Approximately 28,000 businesses in Singapore closed down from January to September 2020. Even with numerous government grants and programmes that were put to help protect businesses from the pandemic, businesses continue to shut down everyday. In this time of crisis where a lot of businesses try different strategies and struggle to come up with new ideas to survive and thrive in the ongoing pandemic, people have become too focused on the doing. People try different ways, people are working extremely hard, working even twice as long just to ensure business continuity. On the flip-side, there are businesses that absolutely thrive during this period. Some have grown tremendously in the last few months despite the Circuit Breaker and other restrictions. What’s the secret there? One of the key factors that many entrepreneurs and business leaders don’t realise is that sometimes you have to look beyond just doing, and also work on YOUR own being.
The formula for life success:
Be x Do = HAVE
The success that you will have at the end of the day, will depend on two things: Things that you do, and your being (who you are as a person). In order to be able to apply this formula and achieve success, 3 mindset shifts are necessary for all entrepreneurs.
Shift #1: Move from Victim to Victor Mode.
In the victim mode, you are stuck in BED, which stands for blame, excuses, and denial. A lot of businesses started blaming a lot of things when the pandemic started. However, this blame doesn’t help your case in ensuring business success and business growth. In fact, it was reported that 32,000 businesses closed during January to August 2019. 13% more businesses closed last year even when there was no pandemic, making it clear that solely blaming the pandemic is misleading. The second thing is excuses. There will always be excuses when things don’t work out our way. Lastly, denial failing to acknowledge that there is a problem in the first place. The moment you are stuck in this BED, you will feel powerless, because suddenly you’re a victim of the situation and can’t do anything about it. That is why it is necessary to shift into the position of the Victor by having Ownership, being Accountable, and having a sense of Responsibility for the situation of the business. The moment you shift to OAR, it would be a more powerful feeling, the feeling of being a Victor.
Shift #2: Work Harder on Yourself than You Do on Your Job.
Being in the industry for a significant time, there is this thing called the “I Know”. The moment you have the “I Know”, your brain is like a glass full of water where you can’t pour in new things. It is critical to gain new knowledge, change the way we do things, and have some creative approaches in the business. Instead of saying “I Know”, maybe we’ll say “Isn’t that interesting?”. Same things can be applied in a different way. When we shift to this mindset, our brain will think I don’t know everything, but I know I have to learn new things. This is when we recognise that none of us truly knows everything. Remember that even the most successful people invest a lot in their learning. Accept that everyone has blind spots, including you, and everyone has to work on those blindspots.
Shift #3: Shift from Fixed Mindset to Growth Mindset.
Fixed mindset is when entrepreneurs fail on something and feel discouraged. Fixed mindset entrepreneurs tend to stay safe, and conduct business only in tried and tested methods. The Growth mindset on the other hand, is when something didn’t work out the way the entrepreneur wanted it to be, he/she would try to figure out what and how to tweak their methods so they can implement it better next time. The Growth Mindset is the will to innovate, take feedback and change, and try new strategies. Take in mind the current COVID-19 Pandemic. While other businesses are quick to close down operations and cut their losses, other businesses have been looking for ways to take advantage of the situation and improve their digitalisation, successfully overrunning other businesses that have lagged behind or simply gave up. Having the Growth Mindset will let you see the opportunity to succeed in every single thing that comes in your way, including crises such as the pandemic.
In summary, for businesses to survive and grow past this crisis, the thing that needs to be changed most of the time is ourselves first. And if we do that successfully, then it would be a lot easier to overcome whatever challenges come in our way, and this will build a resilient business in the long run. Keep in mind, whether you think you can or you can’t, you are correct.