When it comes to nature, bears are the toughest competitors out there. You need to emulate their model in your own business. Bears are the strongest natural example of pursuing your business with a deeper level of GRIT. Here’s why (and it all starts with salmon):
Salmon swim upstream and return to the parts of the river where they were born. Many animals hunt the salmon as they swim, including bears. The strongest and toughest bears go to the part of the stream that causes the most trouble for the salmon to cross: the waterfall.
The stream runs hard here. The rocks are slippery and dangerous. The hardiest bears know that because of the danger, this part of the stream is the least crowded. Here the salmon jump high to clear the waterfall. The bears sit poised and wait for the salmon to jump, then reach out and catch them in midair.
Unlike the other bears downstream, these Gritty bears take a large, juicy bite out of the salmon and throw the dead salmon back into the stream. These bears know that because they have risked the most, they reap the biggest reward: salmon after salmon, mouthful after mouthful. Abundance.
The next group of bears are also smart. Although they are not as Gritty as the first group, they know that the other side of the salmon is still available for them, so they sit and wait a little further downstream. When the half-eaten salmon comes their way, they grab it and eat the other side.
The competition is a little fiercer at this mid-level location, but the salmon are still plentiful. These bears too throw the salmon away and it floats downstream further.
At the bottom of the stream where the rapids end and the water moves slowly, the rest of the animals wait. Here, the foxes, coyotes, birds and rats fight for salmon skeletons. This group fight over the crumbs. The work is hard because the bones have little meat left and the competition is stiff. Sound familiar?
Are your customers the skeletons of the market? Are your business dealings so low-level that your competition doesn’t want them and that’s why you are stuck with them? Force yourself to move upstream to find better customers, better employees and more abundance. Find customers who have bigger businesses, more needs, and the ability to provide you with more revenue.
I have told this story so many times in my company that a member of my sales team presented me with a miniature grizzly bear for my desk. I keep it in front of me always, as a reminder that I want to be the Grittiest bear at the most dangerous part of the stream.
The most dangerous part of the stream, and the toughest part of business—where the competition is the smallest, but the rewards are the greatest. Abundance awaits the Grittiest.
Whether a bear in nature or you in your business, abundance awaits the Grittiest of us all. The crumbs await the weakest.
Which bear are you in your business? Fight the temptation for the easy way out. The more you embrace Gritty behavior, by moving upstream, the closer you get to achieving abundance and greatness.
Here are 9 tips to help you find the courage and strategy to move upstream, work with better customers and make more money.
#1. You must have a healthy self-esteem. The reason you work with those deadbeat clients or have married a deadbeat is because you don’t think you are worthy of better.
#2. You must believe the what you are doing / selling. Without belief in yourself, your product and your service, you are toast.
#3. Become the expert in your niche. Experts get paid…amateurs get crushed.
#4. Move up the food chain. – Don’t do business with people at your level or below. Always play up, never play down.
#5. Understand your value. – What do you do better than anyone else? This is the super power of value that you bring to the table.
#6. Bring more value. –Now that you know your value…bring it. Offer it up at every chance. Don’t wait for the customer to see, it, offer it up, explain it and sell the crap out of it.
#7. Increase your prices. You can always come down…it is very hard to come up.
#8. Follow up like a madman or madwomen. This is connected to #1 and #2. If you believe, you will want them to have your product/service and massive follow up should come natural.
#9. Don’t assume, ask. – You don’t know it all. Never stop asking questions and never start thinking you already know the answers.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Matt Manero is the Founder and President of Commercial Fleet Financing, Inc. (CFF) located in Dallas, TX. CFF is celebrating its 21st year in business and provides financing for commercial fleet vehicles such as box trucks, cargo vans, big rigs, tow trucks, dump trucks and construction equipment. CFF is a 3-time winner of the 2014, 2015 and 2016 Inc. Magazine Top 500/5000 Fastest Growing Private Companies in America. Matt has helped dozens of employees and thousands of small business owners move closer to the money they deserve. He is the author of, “The Grit”, and his forthcoming book, “I NEED MORE MONEY” will be out in 2017. Learn more at www.cffnationwide.com or call 972.247.8447 phone or on all social media platforms via @Matt Manero.