You might have heard that courage and self-confidence have everything to do with getting ahead in the business world, right up there with networking. And you’d be right. You can sure be very good at your job while not having a lot of self-confidence, but to really succeed, you’re going to need to work on developing it. This is especially true if you want or plan to obtain a leadership role or even become an entrepreneur yourself. Many of us dream about quitting our day jobs and starting our own businesses, especially if that lets us travel all over the world and work wherever we want to. This goal is achievable with some luck and a lot of hard work.
Why Entrepreneurs Must Learn How To Be Confident
When you really stop and think about it, you should be able to see exactly why self-confidence is so crucial to entrepreneurs. In order to be an effective communicator, you have to exude confidence in your speech patterns. You can be sure you’ll be taken seriously at meetings and on the phone with product suppliers if you demonstrate confidence. While a good, original pitch to a new perspective supplier is of course important, it’s perhaps even more important that it’s presented with confidence, so the supplier will have confidence in your ability to live up to your end of the bargain. Improving your self-confidence and courage will make people sit up and pay attention when you speak. You will come across as authoritative on a subject and people will listen to any advice you have to offer.
As a self-made entrepreneur, courage and self-confidence are simply necessary in order to effectively pitch your ideas or services to suppliers, clients and other professionals. It takes a lot of courage to make a pitch, and you won’t get very far as an entrepreneur without the ability to make your case convincingly and confidently while being able to handle rejection. Confidence in a product or idea is infectious and by demonstrating your own confidence in yourself, your company and your products or services, you will pique their interest and inspire suppliers’ confidence as well. The more suppliers and products you acquire, the more your business grows.
Confidence is also integral to negotiating and getting the best deal out of any business arrangement. How likely is it that you get that exclusive with that wholesale supplier if you are lackluster and unsure about how you approach them? Sure, anyone can land a decent wholesale account, but to really maximize the potential of a deal you’ve landed, it’s going to require verbal persuasion. Verbal persuasion demands confidence.
You have to be able to inspire confidence in your team members as well if you have them. Whether they be actual employees or virtual assistants, it is critical in drawing out the best of what each of them has to offer. As a manager or entrepreneur, you will be working with many different team members and professionals who have different ways of thinking, doing things and interacting with others. Your job as their leader is to play to each of their strengths in order to create an innovative and productive team. If their leader isn’t confident in an outcome, they won’t be either.
Self-confidence is also necessary to finding quality new talent. As a new entrepreneur, the responsibility falls on you to pick and choose your new hires, even temporary ones. Confidence in yourself and your new company is going to excite the best potential candidates and get you team members who are going to help your company grow and innovate. Failure to excite top talent and draw it to your new company means you might end up with less interested and invested employees, which can damper growth. You should prepare for interviews just like your candidates do – have questions prepared and make a good effort to sell them on the job. You not only need confidence to inspire motivated VA’s, but also to attract them!
Some Tips On How To Increase Your Confidence
So now that you know just how important courage and self-confidence are to entrepreneurs, how can you improve your own self-confidence and increase your courage? There are some key skills and techniques you can utilize in order to improve low self esteem and boost your self image.
The first important thing to recognize is you can’t focus on particular body language or facial expressions to demonstrate confidence. This is because doing so will make your body language and presence come across as stilted and unnatural. People who have developed real confidence and have high self esteem move and speak with ease without having to think about it first. Instead, you’ll need to focus on making yourself feel more confident overall.
The first steps in naturally increasing your self-confidence are improving your abilities and plenty of practice. Skills you should work on improving include problem solving, your understanding of other people’s emotions and how best to respond to them, and your own self-awareness. Once you’ve practiced and improved on your strengths, that will lead to successes, which will compound into even more confidence.
Remember that real confidence is genuine and deep, and not superficial. It’s integral to be genuine and knowledgeable, rather than disingenuous and “blowing smoke.” Others don’t respond well to people they perceive as disingenuous. For example, if you are pitching your service to a new client, they will be far more receptive if you genuinely want to help them with their problems rather than just trying to sell them something.
It’s important to understand what factors trigger confidence in you, because that’s what confidence ultimately is: a frame of mind. Working past negative thinking to embrace more positive thinking is a step in the right direction. Are there activities you can do that make you feel more confident in yourself? Are there certain clothes that make you feel more powerful? Once you’ve identified these triggers, utilize them to your advantage in business situations.
Perhaps the most important step is action. In order to increase your self-confidence you must be willing to take the time and make the effort to improve through reinforcement. Practice hard at pitching proposals to others and speaking to people as if you are an authority. Force yourself to do things that make you uncomfortable. Watch and emulate speakers and businesspeople who are successful. This will all help build your skills and abilities, which will result in greater self-confidence and a growing business.
Remember, courage is ultimately linked to and results in self-confidence when you realize you can successfully do the things that may scare you. If you’re interested in achieving self confidence to a greater degree, you should consider participating in my 30-Day Self-Confidence Challenge. Over the course of thirty days, it will help you learn how to be confident and increase your courage and self image so you can achieve your dream of running your own Internet business while traveling full time.