Every business runs on some core principles that determine its success or failure. While individual businesses have their own unique fundamentals, there are certain concepts that are absolutely indispensable when it comes to making a business thrive. The three core indispensable concepts of a successful business are: knowledge, skill and talent (I am not covering ‘the idea’ here – a unique, differentiated idea is always the first step in starting a business). In all probability, your competitors possess the same traits and the key to becoming a serious player would be to beat your competition in all these areas. The question is “how”? We suggest bringing into play your attitude and cultivating the right approach using these 17 indispensable tips. Hopefully, they will propel your business to new heights of success.
Have a plan in writing
To not have a written business plan simply means you are still in the ‘dream’ stage. Not that you have to write a book, but a few pages are sufficient to outline the basics of your business plan, including objectives, strategies, finances and all other big and small details. Also, make sure to have a sales and marketing plan in place. Drafting a plan is essentially the first and the most crucial step towards starting a business.
Evolve to survive
You must surely have heard—even the greatest known military geniuses in history had to throw away their best laid plans into the fire as soon as the bullets started to fly! So rather than marrying your plans, confront reality, adjust quickly and always be willing to evolve and adapt.
Keep your ego in control and listen to others
When you start your own work, you must understand that it’s not about you, but always about the business. Be open to ideas, receptive to advice, listen what people around you have to say and don’t be afraid to try something new. Besides, always keep your ego in control and never take things personally. Emotions and work is not a match made in heaven!
Always keep track of numbers
If you intend to reap profits (of course!), it is necessary to understand the importance of systems. If these are in place, you will be able to track down each activity and gauge where your business is going. Create systems to help you manage your operations more efficiently and train your employees as well to encourage consistency. For example, you can have software designed to give you weekly or monthly reports of all cash flow. Focus on gross revenue (and costs!), on gross margins, on cash flow and on EDITDA (Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization).
Micro-managing is a big ‘no’
Another essential trait of a good manger is the ability to delegate. Learn to authorize work to each of your employees based on their skill set so that you have more time and energy for more important tasks. Also, while delegation is good, being a control freak is not! Have written instructions, training and orientations in place, but make sure to give your employees the freedom to perform and contribute successfully.
Experiment and reinvent
And keep doing so. You need to understand that it is a highly competitive marketplace out there and the only way you can rise above the competition is to take a novel approach and do things differently. Keep your focus right and approach each problem with a creative mind – you never know when you may hit a jackpot!
You are more likely to be successful if you are passionate about what you do. In fact, it is passion that will keep you going at moments that are difficult and times that are unfavorable.When you don an attitude that shows commitment and love towards your work, more people will be attracted to do business with you. Of course, passion cannot be taught; it comes from within. And if it ever seems to wane (especially during tough times), remind yourself of your goals, get up and get going.
To know the importance of trust in business, put yourself in the shoes of your customer and think. You would then be able to realize the confidence people vest on trustworthy individuals.
While change is inevitable, flexibility will keep it pretty much going for you. Cultivate the ability to act swift, and don’t stay hell-bent on the initial plan if it doesn’t seem to be working out. However, no matter how much immediate or tough the pressure, never give up on your core values.
Keep fear at bay
Or rather, treat each failure as an incredible learning opportunity. And if you still don’t vouch for it, we have a great thought to share: venture capitalists might consider investing money in an individual who tried but failed, rather than in somebody who never tried.
Make timely decisions
It’s okay to take your time, but not at the cost of missing opportunities. While intuitions, planning and putting the right thoughts in place are good, procrastination is not.
You must realize that the only real asset to your company is YOU. Never put yourself in situations that demand a choice between health and money or family and work. Maintain your health and strive towards an optimum work-life balance. You will be surprised how much more you will be able to achieve if you are healthy and happy.
A strong belief
To embark upon a successful business venture, it is important that you believe in yourself, your brand and in the fact that you will be successful. And trust us, the confidence you display will be contagious.
Accept criticism and admit your mistakes
You need to know that it’s OK, and sometimes even important, to commit mistakes because they are your best source of learning. Encourage your employees to hold honest opinions, discuss relevant ideas and share thoughts whenever they want to. Their ideas and opinions may sometimes not be in sync with yours but that is how you will come up with newer and better ideas.
Excellent work ethics
Been there, said that, but do you follow the rules you have yourself laid? Remember: rules are not just for employees, but also for you to strictly adhere to. Strong work ethics go a long way in outdoing competition.
In case of any setbacks, be quick to get up on your feet. No doubt, you will see a lot of ups and downs as you go along but that should only make you stronger. If you accept the fact that the past cannot be altered, you will be able to take each setback as a learning experience and move ahead with new vigor.
Make friends with the Internet
And when we say so, we mean ‘best’ friends. The power and reach of the Internet is incredible; you only need to explore and execute.Create a website, use social media networking in your favor, start a blog to build rapport and reach out to new customers. In fact, it wouldn’t be wrong to say that businesses that don’t have an online presence have a lesser chance at success in the 21st century.
You see, it won’t really make sense if you just read through this post and don’t implement at least some of its recommendations. If you do put to use these ideas, we would be more than glad to hear about their usefulness! Just give us a shout!