Sometimes Success Takes Time
Building a business can take time, and success may be years away. This simple trick can help you stay focused and patient.
"Are we there yet?" Parents of young children are used to this question being asked minutes after leaving for their destination. Young children are always so excited about the adventure ahead and can't wait for it to begin - unless you distract them by letting them watch a movie marathon. They have not learned patience yet.
HAVE WE FORGOTTEN HOW TO BE PATIENT?
In our fast-paced social-media-driven world, it sometimes feels that we as adults have forgotten how to be patient and not to expect a reward to always come instantaneously. Rewards can also come with a time lag.
You may recall that not even a decade ago, we had to order the DVD of a movie we wanted to watch and patiently wait for it to arrive. Now, we just click a button, and the film will immediately start streaming to our TV. If you think about it, many more things have become instantaneous: digital books, online banking, commission-free online trading, our communication via SMS, same-day deliveries, and the one-hour delivery window until your restaurant order shows up at your door. All that did not exist ten years ago. I am not advocating that these innovations are all bad; most of them are actually good and help us save a lot of time.
IT CAN TAKE YEARS FOR INVESTMENTS TO PAY OFF
However, many small business entrepreneurs seem to expect that developing, transforming, and growing a company is as instantaneous as downloading a movie and that their efforts have to show immediate results. Unfortunately, it does not always work that way. Sometimes, it can take years for investments (time and money) to pay off.
Here are four examples and the estimated time it would likely take before you could see results:
• BUILD A YOUTUBE CHANNEL
On average, it takes two years to reach 1,000 subscribers on YouTube, assuming that you constantly upload new videos and apply best practices.
• GET 10,000 FOLLOWERS ON SOCIAL MEDIA
Depending on your niche, how famous you are, and how much work you put in, it can take anywhere from 6 months to several years to reach 10,000 followers.
• REBRAND YOUR COMPANY
After you changed your marketing material, it can take a year or longer for your new brand to be widely recognized.
• PAST CLIENTS REFER YOU
You need to spend at least 100 to 200 hours with your referral network before seeing results.
SUBSTANTIAL TIME COMMITMENTS
These are substantial time commitments before you know if your efforts start to pay off. And during that time, you need to keep investing, uploading new videos, creating new content, and interacting with your past clients.
HOW DO SUCCESSFUL ENTREPRENEURS STAY ON COURSE?
They have patience, unwavering faith in reaching their goals, and endless energy to make it happen.
Unfortunately, there is no shortcut to building a company. It takes a long time. But what has helped me with my business is a different perspective.
Instead of asking, "Are we there yet?" I view my journey as my destination and am happy about every success along the way, no matter how small.
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