How Your Business is Like a Relationship
One thing I do several times throughout the year is check in on my business. I do a little status check to see where my business is at and how it is cycling. When we’re growing and working on our business, this is important to do at regular intervals.
In doing this, I’ve noticed that my business (and the businesses of my clients) have distinct cycles throughout the year. Some of these times are yummy and some are, well, not so good.
Everything in life has cycles, not just business. It’s like the circle of life. This aligns and falls into the concept that I talk about a lot: What you feed grows and what you starve dies.
There are different cycles of business. And, these different cycles of business mirror relationship cycles.
We all have relationships. We have family. We have friends. We have spouses, significant others, and partners. We have children or grandchildren. And we have unique relationships with each of these people.
How are those relationships similar to the way our businesses cycle each year?
These are the 4 cycles of business and how they align with relationships:
In a relationship, this is when you first meet and you are testing each other out. In your business, this time might look like a new product or service launch. This could be a product relaunch. This could be a new client or new marketing strategy, or a new operations or administrative process you’ve introduced into your business.
In this cycle, there is a lot of energy, excitement, tenacity, motivation, and drive. Your juices are revved. In your business, this is typically where you go all-out.
The honeymoon phase usually happens early in a relationship and is when all things seem fun and romantic. In your business, this is when you’re loving your clients, you’re loving your products, services, and solutions. You don’t even feel like you’re working when you’re working.
In this cycle, you’re motivated, rejuvenated, and happy! You live and breath your business. You talk about it with anyone and everyone who will listen.
This happens in a relationship after you’ve been married for a while. It’s comfortable and can sometimes shift into complacency. In your business, this is when things are flowing and running like a well oiled machine. You don’t have to work so hard.
In this cycle, things slow down a bit and you and your business hit cruise control. Though this can feel nice, it can also negatively impact your business growth.
When a relationship becomes dysfunctional many couples will separate or divorce. In your business, this phase appears when your business begins to experience attrition. Depending on how you, as the business owner, react to this phase, you could be flung into one of the previous phases.
In this cycle, you hate what you do, it’s painful, and you have no motivation. It isn’t fun anymore. Typically this cycle leads you to one of the 3 F’s: fight, flight, or freeze. How you react will determine the future of your business.
What Does This Mean For Your Business?
By really utilizing the analogy of relationship cycles, it helps us to step back and look at our business in a new way.
Your business doesn’t just have a relationship with you and you alone, it also has a relationship with the public, your prospects, your clients, and your prospective clients.
Get really real with yourself and ask: Is that relationship a healthy one? How are you showing up in this cycle? And how is your business showing up?
Now that you know HOW your business cycles just like the most cherished relationships in your life, it’s important to nurture your business the same way you would a relationship, by adding value.
Check out my audio training, Understanding the Cycles of Your Business, for the steps and tips you need to shift gracefully through the cycles of business!
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