It takes confidence to strike out on your own as an entrepreneur. You’ll have to maintain a high level of self-confidence to close business deals, manage employees, and network with your peers. Confidence doesn’t always come easy; for many entrepreneurs, it’s a learned skill. Follow these techniques to build your self-esteem and stay confident as you grow your business.
Set Reasonable Goals
Ambition is essential for entrepreneurs, but over-ambitious plans often fail and these failures take a toll on your confidence levels and your self-esteem. Thinking big is good, but don’t overlook the small steps. Use the SMART system to set goals that are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely. Break up your big goal into a series of small objectives that lead up to your short- and long-term goals, then enjoy the confidence boost that comes from achieving measurable goals.
Have a Support Group
When your passion is building your business, having a small network of close friends who believe in what you do can also help you stay confident. Your personal support network should be people who you can count on to be happy for you when you have a good week and give you a pep talk during rough patches. You should choose your support group wisely; for example, entrepreneurs who are your direct competitors might undermine your business and your confidence.
Don’t Compare Yourself to Others
Other startups and influencers in your field can be great sources of inspiration but don’t compare yourself to other businesses or think your business has to be a carbon copy of theirs to be successful. When you realize that every business is different, you prevent yourself from losing confidence when your own business achievements don’t match up to other businesses.
Keep Up With Continuing Education
Your expertise in your field inspired your desire to become an entrepreneur, but, if you don’t keep your skills current, you might end up feeling overwhelmed and swamped, and these feelings will take a toll on your confidence. Think of continuing education opportunities as one of the keys to your business growth. For example, search engine optimization experts should know about optimizing sites for mobile search, web developers need to know the latest software, and restaurants need to adapt to new culinary trends.
Learn From Your Wins and Losses
It’s natural for your confidence to spike after wins and fall after losses, but you can learn from wins and losses. For example, when your marketing campaign works to bring in new clients, you can replicate your process to get more clients. Even losing the occasional client has a bright side; evaluate what went wrong and determine how you can prevent it from happening again in the future. In fact, if you look at the negative business experiences as opportunities to learn and grow, you can reduce your stress levels and build the confidence you need to achieve your long-term goals.<