Recently,I was a guest at a really nice hotel in Houston,Texas. I was going to the 8th floor of the hotel and the gentleman standing behind me was going to the 12th floor which was the highest floor. Now some of you may begin to think that the person I was on the elevator with was mean or snobby but he wasn’t. He was a very well dressed man, who knew where he was going and he didn’t treat me any different because I was getting off on the 8th floor and he was getting off on a higher floor. He was a real gentleman and he pushed the button for me and held the elevator doors as I got off.
I’ve been hearing people say in the business world “stay in your lane”, but you never really hear these terms from the people that are already at the top of the “food chain”. Why?? I mean really you would think that If anyone should tell the smaller businesses to stay in their lane it should be the business owners that is at the top right? The more success business owners -right? Wrong! The reason why you will never hear people like Oprah tell others in a similar professions as her to “stay in their lane” because she is very secure in her lane. People that are secure in what they do are really too consumed in what they do to be concerned about smaller matters. So is your objective as a small business owner to stay in your own lane?
Let’s complete this exercise together:
Take a second or two to imagine you driving on a two lane road. It’s kind of small not really a lot of options
Now take another two seconds to imagine being behind someone that is at a slower pace than you being directly in front of you. You can’t go around because there is oncoming traffic.So what do you do? You are painfully forced to sit behind this car and travel at their pace and their speed. This is what I imagine when someone tells someone to stay in their own lane..
Now imagine being on a 4 lane highway.. Now that you have more options let me ask you does staying in one lane really make sense to you?
Did the term “stay in your lane” come from people or business owners that are insecure? Maybe so!
Another elevator experience
This is a funny thought but it’s still in relation to my elevator experiences. Again I was in another hotel, although the hotel was nice it wasn’t as nice as the first hotel I had stayed in the previous week. As I waited for the elevator I noticed people racing to get closer to the door and also almost knocking people over to get on the elevator.In addition, they were in a rush to push the buttons on the elevator. At first, I thought wow they must be in a hurry. In addition, they didn’t hold the door open for me and they scrambled over who would push the elevator buttons to their floor. Why was it so important for someone to almost push someone over to get on the elevator?
If we relate this experience to the business world, small business owners attempt to bully,copy or steal from other businesses because they are not confident in where they are or where they are going.
Here’s the real secret to entrepreneurs’ success:
As I got on the second elevator, I immediately thought of the other upscale hotel with the piano in the lobby. Why was the person on the elevator in the upscale hotel so friendly? He knew that I was getting off on a lower level. Why didn’t that matter to him? Why didn’t he treat me differently as if I was beneath him? With both experiences I noticed two things: a person with confidence and people without confidence. The person whom I shared my first elevator experience wasn’t worried about rushing to elevator doors and wasn’t being rude and pushing his 12th floor button before me because he was confident in what he had and he knew it would be waiting on him. Having more CONFIDENCE is the lesson I learned from both of these elevator experiences. When you are confident in what you do as an entrepreneur there is no reason to restrict others to “their lane” because there is enough success for everyone.
Learn who you are as a person. Then learn the nature of your business and it’s purpose and grow. Then after you grow help others to grow.
LaNette Kincaid is a Marine wife and mother of two, that took on the challenge of owning a business shortly after graduating college. Most of her tips and advice that you will read in our magazine will come from her personal experiences of trial and error. To see more of LaNette’s business and inspirational tips be sure to follow her on Twitter @LaNetteKincaid