Friday, May 8, 2009

Tip of the Week: Align Business and Personal Goals

What happens when your business fails? Your personal life? A few years ago, I heard a highly successful entrepreneur speak about the ups and downs of owning a business and how he got a second chance.

This man had so much success that he thought he was invincible. So he took all his profits and bought another company. He paid himself royally -- several houses, a yacht.... But he never saw his kids or his wife. He was too busy making money. I know this sounds like a trite story, but while the entrepreneur told it, it did not sound trite. Well, soon he was over-extended financially and emotionally, and when the last recession turned against him, he lost everything, including his family.

Somehow, he managed to start another business and remarry. But this time, he said that he first sat down and figured out what he wanted out of his life and what the business could do to help him realize his personal goals. He realized that he did want two houses, but he also wanted to go to his kids' soccer and Little League games. He wanted to have his wife involved in his business. He also wanted to be a good employer that would help his employees to lead good, productive, full lives, too.

The business, by-the-way, is a simple one -- securely storing paper files for other businesses. There is a huge demand for this, and this saw the need and met it.

He told the audience that it's really important for you to run your business to support your life goals, not let the business run your life. He is very happy now that he had a second chance to get things right.

If you own a business or want to start one, first make sure you've aligned your personal and your business goals.

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