes are their proving ground. The experience gained from making a mistake or experiencing a failure help them to perfect what they have been doing.
As a business owner, you WILL make mistakes - rather than run or bury your head in the sand, learn to take responsibility, stand tall, learn lessons and move on.
Great VAs are Solution-Focused
Employees, generally, are problem-focused. They focus in on the issue, rather than thinking about a potential solution. As I said before, there is often 'another department' to call on.
Successful business owners have honed the ability to think proactively and focus on solution-driven approaches, rather than get bogged down by an issue and potentially let the problem defeat them. By using their creativity, they are able to deal with the many challenges that come up in the day to day running of a business – large and small - for their clients and themselves.
Great VAs are Passionate about their Business
In order to start a business, most business owners have developed a real passion for what they do. It’s what drives them and sustains them. It’s what gets them out of bed every day. If you lack passion, you won’t be as emotionally 'invested' in your business, or in the outcomes you are generating for your clients.
Great VAs are Lifelong Learners
Employees, in the main, are retained to follow a set procedure to achieve the results for their employer. They have done their education and they are in the role that matches their abilities.
Great business owners are on a continual path of learning. Always educating themselves about new and better ways to do things, trying out and implementing new skills, technology and processes, reading and learning from colleagues and peers.
Great VAs have Developed a Love for Numbers
Being in business requires more than a basic understanding of the flow of money. It’s more than just budgeting. When you are a business owner, you need to understand the numbers in your cash flow, and be quick to recognize when there are issues or errors. Sure many business owners may employ accountants and bookkeepers, but they still need to understand and – in a way – love those numbers. Ultimately, the numbers that are reflected in sales, costs, profit and loss will either bring you sleepless nights or an enviable lifestyle.
Great VAs are Savvy about Who they Listen to
The rewards and knowledge that comes with associating with successful people are well-known by savvy business owners. They understand that when it comes to being successful, there is no way they are going to learn anything from somebody who doesn’t have what they want, and has not travelled the path they are currently on. They seek out inspiring people - often from differing industries, who are successful in their own right. Inspiring people and business owners often have tips and tricks...but moreso, they have the right mindset too. And that can be infectious!
As you read through the list, did you reflect on your mindset? Are there areas you could improve? Be gentle with yourself, remember it's not a failure it's a learning! Are there people in your network who can help keep you accountable while you're working on them?