What you’ll learn in this episode:
As we close out the year, and we look ahead to a new year, our brain goes into a place where we’re thinking about what we want, what is our dream and our future, and what opportunities are ahead for us.
I believe this is one of the best times for entrepreneurs, and that we are standing in front of some of the biggest opportunities in our business, resulting in the biggest impact, the most money, and the most fun.
As an entrepreneur, our ability to evaluate an opportunity is invaluable.
Whether it’s our offers or an investment or something that we’re going to do in our business, our ability to decide whether it’s a good idea or a bad one, is crucial.
In today’s episode I’m sharing the 5-step framework I use to evaluate opportunities so you can decide if the opportunities that present themselves in the new year are something to capitalize on or turn away.
Here’s a glance at this episode:
- Why no decision is risk free
- How to use your Hell Yes! energy to guide evaluate opportunities
- Looking at historical and related data to help make future decisions
- Why intentional expert opinion is necessary and helpful (but how less is more)
- Why guidance and mentorship will help you capitalize on profitable opportunities (and avoid costly ones), and save time and money in the long run
Mentioned in this episode:
Work/Connect with me:
[0:01] Hello, everyone, and welcome to the It’s Your Offer Podcast. I’m Jess Miller and I’m so excited to be here with you this week to talk to you about opportunities.
[0:11] As we close out the year, and we look ahead to a new year, our brain goes into a place where we’re thinking about what we want, what is our dream and our future, and what opportunities are ahead for us. As an entrepreneur, our ability to evaluate an opportunity is really invaluable. Whether it’s our offers or an investment or something that we’re going to do in our business, our ability to decide whether or not that is good or bad, is crucial. And, frankly, there is no way around, you know, thinking about these opportunities and being able to discern whether or not it’s something you want to do or don’t want to do. So this topic has been coming up quite a bit, both in my programs and with my clients, as well as with my colleagues as to when we’re looking at different opportunities. How do we decide whether or not they’re good or bad? What are the steps that we go through, to make the decision about whether or not to move forward with something, or either abandon it or just go in a different direction, I believe after the year that we’ve had, and frankly, this past several years that we’ve had, there is a major shift going on in the marketplace. And I believe as entrepreneurs, this is one of the best times that we are standing in front of some of the biggest opportunities in our business to have the biggest impact, make the most money, and really do the things that we love on a bigger scale.
[1:47] In order to do that successfully, we need to be able to evaluate opportunities, and to decide whether or not it’s something that we want to move forward with. So as I started talking about this, I started to think about how do I do this. And I personally am looking at opportunities all the time, I’m constantly thinking about what I’m doing, where I want to go, what different things move in front of me and how to best capitalize off of those things. And so as I started to think about this, I started to really go inward to figure out what are the steps that I take when I’m evaluating an opportunity? And maybe more importantly, is, when I’m looking for a good opportunity, what are the things that I do in order to decide that I believe it’s an opportunity worth investing my time and energy and so I jotted down a handful of these steps. And I wanted to come on and share this with all of you. Because again, your ability to do this, your ability as an entrepreneur to decide whether an opportunity is good or bad, is crucial for the success of your business, for your time and energy and investment of all of those things in moving forward. our time and our energy is a limited resource. And our ability to do that in a concise way and use it in a concise way. And really weigh these opportunities so that we can make some good decisions and move forward is important.
[3:16] So here are some of the things that I do when I’m trying to decide whether or not an opportunity is a good or a bad opportunity. So the first thing that I do when thinking about opportunities, is I look at the risk portfolio. So when I look at this opportunity, I want to look at how risky is this? Okay, so the first thing is what is the risk involved? And from my perspective, everything has risk, there is no, there is really no safe bet, there is no decision or opportunity that you could take that has zero risk, even doing nothing has an inherent risk to it. There’s opportunity costs, there’s the risk of an opportunities passing you by, there’s the risk of going backwards, right? So even standing still is not zero risk. So every decision you make, and even a lack of a decision carries risk with it. So the first thing I want to do is evaluate that risk. Is the thing that I’m considering as an opportunity, I’m considering high risk, low risk, what is it? And if I’m going to take a risk, which as I mentioned, no matter what you do, you’re taking the risk, what I want to do is I want to take a calculated risk.
