One thing I have found to be true in the corporate world is the lack of self-esteem in the workplace. There is also an over-compensation through arrogance and egos. A lot of times these two problems can cause a lack of respect towards customers, team members and in most cases can lead to failure.
Organizational change expert Paul Meshanko, in his recent book “The Respect Effect” explores the science behind these problems, confirming that people with a healthy self-esteem perform at their best and treat others with respect, therefore getting their best. We all shut down when shown a lack of respect. He assures that anyone can train themselves to get on track and stay on track.
Meshanko touches on eight steps to help with building business self-esteem, supporting a broad range of attitudes and behaviors that are individually and organizationally beneficial to startups as well as mature companies:
1. Identify the qualities and skills most closely linked to your idea of success.
Current research is conclusive that self-esteem is linked to our sense of competence in the areas that are important to us. As you look at your entrepreneur goals, make sure you are following your own definition of success that gives you pride and passion in its pursuit.
2. Identify your current strengths and establish plans for improving.
Once you have clarified your personal definition of startup success, examine where you currently are relative to where you want to be whatever your goals, there are few things more esteeming than knowing you’re making progress toward your picture of success.
3. Be on the lookout for new opportunities to grow your talents and experiences.
Part of our sense of self-worth comes from the belief and confidence that we have the ability to grow the business both today and in the future. Entrepreneurs have a natural base for adventure and curiosity, and should relish trying new things each day to stretch them.
4. Identify and redirect unhealthy competition and comparisons.
Make you the base, not others. Your sense of worth should not be determined by other startups, or what you think peers expect of you. Competition sabotages teamwork and leaves feelings of isolation and alienation. Use others as a source of inspiration, rather than envy.
5. Forgive yourself for past mistakes and poor decisions.
From a rational point of view, berating ourselves for past startup failures makes no sense. Free up your energy to be spent on more productive activities, and learn from past efforts. The great entrepreneur Thomas Edison said that every wrong attempt discarded is another step forward.
6. Hold yourself completely accountable for your actions, decisions, and outcomes.
The legitimate place for short-term guilt and remorse is making these lead to some type of behavior change. Failing to hold yourself accountable sends subtle messages that may damage others self-esteem, and it doesn’t promote lasting confidence or competence.
7. Develop a pattern of self-talk that validates your worth and abilities.
Each of us has developed a way of interpreting and explaining the business world around us. It’s important that our stories neither damage us nor free us from blame. We should continue to feel worthy, accountable, and capable, with a mindset that allows us to continue to follow our entrepreneurial passion.
8. Focus on what you can control, not what you can’t.
Our short-term destiny is not always in our control. What we can do is make a commitment to do our best in whatever entrepreneurial environment we find ourselves. We can also make sure we build strong relationships with successful business leaders in advance of our needing their wisdom.
Knowing not what to expect on a day to day basis with a new startup, I feel these 8 step are more crucial than ever. Therefore succeeding relies heavy on a healthy self-esteem. Which in turn leads to self-confidence and in my opinion will make or break any great idea.
Not everyone has the background to start from a position of strength in this area, but we all have the ability to learn and the passion to succeed.