Bridging the Victory Gap: 6 Steps to Massive Results
by Warren Coughlin
“Be great in act as you have been in thought” Shakespeare.
Do you want to make more money in your business? Do you want to have more time to enjoy the money you do generate? This is the first in a series of articles designed to help you do just that.
Many business owners begin their own businesses for one or a combination of 4 reasons:
- They have expertise in a particular area for which they feel a demand exists;
- They have a passion for a particular activity that they feel compelled to pursue;
- They have a passion for freedom and independence and discovered an opportunity to follow that passion through their own business; or
- They were driven to self-employment by circumstances.
However, regardless of how they came to be business owners, they frequently have not developed or acquired all the skills or knowledge necessary to fully capitalize on the businesses they have created. As a result, their dreams remain unfulfilled. They never bridge “The Victory Gap.”
What is “The Victory Gap”
This concept can best be understood by reference to athletics. Anyone who has watched any elite level competitive racing, such as Olympic swimming, sprinting, or cycling, knows that there are generally 3 or 4 top athletes who are always at the front of the pack. The actual winner may switch from race to race, but they are always at the top. Then there is the rest of the pack, none of whom seem able to break into the ranks of the top racers. The distance between the leaders and the pack is the Victory Gap. It is usually not a very large gap, often measured only in tenths or hundredths of a second. Yet the difference in rewards enjoyed by the members of the two groups is dramatic.
The lesson? In business, just as in athletics, you don't have to be vastly superior to your competition to win the lion's share of the market. You must simply be marginally better than the competition on a consistent basis. That consistency is achieved by focusing on Critical Victory Factors (CVF's); those skills and attributes that are essential for success. Great athletes continuously practice and train to enhance the CVF's relevant to their sport. For instance, a marathon runner doesn't work on upper body strength while a sprinter does. Business is no different. Consistent superior performance in business can be realized by focusing on the entrepreneur's CVF's.
The Entrepreneur's CVF's
There are 8 CVF's for business owners. The more proficient you become in each of these areas, the greater the success you will achieve. The CVF's are:
- Subject matter expertise (e.g. if you are a lawyer, you know the law; if you are a carpenter, you know which end of a hammer to hold);
- Success mindset (i.e. you believe in your ability to win)
- Financial management
- Team building
- Systems development
- Time management.
Your altitude is limited by your aptitude. That means that the height to which your business can soar is limited by the weakest of your CVF's. If you are a wonderful sales person, but have poor time management skills, you will always be challenged to sell to enough customers. If you are a wonderful salesperson with excellent time management habits, but lacklustre team building skills, you will always find it difficult to grow your business.
The sad reality is that very few entrepreneurs diligently pursue opportunities to develop these skills. This happens for a couple of reasons. First, rather than view learning opportunities as investments, they may consider them as costs to be minimized, thereby sentencing themselves to limited growth. Second, they may feel there is so much to learn, they don't know where to start. And so they don't.
Where to Begin: the 6 Steps to Massive Results
In this series of articles, we will explore these skills. But before we do, it is important to know how to begin. Every business goes through a 6 step evolution. How far up the evolutionary ladder it ascends is a function of the owner's willingness to continually develop the organization's skills. Please note that the owner does not have to possess all the skills herself, as long as those skills exist in the right places within the company. The owner must be sufficiently familiar with all of them to ensure they are being adequately developed and deployed, but she need not be an expert in all areas.
However, if the business is to move up the evolutionary ladder quickly and effectively, it is critical that the owner know enough to ensure that the CVF's are pursued in the right order. If not, the business could falter. For instance, if an owner is working diligently on enhancing team-building skills without understanding the business' cash flows, she could end up with a happy team soon looking for work. So, if you have not mastered all of the CVF's listed above and don't know where your business sits on the evolutionary ladder, be sure to read the next article in this series where we introduce each of the 6 steps.
To learn more about how business coaching can accelerate your businesses growth, email Warren at WarrenCoughlin@biznetworknews.com
In business, you don’t have to be vastly superior to your competition to win the lion’s share of the market.
You must simply be marginally better than the competition on a consistent basis. That consistency is achieved by focusing on Critical Victory Factors (CVF’s); those skills and attributes that are essential for success.
Great athletes continuously practice and train to enhance the CVF’s relevant to their sport. For instance, a marathon runner doesn’t work on upper body strength while a sprinter does.
Business is no different. Consistent superior performance in business can be realized by focusing on the entrepreneur’s CVF’s.
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