Introduction

Introduction

As business owners, we are trying to do two things:  1) We’re trying to make a living from our business, and at the same time, 2) we are seeking the fulfillment of the larger purpose of our lives—our unique destiny. 

For some, these two aims coincide; you make a living and the work is fulfilling.  For me, and for many others, those two aims seemed at odds and a source of continuing frustration and struggle. Finding the pathway into both is not quick or easy—there is no silver bullet.

In my own small businesses, starting with very little money, this frustration was expressed as, “There is never enough cash, there’s no time for pursuing my passion.”  

I learned there was more to it than just profit—it also included my “mindset”, my thinking process. By definition, “profit is what’s left over,” it’s the residue of the activity that puts cash in the bank.  The secret, though, is to see both “business activity” and “your creative mind’s activity.”  We’ll come back to these two themes repeatedly.

In sports, we often read about “the mental game”—how mental attitudes and skill discipline affect physical performance.  This is no less true in business, but strangely, it is rarely mentioned.

Creativity and knowledge are the master keys to success

Self-employed entrepreneurs have some understanding of creativity, and more understanding of profit basics—but together, creativity and knowledge are the master keys to success.  

This book brings these two ideas together in a highly practical manner.

The Profit Process Clicks Together Like a Lego® Toy

The steps in The Profit Process® developed a sequence that clicked together like the bricks of a Lego toy.  Of course, you can pick and choose the chapters which answer an immediate challenge, but by skipping ahead you may miss some of the foundation steps. You can then come back to revisit those ideas as your business grows. 

There is a natural flow to the ideas in this book—first re-discovering the sources of your own creativity, then focusing on the metrics and language of business that reflect your successes or failures.

The stories and comments I share show how your natural inner wisdom will help you find a clear path; not to some fuzzy kind of “personal improvement”, but to the concrete structures and tools that will take you and your business to new levels of prosperity. You are following the arc of your life and business and then coming to a graceful farewell when you are ready to move on. 

Wealth and Prosperity—a Difference

Working with clients, I noticed a difference between wealth and prosperity—a distinction I hadn’t really considered. Like many business people, I was initially attracted to the goal of limitless wealth. I didn’t define that closely, but I knew it meant a lot of money! 

And yet… I had clients who were sitting on millions of dollars who did not feel prosperous.  Despite their wealth they were never at peace but were driven by a fear of scarcity, even as they would never be hungry or homeless. 

I saw that their focus on wealth alone was driven mostly by fear, and its cousin, greed. They didn’t trust the future and had no confidence in trusting their inner guidance.

In others I saw that prosperity was a “state of mind”

In other clients I saw that prosperity was a “state of mind”—a deep conviction that while the future is unknowable, no barrier was insurmountable. Prosperity and peace of mind were available to everyone. This discovery made a big difference from my own fear-driven belief that I would never be prosperous.  Expressed another way, I gave up trying to make a killing, and became satisfied with making a prosperous life.