As a child I use to love when my father would take my brother and I fishing. It was cold and we were very tired (less than desirable conditions for a 7 and 8 year old) however we loved it. We loved that thrill of seeing your pole shake and the potential of bring home tonight's dinner. As I have developed in business I have realized that Fishing and Business have a lot in common for example:
Go Where the Fish Are
In fishing you need to go where you have the best chances at catching a fish, lakes provide a certain type of fish and environment for fishing (safe, predictable conditions, calm waters) while the Ocean provides several types of fish l(mostly large and some that can eat you) and a very unpredictable. In business you have to go where the best customers(fish) or where you have the higher probability of catching those customers(fish) so use tools like Googles Shopping Insights to look at where the customers (fish) are biting and what keyword/products (bait) they are searching for.
Using the Right Bait
You can find the perfect fishing spot where the fish are literally jumping out of the water, however if you do not have the "right" type of bait you will simply be a hungry spectator. In business your bait will consist of 1) Your Offer: Customers(Fish) are very particular about what they put into their houses, minds, bodies and more so make sure you have the right offer. 2) The timing: Fish like to feed at different times of the day, and the same hold true for customers too. Make sure your offer is timely and convenient for the customer. 3) The equipment: If you go Ocean fishing using freshwater lake equipment you will be in for a very rude awakening when a 40lbs Grouper bites and pulls you and your fishing pole in the water. In business when you are finally in the right market and have the customers attention make sure you have the capacity to handle the customers and their needs. There is nothing worst than constantly being sold out, or not having the right people to handle the customer calls.
Patience is Key
The one thing that all fisherman understand is that the "Fish Bite when they want". Some fishermen and businessmen give up or move spots way to fast. Sometimes the customer(fish) wants to see how committed you really are to catching them/earning their business, so stay the course. They want to see if you are serious about business/fishing and more importantly serious about giving them the right bait at the right time to earn their business. So in business you need to make sure that you are where your customers are, have the right bait, and wait for the fish to bite.
In my last year of Graduate school I had the opportunity to take a leadership class with an amazing professor (who also told me to quit my job before it killed me) which assigned us (2) books to read for the semester. There was one that stuck out to me that discussed a feeling among leaders or business owner called Imposters Syndrome.
As a business owner we often feel like we are not the "real deal" or that we are in fact a "fraud" and will be exposed. It is very easy for us to look to the left and right or at others and feel like they are bringing it more than we have. It is very easy to look at social media and think "I am a loser" or "How come I cannot get it going?" , which is a sign of the imposter syndrome.
There are couple of things that we as business owners can do to combat the Imposter Syndrome:
#1 Do a success audit
I took a personal selling class where the professor has us do a 25 page resume of everything we have ever done in our lives. It seemed intimidating at first however we totally underestimate and downplay our achievements and it was much easier than we thought. We need to do a 25 page resume of all of our achievements and successes so that we have a reference when we need it. Save it as PDF or picture and save it to your phone so that its available at all times.
#2 Try something that scares the shit out of you
It seems very counter intuitive to do something that totally terrifies you when you are feeling like a "fraud" , however I know from personal experience that it will develop that courage muscle and add to your legitimacy. I picked up surfing about 5 years and heard everything from "What about sharks","Flesh Eating Bacteria", "Can you swim?" , well let me tell you something, none of it came true, the only thing that did happen was I lost about 25lbs, became a stronger swimmer, great Go Pro surfing videos, and made some lifelong friends. If you are working on your inner "Bad Assness" I highly encourage you to read "You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life" By Jen Sincero
#3 Get Moving
Yes get moving, physically go for a walk or run. When we sit and think we also begin to doubt ourselves and/or mission in life because our mind is logical, it wants to make sense of everything. The challenge with that is it only has past facts, has no information on the future. Author Mel Robbins in her 5 Second Rule Ted Talk said that if we don't physically take action in the first 5 seconds of us doing something towards achieving our goals our minds will begin to talk us out of it. So get moving, Run, Walk, Do some squats, etc. But please get moving so we can get closer to our goals and so that we do not feel like an imposter
Duane Cofield over 15 years selling Cocaine from the age of 11 in the gritty streets of South East San Diego. I know the "game" in and out and very few can show me something new..I am now a business owner and professor of business a a few Southern California Universities. I am available for consulting, speaking, coaching. Please subscribe to the Official Drug Dealers to Businessmen You Tube Channel Here