Business owners tend to fall into one of two camps – those who are willing to have a go at anything and try new services and ideas, or those who want to maintain the status quo and who are very conservative in their approach to life. Indeed, the notion that people are either open to change, or they are not is a central characteristic of personality psychology. In personality tests your degree of “openness” is assessed and forms part of your personality profile. The degree to which each of us is “open” is, according to personality theory, a rather fixed part of our very being – we are either open, or not.
However, recent research suggests that our degree of openness can indeed be altered. It is not a firmly established personality trait after all, but something which can fluctuate. And that is good news for the online success of anyone running an Internet business. The online world is changing at such a rapid pace that you need to be able to adapt and move quickly in order to succeed. However, business owners who are rather conservative, who preserve the status quo and who do not want to try the “new fangled” ideas until they become established could be doing themselves a disservice. In the past it was indeed wise for business leaders to wait, to let other test the waters and find the problems, before then taking on any new ideas. But nowadays, the new ideas are old ideas within months – if an online business does not take up such new things quickly, they easily miss out. The old, slower, way of doing business is no longer an option online – which means that those business owners not open to change could find life tough on the Internet.
But the research shows that all is not lost. Rather than thinking that this fast-moving online world is “not for me”, the business owner who is traditionally not open can alter that aspect of their personality quite easily. The psychological studies show that crossword puzzles and Sudoku tests can increase the level of openness in an individual. This means that if you want to increase your online success all you need to do is take up crossword puzzles. You’ll become more open to new ideas and information and as a result you will be more willing to try out new elements which could improve your web business, for instance.
- The psychology of crossword puzzles (cogsciblog.wordpress.com)
- How crossword puzzles mess with your mind (newscientist.com)
- Feeling low? Write a blog…! (grahamjones.co.uk)
Graham Jones is an Internet Psychologist who studies the way people use the online world, in particular how people engage with businesses. He uses this knowledge to help companies improve their online connections to their customers and potential customers and offers consultancy, workshops, masterclasses and webinars. He also speaks regularly at conferences and business events. Graham is an award-winning writer and the author of 32 books, several of which are about various aspects of the Internet. For more information connect with me on Google+