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How to achieve your business goals

Business mentor Mark Rhodes discusses how successful advisers develop the right mind and skills sets to achieve their goals

Business mentor Mark Rhodes believes the most successful advisers are those able to align their mind set and skills to achieve their business goals.

“The mindset is all about having a compelling goal and the confidence to achieve that, while the skillset is about the practicalities – what you do, how you do it and when you do it. The two have to work hand in hand,” he says.

Rhodes says the best business leaders are those who have achieved great personal development, with the personal and work elements complementing each other.

He says: “The starting point is your skill set. If you are the only person in your business, or you have a small lifestyle firm and want to evolve into something bigger, you need to look at all the skills required to achieve that.

“Time management is crucial; you must to be able to organise and compartmentalise your different duties, such as staff training, marketing etc. But, if there’s anything that makes you feel apprehensive or uncomfortable, then you know you’re lacking the mindset.”


Rhodes believes that people can alter their mindset and positivity and confidence can be learned. He is an advocate of neuro-linguistic programming, which he credits with instilling self-belief within people.

He says: “I truly believe anyone can learn and adapt to anything if they set their mind to it. If an adviser already has a client bank and has ambitions to grow the business, they must remember that they have shown they can achieve success. All they need to do is have a clear vision of what it is they want to accomplish and exercise their leadership skills.

“The key is to make sure you’re responding to a situation which is a logical process, rather than reacting, which is driven by emotion.”

Advisers looking to build a corporate structure often follow a business plan, with goals set out in a methodical manner. However, they can struggle to achieve their goals if they are too heavily focused on the ‘skills set’ element and not on their mindset, according to Rhodes.

“A successful business leader will display confidence
and enthusiasm, as well as real passion
for what they want to achieve”

He says a successful business leader will display confidence and enthusiasm, as well as real passion for what they want to achieve. They must be able to communicate in a way that gives others confidence that what they are saying is true.

“It’s about building reputation and credibility, helping to motivate and inspire your team members,” says Rhodes. “If a leader has the right mindset to be positive, and encourage people towards a common goal, helping themselves and others believe that change and improvement is possible, that’s a great step within leadership.”

Good communication is key

When it comes to growing staff numbers, Rhodes says advisers should look to employ others with good communication skills.

“As well as finding ambitious, motivated staff, it’s important to find people who can communicate. There’s a whole myth that social media and email saves time, but if you’re in a people business like financial advice you need those communication skills,” he says.

Advisers looking to build or improve their business also need to know how to delegate properly, particularly if they are looking to hire new staff.

Rhodes recommends using a method whereby the business owner categorises his or her tasks into A, B and C lists. Those which fall under A are tasks they must do themselves, while C-rated tasks should be given to someone else immediately. The owner must then decide which of the B tasks can be given to someone else to ensure the business runs more efficiently.

He says: “Growing your business requires you to think long enough to come up with an answer. Today, we’re all in so much of a rush we can’t be bothered to step back for five minutes to think things through. If you’re looking to hire staff, it’s vital you carry out the task exercise beforehand.”

Systemised process

Rhodes admits that advisers will often be fearful of handing over responsibility of tasks to others, and grow frustrated if people make different decisions to their own.

He says: “It’s rare to find team members who think exactly like you and people need to understand that. What you have to do as a business owner – and therefore leader – is create a well systemised process.

“If you want to run a small corporate firm, you need to replicate your skills set within or eventually sell to someone with the same skill set as yourself. If you want to build a larger firm, you need to build something that works well without you. It needs to run so smoothly and efficiently that if you extract you from the equation, all the cogs still work.”

Rhodes says choosing the right people for the firm is everything, and they should be given recognition and praise.

“At the end of the day, being a great leader is about being a great communicator. You need to inspire confidence and belief in order to grow, and communication is absolutely crucial in doing that,” he says.

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