Ep #48: Entrepreneurial Maturity
Would you say that you’re mature – entrepreneurially? Are you willing to understand, confront and acknowledge everything about your business – without emotion? If not, here are some tips for stepping into your entrepreneurial maturity.
What you’ll find in this episode:
- The importance of developing maturity in these five relationship areas.
- Your relationship with Money – what do you tell yourself about money today?
- Time – what’s your relationship with Time?
- Your Team and Your Business – the relationship.
- Who You Are – you as a business owner have your own thoughts, beliefs and feelings.
- Entrepreneurial maturity is a journey not a final destination. You never arrive.
Featured on the Show and Other Notes:
- Episode #16: Five Key Relationships for Every Female Entrepreneur
- Profit First: Transform Your Business from a Cash-Eating Monster to a Money-Making Machine by Mike Michalowicz
- Inside Bill’s Brain – Netflix show
- Please write a review if you like this podcast. Go to your podcast app and find the reviews section. Thank you!
- Coming in the next couple of weeks – I’m releasing a video compilation that focuses on getting results through others. Subscribers to my email list will receive these. Join here!
- The Founder’s Lab is my private coaching program for female founders who are generating more than 7-figures in their revenue. It’s a complement to the Entrepreneurial Management program and is a part of the work you get as a client of mine. This isn’t a “class.” I don’t give you copious tons of things to do. I give you the ones that matter and then we keep talking about them. We apply them. That’s why it’s called the Founder’s Lab.
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48 Entrepreneurial MaturityHey, everyone. I’m Kris Plachy, and this is How to Lead for Female Entrepreneurs and Founders because the best way to grow a business is to grow the person who’s running it. Let’s go ahead and get started.
Hello, everyone. Welcome, welcome. This is Kris Plachy, and I am your host of the How to Lead Podcast for Female Entrepreneurs. How are you? If you’re new here, welcome. If you’ve been with me for a bit here, hi. Glad you’re back.
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Okay. So today I’m going to be to you about something called entrepreneurial maturity. I think I’ve referenced this over the past few … over my podcast time. I guess I should say that I drop it every now and then. But I want to kind of do a deep dive into it because I know for all of us there are … I believe everything I’m going to tell you is relevant to you at some point in your work as an entrepreneur. I do believe it’s a process and an evolution, not necessarily a destination, okay? Because we could certainly say that from an age perspective adults mature, but adults don’t necessarily share the same level of maturity. Is that a fair statement? The same thing is true with entrepreneurs. We’re always on this journey of maturity that comes through experience, and awareness, and really our own development and learning. Because of all of the conversations I have with so many women like you, I just want to kind of share with you what in my experience helps you get closer to that maturity level and areas of yourself and your business that I think you want to really do the work in to arrive at that.
So many of my clients who originally come to me are so underneath their business, right? Overwhelmed, burdened, in some cases very resentful of, and don’t see the path forward. And in most cases, the reason that’s happening is because there are areas that you haven’t developed and matured in as a business owner and leader. That isn’t meant to be received from my perspective by you as disparaging. So please know that. That’s not the intention. I don’t have any judgment in it. I have a lot of compassion, and I say that even as it reflects back to me as a woman running her own business. And that’s why I think coaching is the elixir that all of us need. You need a really, really good coach because you can’t necessarily always see what you need to see about yourself and how you’re showing up in your business.
I can tell you just in the last several weeks … I mean, I talk to women all the time, and I have a couple of newer clients that I started working with. And just by listening to them and hearing out what they tell me as honestly what they believe to be the truth about their business, they are telling me what they believe is true about why they haven’t been able to do this thing, or why they aren’t capable of this thing, or why they just aren’t good at this thing. And they tell it to me as though they’re reporting the facts. And all I have to do is really just notice that and share back with them like, “You know it’s just you’re thinking about that, right?” and watch their brain and their face simultaneously contort into wait what, right? But epiphanous moment.
So when we talking about entrepreneurial maturity, I believe that there is always work you can do to develop yourself and work and improve. And if you are a podcast listener and you really are a doer of this podcast, I know you’re getting those results in your business. I hear from you, so I know that. But you have to also, I think, complement your ability to do and take action with also getting feedback and insight that you can’t just get on your own.
