Although you may not realize it, your mindset plays a crucial role in your customer service. It can make the difference between repeat sales and customers that never want to do business with you again. Here are three key ways your customer service is affected by your mindset:
- How you approach customers.
Have you ever checked out a big chain store with a cashier that didn’t talk to you? As a customer, you sensed the cashier was only serving you to make money. It probably didn’t make you feel great.
Contrast that experience with a cashier that pauses to look you in the eye and greet you. She may ask about your day or offer to help you if you didn’t find everything you were looking for. That’s good customer service and it starts with a willingness to serve the customer.
- How you handle conflict
Customers that feel wronged will talk about their experience to anyone who will listen. Since profits can come down to word-of-mouth referrals, this can seriously damage your business.
If you have a negative mindset, you might be tempted to ignore the customer and hope they go away. But with a positive mindset in place, you’ll listen to what your customer is saying, validate their feelings, then offer a solution that works for both of you.
- How you follow up
A sale isn’t the end of the customer service experience. It’s only the beginning. Smart business owners follow up with their customers after purchases. They ask if there were any problems with the transaction and double-check that their customers have everything they need.
Mindset plays a huge role in how you handle customer service. If you have a positive mindset, your customers are more likely to enjoy their experience with your product or services.
When something goes wrong in your business, do you spend hours worrying and fretting over it? Do you re-play the problem and imagine all the ways that it could get worse? Do you slip into self-pity and find yourself asking why this is happening?
You may not know it but this is a form of catastrophizing. Catastrophizing makes a small problem look much worse than it actually is. If you let it, catastrophizing can completely drain your energy and time.
An example of catastrophizing would be seeing data in your analytics program that makes you think your website has been hacked. You reach out for help but in the meantime, you convince yourself that your website has been hacked and that you’ll have to rebuild it.
So, you check your devices and discover you don’t have a useable backup copy of your website. You spend your time thinking about how you’ll never be able to remember everything you put on your website and how horrible your hosting company is and what a terrible day you’re having.
While it’s understandable to get upset when you face a business setback or new problem, this type of thinking isn’t productive. That’s because you’re focused on the problem and not the solution.
Imagine the above scenario does in fact happen to you. You can fret over it all day or you can say to yourself, “This stinks. But lots of businesses get hacked. I’ll find someone to clean up my website for me or I’ll learn how to do it myself by watching tutorials.”
The first response makes you feel like a powerless victim. But the second one allows you to look at what you can do. It keeps you productive and focused. With that focus, you recognize that you can handle this problem without losing a lot of time and money.
A joint venture is a partnership between two or more businesses. Joint ventures allow you to split the costs and the product creation. When it’s time for the launch, you and your JV partner divide the profits. Joint ventures can be a lot of fun, but before you get involved you need to consider your mindset and the mindset of your potential partner.
You don’t want to partner with someone that has a ‘what’s in it for me’ mentality. This type of joint venture is less likely to succeed because the focus is not where it should be – on providing value to your customers.
This doesn’t mean you can’t make a tidy profit from your joint venture. It does mean that you need to start your brainstorming and creation phase with the idea to serve your community.
For example, you might say, “How can I serve affiliate marketers?” This question will inspire you and your JV partner to come up with products geared toward this audience.
But keep in mind that you want to serve a customer with a specific need. Don’t just say, “How can I serve affiliate marketers?” Instead ask, “How can I serve new internet marketers that are desperate to see their first affiliate sale?”
Using this question, you could create a video or audio course with your JV partner that covers what affiliate marketing is and provides solid tips so affiliates can start earning some commissions.
If you wanted to, you and your JV partner could create a second course that goes more in-depth in affiliate marketing and you could aim it at intermediate affiliate marketers that have already made a few sales. It just comes down to knowing your audience and finding ways to serve them. Starting with the right mindset will help you and your JV partner create a better product.
Everyone encounters obstacles in their business. It might be that you’re a single mom with very little money to invest in starting your online business. It might be that you already have a full-time job and you’re trying to build a side-hustle so you’re pressed for time.
If you don’t have a healthy mindset, you could let all of the obstacles get you down and keep you from reaching your ultimate goals. But successful people that work on their mindsets know that obstacles can often be turned into opportunities to better yourself and your business.
You can do this by ‘reframing’ your thoughts. You might say things like, “I don’t have enough money to afford that expensive marketing course. I don’t have enough time to build a side-hustle so I can walk away from my job.”
