When you look in the mirror and decide if you like what you see, your conclusion is based on whether you have a high self-esteem or low self-esteem. People with higher self-esteem tend to appreciate their personal traits, bounce back faster from mistakes, and view the future as full of opportunities for growth. Those with negative self-esteem tend to undervalue their worth, lack belief in their capabilities, and shun new opportunities.
In the business world, a similar dynamic exists. Entrepreneurs and organizations also have a self-esteem that affects their culture, ingenuity, and progress. For example, when you or your company develops a new idea, what is your initial reaction? Does your response reflect a negative self-esteem, such as:
- “I’m not sure people will like this.”
- “What if our customers react negatively?”
- “We’re stuck in fourth place and there’s not much we can do about it.”
- “We’d rather fly below the radar and avoid competitors noticing us.”
Or, do you develop new ideas from a positive self-esteem, such as:
- “Let’s give it a shot. If it fails, we’ll quickly move to something else.”
- “Even if customers don’t like it, they’ll know we’re trying to be innovative.”
- “I am the only limit to my success.”
- “Why hide from the competition? We belong here as much as everyone else.”
The more I consult with individuals and organizations, the more I’ve concluded that success in marketing is based on the client’s level of self-esteem. If you don’t think your products or services have value, then you won’t market them aggressively. Essential issues, such as innovation, personal development, and expanding into new markets, get minimized by self-limiting beliefs. How does an individual or organization overcome a self-esteem problem?
Start by understanding that you are your most important customer. If you can’t sell yourself on the value of your own products, you will struggle to sell them to anyone else. It’s difficult to promote what you don’t inherently value. Your customers feed off of the confidence and belief that you exhibit.
As we wrap up 2015, honestly assess how your self-esteem impacted the past year’s business. Did you meet your goals? Or, were you too conservative? Did you try new ways to enhance your product line? Or, did you just maintain the status quo? Did you invest in training to improve skills? Or, did you remain apathetic towards personal growth?
Begin 2016 by acknowledging that you are your most important customer. Get out of your own way. Sell yourself on your own value first. Then, take active steps to let your customers know about the amazing value your products and services offer.