If You Always Do What You’ve Always Done… Five Ways to Break the Cycle


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I’m a big advocate of the concept that if you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got.

This is something that comes up a lot when I’m working with clients. From an outside stand point it’s often easy to see that a business owner is getting the same results because they’re putting in the same efforts over and over again. When you are that business owner, however, it can be much more difficult to realise that this is the case.

If you’ve fallen into this trap with your business, it’s likely that it’s seriously holding you back. There’s an obvious solution here, and that’s to try something new. Unfortunately, when you’ve been marketing the same services in the same way to the same people for a certain length of time, it can be really tricky to break the cycle.

Here are five ways to break old habits and try something different:

Look at your business from a customer’s perspective

When was the last time you looked at your business from a different perspective? The way you’ve always done things may work for you, but if they’re not working for your customers you’ll need to rethink. One effective way to do this can be to try and experience what things are like for your customers. You could do this by surveying your customers, asking for honest feedback, or even by hiring a mystery shopper.

Work with different experts

If you work with people such as marketing experts, designers, copywriters and photographers, you might want to consider whether it’s time for a change. There can be a great deal of benefit to be gotten from building working relationships with these people over time… but if what they’re doing isn’t working for you you might want to shake things up. Engaging the services of a new team of experts could help you to do this.

Talk to a coach

It can be difficult to break out of old habits if you’re not sure why you keep returning to them. For example: is it a lack of confidence that’s stopping you from trying something new, or is it because you’re not sure what you’re aiming for in the long term? A session with a coach could help you to address some of these issues and gain more of an awareness of the opportunities that are available for you and your business.

Go back to basics

When was the last time you looked at your business plan and strategy documents? If it’s been a while, it might be a good idea to review them and consider whether there’s anything you want to revisit, anything you want to re-address, or anything that’s been missed out. If you don’t have a business plan or strategy documents, going right back to the beginning and developing some could put you in a very good position to have a fresh start.

Take some time away

Owning a business is extremely full on! When you spend every day inside your business it can seem almost impossible to be able to step back and see the big picture. If your business practices have got a bit stale and you can’t see a way to refresh them, it might be time for you to take a break. Many business owners find that taking a holiday from their business and doing something different can be very inspiring.

Over to you: have you ever got caught in a cycle with your business? How did you break out of it? I’d love to hear from you on Twitter.

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