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Skillset versus Mindset for Business Success

Today, I want to talk about the mindset for business success. We all heard the story growing up: go to school, get good grades, graduate and do university, TAFE or an apprenticeship. There, you’ll get the skills you need to succeed in the world. Nothing can stop you – the world is your oyster!

But if that’s true, then why do many smart, highly skilled people fail at the game of business and life? And why do others – like Richard Branson who struggles just to read due to dyslexia – have so much success for so long?

The answer lies in how they think, not what they do.

What is mindset?

Mindset is the collection of thoughts and beliefs that determine our choices. We may not be conscious of them, but they direct how we see the world and act within it. 

We pick up beliefs kind of like picking up fluff as we go along in our life. Some aren’t even our beliefs – they belong to other people, like our parents, and we heard them so often growing up that we think they’re ours.

But these beliefs don’t help us when it all goes wrong.

When everything seems chaotic

Whilst skillset is super important, the right mindset can get you through the hard times. (And there will always be hard times!) When it all goes wrong and you need to double down and get it done, your skills are no use if you can’t stay motivated to do it. 

Sometimes, walking away would be easier – I know that for a fact. When COVID-19 hit our business, I found myself at the ATM depositing my personal savings into the business account to make sure my workers get paid.

(If you have employees, you’ll know that anxious fear that you’re going to miss payroll.)

It was hard, but I knew that I could save the business and eventually get paid back if I just stayed the course. I could keep my good staff and keep the client happy. 

If I didn’t have the mindset to come up with that strategy, I’d be bankrupt now and facing a ton of lawsuits. 

I remember standing up in the staff meeting and assuring them that no one would lose their job. They didn’t know how I was making it happen and they didn’t have to – that was my job. 

But, imagine if I’d stood up and spoken in a panic. A stressed manager just creates a stressed team, and no one can work creatively and effectively in that environment.

My mindset allowed me to keep the faith and work to get us back on track. A year later, I can see this was a turning point for me and my company. I learned so much, and we actually grew. 

What is a success mindset?

Here are some aspects to a strong, healthy mindset for business success:





Resourcefulness & problem solving



Willingness to try and fail…and then learn

Goal oriented

Team oriented


Gut instinct


Future focused

Of course, there’s heaps more. Some might be so abstract that you can’t put your finger on it – it’s an X factor.

Changing your mindset

Luckily a success mindset isn’t something you’re born with – you can develop it.

But, changing your mindset won’t happen in five minutes – your brain’s been with you a long time and the program is pretty hardwired. Here are some tips to get a mindset for business success:

  1. Sit down and think about your beliefs about the world. Where did they come from? Could they be wrong? Are they even helpful to you?
  2. Stay aware of your own thoughts during the day – watch what your brain tells you.
  3. At the end of the day, review the events and your reactions to them. What kind of mindset were you working with?
  4. Find someone with a strong mindset and model them.
  5. Look into mindfulness practice.
  6. Read books by people on this topic. Immerse yourself in the world. (Read my blog post on how I read a book every week.)

Most importantly, just keep practising and be kind to yourself. Remember, you’re only human!

If you have queries or want to discuss your particular situation, feel free to contact me.

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