When it comes to starting a small business, an entrepreneur may worry about how to successfully run an organisation from the ground up.
It is not simply a matter of walking into an office space, pitching out a few ideas and expecting them to work. It is far more than that, as you will soon find out.
The reality is that you will not have the financial means to hire entire departments immediately. In fact, you may work with a ‘bare bones team’ for at least a couple of years to keep costs down.
So what does it take to start your own small business in a manner that ensures longevity?
Probably the best quality any entrepreneur can have is the ability to persevere through the many ups and downs of running a business. A word of advice, it will never go exactly as the business plan described it, but the experience gained from your mistakes will prove invaluable in the future. The power of resilience will allow you to keep going even when the outlook appears unpromising.
Since a start-up will require an entrepreneur to take on many roles all at once, there is a potential for your long term vision and focus to slip. A vital entrepreneurial quality is the ability to compartmentalise every facet of your business to avoid missing the bigger picture.
Once you have set your long term vision, you will need to have a ‘laser focus’ on each step needed to achieve that ultimate goal.
As mentioned before, “an overnight success” actually takes between 7 and 10 years, according to Sujan Patel, co-founder of Web Profits, a fluid online marketing agency in Australia. A fatal flaw for most entrepreneurs is a lack of patience and a potential to forget about the long term vision. They may only focus on what comes next, rather than where the company needs to go.
A word of advice would be for entrepreneurs to stop, assess and plan on a quarterly basis to ensure founder and employee goals are constantly aligned.
It is well known that employees can either make or break a business. An important entrepreneurial skill is the ability to hire the right people. Having great people on your team will help your business reach new heights faster whilst building a company culture that employees want to be a part of.
You will then need a robust onboarding process to fast track the process of what employees need to do and what is expected. An onboarding process also ensures the company continues in the correct direction. This hopefully establishes a level of employee commitment, as well as grounds for any potential employee misconduct.
Once you have your ‘dream team’ you will need to manage them effectively by motivating, encouraging and developing each member of your staff.
Whether a salesman or not, an entrepreneur needs to have the ability to sell to customers, investors and employees. This could be considered as one of the most vital entrepreneurial qualities needed.
Entrepreneurs need to work to be available when customers are ready to buy, but also need to know when to move on when they are not.
Let’s get something straight now: you don’t know everything and the market is ever-changing. Successful entrepreneurs understand that they need to stay up to date on new technologies, systems and industry trends in order to reach the right customers and stay relevant.
Learning from your staff can also become an entrepreneurial quality. Not only will your staff love that their voices are heard, you can use their prior experience to your advantage.
It is easy to become bogged down in the chaos of day-to-day operations. Make sure you take some time to reflect on what has happened and what still needs to happen in your business. An intrinsic entrepreneurial quality is to know when to stop working before burning out physically, mentally and emotionally.
As mentioned earlier, it is vital to select the right team who will grow your company but it is also vital that you are able to rely on yourself to become resourceful when times get tough.
In the end, you will only have yourself to rely on when the chips are down. Ensure you are constantly increasing your skillsets to enable your company to grow despite any situation you may find yourself in.
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