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As recent global president of the Entrepreneur Association, Troy Hazard has consulted for the likes of Goodyear, Baskin-Robbins, Subway and Fischer & Paykel. But he’s the first to admit he’s faced some moments of sheer desperation in business. For more on his story, Hazard joins Peter Switzer on his Sky News Business Channel program – SWITZER.

Troy began in the media when he first left school and worked in radio, television and television production for a few years. But he found he wasn’t enjoying it anymore and decided to start his own business.

“We broke out and did a bit of property development, renovating houses, and with the money we made out of that we invested it in other broken businesses essentially, looked at things that needed renovating or fixing and did our best to turn them around and sell them. So we became traders essentially.”

People problem

He says each of the different businesses he invested in had different aspects wrong with them, but the underlying problem was people – “bad leaders, bad people”.

“They just had no vision, they had no focus, and consequently they ran round and round in circles a lot,” he says. “And that was what was the bottleneck for many of them.”

Most of the businesses would just “wing it”.

“They wake up and the business grows and all of a sudden it’s going a lot better and [they say,] ‘Oh, we’ll keep going’ and they keep peddling and then three years later they go ‘how did we get here? I can’t quite work it out, but we’re still going OK’,” he explains.

Then something happens, for example, the economy shifts and the business is no longer ‘OK’ anymore, he says.

“Our job is to go into many of these companies to have a look at it and go, ‘Well, we need to get you focused on looking further down the track and remembering there is a cycle in business and the cycle will come back and hit you again’.”

Don’t lose track

Hazard is now on the US business speaking circuit. He explains that 2009 was difficult as they arrived in November 2008 when his book was being released and just when the global financial crisis hit.

“I figured if everyone was looking for the next thing, they might actually take my phone calls,” he says. “And fortunately they did.”

He explains that his book The Naked Entrepreneur was about him “tearing back the unreal layers of business and getting true”. He had been in business of 20 years and in 2006 he burnt out. 

“We had a great year in business, but personally I was just a wreck,” he says. “And so I sat down and tried to work out what was wrong. And essentially it was me losing touch with why I was actually getting out of bed. It was just more equals more. I lost the fun.”

Hazard says as we get many pressures put on us everyday, “we’re focused on avoiding the accident as opposed to trying to win the race”.

“It’s about the next pay cheque, the next mortgage payment, the next rent payment, and you lose track of why you’re actually doing it,” he explains.

Check out Peter Switzer’s SWITZER on Sky News Business Channel, Monday to Thursday from 7pm. 

So, if you’re looking to work on your business rather than being stuck in it, book in for a complimentary business assessment today with Switzer Business Coaching

Important information: This content has been prepared without taking account of the objectives, financial situation or needs of any particular individual. It does not constitute formal advice. For this reason, any individual should, before acting, consider the appropriateness of the information, having regard to the individual’s objectives, financial situation and needs and, if necessary, seek appropriate professional advice.

Published on: Thursday, September 30, 2010

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