How understanding your zone of genius leads to business success

Do you understand where you work best in your business? Many of us sadly don't and it can affect our efficiency and mental health. Join Stephen to learn more about finding your zone of genius: your personal skill-fit within your business.

What is your “zone of genius” in business?

Sounds very grand, doesn’t it? In real terms what you are asking yourself as a business owner is,  “Where do I fit into my business?” “Where do my skills best serve this business?”

For many business owners we try to take on all of the hats in our business, struggling to keep up with the most basic of day-to-day tasks. This leads to overwhelming panic as our list grows out of control. It also causes mistakes and delays on important projects and client work, which can damage your brand’s reputation and industry footing. It sadly hinders growth on new venture opportunities too.

It is also incredibly damaging to our mental health as well, because we feel pressured, tired, behind and often inadequacy creeps in. Our good friend Brad Burton, an amazing motivational speaker, describes this feeling like a shaken soft drink bottle, at some point if you don’t relieve some of the pressure, the bottle will explode. 

If this is where you are at today, then we urge you to stop, take a moment and rethink.

We all understand that needs must in the beginning where we are working on this fledgling business, but as we grow this mindset has to change, it has to evolve if we want to scale. We have talked before about scaling to a point that makes sense for us, today’s topic is a reminder that in order to scale, regardless of what heights we hope to achieve, we need to understand which business hats we must remain wearing and which to hire out.

The Exercise we are going to give you is also useful to repeat if you have been in business 5, 10, 15 years or more, or at any point where you are feeling pressure from all the little activities that have you running around in circles and not leading from the top. Believe us, it sadly happens all too often, watch the video for Stephen’s most recent experience. By conducting our exercise you’ll have a better understanding of your leadership skills.

First you need to understand one thing

You cannot control everything and you cannot be responsible for everything. Imagine that your life is a glass of water, divided into sections. One section for family and friends, one for work, one for social activities, or fitness and so on. Imagine if someone comes along with a problem, how much capacity in your glass do you have for that issue?

If the glass overflows that’s no good for your mental health, because you only have so much capacity to give. Instead you need to learn to balance what goes into the glass with what you have capacity to hold. Giving yourself space in that glass of giving, allows you to take on just enough to cope with, so that if needed you are always on your A-game and not distracted, overwhelmed and feeling uncreative.

Give yourself permission to cut back on the noise!

How to find your zone of genius exercise

Sit somewhere quietly with a pen and paper. Turn off distractions and think about what it is that is most important to you, what you are hoping to achieve. Put all of that thinking into one clear sentence. That’s your why and your purpose.

The second part of this exercise is to write down on a separate sheet of paper all the activities you’ve done over the last week, or month in your business. All of those to-do list tasks. Write them into 4 different sections: 
  • ‘not great at/don’t enjoy’
  • ‘good at/enjoyable’
  • ‘excel at/love doing’
  • 'what really sets your passion on fire'

Somewhere in the last two categories, coupled with your why and your purpose are all of the tasks that make a difference to this area of your business (and life) moving forward. These become your specific zones of genius.

From here you will have a clearly defined list of the areas and tasks you need to delegate, or outsource, or maybe even just stop doing. It is ok to hire out work that you either dislike or aren't good at and it's ok to refocus your energy into the areas that make you happy and bring you greater results. It’s also ok to say ‘No’.

You started this business because it meant something to you. Now it is time to reclaim that and reclaim you in the process.