What Does The New Year Have in Store for You?
Would you invest in assets that seem to steadily lose their value? Would you hang on to assets that have kept losing their value for some time?
Of course, you would not. You want assets that have the potential for increasing their value and you will dump those that do not have growth potential.
What about yourself? How will you increase your value?
If you want to make more money in the new year from selling your hours and/or your wit then I believe it’s fair to assume that you must provide more value to those around you.
Business Model You
The beginning of January is a good time to block a few days in the calendar and review your personal business model. You can do it alone, with your spouse or with one or more close friends, where you reciprocate for each other.
In March 2012 Alexander Osterwalder et al published a version of their seminal book Business Model Generation entitled Business Model You.
The philosophy is quite simple:
You have a business model. Your model lives in a business model environment. When you understand the fundamentals of your business model, then you can assess how the business model environment will evolve in 2018 and decide your options for improving the value you provide to those around you; those who pay for your services and those who support you in other ways.
If you haven’t read Business Model Generation, then you get the fundamentals in the first two chapters of Business Model You. If you have read Business Model Generation then you jump directly to chapter three. The book doesn’t talk about the business model environment, which I believe is a mistake, but you can easily catch up on this framework in the Business Model Generation book page 200-240.
It doesn’t matter if you are right or wrong
Guessing right about the future is essentially impossible. However, describing a couple of future scenarios and list what you can do to increase your value will be an excellent starting point for dealing more systematically with your life.
Using the Business Model You approach you may also want to block time on your calendar for self-development and to review the progress, say each quarter.
Habit number seven in Steven Covey’s “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People” is “Sharpen The Saw” and is about principles for balanced self-renewal. I suggest you also refresh this chapter before you sit down to define improvements to your 2018 business model (or read the entire book if you haven’t done it yet).
Don’t get too busy and don’t associate busyness with success
Are you one of the many who believes that successful people are very busy? If you are, then you may also conclude that you must be busy to be successful.
To me being successful means doing the things you choose to do. That again means that no one dictates on what you should spend your time. If you are busy because you have a hard time meeting the objectives defined by or the expectations set by others then success is accidental.
Let me give you an example: In 1980 I became a salesman. The sales targets were essentially defined by the company’s headquarters and then rolled down through the ranks. Nevertheless, did I manage to meet them each and every year for six years in a row and made it to the 100% club. I was convinced that I was successful until the day I was given a sales target for me and my people that I knew we couldn’t make. I fought a hard battle against the budget trying to explain why it was impossible, but no one would listen. As we couldn’t agree there was only one option left – they had to fire me. You cannot have a manager that doesn’t believe in his budget. That taught me a lesson. Being fired was a success to me. I had been true to what I believed and I could now find another project, where I was a part of defining the goals and objectives. Never again would I work on a project where setting the objectives was outside my control.
Make 2018 the year where you become independent
Whether you run your own business or you have a salaried job, 2018 could become the year where your employer or your clients start needing you more than you need them. The perceived value you provide far exceeds the payment you get or ask.
That is when you start becoming independent and successful.
Good luck and all the best for the coming year.