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5 Tips to Get a Work Life that Doesn't Suck

5 Tips to Get a Work Life that Doesn't Suck

Elizabeth Wilson |

4. Get a system.

“My experience has been that for entrepreneurs, managing in general is not their greatest strength. They either need to put some systems in place to make sure they keep the right records and keep promises to clients [or], if they simply cannot do that, they need to barter with someone who will. If their hairstylist is looking for work and is a really organized person, they can have this person help them out.

“One of the biggest mistakes for a startup is not keeping promises — to suppliers, colleagues, anyone in the community. Most entrepreneurs are very focused on their product, their service, their purpose — not the infrastructure to support it. Without systems in place, it would be a little bit like building a great big house on quicksand. You’ve got to have the underpinnings there for it to be a success.”

5. Say what you mean, do what you say.

“Your integrity is up to you. Few things are more important than your reputation. The worst thing you can do is make a lot of promises and not keep them, represent that things will happen and then not make them happen. The ‘say what you mean, do what you say’ is what allows you to operate in the business world in a reliable and admirable way, and everybody is more comfortable doing business with people whom they respect and admire.

“A lot of businesses get referred based on relationships, so don’t say it unless you’re prepared to do it, and certainly don’t overpromise. That’s a common thing that happens when an entrepreneur is eager when starting up. It’s learning to try to satisfy the client, the vendor and situation at hand and being realistic about what you can do.

“Personally manage your systems: The successful businessperson brings [his or her] support person to meetings, where the sales [team] will promise one thing and the manager/entrepreneur is there to make sure it gets done. If your instinct is to say ‘yes, yes, yes,’ but the request requires you to really look at its feasibility, then don’t say yes. Say, ‘I would love to, let me get back to you.’ It’s seldom that you have to respond on the spot. Impulsivity is a trait of self-starters.

“The important thing is to set aside the emotional and ask for what you want in a graceful and neutral way. And the message here for all of these tips is: Help yourself create the outcome you want. If you don’t think good thoughts, make good choices, then you’re not taking your business where you want to go. This leaves a gap — this space between your thoughts and what you don’t do — and the gap is where life sucks. Following these tips closes the gap.” © 2008 YellowBrix