As a lifelong student of business, I’m constantly seeking out information and skills that lead to business success.
I’ve read thousands of books, spoken with hundreds of business owners, and been through all the highs and lows that business brings.
But through all this, one thing seems clear.
There are no quick hacks or silver bullets to lasting business growth and success.
However, there are a series of simple, thoughtful, and practical principles that apply across numerous industries and business sizes.
Want to know what they are? Let’s dive in.
Have Your Own Definition of Success
Success means something different things to everyone.
Really, there are as many versions of success as there are people on the planet.
But the challenge is, sticking with our version and not comparing our own success to someone else’s.
In a world where technology is everywhere, we’re easily distracted by what others are doing instead of focusing on our own goals.
That’s why it’s crucial to get crystal clear about what success looks like for you.
It’s well worth investing some time, energy, and conscious thought into what fulfilling success looks and feels like for you.
This is what will keep you on track and motivate you to move forwards without distraction.
My Practice Max clients know I’m a huge advocate of goal setting.
Goals work like a homing device to help focus attention, energy, and effort. Just like defining your own idea of success, deciding your goals is personal too.
As business owners, we set goals for our practice, like revenue targets, patient retention, patients booked. Business-oriented goals are great – and even essential to build a dental practice you love.
But, we’re multi-dimensional. You’re a human being before you’re a business owner. So, it’s important to set goals in other areas of your life too.
Have a Vision
No business success is possible without a dream or vision.
Think about it.
Your dental business wouldn’t be where it is now if you hadn’t created a vision and given it life by implementing a plan.
I love Andrew Griffith’s story about how he wrote his first book.
When he shared his idea with some so-called marketing gurus, they told him he couldn’t do it.
What they underestimated was Andrew’s vision to write.
He didn’t listen to them and that first book (along with eleven others) became a bestseller. Now, he’s one of Australia’s best business authors!
Create a vision and work towards it with a plan that’s supported by goals.
Maintain Unwavering Self Belief
Even the most confident and self-assured among us have moments of doubt.
Even if they don’t admit it, even if they don’t look like they do.
We can’t erase the human part of us that feels insecurity and hesitation from time to time.
But your success in business relies on your ability to develop and cultivate a strong belief in yourself, your abilities, and your drive.
Without doubt, challenges will always arise in business and life. What I’ve found is it’s how we respond to the challenges, rather than the challenges that make us.
If you have a solid foundation of self-confidence, you’ll be much better prepared to withstand any setbacks that come your way.
I find stories about people overcoming adversity keep me inspired. These stories show me that other people have faced challenges – and overcome them too.
It’s also vital to have people in your life who believe in you. This might be a business coach or mentor. It could also be a professional peer group. Our Practice Max community is the perfect example of a group of fellow dental business owners who provide support, advice, and a sympathetic ear when need be.
Self-belief is like a muscle. Ironically, just like resilience, it grows during challenging times.
Be a Good Student
What I’ve come to realise is that success is not a destination.
Although it may be clichéd, success is a journey.
This means that your learning is never done if you want to be successful.
You only need look to some of the world’s most successful business people and you’ll see they have an ongoing commitment to learning and growing.
Whether it’s through books, courses, seeking out mentors, or chance meetings – there is always something to be learned and gained.
Approaching life and business this way means we’re able to bring new ideas and energy to what we’re doing, without having to reinvent the wheel.
Keep learning and you’ll be rewarded lifelong.
Join a Good Crowd
It was the great success legend Jim Rohn who said:
“Don’t join an easy crowd; you won’t grow. Go where the expectations and the demands to perform are high.”
Success requires that we spend time with quality people.
It is their influence, character, energy and ideas that are infectious and call us higher.
In fact, it’s commonly believed that we become the average of the five people we spend the most time with.
Think about the five people who you surround yourself with. Do you honestly want to be like them? Do they inspire you? Are there qualities or skills they have that you’d love to adopt?
One of the reasons I founded the Practice Max community is to call together the brightest minds in dental practice ownership across Australia and NZ.
Each and every member is an outstanding practice owner, genuinely committed to growing as a person, and is committed to continually growing their business.
Apart from learning more, I’m motivated and energised purely through association.
Make sure your “people” are a good crowd and you’ll be sustained on your pathway to success.
Being generous might seem out of place among success principles, but it definitely belongs there.
Truly successful people are generous: with time, ideas, spirit, and knowledge.
In some cases, these people might be financially generous too, but it’s not the determining factor when it comes to success.
At its most basic level, successful people want to help others and solve problems.
Generosity can be delivered in many forms and like the definition of success, it’s vital you find one that works for you.
So, at the end of the day, success is really about understanding yourself better.
It starts by defining your own version of success, developing a plan, and going after it with an unwavering belief in yourself backed by some clear goals.
When we can do that, the rest kind of falls into place.