I enjoy writing/working outside in the summertime–it’s something about the sunshine and fresh air. Today though the mosquitoes are being particularly pesky and it got me to thinking about why people generally don’t like mosquitoes and the business lessons we can learn from them.
1) Don’t suck the blood out of anyone you come in contact with.
Mosquitoes are equal-opportunity blood suckers. They aren’t picky. At the moment one not-so-bright mosquito is attempting to bite my MacBook. It’s not the smartest strategy, is it?
As a business owner, you need to know who it is that you best solve problems for and can be of service to. Don’t indiscriminately spew your marketing message out there at everyone.
And don’t suck the blood out of people (unless you work at a blood donation center). Trade your services or products for a fair price and deliver quality.
2) Don’t carry viruses.
Mankind has created countless pesticides, natural repellents, and other inventions to repel mosquitoes because they carry viruses and disease. If they didn’t, we wouldn’t mind them quite so much.
“Ego-itis” is a particularly nasty virus in the business world. Don’t be that person at the network meeting or playground who’s all about their own business all the time and can’t stop talking about the new product you need or service you have to purchase. Focus on others first, find out about them, and be a connector instead of self-absorbed.
Another virus business owners often seem to carry is “apology-itis” where they’re constantly apologizing for different aspects of their product or service. Be proud of what you offer and people will enjoy learning about you instead of secretly wondering whether it’s smart to do business with you.
3) Do be persistent, but don’t make people squish you.
I’ve rarely seen a mosquito give up. I swat them away and they keep dive-bombing and buzzing around me until they finally either get squished or get blood.
Don’t give up the first time you fail at something. Keep at it and be persistent. But only while remembering #1 and #2. Don’t persistently pursue someone who wouldn’t benefit from what you offer or they’ll be forced to squish you – ouch!
4) Even if you’re small you can survive and succeed.
Mosquitoes are tiny, yet somehow they are still here. Enough of them avoiding squishing to breed and continue their reign of annoyance for another season.
Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that you can’t be successful or help people because you’re a solopreneur or small business. You’ve got tactical advantages over the “big guys” if you take some time to look for them.
Now, go get “bzzzzzz”-y and build your business, keeping in mind these lessons from a mosquito!