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Business Coaching: Building the Foundation

February 6, 2012

These exercises have been developed over many years of working with small business owners, women and men starting businesses and those of you who want to advance in their career. When you tackle them with a fresh set of eyes they may yield some new insight for you as well.

Again and again, I find that starting with “what is so” is the most powerful place to begin. Too often we all focus on what we don’t have, on what isn’t enough, on what we desire or think we need to have a “real” business. We spend our time wishing we had more, were more, had done more. (Anyone of you ever done this? I sure have!) The only problem is that then we feel wobbly, unsure, insufficient to the task, and without a firm place to stand. This is hardly the place to build a successful business!

Instead, let’s get a handle on what’s already in your business by taking an inventory of what you do have in place.  When you see clearly how things really are, you can stop diminishing or deluding your self. Both of these really equal confusion! Through calmly and courageously acknowledging things as they are you’ll begin to free yourself from the doubts, anxiety, fears and all the rest. Then? All of our hearts begin to expand with dignity and self-respect.

Are you ready to move ahead with a strong foundation under your feet? Let’s discover what is so in your business and in your life that supports your business.

What is So Inventory Exercise:

Write at least three items under each of the following categories. Add more than the 3 lines if you have more. Ask your colleagues and family for ideas of ‘what is already part of the foundation’ for your business. No modesty! This is the time to be truthful about your talents and skills (whether they are proven or just growing). This is the moment to appreciate yourself, appreciate what is already part of your foundation, and know what you have to build on into this coming year. No one starts with nothing!

What is so concerning these aspects of your business:

  1. Talents & Skills (we just added this top one thinking about all of you and all your talents!)
  2. Money
  3. People
  4. Systems
  5. Agreements
  6. Mission impact

Need a couple of examples to get you started? Here you go:

Talents & Skills – craft skills, uploading, downloading, blogging, contracting, communication with clients, wrangling kids, etc.

Money – receivables (money due to be paid to you), payables (bills due), reserves, debt, capital, contracts, etc.

People – help, lack of help, family, vendors, suppliers, community, media contacts, etc.

Systems – computer, printer, camera, software, lab, time management calendar, etc.

Agreements – client contracts, with yourself or a partner, agreements in some areas but not others, affiliate partners, etc.

Mission impact – your mission or purpose for the business, the number of people who you plan to ‘serve’, satisfied clients, community gifting, your personal intention in building your business, etc.

Let’s devote this week to celebrating all that we already have in place! Can’t wait to hear what you discover.

Normally small business women and men (although this seems more prevalant with women) get so caught up in what they need to do, and criticizing what they haven’t done, that it’s hard to be proactive and not just get swept along in the chaos.

Every month I’ll be sharing new exercises, tips, and insights with all of you to help build your businesses or advance in your career. I am so excited to see you all develop your businesses! Most anything can be accomplished when we join hands and put our minds and hearts to work together.

Warmest regards to you each and all,


Check out the Next Octave Women’s Leadership Program – a simply delicious retreat in the MOST amazing retreat center on the Hawaiian Island of Molokai. If you want to get really jealous take a look at some of the photos in our photo gallery of previous retreats in California and Mexico on The Wisdom Connection website.

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