[4:31] So that means I want to look at the options. I want to look at the risk port, you know, portfolio and I want to decide from the research that I’ve done and the information that I have, how can I take this risk in a calculated way and to understand fully what that looks like? So that first step is what is sort of this risk portfolio? What is it what does it look like to either take this opportunity or not take this opportunity or somewhere in between that, you know, you go into it come out of it for a little bit, whatever that looks like. So what is the risk?
[5:07] The second piece of it is, what energetically does it feel like? I’ve talked about this so many times that your body is a compass, it is giving you information all of the time. And so how does it feel like what is that sort of, you know, gut feeling that’s coming up for you, as you think about this opportunity? What is your body telling you about it? Most importantly, in my world is, is this opportunity? A hell yes for you, right? If you’re going to create an offer, as an example of something that you’re considering as an opportunity? Is it hell yes? For you, what do you want out of this? And, you know, how does that feel in your body to you? Are you excited about it? Because that’s a huge part of whether or not this is an opportunity that you should either consider or decline. I can’t tell you how many people that I have spoken to clients that I’ve spoken to, where they’ll tell me something, and, and I can tell it’s coming from their brain, it’s very cerebral. But when I asked them how they feel about it, it’s just not that exciting. And sometimes, it’s really not good when you start to dig into it with people and you start to talk to them. And you ask them, well, how do you feel about this, they actually really don’t like it. But they’re kind of stuck in this mental place, which I think is leaving a huge part of the equation out, which is your body and that feeling and that emotional connection to it. So after I sort of think about the risk, I think about how do I feel about this? And am I in hell yes energy about this particular opportunity? And, you know, how does that look for me? How does it feel for me? Okay, so that’s the second thing. And again, it’s sort of that gut feeling like you’re going part on risk, which is the first step. So that very prefrontal cortex, you know, research, let me think about taking a calculated risk here, what does that look like? And then using your body and the feeling that you get that energetic component to it as that second step that’s really giving you information?
[7:20] The third piece is, what data do you have? Right? What data do you have historically? Have you done something like this before? What’s the data that you’ve collected around it? Is there data in the marketplace that you can capitalize off of? I love these hard facts, like what is the data telling you? And then if you’re going into the opportunity, what data can you track? You want to track everything you want to track this progress. So if you’ve made a decision, and you’re looking to, you know, move forward with an opportunity, in any capacity, you want to always be looking at the data, you want to track your progress and your results. And you want to look at that. And you really want to critique what is the data telling me here. So historical data, data that you’re collecting along the way, you know, anything that’s going to help you, kind of give you that really tangible, hardcore information, so that you can, you know, discern from that, what kind of an opportunity it is based on the data.
[8:21] The fourth thing is to consult the experts. So when it comes to many opportunities, we are not the expert in some of the things that we are evaluating, yes, maybe we’re an expert in some of it. But there’s, oftentimes there’s opportunities outside of our lane. And so you want to go and ask the people in your life, that are experts that you, number one, they have the experience around the information that you’re actually looking for. This is crucial. Don’t go ask your neighbor, don’t ask your best friend, don’t ask your sister, make sure that it is somebody who is credible, who has the information that you need as an expert, meaning they know what they’re doing, they’ve done it before they have a proven track record. And you know, you’re asking them about something that is within that wheelhouse. And then the other piece of it is that you trust them, that you’ve worked with them before. They’re they’re standing in integrity, they’re going to be honest with you, they’re going to tell you the information that you want to know with no strings attached. That’s the kind of person that you want to ask. And making decisions in a vacuum about something that you don’t fully understand is not what you want to be doing.
