How you think about yourself and how you think about life is determined by many factors – Including (but not limited to) the family structure you were raised in as a child, your education, the neighborhood and city where you lived growing up, etc. When living in the northeastern part of the United States I found everything to be more formal, in general. Yet living in Florida nearly 20 years, I have found the lifestyle to be more casual partly influenced by the weather, I’m certain. The warmer climate influences the way you dress and how you interact or socialize with others. The seasons are barely indistinguishable other than the degree of heat and humidity, whether it’s hurricane season or not and those five chilly days a year. Everything converges to determine what legacy or what level of greatness you may be destined for.
What else influences life and how you think is your age. When 16 or 18 years old your thought process was really beginning to develop more and more with each passing year; what your interests would be, your likes and dislikes, even the type of clothes you wear, music to listen to, your ambitions in life and what type of occupation you’d like to pursue. It all leads to the greatness of your very being in the world.
Time passes and you’re now 40 years old. You may be leading and running a business. Though you’ve been in business since finishing your university studies, just now are you really coming into your own of who you are as a business person – as a CEO, president or business owner. It takes experience out in the world of business to understand your management style and what really brings you the success you seek.
As you approach 60 or 70 years old you may be considering retirement or because you enjoy working so much and have been successful fully intend to continue working. Why should age stop you?! Over the years you have gained much experience and knowledge about business. Your perspective about business also changes with the years.
Throughout the years in business, as a CEO, president or business owner, ask yourself this question:
Am I seeking greatness?
What is not being referred to regarding greatness is how many houses you have, the type of luxury car you drive, if you have a boat or an airplane, the number of vacations taken throughout the year or how much money you have in the bank.
Remember the reasons you are in business:
- First and foremost, to make a profit.
- To solve problems for customers and clients (however that is defined)
- To employ a motivated, talented team of people to do great work and reduce your stress as leader of the company
- Contribute to people having a better life by the work, whatever it is, that you do.
It’s about always focusing on the bigger picture, the larger vision, of where you want to go and what you want to do in life and in business.
- How do you interact with people every business day?
- Do you think things strategically through with an open mind?
- Are you looking at what is happening around you in the present moment or are you just thinking about what the future may or may not bring?
- Do you have a vision of what you really want from your business and how it may or may not impact your life – and the lives of others?
- How do you envision thinking about yourself as you get older? About your accomplishments?
When you get to what is considered retirement age by today’s work standards one day when you look back on your business life it will all seem like it was just 10 minutes ago rather than 10-20-30-40 years ago. If you are reading this at a younger age, it may seem like an unimaginable forever till this event happens in your business life of reaching retirement age. Life starts to speed up and the years go by. It’s true. When you are six years old, a year is one-sixth of your life. When you are 60 years old, a year is one-sixtieth of your life. So, you perceive time as speeding up.
Let’s define further the word, greatness, in business terms.
Greatness means you can stand straight up every day, look directly in the mirror at yourself and say:
I did it. (Whatever “it” may be)
- I created a successful, well respected business.
- I treat all employees fairly and compensate them well within a positive work culture.
- I do things for the community where my company is located; and within my industry.
- I take care of my customers/clients.
- I am happy with my life.
- And yes, there is money in the bank to pay all the bills.
If you just have lots of money in the bank but you have nothing inside of yourself, if you feel empty inside of yourself, what eventually happens is you’ll feel like your life is wasted in one way or another. Your life will not feel fulfilled even though you have everything you may need around you. Yes, a reasonable goal may be to, when the time is appropriate, retire comfortably with significant money in the bank. But then what?
Think back to the events that happened in your life.
- How you unexpectedly helped someone such as a customer/client.
- How you helped an employee grow more as a business person.
- How you gave someone the benefit of the doubt based on your gut feelings and gave them a second chance which ultimately was of benefit to everyone involved.
- How you may have encouraged someone to start a business of their own.
- Perhaps you volunteer time to an organization and/or cause you believe in.
- Or set up a fund to help others in need of something you think is important to people’s lives.
Whatever it happens to be, don’t waste your life by getting older then looking back with regret about how you managed your life and your business. Don’t reach a point where you didn’t do what you needed to do and what you wanted to do. To not only become financially comfortable but to be comfortable inside of yourself as a person people are glad to know and like for more than just money.
Become someone other people want to emulate. Be an example to others.
You don’t want to reach your latter years walking around aimlessly, without purpose. You may have money but if you’re miserable all the time, then what good does that do? It serves no one including yourself.
Take time to think about what greatness means to you. Doesn’t matter what it means to anyone else other than YOU.
Define what greatness means. Then go for it. Put everything into seeking greatness in your life and in your business. The two are intertwined to some degree or another.
As you seek greatness, remember your business needs to make a profit. Otherwise, nothing will happen the way you would like it to. It’s just a fact.
You don’t want to be retired and spending your day sitting in the mall or drinking coffee at a fast food restaurant talking about the “old days” with sadness because you didn’t fulfill your life’s dreams and wishes; that you didn’t help other people or take advantage of the opportunities life and business offers.
Greatness is yours.
It’s waiting for you.
Are you going to take it?
To your success!
Business expert and strategist, Howard Lewinter, guides – focuses – advises CEOs, presidents and business owners throughout the United States across a wide variety of industries, to MORE success – MORE profit – less stress. Business people trust Howard’s vast business knowledge, intuitive insight and objective perspective to solve business problems and issues. Get MORE from your business. Talk business with Howard: 888-738-1855.
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