Semantics can be defined as the study of meanings, or the science and study of meaning in language. I think there is importance to paying attention to the meanings of words and how that applies to our businesses and how we see our businesses.
Here’s an exercise in semantics. Ask yourself: do you work for success as an end-all or do you see your business as a means or tool for prosperity? Aren’t success and prosperity the same thing? I think that one of the key elements to business prosperity is dedication. I think that dedication resides in that place between success and prosperity.
I remember years ago, when I was in high school and my mom was busy with her bookkeeping business, I once talked to her about success. You’d have to know my mother to understand her response, but she said she did not believe she would ever be successful; her only goal was to be prosperous. To her “prosperity” meant making a profit and success meant something beyond her ability to achieve.
One definition of “success” is the completion of a series of events [tasks] that accomplishes the intended goal. “Prosperity” on the other hand, has within it the idea of thriving and economic well-being. It could be that my mom never saw her home business as being complete…she didn’t see an end to it; it didn’t have a beginning, middle and end. She did see her business as providing financially for her family. Her business thrived and did achieve what she wanted in terms of prosperity. Her goal was to make enough income by providing bookkeeping, taxes and payroll services to her clients to help pay the family’s bills. In this she succeeded. However, her goal was never to have a “successful” business. She didn’t start her home business for the sake of having a business, she started it to help her family. Maybe this is all just semantics, but for someone like my mom it was an important distinction.
Dedication was key to the prosperity of Winnie’s Bookkeeping Service. Mom was dedicated to providing the services she was good at and dedicated to helping my dad to meet the family’s financial obligations.
I think that dedication is crucial to both success and prosperity and lies at that place between the two.
Linda C Smith, http://www.intlnat.com