Are you playing to your strengths? + the secret mind of the most successful entrepreneurs

meandseth2In the summer of 2011, one year after I let go of the lifeline to my last PR retainer client to set up my coaching business, I read in Seth Godin’s blog – one of the most popular marketing blogs in the world – that he was going to offer a one-day workshop in his New York office.

Being the “activator” that I am, I hit the sign-up button and applied. Within a few hours, Seth emailed me back saying that I was in the workshop.

Well, let me tell you that being laser coached by the “the man” himself was a true peak experience.  The truth is that I was nervous and vulnerable, but I did it anyway.

Seth gave us each a copy of his book, We Are All Weird, which was about to be published. He told us that if we read it and sent him a quote, his publisher might include it in the reviews. So I read the book, sent my quote and Seth posted it with several other quotes in his blog and in the review.

[Tweet “The Universe rewards us for showing up and playing big even when you feel small.”]

I was so inspired by Seth that I asked him if I could do a video interview with him about the book. That morning I sent the email, I got a response back within hours and he said, “How about today?”  I almost fainted.  We scheduled the interview for the following week.

I had only done one other video interview prior to this.  I barely knew how to use the Skype/video function.  I did the best I could even though I felt scared inside, which turned out fine.  There were some bumbles but it was done.

It was a remarkable experience and proof that it pays to take risks and to ask.  I’ve learned to always think about this when asking someone to do something, “What is the worst thing that can happen?” And then I ask myself, can I live with that?  The worst thing was that he could have said was no. But he said yes.

Inc. Magazine’s article, Inside the Mind of the Entrepreneur, reviewed groundbreaking research that shows what sets Inc. 500 CEOs apart from other entrepreneurs.

Gallup studied more than 4,000 founders of companies to learn the talents they possessed to start and grow a business to become successful. They found 10 dominate strengths.

“The top score was risk taker – someone that enthusiastically takes on challenges, highly optimistic perception of risk and takes a rational approach to decision making to mitigate risk,” said Leigh Buchanan, author of the article in Inc.

Gallup demonstrated that these 500 Inc. founders were more than twice as likely as the national sample to score high on all 10 strengths.  In addition, they scored high on more than half of the 10 strengths as opposed to the national sample that scored high on only two.

Not only did the Inc. 500 entrepreneurs excel in all 10 areas, but they dominated in three strengths–risk-taking, business focus, and determination– when compared to the national sample.

Inc. noted that these strengths are the most universally associated with business start ups, the survival of the company, and growing a company.

Another of my favorite mentors/teachers Marie Forleo, the founder of B School, was included in this article as using her WOO strength to build strong relationships that have helped catapult her to success.

The top 10 Crucial Personality Traits of an Entrepreneur

  1. Risk Taker
  2. Business Focus
  3. Determination
  4. Delegator
  5. Knowledge Seeker
  6. Creative Thinker
  7. Confidence
  8. Promoter
  9. Independence
  10. Relationship Builder

Each of us has a unique category of strengths in how we approach our life and work. Becoming self-aware is key.

When you play to all of your strengths in your work or business, you will create a sense of “flow” where you are in your zone of genius.

All entrepreneurs will face challenges externally and internally. I believe the biggest challenge you face in life or business in your mind, which I call your “inner game.”

[Tweet “Your mind is the steering wheel of your life and your body is your GPS.”]

You have to learn to manage your thoughts, limiting beliefs and take consistent action in the face of fear.

I ask each of my clients to know themselves as part of our work.

[Tweet “To make your dreams come true, you must be self-aware.”]

Check out the entrepreneurial strengths finder assessment here, and let me know your top strengths.

Make Money Now: Get out of your own way to step into profits will start Nov. 19, 2014.  Are you ready to make your business profitable in 2015?

Was this article useful to you? If you found it valuable, please pass it on.  

Now it’s your turn, I’d love to hear from you. What are your strengths and how are you using them in your life or business?

  1. Hey there, fellow B-Schooler! Really enjoyed reading about your insights and journey! Thanks for all the links, as well. Will be looking forward to seeing you continue to blossom. This rocks! 🙂

  2. Hi Yazminh – thank you so much and it’s great to meet another B Schooler. I love B School so much!! I’ve been in it since 2010! I credit that with what I have built today in my business. I wish you the same. I’m going to post my entrepreneurial strengths next on that link in B School;)

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