March 21, 2016 3096 Views

On Becoming a Successful Entrepreneur

Starting and running a small business can be one of the most exciting achievements of an entrepreneur’s career. It is a challenge that tests every skill and piece of knowledge a person can have, and then some. It is this goal that motivates entrepreneurs to make an attempt to build something that wasn’t there before. But getting from here to there isn’t easy, so here are a few things to keep in mind if you plan on building the next great company.

Delegate

It is far too tempting for the average entrepreneur to believe they can do it all themselves. While it is true computers and information technology have given the individual business person enormously amplified productivity over the last 30 years, the truth is there is only so much one person can do. Frequently, starting and running a sustainable business requires more productivity than one person can muster.

It is far better to ask for help and be able to concentrate on your strengths than it is to try and do it all yourself and burn out halfway through the job.

Concentrate on Sales First

It is also tempting for new entrepreneurs to believe they can do what big companies can do when it comes to getting customers. The fact is you aren’t Coca-Cola yet. Brand advertising isn’t going to help you. What you need to do is treat your company like a presidential campaign. You need salespeople on the ground slugging it out with the marketplace on a daily basis if you expect to get your product out in the world where it belongs. This cannot be overemphasized.

Record Keeping

This is something even successful entrepreneurs overlook more often than they should. As a small business owner you have to become obsessive about keeping records of everything you do from the number of hours you work to how far you drive for the company to how much of the area in your apartment is set aside for work. The chief reason for this is all that information will be crucial to your tax filings every year.

The other reason is because the information you develop as a business owner is expensive. You don’t want to look up the same fact twice, because then you’re just double-billing your own profits. Captains in Britain’s Royal Navy kept logs for a reason. For some of them it was the only way they could navigate back home. The same goes for you. Your records are your company. Protect them at all costs.

Polish

All the time and money you save while you are implementing the efficiency plans you spend so much effort on should be invested in polishing your product until you can see yourself in it. There is absolutely nothing to be gained by putting out a substandard product. Every single customer you get should be treated like royalty from the very moment they stop to look at what you have to offer. Would you rather they be thrilled with the product they receive or disappointed? The answer to that question should form the basis for everything you do in your business. Delight your customers. Without them, you have nothing.

Patience

There is a famous quote by a software development consultant that says “Nine women, one month and no babies?” While the quote is amusing, the point is well taken. Good things take time and money to build. There is no shortcut to excellence, just like there are no shortcuts to good cornbread. You have to put in the time if you want good results.

The way to approach this properly is to think like a farmer. All your best work comes in the few days before you plant your crop. While it’s growing, all you can do is tend the field. It does you no good to complain barley takes a long time to grow, because that’s not going to change anything. You have to let your product and company breathe if you want to see long-term results.

Starting and building a company isn’t easy by any stretch of the imagination, and more than few good businesspeople fail at it. The good news is if you are patient and willing to put time and effort in where they are needed most, you can improve your chances for success.

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SMBReviews is committed to providing small and mid-sized business owners with the information and resources they need to select the best service or product for their company.

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