BUSINESS STRESS TEST

The BST will measure how well your business is performing in 6 key areas: Clarity of Vision, Leadership Responsibility, Brand Commitment, Fiscal Health, Collaboration and Systems & Productivity.

You will receive recommendations based on your score at the end of each section.
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First Name *

 
CLARITY QUOTIENT // Clarity of purpose as it relates to leading your business.

 
I have a well developed vision for my business. *

 
The most important responsibility I have in business is seeing where I'm taking it big picture. *

 
My long term vision regularly trumps my short term concerns. *

 
I view selling my vision as my primary job. *

 
I see my business as clearly distinct from the competition. *

 
My vision is directly reflected in my brand. *

 
When I share my vision, people understand it... *

 
My vision gets ignored when things get tough. *

 
I find myself sharing what makes my business unique everywhere I go. *

 
Those I've shared my vision with can restate it accurately to others. *

 
When I share my vision, people want to hear more. *

 
People get excited when they hear my pitch. *

 
I have trouble describing what makes my company different from the competition. *

Low Clarity Quotient

Description:
You live in the day-to-day of working your craft or some array of tasks without a clear sense of why. You are excited about the idea of running a business but without a sense of where you're going to take it. The risk of being in this position is you could spin your wheels enthusiastically for some time without ever really taking ground. 

Organizationally, you feel confused. What should you do next? If you have a team, you don't know how to prioritize their assignments. That confusion is disabling and limiting for everyone. You feel busy but without purpose. If you're feeling like a lot of time is passing with little change, you might be right. You're full of anxiety and doing more isn't going to help. You need to know where you are and where you're going or you will not succeed.

Recommendation:

It's time to get a grip on your vision. In order to do so, you're going to have to pause and take time to articulate your vision, preferably on paper. Although this may feel like the last thing you have time for, it is perhaps the single most important task in front of you. It will set the trajectory of where you will drive your business and minimize distractions along the way. 

It may help to start by identifying three key adjectives that describe the picture you have for your company. Consider the aspects of your business you are passionate about as descriptors. 

Why did you get in this business to begin with? What benefits do you want your customers to uniquely receive as a result of working with you? What kind of difference do you want your business to make in this world? Take these answers, write them out and practice sharing them with everyone you can. 

Notice the response people give you and refine your language. When you're tempted to emulate other company's visions that you're attracted to, resist. These may inspire you but if they don't flow from who you are as the leader, they won't serve your business. Ironically, it will slow down the process of discovering the right articulation of what your company should be about.
CONTINUE TO PART 2
Medium Clarity Quotient

Description: 
You feel an increased sense of freedom to act that is purposeful and shows some degree of success but the final destination is still a little fuzzy. You know directionally where to head but you are still easily sidetracked, especially by objects of interest that might not serve your vision. 

In many ways, you have a picture of what you want but it's not clear enough to demand the discipline required to make it real. That's why you are tempted to co-opt the picture and travel down side roads that can easily frustrate and disorient. 

You don't always recognize you're being distracted but once you do, you have what you need to correct course. The challenge is you are constantly tempted to settle for a replica of your vision rather than the real article. In this case your "good" is in competition with what could be great.

Recommendation: 
Your dissatisfaction should be increasing the more you find yourself off course. To quote Mr. Miyagi in The Karate Kid, "your focus needs more focus." 

It's certainly ok to develop new ideas but you have to have some sort of filter to make sure you don't allocate disproportionate time in those directions. That filter is your vision.
CONTINUE TO PART 2
High Clarity Quotient

Description: 
You feel a sense of freedom to act and move that is purposeful. Your team works fluidly and understands what's expected of them to succeed. The feedback you receive from customers as well as your financial statements tell you where you're hitting the mark and where you're failing. Vision doesn't guarantee success but it does give you a sense of bearings and direction. You are clear on next steps. 

Most importantly, you feel gratified to know you're headed in the right direction. You have a keen sense of awareness when you're off the mark too. Why? Because you know what the goal is that you're headed toward. You may get distracted along the way, but you are crystal clear when that happens and can correct course. 

Recommendation: 
Since you know what success looks like, take time to celebrate those milestones. By recognizing the things you've done well, it will reinforce your vision and encourage you to continue toward the goal. This idea of reinforcing your vision will contribute to the story you can tell about your business. 

The more you can enrich your company culture with a steady commitment in the right direction, the stronger you and your team will feel.
CONTINUE TO PART 2