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The Ultimate Question For Business Owners

Updated: Oct 10, 2023

In several conversations these past weeks, I have had this ‘ultimate question’ come up with successful business owners. In each case, the businesses they owned were successful and they were considering new opportunities that had either been presented to them or that they had perceived in the marketplace. In hearing their deliberation of all the different issues involved, one overarching question came to mind that I knew I had to ask them. If you are a business owner, you need to ask yourself this question as well:

“How much is enough?”

Over the years that I built up my business, I found that for many of the earlier years the focus was to become bigger and better at what we did. Please note though, it wasn’t just to become bigger. It was also to become better. Becoming bigger just for the sake of becoming bigger is a mistake. However, when you combine it with ‘better’ as well, then it’s not necessarily a bad thing. For many of us in the early stages of our businesses or our careers, it is certainly the right thing to do.

As time passed though, my priorities changed. I came to realize as many do that while it’s important to achieve a certain level of success because we all need to eat, it can’t be the ultimate end goal. When it is, it becomes both unachievable and unsatisfying. It’s unachievable because there is always someone that has a larger business than yours, and it’s unsatisfying because it becomes an endless pursuit for something that has limited meaning. Success and growth can be fun, but without greater purpose they leave us with an empty feeling. Ultimately you must work for something bigger than simply to get bigger.

Eventually you figure out in your pursuit of success that your ultimate goal is something much more important than success itself, whatever that particular item may be for you. This is why the question above truly becomes the ‘ultimate question’ for business owners. How much is enough to live the life you want, without sacrificing many aspects of the very life you desire? When you are able to answer this question for yourself, you will likely find that “how much” is a little less than you thought it was. This is a good thing.

As you build your business, however large you determine that it should be, I encourage you to keep this vital question in mind. If you do, you will find yourself leading a much happier life long-term. If you don’t, my worry for you is that you will end up making great sacrifices towards an end that doesn’t seem to be quite as meaningful or fulfilling as you anticipated it would be.

If you need assistance in formulating and achieving your own long-term vision, please reach out to us on our Contact page.

I wish you the best in your business and life.

Mark Goldman



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