What Are Your Business Non Negotiables?

If you’ve been following my blog, you’ll know that I’ve been reflecting a lot on the question of brand recently. Last month was personally pretty stressful, and I found myself dealing with situations I didn't like and/ or made me feel really uncomfortable. The question 'what is your brand' goes deep and led me to ask myself ‘what are my business non negotiables?’ What Are Your Business Non Negotiables

For example, I've been thinking about whether I want to work with businesses in turnaround, and if so, in what circumstances? It’s challenging work, and the business owner has to be willing to make some pretty radical changes – often in themselves – and some tough decisions they’ve perhaps put off e.g. firing key personnel. They've got to act fast and use good judgement, often attributes that have been in short supply previously! Because I successfully turned around a failing business myself as a former CEO doesn’t mean I necessarily want to offer this as part of my portfolio of services. If I'm going to work with businesses in turnaround, what are my non negotiables?

When it comes to the question of brand, there are many, many definitions. Thinking about what your business stands for is one way of defining your brand. What are your values and principles? By definition, this question asks you to consider what your brand does not stand for. What won’t you accept? What are your business non negotiables?

I asked myself the question, “what are my business non negotiables” many times before. (By the way I have a really great worksheet that I share with my clients to help them to work through both their ‘must haves’ and their ‘non negotiables’ which you’re welcome to download).

[callout]What are your business non negotiables? What are your 'must haves and must nots? What does this mean for the way you do business? To help you map these out, I've created this free spreadsheet to help you gain greater clarity on these questions. Click HERE to download your copy.[/callout]

Some of my reasons for starting a business included:

  1. The freedom to be in control
  2. Wanting to share my knowledge and experience to help more businesses succeed
  3. The freedom to be creative
  4. To do things ‘the right way’
  5. To have a better work-life balance
  6. To work with like-minded people
  7. The challenge of seeing what I could create and where this would take me
  8. Financial independence and to earn more than I did as a CEO

[shareable]What were your reasons for starting a business? What are your must haves?[/shareable]

I also had a list of things that I did not want to happen:

  1. To not lose control of decision making in the business
  2. To not employ staff
  3. To not work longer hours than I did as a CEO

None of my reasons for starting a business have changed. In fact, they’ve only got stronger. But now that I’ve been in business for a while, my list of non negotiables has increased:

  1. I don’t want to work with people who aren’t willing to do the ‘boring stuff’ and put systems and stable foundations in place. Because it’s these people who lurch from one crisis to another and have cash flow problems, meaning they can’t afford to pay their bills on time.  Without stable foundations, these businesses will never succeed!
  2. I don’t want to get up at 5.30am in the morning to traipse along to a networking meeting when frankly I’d rather be asleep.
  3. I only share details of products and services that I've used personally, have delivered results for me and I have total confidence in.
  4. One none negotiable that has changed is that I do want to build out a staff team as this is what will enable me to realise the vision I have for my business. So that’s off my non negotiables list!

[shareable]What are your business non negotiables? What are your must nots?[/shareable]

When our business is not going the way we want it to, it can really help to go back to basics and think about your must haves and must nots. And then think about what the consequences of this are. So for example, if I'm going to work with businesses in turnaround, what are the agreements I need to put in place with my client for the relationship to work? If I'm to take a mini sabbatical each year, what does this mean for the infrastructure of my business? When is the best time to do this so that my doing so works for both my clients and me?

[callout]What are your business non negotiables? What are your 'must haves and must nots? What does this mean for the way you do business? To help you map these out, I've created this free spreadsheet to help you gain greater clarity on these questions. Click HERE to download your copy.[/callout]

Join The Conversation

Question: What are your ‘must haves’ when it comes to your business? And what are some of your business non negotiables? I'd love to know so please put your feedback in the comments box below.

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