8 Questions to help you build your business
By Marc Ford MBA

“Coaches, coaches everywhere telling me what to do and how to run my business.”

Really? If that’s the case then, they are instructors and not coaches. Managers and not coaches.
Coaching involves asking questions and listening to the answers. Asking questions that will stimulate further thoughts, new ideas and different approaches. Every time a coach asks a question, they should always be prepared for a different answer. Why?

Because the person replying is unique. Their experiences, knowledge, thoughts and attitudes are all built up over a period of time with their own unique perspective. It’s like two people in the same room, sat in the same way, dressed identically and eating the same food. Because of prior experiences and events, the perspective of that moment in time will be different, no matter how ‘identical’ things seem.

So should coaches and guru’s ‘tell you what to do?” Theoretically no. There are always the right things to do and the wrong. There are building blocks for every business that should be in place, but on top of that is YOUR uniqueness and YOUR personality. No one else can tell that story like you can. No one else can be who you are. So celebrate it and make it part of your USP, (Unique Selling Proposition).

Here are 8 questions that will help you build YOUR unique business and YOUR unique sales proposition:

What angers you?

Every super hero needs a bad guy. Without one, the super hero has nothing to fight against. Are there specific things that evoke a compassionate anger in you? (Key point of differentiation: this is not about road rage, poor service, or leaving the seat up. We’re talking about the systemic things that evoke a desire to intervene in a situation as an act of compassion or to rectify a great wrong.)

What makes you cry?

Think about the last several instances that caused you to cry. Movies are fair game too. I’ve noticed that I almost always tear up while watching stories of underdogs who overcome incredible odds. This is a clue to me that my greatest work may somehow involve fighting for those who are oppressed or unheard. (Social enterprises are a great example of this.)

What have you mastered?

Are there tasks, skills, or opportunities that you have simply mastered and can do without thinking? These low-friction activities might give you a clue to ways you can continue pursuing your voice. We learn through action, observation, then correction. Start with what you do well, and work your way toward your goal.

What gives you hope?

What do you look forward to? What great vision do you have for your future and the future of others? Hope is a powerful motivator and can give you a clue to the ways in which you may be able to compel others to act.

If you had all the time and money in the world, what would you do?

It astounds me how few people have asked themselves this question, and it astounds me more how few people can arrive at an answer when they do. We believe that a lack of resources is the obstacle to our happiness and fulfilment, but for many of us, the limitation has nothing to do with a lack of money or time. The limitation is our fear of falling short of our own self-perception. We point fingers at others because we can’t reconcile our own fear of engagement. We don’t think about the limitless possibility because we are afraid of what would happen if we were to get it.

What would blow your mind?

Take about an hour to list 40 things that would blow your mind if they happened. You’ll get to about 15 before you find it difficult. Keep going. List out everything that would thrill you if it were to happen, including relational things, business things, travel, ambitions, hopes, etc. It’s a great way to identify patterns in your motivation.

What platform do you own?

No need to start over. Build from where you are. What platform do you already have for self-expression? What foundation can you build on to begin affecting the kinds of change you’d like to see? Never trust someone who says they want to see the world change, but can’t effect change in their own community. In the same way, you should never trust a fat fitness coach.

What change would you like to see in the world?

If you could identify a single thing – a big change that you would like to see before you die – what would it be? What would be different about the world because you lived? Don’t be afraid to think big, but be specific. You may not be the one to lead this change, but you may be able to play a significant role in it. (By the way…think relationships here too. The biggest change you and I have the capacity to make is in the lives of others.)

Give it a go…you might surprise yourself with the answers, but amaze and reach out to your ideal customers and clients at the same time!

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