Minding Her Own Business: Become a Business Magnet


By Saralyn Collins


What does Steve Jobs have to do with MY Business?


It took a couple of weeks, but I couldn’t put it down. I’ve never been a huge fan of biographies and when I saw the size of the book, I thought “Maybe I’ll let my husband read this one and tell me about it…”


But I picked it up to look through the first few pages and two weeks later, I couldn’t put it down until I finished.


Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson is really a “must read” for those who want to know how to develop a world class business. Yep, it’s huge – but it is an easy read. And… OK, so he wasn’t the most congenial, warm person to be around. Yes, he had a violent temper and lost his cool fairly frequently. He demanded – not a word I use lightly here – the absolute best from each person who worked with him. And the amazing thing is, that’s what he got from each person.


Surely you are spending some time right now assessing this past year and the results you produced. I don’t know about you, but I am rarely totally pleased with how each year has turned out. I always want improvement – whether it is in the processes I use, the clients with whom I work or the profit level I produce.


There are so many lessons to be learned from reading how and why he took each step throughout his entirely too-short career. As we move into the new year, maybe it would be wise to discuss just a few of them.


I compiled some ideas from others and while I will share with you some lessons learned, I want to encourage you to read the book and see what speaks to you personally. Here are Ten Bits of Business Wisdom from Steve Jobs:


1. Embrace the opportunity in every situation. “Getting fired from Apple was the best thing that could have ever happened to me. The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again, and less sure about everything. It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods of my life.


2. Commit to doing great work and never settle. “Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking, and don’t settle.”


3. Make every day count. “Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose.”


4. Don’t miss your moment. “Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.”


5. Keep your priorities in check. “Manage the top line, which is your strategy, then your people and your products, and the bottom line will follow.”


6. Attract remarkable people. “Building a company is really hard. It requires the greatest persuasive abilities to hire the best people and to keep them working at your company and doing the best work of their lives. Everything that has been done has been done by remarkable people.”


7. Choose the right horse to ride. “Apple is a company that doesn’t have the most resources. The way we’ve succeeded is by choosing the right horses to ride really carefully. If you choose wisely you can save yourself a tremendous amount of work, instead of trying to do everything.”


8. Don’t stress … it will all work itself out. “If the market tells us we’re making the wrong choices, we’ll listen to the market. That’s what a lot of customers pay us to do, to try to make the best product. And if we succeed, they’ll buy them, but if we don’t, then they won’t. And it will all work itself out.”


9. Move on to the next great thing. “If you do something and it turns out pretty good, you should go out and do something else wonderful. Don’t dwell on it for too long, just figure out what’s next.”


10. Stay hungry. Stay foolish. “Much of what I’d stumbled into by following my curiosity and intuition turned out to be priceless later on.”


We don’t have time and space to discuss each of these in detail but they are important. So over the coming months, we will look at HOW you actually incorporate most of these into your plan of action and how, during this coming year, you can produce better results, attract more customers, and build a more profitable business.


If you can’t wait for coming articles and want to know how to “jump start” your business in this new year, contact Saralyn at 828-649-8011 or Saralyn@SaralynCollins.com Register (www.wncwoman.com) for the January 17th Business Magnet lunch ‘n learn to discuss how to put together a definitive plan of ACTION for the new year!

Written by Saralyn Collins