The Mindset of a Successful Business Owner

"The most important asset of any business is the owner." Tony Gattari

In my experience of working with over 110 businesses around the world over many years, I have been amazed at how often we are called in because the business owner has problems with staff or customers or suppliers or the market. Invariably our first meeting with an owner is dominated by the owner telling us all the problems he is facing and how everyone is against him. This 'victim mentality' typically expresses itself through blame, denial and excuses. After hearing what the owner has to say, we will usually confront him with a simple, bold statement: "Your problems have little to do with anyone else; they are ultimately a reflection of your own behaviour."

The essence of this statement is an important insight - a business is a reflection of its owner. As the owner gets better, so does the business.

So before we set to work on other aspects of your business, let’s start by working on you - the owner. I know this might not be what you want to hear, but herein lies the great secret to success in business. Business success has very little to do with what you get (how much money you make or how famous you become). It has everything to do with the person you become. My advice to you is to rejoice in the process of developing your character, because that is what you'll need to sustain real success. Having made this point, I invite you to read on, do the exercises and, most of all, enjoy the journey!

Success = Activity

We live in a world of abundance where persistence in doing the right activities can lead to great rewards. There is nothing wrong with going after this reward and enjoying the fruits of our labour, as long as we don’t fall into the trap of measuring our success by how much we have in material terms. If this is the frame of mind you are in, I recommend that you reread the Preface of this book and learn from some big mistakes I have made in the past.

Another important lesson to learn is not to fear failure. In pursuing success in any endeavor, we need to understand that failure is not a lifestyle; it is only an event.

The Importance of Your Beliefs

"We can make an income or create a destiny." Tony Gattari

You must have the right mindset before beginning the journey of building a successful business or career.


Start by asking yourself the following questions and writing down your answers:

What do I most enjoy doing in life?

What kind of life do I want to live?

What legacy do I want to leave behind?

After asking yourself these questions, you should begin to have an understanding of how you will measure your success. Whatever we have in terms of worldly possessions is what is seen from the outside. In general, society will measure our success on the basis of how many expensive toys we have. But real achievement is all about our belief systems. Before we can enjoy the lifestyle we are searching for, we must define or refine our beliefs.


Review your answers to the questions above. Can you write down one paragraph that expresses your life mission, your purpose and your desired lifestyle? Are these things clear in your mind? When you think about these things, does it spark emotion in you and inspire you to commit your life to the path set before you? Use the space below to write down your personal mission paragraph.

My purpose in life is ?

The Power of a Positive Attitude

"Those who start with too little money are more likely to succeed than those who start with too much. Energy and imagination are the springboard to business success." - Unknown

Your attitude, whether good or bad, will determine your outcomes in life. If you want to be the best you can, it is essential that you have a good attitude. Your attitude will also set your focus. In other words, what you focus on is what you'll get! Here's a quick way to check what your attitude is right now. It’s called 'Above-the-Line - Below-the-Line'. Be honest and tick the answers that are applicable to you. Which side of the line are you playing on?


Use the tick boxes below to consider whether you are an 'Above-the-Line' or a 'Below-the-Line' person:


    I take ownership
    I am accountable
    I am responsible


    I blame others
    I make excuses
    I am in denial

Above-the-Line: If you have ticked all the answers above the line, you are a person who will always find solutions to problems. You will always live a life of abundance, because you seek answers to life challenges and accept when things go wrong.

Below-the-Line: If you are sitting below the line, you will find it hard to be successful in business unless you change your beliefs. More than likely, you are probably inclined to make statements like the following:

  • The economy is tightening up; no one is spending any money
  • My staff are hopeless
  • The big guys down the road are always discounting. How can I compete with their prices?
  • My customers are always trying to get things cheaper
  • Whinge, whinge, whinge...

How are you supposed to get a positive result if you have a negative mindset?

About Tony Gattari, Achievers Group

The author is founder and Chief Energy Officer of Achievers group. He is a much in demand passionate professional speaker, business educator, author and corporate, business advisor. He has worked with over 140 businesses around the world.

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