Reframe these thoughts and you might actually find obstacles can become advantage. For example, you could say, “Since my budget is tight, I don’t waste money on shiny objects. This helps me stay focused in my business. Because I’m pressed for time, I have to be choosy about the projects I take on. This helps ensure I pick projects that are the best match for my skills.”
Another helpful tactic for dealing with obstacles is to look for creative solutions. There are many stories of entrepreneurs who were looking to fix a problem they were experiencing and in the process created a product that they went on to sell.
Take a moment and write down 10 possible solutions to your current obstacle. Keep in mind these solutions don’t have to be plausible. They can be as bizarre as you want because the point is to get into a creative space. Once you’re inside the creative flow, it’ll be easier to see ways you could turn your obstacle into an opportunity.
Procrastination is the process of trying to avoid a task by doing something else. For example, instead of setting up your WordPress website or creating your new product, you might decide to clean your home, go grocery shopping, and take a walk around your neighborhood. All of these are good activities. But when you use them so you can avoid building your business, it’s a form of procrastination.
But procrastination isn’t usually the real issue. Often, it’s a symptom of a deeper problem like a mindset issue. You might be avoiding a business task because you lack confidence. For example, you might procrastinate on writing the sales copy for your new product because you worry that you’re not a good writer.
You could also be procrastinating because you’re overwhelmed and not sure what to do next. Instead of installing WordPress and getting your first blog post up, you might waste time on social media or spend hours debating on what fonts you should use on your website.
Procrastination can also mask itself as helping others. For example, maybe you spend your nights helping your kids with their homework or you’re on several committees for various organizations. While it’s certainly important to be there for others, you have to make room in your life for your business. If you try to squish it in ‘whenever’, you’ll find plenty of ways to avoid it.
Often, it can be helpful to learn more about mindset issues by buying an e-book on the topic or scheduling a session with a business coach you know and trust. When you understand more about procrastination and why you do it, you’ll be better equipped to tackle it. Then you can break through this resistance you’re experiencing, and get on the road to creating the business of your dreams.
The words you speak over your business are direct reflection of your mindset. Your words and your mindset work together to create your reality. You want to be careful about what you speak over your business because it will become true.
With that in mind, here are three things you want to avoid saying at all costs about your business.
- I’m just playing around.
This implies that you aren’t serious about building a real business. If you don’t take yourself seriously, neither will clients. As a result, you’ll attract customers that will treat you poorly because you aren’t broadcasting confidence in your business.
Own your business. Own the fact that you work for yourself. Be proud of it and tell anyone who will listen about what you do. This helps you become more confident and enthusiastic. Plus, it encourages potential clients to have faith in you and your skills.
- I’m not capable of success.
There are many reasons you might feel like you can’t be successful. Maybe no one’s ever believed in you. Maybe you’ve always struggled just to get by with the basics.
But it’s time you believe in yourself. Instead of talking about what a failure you are, remind yourself that you’re worthy of success and that will you do what it takes to earn that success.
- I don’t have a head for business.
Low confidence can make you doubt your ability to succeed in business. But before you say this, consider that we often live out our words—even if we don’t want.
Instead of listing all the reasons you can’t run a business, encourage yourself by listing the reasons you will succeed. For example, you might say, “I am capable of running a successful business. I’ll take night classes at the local college to supplement any business skills I need to develop.” By saying this, you create your new reality—the one you’re a successful business owner.
When talking about your business, choose your words carefully. Think about the business you want to create and speak as if you’ve already successfully built it.
You may not know it but everyone has a money mindset. Your money mindset determines how much money your business will make and how you’ll spend it. See if you find yourself holding onto any of these negative money beliefs:
I can’t earn more than ABC.
You may internalize a certain figure thinking that you can’t possibly more than that each week or year. For example, you may think that you can’t make more than 45K annually because that’s how much you made when you were working at your job.
But you have to understand that a number is just a number. It has no power over you unless you allow it to. Try re-affirming yourself by using a new number that’s bigger than your old one. For example, say, “I choose to earn 50K each year.”
I’m not good enough to charge more.
Raising your rates can be scary. To avoid dealing with this fear, you may choose to repeat a self-limiting belief like the one above. This can make it hard for you to gather your confidence and charge what you’re really worth.
Some solopreneurs and coaches overcome this issue by choosing to do incremental price raises. This can help you ease into a higher income level and get you use to quoting bigger prices to customers and clients.
I’m not making enough to invest in my business.
You don’t have to crack six figures before you invest in your business. You can still build it, even if you have a tiny budget. Buy a small e-book or course on a topic you want to learn more about. Fully implement your new investment so you get your money’s worth.