[9:34] Now, I want to say caveat, side note. There’s also the opposite issue that I think is also a big problem and that is going out and asking everybody for their opinion. You don’t want to ask everybody. You don’t want to go out there and post it in a Facebook group. Even if these people are experts in a certain space. You don’t want opinions of 45 people because that also leads to issues. You want to find a few trusted sources, again that have the expertise, they’ve got a proven track record, they know what they’re doing, and that you trust them. And you can ask them for some, you know, expert advice on something that you’re considering. And then stop there. Don’t go and ask everybody. It’s not you know that that is not what you want to be doing. It’s almost like information paralysis. And the other thing that happens when you ask too many people is, they may know what they’re talking about. But people have different philosophies. And many times, those different philosophies are in conflict with one another, not because they’re wrong, but because they’re just different philosophies, they’re coming at it from a different place. So when you start asking 20, people, you start to get into that kind of a problem. So trusted expert, they know what they’re talking about, and you trust them to give you good information that you can really, you know, value, and stand behind.
[10:56] And then the last thing that is like last but not least, and it seems sort of obvious, but it bears mentioning, which is get support from a seasoned expert. So almost everybody I know whether you’re a coach, a CEO, doesn’t matter what you’re doing in your business, people have mentors, coaches, and support from seasoned experts. And the reason for that is, if you’re an entrepreneur, and you’re listening to this, you know, that it’s not easy to go it alone, that having support and a community and a guide to help you navigate through some of these things that are very difficult, gets you to where you want to go far easier and faster than you would go otherwise. It also helps, you know, kind of avoid some of these battle wounds that come from going down that, you know, path less traveled or that you know, territory that hasn’t been charted yet for you. And so when you work with someone who’s seasoned to give you support, and offer you that guidance, it allows you to see things you wouldn’t have seen before, evaluate, you know, these opportunities in a way that you wouldn’t evaluate them alone.
[11:20] And as you’re thinking about, again, where you want to go forward, and something that you may or may want to do, that allows you to have this expert opinion that’s outside of yourself unbiased and frankly, with the vantage point that you likely don’t have yet. And doing that can be one of the biggest catalysts, not only for growth in your business, as far as thriving and making money and having an impact. But it could also be the biggest catalyst for personal growth. Because as we know, we are one of the biggest assets in our business, you as an entrepreneur are one of the biggest assets in your business. And the way that you’re able to critique things and think about things through your own lens, with the help of someone else who’s guiding that process. And really helping you think through it is invaluable. And it is hard to do that for yourself. So when you hire an expert, or someone to support you, that’s able to get in there and help you grow personally in the way that you think about things and navigate through them and show up, in addition to all of the, you know, experience that the person has that they can offer you and the pitfalls that they can help you avoid, and also opportunities that they can help you think through in your brain about an opportunity that you’re considering. All of those things are things that you will not get alone. And I don’t know one successful entrepreneur who doesn’t hire experts to support them. Or also that doesn’t surround themselves with other successful people within community that allow them to do that.
[13:51] When you find a group, or a guide or a coach or somebody who can help you navigate through these things, you are able to make quicker decisions, more powerful decisions. And you’re able to also avoid some of the downside. And that kind of goes back to that calculated risk piece, like some of the risks that’s associated with things that you just don’t have the experience for yet. So getting the support from a seasoned expert is crucial when trying to evaluate an opportunity going forward, or whether or not an opportunity is a good opportunity or a bad opportunity. Having that person there to support you is a really, really important.
[14:31] So circling back to opportunities as we move through the end of the year as we think about the next year coming up. We start to think about different opportunities in our business, whether it’s a new offer you’re putting out there or whether it’s something that you’re investing in your business in a different way. There are opportunities around us all the time and our ability to evaluate whether those are good or bad is crucial. You cannot move forward and have a thriving business without Being able to evaluate opportunities and to really kind of move through it in a systematic way so that you can decide whether or not this opportunity that’s in front of you is something that you want to invest in or move forward with or not.
