|The Fun of Business Self-Discovery|
|Written by Oleg Beregovich|
|Tuesday, 14 February 2012 10:54|
When I started writing this article it was going to be about an interesting business project I am working on: the New Perspective Business Group School. I ended up writing about how I came to work on this project and what it means for my self-development. This article is not really about me, though it would seem to be, but rather about an ongoing process of self-discovery I am involved in for the simple purpose of finding the important, fun, productive and sustainable business and lifestyle that can give my life a purpose for the long haul. The purpose is personal. The process for getting "there," where you start to fulfill your purpose, seems universal.
The search initially started with my technology background, adding management and business administration experience on the way, to become a business owner. About mid-way through running my now 12-year old technology consulting business, I understood that I wasn't a businessman in the full sense of the word. I realized that while I was identifying opportunities and fixing problems in my client’s businesses, I was overlooking my own main business issue. For those familiar with Michael Gerber's The E-Myth Revisited, I had a “technician” problem.
[More information on my background may help explain how I came to those crossroads, so I've included two brief paragraphs at the end of the article.]
So, I went back to school and successfully earned a MBA degree, adding it to the BS and MS I had already (for some reason college degree acronyms sound like diseases). With the MBA I had added some business theory and structure to my practical experience, understood that I am at least as smart as most people in business, and made some new connections. Great. Now what?
After getting back to the drawing board, I realized that something was still missing. Something personal. I didn't just want to start a new business or turn-around an existing business. I wanted to start and build something that is mine. Not in the ownership sense "mine," but in the sense of having a business that is an extension of who I am. I am still working on that, but now I am much closer to where I want to be. I came up with some more good ideas, read more books, talked to people I trusted, but I really felt that I needed a new perspective.
I started working with Doug about a year ago. He wasn't the first business coach I have worked with, but I still work with Doug today. Large amounts of creativity and innovation are great during project/business inception, and when the business is up and running. The beginning of a project requires a reasonable amount of structure and discipline to get things moving. This is where I found coaching guidance very helpful.
I had to take a much closer and a truly open-minded view of myself, looking past internally preconceived notions and traditional expectations. Finding what is really important to me, what I am good at, what I want for me and my family, and putting it in a “can do” perspective definitely takes more than one try.
Again, this is a very personal process. Each person will have a different experience and a different pace, and some people might get overwhelmed in the beginning of this process. But the end result is usually the same: a good experience leaving one in a much clearer, more powerful and a more energetic state.
Interestingly enough for me, some time into this process, I decided to stick to my original business ideas. The perspective became very different.
The business is called New Perspective Business Group. Long name, but it does mention key aspects. The mission of the business is to “Help create successful, innovative, sustainable, businesses.” The idea is to guide idea owners and entrepreneurs through an holistic business creation and operations process that includes open standards, best practices, and a measurable learning approach, to improve chances of success and survival in this uncertain environment.
New Perspective Business Group is starting a business school for entrepreneurs. The school will help entrepreneurs in dealing with the following challenges:
✓ How to model a business in an uncertain environment
✓ How to deal with the lack of a well-rounded business education and specific business skills
✓ How to bridge business theory with business reality
✓ How to create a sustainable business for the long term
The school is also an entry point to develop a potential customer base for New Perspective Business Group, which is intended to be a self-sustaining business development channel.
Back to the purpose of the article: Why do I think this business is right for me? It goes back to searching for and clarifying what is important, what my personal competitive advantages are, and what brings me enjoyment and provides sustainability.
After digging around inside a little, I found the following:
There are also several potential personal hurdles to overcome:
Today, I understand where I am, where I am going, and what is possible better than a year ago. And as I officially started this business last month, it feels like I am going into a second iteration of the search, self-analysis, testing and learning. Should be fun. My original business, technology consulting, is still my main revenue generator, and will have to stay this way, until New Perspective Business Group becomes a self-sustaining business. So, this keeps me busy. I like it. Entrepreneurs are an optimistic bunch, and I guess this is my profession from now on. I plan to enjoy it for a long time.
More about My Background
I started as a tech geek. I grew up professionally during the dot-com era, and know many programming languages, and a myriad of various technologies and methodologies. I am a manager and have managed teams of people and projects for over 12 years. I am an entrepreneur. I had an IT consulting business for over 10 years, with global customers, vendors and teams. I have a BS in computer science, an MS in Technology Management, and last but not least, an MBA.
In the personal sphere, I practiced martial arts for many years, and studied and came to respect eastern philosophy (I found this very relevant for connecting business and personal lifestyles). I like teaching and have taught computer classes in small private technology schools, as well as doing personal tutoring, for most of my career.