While still in my twenties, my future wife and I decided upon a business name – for at that time I was a professional musician. We came up with the business name – ‘Outasight Music’.
Outasight was chosen because in the Australian idiom it means something of excellence, but as we had the above scripture in mind it also spoke of a life walked by faith and not by sight – thus Outasight.
In 1997, once I had published my first motivational book, I was challenged to change the music part of my business name to enterprises, knowing that in the future there would be a range of business ventures that I would be embarking upon. That is when my business became known as ‘Outasight Enterprises’.
Recently I had the awesome opportunity of speaking to a group of young entrepreneurs and brought this message to them, and I would like to share portions of it with you in this article.
Keep in mind that the two key words that make up the meaning behind Outasight are: Faith and Excellence.
I first started with an acronym of the word FAITH.
In order to be Outasight we need to be:
There is a story in the good book that speaks of a ruler who leaves in the hands of three who were in his employ – one $5000, one $2000 and the last one $1000. The first two doubled their master’s money. The third buried it and didn’t even deposit it into a bank to earn interest. He was not faithful and was punished for his inaction based upon fear.
To date I have owned businesses in the music, cleaning, publishing, web design, speaking, coaching, musical theater, blogging and hair salon industries, and one of the key elements that have under-girded my successes in each of those industries has been that I have endeavoured to be faithful with what I had in my hands at the time.
I have used the knowledge I had to do the best I could possibly do with each venture, and that remains even to this day. With each new business, I find myself progressing ever further forward in proficiency and profitability. Step by step I desire to be faithful with what I have at my disposal.
Action cures fear.
Every business I have started I have had the ‘Why’ sorted. But the ‘how’ has always been a journey of discovery.
It is action that has always carried me across the winner’s line. I have not waited before everything was in order, or everything was in a state of perfection. I have learnt as I have gone along. Sitting on my backside has never achieved anything. Action and being active has always yielded great results and taught me great lessons.
At times it has meant facing failure from time to time, but I have learnt to ask her the question – ‘What can I learn from you?’ The answer has always come – the seed for my next success.
I have always invested in my education first and foremost.
It started in the depths of a university library and progressed to the attendance at seminars that required the emptying of my bank account, and then on to the hiring of coaches and mentors even when my bank account screamed at me that I couldn’t afford it.
Even to this day I continue to invest. I buy books. I still attend seminars – both paid and free.
First the investment, then the increase.
I have created sales systems.
I have created payment systems that positioned me so that I never had bad debts and at times received 100% payment upfront before even providing a service or product.
I have always added ‘fries’ with my product or service offering.
I have always looked for residual income and recurring payments.
I survey my clients, and rather than guessing what they need they tell me what they need and what they will pay.
I surround myself with smarter people than myself and take notes furiously.
I am never afraid to increase prices – usually in 10% increments.
I look out for the creation of strategic alliances with complimentary businesses.
I think about my business and about my life.
A good place to start is by conducting a SWOT Analysis – Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats.
I look at profit margins and see if there is room for improvement.
I test and measure all my marketing. If it works I improve it. If it doesn’t I remove it.
I reduce overheads.
I work on and not in my business.
I keep a journal and write about my life and about my business, thus gaining a clearer perspective on what I am doing, who I am, and what I’m about to do.
The more I teach others the more I learn. That is why I coach, teach and inspire.
I even go into joint ventures with my staff, especially those who have been loyal to me.
I have helped my children get into their own businesses – some of the first being vending machines and multi-level marketing – and now into national and global-reaching online businesses. I have even recently bought a hair salon for my youngest daughter to hone her business skills, having last year graduated as a professional hairdresser.
I choose to honour all those who have gone before me. I surround myself with those who have gone where I wish to go and been where I want to be.
Even when buying an existing business recently – that had been run at a profit for the past five years (but still had incredible potential for increase), I choose to honour the previous owners.
And along with faith there needs to be excellence….
Accept nothing but excellence, but don’t allow perfection to stop you from beginning. Perfect practice makes for perfect results.
Make faith and excellence your trademarks in your life and in the marketplace today.