So let’s talk about maturity. Entrepreneurial maturity is when you are willing to explore, investigate, understand, confront, acknowledge everything when it comes to running a business. Now, I notice that most of us can do that very well in some areas of our business, but in other areas we tuck away some stuff and we ignore it. So I’m going to go through … If you’ve been listening, you know that I have really these five key relationships I think that you have to develop in order to really arrive as a female entrepreneur and in that level of maturity that we’re sort of all striving for. So I’m going to do this in terms of each one of those relationships so that you can do your own reflection here.
But, the first one is your money. Now, money’s a funny little thing, right? It’s just money. It’s just paper, and we make it mean a lot. We can always tell about the level of maturity we have in our relationship with money, first of all, based on how much of it you have or don’t have, how much of it you keep and don’t keep, how honest you are with your money and what you do with your money, how frequently you look at your money situation from an objective point of view. The level of which your emotions are triggered by money is a direct correlation to your maturity with it. If you are highly triggered by money in a way that is not constructive, then you have work to do in developing your relationship with it. And that has nothing to do with your history. Your relationship with cash, income, profit, revenue, debt has everything to do with your brain today, not your parents, or your husband, or where you grew up, or what you did in college, or any of that. It’s what you tell yourself today about money and why you either hoard it, hide from it, overspend it, never make it, how much you charge for services for products, how much you pay for services, your products, right?
It’s never a shock to me that my clients who generate a lot of revenue, not necessarily the clients that are rich, just clients that are generating a lot of revenue, they have a very abundant relationship with money and are also willing to invest it, right? So you have to be really honest with yourself. If you are in business to make money, then your relationship with money needs to be really, really mature. Are you an adult in your relationship with your cash, with your revenue, with your profit, with your expenses, with your debt? And if you’re not, don’t beat yourself up over it. Don’t talk about how you’ve never been good at it. Don’t talk about how you don’t know how to be good at it. Pick a teacher and get connected to and build your relationship with money.
One of the best books I’ve ever read about being an entrepreneur and money is Profit First by Michael Michalowicz. I strongly recommend you read that book. You’ll hate it, and then you’ll love it, and then you can thank me. But you have the practices that you have with money and then you have your brain. And then you have all the other things that happen. So we have to develop our relationship with our money. And that’s how we know if we’re on the best road forward to maturity is when we stop being so triggered by money.
The next way to really assess entrepreneurial maturity is your relationship with time. Solopreneurs, when you’re bootstrapping, hustling, your relationship with time is wretched. You just abuse your time. You’re a time abuser, right? You’re just always working, always driving, always hustling. You’re not thinking about time as an investment. You’re thinking about time as a thing that slips through your fingers. You’re always busy. You’re always overwhelmed. You sort of have this push-pull negative relationship with time. You’re exhausted, you’re inspired, but it’s just not well managed.
And then when we transition and we start to hire a team, and we start to delegate, and we start to get work done through others more, we have to reassess and develop a much more mature relationship with time for ourselves and for our company. Because if you abuse your time, it then eventually will seep into the results of your company, the assets of your company. It shows up in the results of the way that your team uses time. So if you’re flippant with your time, you’re not demonstrating a mature relationship with your time. If you budget your time, if you plan your time, if you organize your time, if you manage yourself within the restraints of time, you are developing a mature relationship with time.
We all have the same amount of time in a day, right? I know a lot of us have heard that, right? You have as many hours as Beyonce. I actually was watching Inside Bill’s Brain I think is the name of the Netflix show about Bill Gates’ brain. And they said the same thing. I think it was his assistant that said, “You know what? Bill Gates has as much time in the day as everybody else.” Bill Gates is a kajillionaire. So he’s just very mature with his time, and also really good at protecting it, which is a mature exercise also, and setting boundaries, limits. So really assessing your relationship with time, and would you say, “I have arrived. I have this mature relationship with time,” or, “I’m working on it,” or, “I haven’t even thought about it. I’m just constantly at the beck and call of time,” which we want to work on?
Then there’s the relationship you have with your team and your business. I’m going to put these two together. Do you show up as a leader in your business to the people that you hire? Are you a mature leader? Do you manage your emotions? Do you demonstrate and model the behaviors that you want from people that work for you? Are you demonstrating maturity or are you emotional? Do you participate in behaviors that minimize or reduce your credibility because they’re not mature?
