January 3, 2020January 6, 2020 // Partners Fuel Growth Without Breaking What’s Working One of the biggest challenges I see entrepreneurs face is fueling the growth of their business, without breaking their business. The closing of iconic retailer Southern Season in my hometown of Chapel Hill is an example of what’s at stake. As of January 1, 2020, their enlarged flagship store and all other physical locations have not survived efforts to grow the business; the online business is remaining open – so far. Key to business success I’ve spent over 30 years creating business success and discovered that there is a single key to preventing crisis when growing your business: knowing your True Self. Confusion about who you are, where you try to be something you’re not as you grow, is the root cause of both personal and business breakdown. Interestingly, knowing who you are and who you want to become is the first step in healthy, powerful leadership. True Self Leadership then, is the key to sustainable business growth. The IAM Way I started out my career as a software engineer and then earned a master’s degree in Organization Development (OD); I became rather obsessed with maximizing our human potential to create both meaningful and profitable work experiences. In my first 10 years in OD, I faithfully used the best practices I was taught – until I realized that they were too slow, too academic, and too complicated to work in most entrepreneurial situations. The IAM Way is a system I engineered over the next 20 years as I worked with people to discover what really works. The IAM Way is the result of refining what works. It’s a 5-step whole-person leadership, career, and organization development process that guides you to tap into your authentic self and your personal power, so you can lead and succeed based on your definition of success – what’s already working in your business that you can build on. It’s a fact that much of successfully growing a business depends on market conditions. For example, Southern Season is being impacted by the decline in brick and mortar retail. And yet retail isn’t dying, it’s evolving. The unique identity and brand of Southern Season is valuable – if it can be translated into digital venues and they can stay true to their brand and what made them successful in the first place. Evolve and grow The growth and evolution of a business can be effective with True Self Leadership, the first step in the IAM Way process – the step that changes everything! What’s needed is leadership that challenges the people who comprise your business to grow and evolve – to meet changing demands both internal to your organization and in the external marketplace. These demands inevitably create stress that can either: 1) bring out your best and build your capacity to deliver and adapt, or 2) result in confusion, overwhelm, or conflict about what to do. True Self Leadership and the IAM Way guides you to proceed with clarity, confidence, and courage in growing into the next best version of your potential, both personally and collectively. Knowing your True Self can ensure being your best and success, which I hope Southern Season can do. Learn more about True Self Leadership and the IAM Way at the upcoming Leadership Series for CED Partners January 28, 2020. For more information and to sign-up visit the Leadership page. Authored By: Karen Tax, I am a consultant and author who coaches people to rediscover their innate brilliance – where you make your work meaningful and profitable at the same time – without sacrifice or compromise, where everyone wins. It’s what we all want but don’t always have the clarity, confidence, or courage to live.