The good news is a bad money mindset can be reprogrammed. You can learn how to think differently about money and your business so that you can achieve lasting success.
Every solopreneur and coach needs good business people. These are the peeps that get it and understand what it’s like to run an online business. But you should carefully consider the business friends you make.
You don’t want to get close to solopreneurs that have a negative mindset. Their mindset is contagious and if you aren’t careful, you’ll begin to pick it up, too. Here are a couple of warning signs your friend might be a negative Nelly:
Your friend makes you doubt yourself.
You get excited and share your latest product with someone in your circle. Your friend instantly begins to tell you about all of the things that could go wrong or why you need to do your project differently. They may even tell you that your idea is stupid or silly.
Confront your “friend” about this behavior and they’ll act as if they’re just looking out for you. But make no mistake. This friend doesn’t have your best interests at heart.
Your friend complains about everything.
This is the classic Eeyore complex. Just like that character from Winnie the Pooh, they always have to add something negative to every situation. They refuse to be positive or encouraging.
Your Eeyore friend may not realize they do this. You might try to talk to them but they may not be willing to change. If that’s the case, it might be better to limit your time with this friend so you don’t catch their poor mindset.
Your friend is always competing with you.
You can’t do anything without feeling like your business friend is trying to outdo you. Every accomplishment you make fuels their need to be better than you.
If this describes one of your friends, talk to her. Your friend might be naturally competitive and not realize she’s doing this. Or she may be insecure about her own accomplishments. Whatever the reason, explain that you don’t want to compete all the time.
Be choosy about which business friends you become close to. You want to surround yourself with friends that love and support your growth (don’t forget to return the favor!)
A negative mindset can keep you from growing your business and reaching for more success. But sometimes, you can fall into a negative mindset without realizing it. Here are three signs you need to take a hard look at your current mindset.
You expect the worst (and usually find it!).
Despite what you think, expecting the worst isn’t really helpful. It doesn’t prepare you or make you stronger. It simply makes it more likely that you’ll find something to complain about.
Next time you’re about to recount a horrible experience, ask yourself if you went into that experience expecting a bad outcome. If you did, you may have accidentally created this bad situation without realizing it.
You blame others for your lack of success.
Some people seem to carry a list of reasons they’re not successful in their back pocket. Ask a question about how they’re business is going and next thing you know, you’re listening to twenty-five reasons they haven’t succeeded.
The reason business owners like that don’t succeed is they’re refusing to take responsibility for their choices. But you can’t better yourself or your business until you’re willing to own your choices.
You can’t remember the last time you tried something new.
It’s easy to get stuck in a rut without realizing it. Maybe you released a course or e-book that was super successful. You kept creating similar products and now you’re coasting on your success.
But part of having a healthy mindset is challenging yourself regularly. Do things that are outside your comfort zone. Offer a different type of product. Reach out to an event coordinator and ask about speaking at their event. Participate in an affiliate contest.
Changing your mindset is about tuning into your thoughts and really listening to them. If you don’t like what you’re hearing, look for an e-book about mindset or consider booking a session with a business coach you like.
Many solopreneurs and small business owners struggle with low self-confidence, especially when they’re first starting out. Low confidence can destroy your dreams and hold you back from the success you crave. Here are three ways that low confidence might be impacting your business:
Your income level is “stuck”.
You’re not making as much as you want to and you’re not sure why. Many money issues often come back to a lack of confidence. It might be that you’re not asking your clients to pay what you’re really worth or it might be that you won’t launch higher-ticket products for fear no one will purchase them.
Developing your confidence is one way to boost your income. As your confidence increases, customers and clients will be even more attracted to your business. This can create a cycle of increasing confidence along with increasing income.
You accept bad clients.
Clients know when your confidence is low. While most of them won’t take advantage of this, there are some that will. These clients will be demanding and may try to haggle with you over price or convince you to do extra work for them.
Don’t give into the pressure from bad clients. As your confidence grows, start looking for clients that will see you for the skilled professional you are.
You play small.
When you lack confidence, you don’t let yourself shine. Then you end up missing out on opportunities that you really wanted to take like appearing as a guest on a podcast or participating in a joint venture with a business owner you admire.
Playing small may feel safer but it can severely limit the growth of your business. Try challenging yourself to take one small risk each week. As time goes by, you’ll find it gets easier to own your awesomeness.
The good news is that low confidence doesn’t have to mean the end of your business. Learning about mindset and working to improve yours can help you develop the confidence you need to build a successful business.