Sales Masters Guild Mentor, Toby Acton, believes that training can help those business owners looking for guidance.

In a recent blog, I explored the reasons why some business owners fail to achieve success despite being really good at what they do and looked at what they can do, and what I can help them with, to achieve that success and the work-life balance that they want.

But that got me thinking: knowing that the failure rate is so high, why do many business owners not seek advice before they start their businesses or during the start-up process.

Talking to many business owners I think it is simply this: often they “fall into” running their own business due to circumstances or necessity.

As I mentioned previously, many people become self-employed because someone tells them “You are really good at that, you should start your own business”, or they get disenchanted seeing all the money that they are making for their bosses and the company that they work for and they want a bigger slice of the pie.  They may not have the creative freedom in a job or feel restrained by the direction that their employer is focusing them – they may want to be in control of that themselves, so they take the plunge and go it alone. 

Or they may have an interest or a hobby that they are passionate about and they want to earn a living doing something that they love.  This may often start as a part-time additional income steam and they are confident that they can expand it and make it a full-time income.

Perhaps they are fed up with the long hours and low pay of a job and want to have a better work-life balance and work less days for more money.  The dream of many business owners is to work 2 or 3 days for a full week’s income – it is sad and ironic that so many end up working a full 7-day week (plus evenings!) for 2- or 3-days’ income!

And then there are those who are “pushed” – they are made redundant from a job and they no longer want to trust their future and their fortune to the whims and ebb and flow of the job market so decide to forge their own path.

So, many people end up self-employed without a structured plan and a roadmap for the way ahead. They do not have a clear vision of what they want their business to achieve for themselves, their family and their lifestyle.

That is not everyone of course – there are those who do plan and have a clear strategy for success and execute it brilliantly and build high-income business that work.  I take my hat off to these successful entrepreneurs and salute them.  But my passion is to inspire, guide and support those that need some help on their journey.

Looking for guidance

People seek for guidance, training and support in their business for a number of reasons:

  • they may be new to business and recognise that they need to talk to someone about how to go about things and how to structure their business
  • they may have purchased a franchise and whilst many franchises now provide a support framework this may be for a limited period of 6 or 12 months and may only cover the practical skills specific to the business sector and may not assist them with marketing, sales etc
  • there are those who after starting with enthusiasm and vigour they begin to feel after a few months or maybe a year that they are banging the heads against a brick wall and getting bogged down with “stuff” and they are wondering what exactly the true secret to success is
  • those wanting to grow and expand an already successful business model and scale it up to the next level, often taking on staff and aiming for larger clients
  • there are those who want to extract more profit from their business, make it leaner and meaner and get more income for the time they put in
  • they may be wanting better work-life balance and to maintain (or grow) their income but reduce the time they are putting into the business
  • those who recognise that they are truly “self-employed”, i.e. employed by their business, and not a true “business owner” where they are in charge of their business and running it and their lives rather than their business running them
  • there are those who are considering their exit strategy and want to look at structuring their business for sale or for merger, or to be in a position to bring a captain on board to run the ship for them

All types of businesses

At my most recent Entrepreneur Training Day I had a variety of different business owners from various different sectors:  a lady who has founded a successful networking business that she has plans to expand and she also publishes some local magazines.  There was an established Business Coach, a successful Body Confidence Coach and a Life Coach who is just starting out on her self-employed journey.  We were joined by a Marketing Consultant with a new business about to launch and an Estate Planning Consultant with a business that has been established for 7 years alongside a secure document storage business that has been operating for 18 years.  Also in the room was a Kinesiologist and a Geomancer (a fascinating business!), and gentleman with a network marketing business in the health and wellness arena. Finally, we were working with a lady who has an established, successful construction company and has also recently started a beauty clinic – an interesting combination!

So, all sorts of different people from all sorts of different backgrounds, working in different sectors and at different stages on their journey towards success – but all with one thing in common: ambition and the desire to learn how to accelerate the journey from where they are to where they want to be.  I think the ability to acknowledge that we can all improve and do what we are doing better is fundamental to success and getting there faster.

So while many people may “fall into” running their own business without a structured planned approach, the good news is that in time very many of them recognise the need to understand exactly the steps that they need to take to move their business rapidly in the direction that they want to and they ensure that they get the training and guidance to do so.

Personally, I love to work with ambitious, open-minded entrepreneurs who are not afraid to metaphorically put their hand up and say, “I need help to do this right”.  There needs to be an element of swallowing of pride and being open to changing a few things, but the results are immense in terms of business and income growth, personal satisfaction and work-life balance.


You can find out more about Toby and book onto any of his Entrepreneurs Training from booking page or his Sales Masters Guild Mentor page.

Toby Acton

Toby Acton

Toby Acton is a Sales Masters Guild Personal Business Mentor.

For more than two decades, Toby has been running his own businesses, with interests in a variety of diverse sectors including IT, market research and property. He has also mentored and trained many hundreds of people on how to build their networking marketing businesses and to develop their personal brand.

Find out more about Toby on his Sales Masters Guild profile page.

Read more blogs from Toby.

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