As you build a business and you have more people who work for you, there’s more people looking to you to guide that success. You have to work on the awareness that you have of yourself. And that business maturity, having a relationship with your business that extends outside of it’s mine and I get to do whatever I want with it, that’s one of the things that I work on with my clients, especially initially, is mine. It’s very me oriented when you’ve been a business owner and you haven’t really pushed yourself through the process of stepping outside of the business. There’s you, and then there’s the business. That is entrepreneurial maturity, separating yourself from the business.
The business is its own entity. You are the custodian of it. Do you demonstrate a level of maturity in the decision making that you make to support it? And that means a lot of times doing things, you guys, that don’t feel good, that feel really uncomfortable for you, but it’s the right thing for the business. Because there just become a time when the business becomes much larger than you. And if you allow it to do that, that’s when things really get exciting. If you keep it just about you, that’s fine. But be honest with what you’re keeping and don’t want, lament that you don’t have something larger. That’s why the business acumen that I think you need to learn in order to harness this talent of others, hire people, manage people, fire people, have difficult conversations, hold people accountable, set expectations, communicate clearly … These are so many of the things I do in my program. I think you have to be able to do that to be able to separate yourself from the business and really work towards a newer, more successful, more powerful level of emotional maturity and entrepreneurial maturity in your business.
And the last piece for you is who you are. You as the business owner have your own thoughts, your own beliefs, and your own feelings. And if you are feeling negatively overwhelmed, frustrated, burdened, resentful, scared, angry, impatient on a regular basis, that means that you are blaming other people in your company, whether it’s your employees or your clients. That means you are blaming them or your business for how you feel. You have thoughts that are triggering negative emotion regularly, and you’re believing them.
As we go on the trajectory of growth as entrepreneurs … That’s why being an entrepreneur, I believe, is one of the most difficult and yet meaningful life choices you can make. Because in order to achieve the success you want in the business, you have to ask so much of yourself through that process of growth, and that really is … In life coach training, we talk about emotional maturity, and I’m overlapping that with also entrepreneurial maturity. But as an entrepreneur, you have to do the work to become emotionally mature. You can’t go off the handle on people. You can’t blame people for how you feel. You can’t hold the business hostage for being in charge of your emotions. To the extent that you continue to do that, you will not feel good as a business owner, and that will be reflected in your decision making and how you manage others.
Now, I know that you can choose another way to think about your circumstances so that you can feel better. And when you have learned how to integrate that practice into what you do, you get closer, and closer, and closer to entrepreneurial maturity because you recognize that your emotional health as a woman running a business is not based on the results of your company. And I know that if you really are the woman, like some who I’ve talked to in the last two weeks, who really believe that it’s the results in their business that are driving how they feel and ultimately then the choices they have to make, I know listening to this can feel frustrating. But I also watch the other side of it, which is knowing you are not held hostage emotionally by anything other than your mind. And if you want to learn how to become more thoughtful about how you think and then ultimately how you feel, and act, and the results you get, that’s available to you, and it’s how you actually will ultimately improve the results. But that requires a level of maturity of raising your hand and saying, “I get it. I’m stuck. I can’t get out of this negative spin. I need help.”
I really do believe that a lot of women think that because they’re natural caregivers they should just be good at managing a company, at managing people. I don’t think that’s true. I think you have to learn, and I know you can be taught. But to get to this level of entrepreneurial maturity is such a wonderful thing. I love when I watch it in my clients. Now, as I said, there’s no final destination point here. This is ongoing work. It’s like meditating, or praying, or … You never arrive. You’re never done. But you get better at it, and you get more capable, and you get less triggered. And that’s what I love to help my clients do.
So I want you to spend some time. This might be a podcast you need to listen to a few times because you could do your own reflections on money, and time, and team, and business, and yourself, and where you believe you are in terms of your growth and effort in achieving more entrepreneurial maturity. And of course, when you’re ready, I would always love an opportunity to meet you and talk with you and see if we should work together in my Founder’s Lab. So thank you for tuning in today, and I’ll talk to you again next time.
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