[15:16] So just to recap, the five things that I do when I’m trying to decide whether an opportunity is good or not, is number one, I always weigh the risks, I look at that risk portfolio, is it, you know, really risky? Is it not so risky? Is it somewhere in between? And how do I take a calculated risk? When I’m thinking about this, I try to think through all those different moving pieces, so that I can look at the risk, you know, equation, but also think about, if I were to move forward with something, how do I do this in a very calculated way, so that I protect myself or I do that in a in a smart, strategic way?
[15:50] The second thing I do is I always look for that hell yes. Energy, I always use my body as a compass. Am I excited about this? Am I being really drawn toward this thing? Or when I kind of think about it more? Is it really sort of repelling me? Not from my head, but from my body? It’s like a heart center thing. And I think it’s really important that you want to think about, you know, is it how yes for you? What do you want? Is it drawing you closer to it or not? And how does that feel in your body, like, I always tell my clients feel forward, and really listen to that information that your body’s giving you because it’s giving you information all the time.
[16:29] The third thing is you want to look at the data, you want to look at historical data, have you done something like this before? Is there something in the marketplace or that you can look at that is going to give you some data about how this might go down. Or if you’re sort of waiting into this water, you always want to track your progress and your results. And you want to look at those results. So you can make decision as you move forward. Most opportunities, they’re not stagnant. So if you can move into them, and then you’re collecting all this information, to decide whether or not you want to keep moving forward? Well, you can do the same thing when you’re evaluating an opportunity as well. If I make one decision, what does that look like? What’s the data? And how do I use that to inform my other decisions going forward, so collect the data and really look at it.
[17:15] The fourth thing is ask a trusted expert. As I mentioned, you want to ask somebody that number one has the experience that you are looking for they’ve done the thing that you’re wanting to evaluate, they it’s in their lane, they have a proven track record, you there’s somebody who knows what they’re talking about, don’t go and ask some random person, your neighbor, your friend, whomever who might be a great, you know, guy or gal, but they’re not an expert in the field. And I see this a lot. So be very discriminatory in who you ask and to really make sure that you choose people who have that expertise. And then the second piece is make sure you trust them, you know, they have good character, they’re in integrity, they’re going to be honest with you. It’s a safe space, and you want to really ask that person. I also mentioned, don’t go out and ask 20 people, you start getting all sorts of information. It’s information overload, many people could have used that conflict, it just becomes a nightmare. So you know, have faith in your ability to make your own decision, and that you will be able to then find a few people that are trusted to ask. And then you can make a decision from there. Don’t go ask 40 people. And then last but not least, get support from a seasoned expert, every successful CEO that I know and entrepreneur has people supporting them. They have community, they surround themselves with really incredible people, they go and get mentorship or guidance or coaching that they need from somebody that they trust that they believe is going to help them get to where they want to go. And they make sure to utilize that person in times like this, as businesses grow more opportunities come across your plate, and having somebody like that and a community around you that you can lean on. Because as we know, entrepreneur, you know the journey of an entrepreneur, it’s not for the faint of heart. Having that support is crucial, it will get you to where you want to go faster, it will save you tons of money, tons of time, and it will just be a much more enjoyable and impactful experience.
[19:14] So make sure that you get that support from a seasoned expert in whatever way that you can. It will be one of the best investments that you ever make in your decision, and it will be the best piece of guidance that you need in deciding about opportunities that come across your table going forward. So, as I mentioned, as an entrepreneur, your ability to evaluate and opportunities and invaluable you can not be successful in your business without honing the skill. And I believe following these five steps will allow you to work through these opportunities. Be able to decide whether an opportunity is a good opportunity for you or a bad one, and be able to make those decisions quickly so that you can capitalize on these opportunities as they come across your desk and or decide They’re not for you and move forward quickly because as we know, time is money and our energy is value and you want to be able to make these decisions quickly and easily so that you can, you know, move through your business and continue to create the impact the money and the influence that you want.