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How to Dig Yourself Out of a Business Hole


Entrepreneurs have a default response when they’re asked how business is going: “Everything is great!”

The problem? This isn’t always true.

Entrepreneurs do need to project a positive, strong image. That way, they’ll attract the best partners, investors and employees. A confident outlook keeps everyone at ease.

But what about when things aren’t going to plan?

The instinct of many entrepreneurs is to bury bad news. They don’t want to talk to partners, because they’re scared that will kill the deal. They don’t want to talk to their employees in case they start looking for new jobs. And they don’t want to further burden their spouse.

So, entrepreneurs hide the problem away, hoping it will disappear. Unfortunately, the opposite is usually true. Problems that aren’t tackled get worse.

When your business is in a hole, you need to reach out and ask for help. You’ll often be surprised at how willing people are to help you succeed.

Here’s what I recommend you do when things don’t go to plan.

  • Shine a light on what’s gone wrong. Don’t bury problems away. Bring them out into the light of day. Sunshine really is the best disinfectant. Only when you properly consider a problem can you find a solution.
  • Ask for help. Everything you need is probably just a phone call away. Yes, it’s tough to let go of your ego and eat humble pie. But remember, humility actually shows strength in a leader.
  • Keep watching the horizon. When you’re fighting in the mud of the trenches, it’s easy to lose sight of the bigger picture. Taking a broad view will make it easier to find a way through.

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