As entrepreneurs, we pride ourselves on our individualistic natures and the strength it takes for us to show up every day and run our businesses. But once we step into a big role, even we can’t escape those humbling moments where we come face to face with our inherent weaknesses. Some of us are brilliant at motivating our team, but get a little sloppy when tending to little details. Others shine at ironing out inefficiencies, but aren’t so good at big-picture innovating.
These inconsistencies are what make us human. And while it might be hard to fess up to our weaknesses, bringing them to light is exactly what we need to do in order to make sure our businesses succeed.
The quiz below will help you identify your weak spots as a business owner. Pick the best answer, and get ready to learn what lies beneath your personal and professional quirks:
1. You’re most motivated when you are:
a. Following your bliss.
b. Feeling aligned with your short and long-term goals.
c. Following a regimen that you know will get you specific results.
2. You’re deciding a new color palette to represent your brand:
a. You pick out your favorite colors — the ones that make you feel happy.
b. You rely on your designer’s advice. After all, she’s the best in town.
c. You stick to the same color family that best represents your brand.
3. You are about to make a speech and you realize you’ve misplaced your notes. You:
a. Breathe deeply and wing it.
b. Ask for a short postponement and have your office fax your notes over to you.
c. Apologize and switch to another well-remembered speech.
4. What’s your ideal way to brainstorm with your team?
a. You come up with all the ideas, and your team executes.
b. Your team brainstorms, and you pick the winning idea.
c. You brainstorm with your team, and the best idea wins.
5. Your loyal clients would best describe you as:
a. Creative, eccentric, and free-spirited.
b. Warm, personable, and adaptable.
c. Reliable, punctual, and professional.
6. It’s Wednesday morning, and you get an emergency call that requires that you leave town the same night to be gone through the weekend. You:
a. Leave everything right where it is. You’ll deal with work when you get back.
b. Call your team immediately and delegate as many tasks out as you can.
c. Try to crank out as much as you can, and then take the work with you on the plane.
7. Out of the ten great ideas you jotted down in 2010, how many were actually realized:
a. One to two (You had twenty ideas and couldn’t decide).
b. All ten (but you have to check with your team to see the status).
c. Three to five (You were too busy to do all ten).
8. Your employees would describe you as:
a. Fun and unpredictable, but a little possessive.
b. Nurturing and trusting, but a little indecisive.
c. Hard working and reliable, but a little rigid.
Your strength is: you trust your instincts. This confidence allows you to think on your feet, and it carries you through the inevitable uncertainty that comes with running a business.
Your weak spot is: you let your emotions drive your decision-making, which might feel good in the moment, but could alienate you from your team and your clients. Work on staying focused enough to communicate your ideas properly, and try to engage a bit more to make sure that your projects are on track and things are running as smoothly as they could be.
Keep in check: Your ego, which clouds your judgment often.
Your strength is: you are a natural team player. You probably have a tight-knit team that feels like family, and your sincere nature forges solid client relationships. Your people skills allow you to shine at business development.
Your weak spot is: You second-guess yourself quite often and place important decisions in other people’s hands. Work on trusting your instincts a bit more, and don’t be afraid to take the reigns in situations where you must lead your team.
Keep in check: Your people-pleasing tendencies, which can undermine your leadership position.
Your strength is: you are highly organized and your business appears flawless. You run a tight ship and aren’t afraid to roll up your sleeves and dig in whenever and wherever necessary.
Your weak spot is: you can’t let go, and it’s likely that you’re tearing your hair out behind the scenes to make sure everything’s running perfectly. Work on delegating a few tasks to someone else, and be patient as you train them to become the right hand you need.
Keep in check: Your inability to handle uncertainty, which is very likely preventing you from moving your business to the next level.
© 2011 Ali International, LLC
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