As the owner of a colchester based marketing agency I am often asked to outline what I think is the key to achieving a specific set of business-orientated goals. I am also asked some weirder questions too but they’ll be covered in another blog!
Some people suggest devoting yourself to the hard-graft, to being persistent or to simply focus intently on your objective is enough to achieve success.
Research in fact shows that these are actually by-products of something much more powerful that we can develop when we truly apply ourselves. This “something else” is actually quite special; it is critical to success and it is going to the topic of this blog.
“The moment we believe that success is determined by an ingrained level of ability, we will be brittle in the face of adversity” - Josh Waitzkin
See, there are a lot of people in the world who believe that intelligence, or the abilities that require or exhibit intelligence are fixed, as in a fixed mindset facilitates these qualities. Other people see them as qualities that can be developed and nurtured as part of an overarching growth mindset.
A growth mindset is a state of being and thinking wherein the individual can alter,influence or add to a sense of intelligence using or utilising a wide range of cognitive tactics.
There are too many people now who think they are not creative and that’s that. They think that they can’t, for example, run or manage the marketing side of a business and therefore don’t ever try, before you guess it, its called having a fixed mindset - and it can be hinderance.
The key to success:
Success takes many shapes and sizes; let's face it we are often too hard on ourselves, sometimes we simply forget to celebrate the successes that we have enjoyed along the way. Sometimes running a business just takes precedence; and the little things get away from us.
This has nothing to do with negligence or with a lack of attention to detail, it is often because we always think we can do better or that we can move the goalposts favourably. Defining success is an inherently personal thing but the real problem exists within not defining it in the first place.
I myself make sure that I take a moment, usually once a month,to set and review business goals for my marketing agency in colchester and my team. Often these can be goals that we would track using quantitative measures such as sales growth, overheards, expansion of the opportunity pipeline et al. That being said I make sure to always include qualitative aspects such as team morale, how inspired I and my team feel, how much harder I can work to inspire those around me, how team centric and how inclusive my agency is. These are things that can not be measured or tracked using data, but none the less they are necessary.
So what exactly does the above have to do with successful business growth. More importantly what does the above have to do with a successful marketing strategy? As business owners, we need to bring a growth mindset to the table when building a growth strategy; of course right? A growth mindset will allow you and your team to question the status quo. By keeping your mind open to new forms of growth strategy, beyond what you already know and what you have already tried, you will help your business preside over a period of rapid growth; facilitated solely by a mindset.
Simply put: The key to success is not simply effort, focus or persistence; it is the growth mindset behind it all. The mindset itself is critical, research shows that when we directly try to build up our resilience, in toughening ourselves, it is nowhere near as effective as changing the mindset behind our motivations.
Leaders need a growth mindset:
As businesses plan for a future that is even more reliant on the digital world and even more mobile, having a growth mindset is becoming a vital necessity.
Traditional approaches to growing a business include telemarketing, cold calling, leaflet drops and of course let us not overlook the most important of them all: networking! Yes networking. That weekly, or monthly meetings where you drown in coffee on tap, you eat too many bacon baps and you enjoy or squirm at the obligatory 1 minute “about me” speech.
It may come as a shock to many but these forms of traditional growth hacking are slowly dying out - if left unchecked and un-complemented by the fundamental 8 components of digital marketing strategy they will ultimately slow down to a standstill. This then will only serve to further reduce your chances of successfully growing your business.
As a general rule however I strongly believe that before I even begin to talk about marketing I must first speak on the mindset behind the marketing strategist! This mindset, and the strategist themselves need to be in the right mind! That means that before you go to war with the white board in an epic planning session, you need to make sure that you are in the right state of being and that you have your growth mindset switched on! Though of course it is less a switch and more of a zone, which for me, works most powerfully after 50 jumping jacks and a serious caffeine kick.
Its often said that a business cannot grow beyond the knowledge and capabilities of the person leading it, however, when you allow yourself to embody a growth mindset simply you combat this and allow yourself to be open to learning more and to growing.
In my area of expertise I can say with certainty that most if not all capable and highly competent business owners/leaders are open to trying new things.
The main hindrance that I have observed is that a lot of people do not know what to try, or what approach will ensure the highest level of success; with many resorting to the same old tried and tested approaches that ultimately fizzle and fade like a disappointing pound shop sparkler.