Successful entrepreneurs all have something big in common: courage! According to the Hiscox American Courage Index, business owners show a higher level of courage than the general population, and for good reason. It takes confidence to persist in the face of ambiguity and failure.
High confidence is a crucial element in thinking big. Part of that comes from being prepared and having strong knowledge about an opportunity. It allows you to see less risk and seek out potential. Best of all, confidence is something that can be cultivated. You don’t have to be born with it, but rather you can grow it over time using these five tips:
- Get self-aware. Facing hard truths is not easy, but it provides opportunity to fine-tune strengths, overcome weakness and pinpoint areas where growth is necessary. Not only does seeing your vulnerabilities allow you to work on them, it prevents you from having to face them without warning.
- Recognize that you think small. It’s human nature. Very few people are true visionaries. Most of us tend to say no and have a tendency to fear what is new. But you can push yourself beyond it.
- Define “thinking big” and put it into action. My own definition of thinking big is delivering the greatest value to the greatest number of people as efficiently as possible. It may mean something completely different to you.
Once you’ve determined your thinking big, achieve forward progress. Focus on long-term sustainability and learn, grow skills and improve along the way. Then start planning for “next.”
- Be able to answer why. Ask yourself questions like why did you say no? And why you don’t have confidence in an idea? Good entrepreneurs turn over every stone and evaluate every opportunity. And they have a logical plan for saying yes to even the best option. Work on your yes mindset until it comes naturally, and that starts with digging deep and getting answers into your own thinking.
- Mitigate risk, but be willing to fail. Embrace failure, for there is always something powerful gained. Failure is fuel that helps you realize your next big idea.
Thinking big doesn’t require you to have all the answers to think big, but you do need to have confidence in your potential success. Your own self-assurance will have influence on your decision making, and those critical business decisions will trickle down to your staff. When you set goals and make plans for growth, include confidence as a measurable metric and hold yourself to meeting benchmarks. The payoff will be exponential.