Ambition Vs Ability – Don’t Confuse Them…

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What is your AMBITION?

What ABILITY do you possess that will ensure you achieve your ambition?

Business Owners typically paint big, ambitious pictures for themselves and their families.

In that picture they see themselves having more. More of everything.

More possessions, more wealth, more relationships, more free time, more control and more experiences. More of a bigger and better life.

Ironically, it doesn’t end up like that… but they do get MORE.

More health issues, more body weight, more financial complexities, more debt, more people problems, more time spent in the business, more time away from family, more worries and more daily stresses.


Business Owners tend to be far right brainers – they have great ideas, but they struggle big time at consistently implementing their ideas.

They need to be surrounded by implementers!

They need people UNLIKE themselves.
Some business owners never get this lesson and continue to run and control the business as though they are the only ones who can do what needs to be done.

Let’s go back for a business lesson on the golf course.

I’m a right brainer and I love golf. So here is my strategy, which I used in the early days to help me play well:

Before a competition, I would lay in bed the night before and visualize how I was going to play every single hole.

I would go through each hole, visualizing what club I was going to pull out of the bag, picturing the distance the ball would travel and where it would land, considering my next shot and imagining exactly what would happen once I reached the putting green.

In my mind I played near-perfect golf. I was a champ! That was my AMBITION.

I’d spring out of bed the next day, all excited and pumped up. I’d look out of the window and, if it was a clear sunny day, I would convince myself that today was going to be MY day of victory – the golfing gods were going to be on my side.

I totally felt that, today, I was going to play my best round ever. It would be so good, in fact, that the TV stations, newspapers and golfing journals would be scrambling to interview me, asking me how I did it, what I ate in the morning and what my secret was. I could even see what the papers headline would read:

‘Amateur Golfer Discovers The Secret To Pro Golf Scores’

In my mind I was expressing my AMBITION to myself.

I turn up to the golf course, pumped up, with all the thoughts of how I was going to play today still racing through my mind – still quietly confident that today was my day.

I step up to the first tee, a bit nervous, but silently excited, and with one glorious swing I smash the ball right out of bounds! With a one stroke penalty, and now hitting my second ball, I haven’t even moved off the tee box and my score is already three for a par four. In the end, I finish with a seven.

My mind then goes into a tail spin. This is not what was meant to happen! At this point there is a huge conflict going on in between my ears.

It’s at just such moments that I realise my AMBITION does not match my REALITY. There is a huge gap between the two!

I carry on, telling myself there’s plenty of holes left, and that it was just probably nerves. I continue playing, hoping that the next hole will match my ambition.

It doesn’t!
I ended up with one of my worst rounds for the year.

It’s crushing for my ego and my sanity. I question my ambitions, but quickly shrug it off by telling myself that it was just ‘one of those rounds’ and there’s always next week.

Business owners play the game of business in much the same way that they play the game of golf.

They have huge ambitions, but their abilities don’t match those ambitions.

This is a very serious problem.
The problem is that when your ambitions (or goals) don’t match your abilities (business skills), the kneejerk reaction is to compensate by

working harder and harder and harder until you simply can’t do it anymore.

We play more golf, we go to the driving range and hit hundreds of balls, but nothing really changes except that we get tired and disillusioned with the game of golf and, more importantly, with ourselves.

With this type of thinking, business owners end up either selling their business (selling their golf clubs) or closing the business down (giving away their golf clubs).

If I was serious about my golfing ambitions, as you should be about your business ambitions, then all I needed to do is find people to help me bridge the gap between my ambitions and my abilities.

To became a better golfer I needed to up my golfing skills. I took a series of lessons, had my golf clubs custom fitted and practiced over and over again. I studied what it took not only to play better golf, but also to think better around the course, so that I could play with strategic purpose instead of just trying to whack the ball as close as possible to the hole.

I tamed down my ambitions to match my current abilities. If I played within one or two strokes of my handicap, I would tell myself it was a great round. I would also tell myself that, if I wanted to play below my handicap, I would have to get more coaching and practice in so that I could bridge the real gap between my ambition and my ability.

Business is no different.

Be real about your current abilities and be real about your ambitions. If there is a gap, bridge it.

Working longer and harder hours won’t bridge the gap.

If you confuse your ambitions with your abilities you will need a very strong pair of legs, because you’ll be doing a lot of running around and time wasting, and that’s how you end up working longer and longer hours.

Seek support, mentors and coaches who can help you bridge the gap between your ambitions and your current abilities.

Our way of doing things is unique and it’s why it produces unique results for our clients…

We would love the opportunity to help you clear your head on what is the right way for you to accelerate your business… 

We highly recommend you watch this step-by-step case study of how we grew Beefy’s Pies into a Famous Aussie Icon from a small stressed out bakery into a family owned chain. Click here to get all the insights into their success…

Or if you have heard enough about how we work with our small business owners, then let’s have an off the record chat about your current situation and see what we can do to immediately guide you…click this link to see what time best suits you.

Wayne Hutcheson

P.S. Ask if our Boardroom Program intake is open for enrolments…It works best for business owners who see the benefit of having us on as their ‘external partner’ so that they are not alone in the day to day decisions of their business. 









About the Author:

Wayne Hutcheson is a Coach of the highly regarded Grow Business Grow Boardroom Program. He works closely with a hand full of clients to help them achieve growth in their business and to enjoy 'guilt-free' time away from their business without it affecting their profitability.
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