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Profit Power: Address self-talk, your biggest enemy

February 20, 2015 -  By


A healthy business is one that pays healthy market rates for employees and its leaders. It makes a healthy return on equity for the owner’s investment. It has a healthy culture that empowers and inspires, driven by the owner.

So why is your business not succeeding to its full potential? Is your self-talk, the owner’s self-talk, limiting its success?

Self-esteem and/or self-worth are topics not much discussed in our macho industry, yet it is the single biggest obstacle holding back entrepreneurs and leaders from achieving their rightful potential. It’s when leaders talk themselves into a lower level of energy, vision and result, becoming self-fulfilling in the wrong direction.

Poor self-worth is based on people’s deep-seated misconceptions. It manifests from how one speaks to oneself—quietly and out loud. I call this self-talk. Here are some conversations of it that might have crept into your head a time or two.

Poor self-talk:

  • I can’t find employees;
  • Cash flow is terrible;
  • My employees take more time off than me;
  • I need to keep my pricing low;
  • My employees don’t want responsibility;
  • I have to fix every problem myself;
  • I will never change;
  • I am stuck;
  • I can’t afford that;
  • I am in the washing machine;
  • I never have enough time;
  • I can’t trust others to do the job as well as me;
  • I’m lucky to find work; and
  • It is not my fault (that this problem keeps happening).

Healthy self-talk

  • My business supports my lifestyle;
  • My clients are delighted by my employees;
  • My time is extremely valuable;
  • I treat myself the way my clients want to be treated;
  • My services are a high value-add to my clients lives;
  • Good employees seek me out—I need to get the word out there about what an awesome company we have;
  • Everyone in my company deserves respect and fulfillment;
  • I deserve to be paid what I would pay a skilled professional to do my job well;
  • I deserve to earn a premium for the risk-capital I have invested;
  • I offer a valuable service that benefits my clients;
  • I don’t compete against 2 guys in a truck;
  • I surround myself with people who like working with me—life is too precious to deal with clients who don’t like themselves;
  • There is more than enough business out there, and I can organize my company to capture the opportunities;
  • I trust my employees to do the right thing;
  • I am open to feedback because it helps me grow and prosper; and
  • Life is great, even if today was full of challenges. I learn and grow and become a better version of myself.

Choose to improve your self-talk

If you want to have a better year, then change how you talk to yourself right now. Do it three times a day—every morning, every evening and every time an employee or client approaches you with a problem. Ultimately, attitude and poor self-talk is a choice. Choose to have a healthy outlook.

To do that, stop hanging around people with consistently poor self-talk. They will make you feel worse about yourself. Also, hire positive people who can execute and join forces with them. Build your team with these people. Create a circle of positive, productive people at work and in your leisure time.

Bottom line: Don’t put up with clients, employees or neighbors who drag you down.


This article is tagged with , , and posted in Blog, Expert Insights
Jeffrey Scott

About the Author:

Jeffrey Scott, MBA, author, specializes in growth and profit maximization in the Green Industry. His expertise is rooted in his personal success, growing his own company into a $10 million enterprise. Now, he facilitates the Leader’s Edge peer group for landscape business owners—members achieve a 27 percent profit increase in their first year. To learn more visit

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