Could These Two Forgotten Factors Determine the Success of Your Business?

Why do fewer than 10 percent of startup businesses succeed? The answer may surprise you. Serial entrepreneur and business mindset coach Olympia Papazoglou discusses the two most important forgotten factors that determine success: mindset and psychology.


Whether you’re a new entrepreneur starting up a whole new thing, or an established entrepreneur feeling stuck and seeking to expand, it can be empowering to know that taking care of your inner world plays an important role in how you perceive and behave in your outer world.


Forgotten factor #1: Mindset

Mindset refers to the belief system and the set of rules that we have accepted and imposed on ourselves. The nature of those beliefs and “rules” often determines our thoughts, behaviours and actions, which can lead to certain results. In other words, our beliefs, thoughts and behaviours can influence our outcomes.

For example, if we live in a foreign country and have a belief that nobody will trust us as a business partner or give us an opportunity to present our business plan, this may restrict us from taking action. If we instead ask ourselves questions like “How can I make this happen?” and “How can I gain the trust of this new market?”, we widen our perspective, and begin to spot more opportunities and come up with creative ideas.

Beliefs about ourselves are also reflected in our body language and tone of voice, influencing how others perceive us. Examining beliefs and replacing them with ones that really serve you can make a significant difference to how you perceive – and pursue – your business dream and goals.


Forgotten factor #2: Psychology

Psychology is equally as important as mindset; indeed, the two work together. Our emotions primarily control our behaviours and actions. On a basic level, we are motivated to avoid pain or to gain pleasure. And when we are trying something new, something out of our comfort zone – starting a business, for example! – fear may kick in. This is because change is often perceived as dangerous and so our mind tries to prevent it from happening. This is a very normal response to protect ourselves – but one that we can pay attention to, and shift, when the fear is not working in our favour.

But how can we confront the mind? There are two powerful psychological tools we can turn to:

  • The first is to ask: “What is the worst thing that can happen?” and “What is the best thing that can happen?” Make peace with the outcome.
  • The second is to assume you have already achieved your first business goal, and to ask: “What is my next goal?” By focusing on the next goal, your mind receives a message that your first goal has already been achieved and that you are safe and sound – so you will feel less fearful of pursuing that first goal.


Building for success in business

I believe that success in business is largely determined by an open, unbiased, flexible mind; unshakable confidence this may seem easier said than done, but it just takes practice, like every skill in life; and deep awareness of any emotional states that support or prevent us from moving towards our desired outcome.


PHOTO: Jenny Ueberberg/Unsplash


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Olympia Papazoglo is a serial entrepreneur in the oil and gas industry. She is an MSc Naval Architect and Marine Engineer, which she completed at National Technical University of Athens, Greece. Before becoming an entrepreneur, she worked in leadership roles for major international companies in the oil and gas industry in South Korea, the Netherlands, United Kingdom and Greece. In addition to her main entrepreneurial activities, she is an ICF-certified business mindset coach. She is also the leader in Europe for the Global Maritime Community and a member of WISTA Hellas.