How to Know If Your Business Will Be Successful

Two personality traits that underpin business success.


You've just landed on a great business idea.

Your mind is racing like a five-year-old hyped up on candy.

So many possibilities, so much excitement.

The world is bright and full of possibilities, and then, the little voice inside your head begins to rumble and thunder:

"But, what if it doesn't work?"

"Who will my customers be?"

"How will people even find me?"

Suddenly, the clouds of doubt and uncertainty are threatening to rain on your parade.

Is it time to pack up and head home? Or are you willing to risk getting a little wet to chase your dreams?

If you're up for chasing your dreams, there is a simple perspective shift that can act as your "raincoat" as you board the entrepreneurial roller coaster.

This raincoat help should keep you dry, and maybe even sane. In fact, it might even help you answer the question: "Will my business be successful?"

How to Guarantee Your Success

Every week, I get a mountain of emails and one of the most common questions I get asked is:

"How do I know if my business idea will be successful?"

There is no definitive answer to this question because, ultimately, it's up to you.

But, today, it's time to have a candid conversation about the two skills that can help guarantee your success as an entrepreneur.

If you regularly use and hone these two skills, there is no doubt in my mind that YOU (and probably your business) will be successful.

The Two Skills That Will Determine Your Success

After working with many different entrepreneurs from around the globe, I have come to find that there are really just two skills that will be able to determine your success and, thereby, the success of your business.

These skills are:

Yes, you have to be willing to be uncomfortable, have a great marketing plan, and learn to promote yourself. But, once you've mastered these hurdles, the skills of resilience and resourcefulness (and how often you practice them) are what will truly determine your success.

Skill #1 -- Resilience

Resilience is the ability to get knocked down, get back up, and continue to push forward. (click to tweet)

While we all wish we could predict the success of our business, it's impossible to accurately forecast the seemingly random twists and turns you'll encounter along your entrepreneurial journey.

Some days you'll be on the top of the world and feel like you've got it all figured out.

Then, the next day, you'll find out that you don't know as much as you thought you did and get knocked down.

It's how you deal with the emotional roller coaster and your willingness to get back up after you fail that will ultimately determine your success.

Your entrepreneurial journey really has three distinct options:

  1. You're successful. -- This is what we all want.
  2. You fail, but you get back up. -- This is where resilience comes into play.
  3. You fail and you quit. -- You never hear about these people, but they do exist.

Sure, there are life situations that may set you back due to lack of planning or financial resources — which is typically caused by lack of planning — but, unless you throw in the towel and say, "Hey, this roller coaster isn't for me," then it isn't over yet; you haven't really given yourself the opportunity to succeed and you should keep on going.

Skill #2 -- Resourcefulness

Resourcefulness is your ability to see where you are and take the first step towards your goal.

Sure, the path may not always be clear but, by simply taking the first step, you'll have a different vantage point which will allow you to see if the destination you are heading towards is really the one you want.

Within five minutes of talking with most entrepreneurs, I can usually tell how resourceful they are just by the things that they choose to talk about.

Do they focus on the opportunities in front of them? Or do they talk about the setbacks and/or their past successes?

It's the ones who keep their eye on where they are NOW and where they want to go, and their willingness to take the first step, that are inevitably going to be successful.

You can't win a race by talking about the last gold medal you won... or should have won.

If you focus on where you are now and where you want to go, you'll be at your destination in no time.

Being Comfortable with Discomfort

cold shower therapy
Once you've mastered the two key skills of entrepreneurship, you've got to "do the work" and learn to be comfortable in uncomfortable situations.

If you're interested in exploring how you act in uncomfortable situations, then I'd challenge you to join the Cold Shower Challenge.

Right now there are hundreds of other entrepreneurs working with the metaphor of "cold showers" to see how they act in their business and life, when faced with doing something they don't want to do.

I seriously think that there is no better tool than the Cold Shower Challenge to help prepare you for the entrepreneurial roller coaster that lies ahead.

Join the Cold Shower Challenge

I'll talk to you soon,

Nick ReeseNick Reese Signature

Published: 2014-02-26