The importance of a business mindset

I recently talked about the importance of having an abundance mindset. And it got me thinking about the different mindsets we bring to our professional and personal lives.

So, I asked a group of ladies over coffee how much they thought mindset impacted their business. The answers ranged from 60% to 95%. That’s a lot! But while, those numbers are very high, I agree completely.

Yes, a lot of our business success comes down to planning, executing those plans, business development and finding the right support. BUT, if your mindset is not in the right place for your business, it can leave you feeling overwhelmed, unclear and headed for chaos. And that’s a recipe for disaster.

Delving into the business mindset, I realised that it’s a big topic – and too much to cover in one article! So this first article will cover what a business mindset is, and why it’s important. The second article in the series will look at how you can then develop that vital business mindset.

What is a business mindset?

A business mindset is the ability to make decisions and navigate situations from a business-oriented perspective. It’s an understanding that decisions should support the objectives, vision, and profitability of the business. It strongly aligns with an entrepreneurial mindset, and with the deep engagement of Carol Dweck’s growth mindset. And good news! – it can be learned (more on that in ‘How to Develop a Business Mindset’!).

What are the key components of a business mindset?

A business mindset can be a critical factor in a business’ success. People with a business mindset understand the unique values and insights they bring. And they generally share seven key components.

1 – Goal orientation

People with a business mindset are highly focused on their goals. They understand where they want their business to be and make strategic plans to get there.

2 – Risk management

A business mindset means balancing and managing a business’ risks and rewards, while making the calculated decisions necessary for sustained  growth.

3 – Innovation

People with a business mindset have the mental agility to think creatively and remain open to new ideas. This innovative thinking brings a competitive edge to businesses through new products or services, or new ways of doing business.

Successful business innovation means coming up with ideas AND implementing them. To put my ideas into effect, I run through a process around September of each year, which allows me to plan for the year ahead. My process goes a little something like this:

  • What is our ‘business-as-usual’ for the year ahead? What staple programs are we known for (for us this will be 1:1 Coaching and Thriving Women)?

  • What big new projects do I want to work on? For my business, I limit ‘big new projects’ to one a quarter. This could be a new website (check out our shiny new one), a diagnostic (wanna take it? click here) or a major event (see the latest here).
  • What new programs do I want to create this year that will fill a gap in the market?

And then to put these ideas into action, Serena, my amazing sister and Business Manager makes the diary work, like a game of Tetris. This is a very important step. Scheduling your innovative ideas so they will be acted upon gives you the freedom to maintain your business focus.

It’s also important to have someone supporting you who understands you and your business. Serena has the patience and wisdom to leave a bit of calendar space for me to also create a program or two mid-year, to ensure that what we are offering remains relevant.

4 – Resource optimisation

When you have a business-focused mindset you will understand the value of resources and the importance of using them efficiently. This includes time, money, human resources and any other assets that the business has at its disposal.

5 – Resilience

Business often involves setbacks and failures. A business mindset includes the resilience to weather these challenges and learn from them (utilising a growth mindset!) to improve and drive forward.

6 – Customer focus

A business mindset means understanding and prioritising the needs of your customers. This customer-focused approach can help to build strong relationships and customer loyalty.

7 – Continual learning and adaptability

The business environment is dynamic and constantly changing. A business mindset includes an ongoing commitment to learning and adapting to keep up with these changes.

[H2]Operating without a business mindset

There are so many advantages to having a business mindset in your work. But, on the other hand, running your business without one can lead to significant  challenges.

  • Lack of direction. Without a business mindset, you will lack clear goals and strategic  direction for your business. A clear vision and a plan to get there are key to making  informed decisions and  knowing which opportunities to pursue and which to avoid.
  • Increased risk.A business mindset involves considering the potential risks and rewards of decisions relevant to your business. You may be taking unnecessary or uncalculated risks that could lead to financial losses or other challenges.
  • Stagnation. Without a business mindset, you might miss opportunities for innovation or change. This could result in your business becoming stagnant, and see you essentially ‘treading water’.
  • Inefficiency. Part of a business mindset is understanding the importance of resources and using them efficiently. The misuse or waste of resources could lead to higher costs and lower profitability.
  • Poor customer satisfaction. A business mindset is customer-focussed. If you fail to consider the needs and wants of your customers, you may lose them to your competitors.

The key to business success

If you’re operating your business without the right mindset, things might cruise along well for a while. But the pitfalls are clear. Operating with the right mindset is a key part of your business success.

What’s next

Now that we know what a business mindset is and why it’s important, we need to understand how to develop it. My second article  guides you through the steps you can take to develop a business mindset.  

Looking for something else?

Emma also has a podcast.