Eight months ago I set up a small business – the secret to have things go my way was to have no expectations. I had expectations so nothing went my way and I became dissatisfied, however as soon as I lost this I began to see the potential for the business which at one point had a slogan promoting World Domination via Cupcake. So what does it take to become a successful Entrepreneur? Personally I beleve that a little self-awareness is the best trick however besides this it comes down to the individual running the business, as it turns out there really are some people who manage to be more successful in business compared to others – the question is what qualities make those who are successful stand out from the crowd?
- Write a Business Plan. It seems redundant but I have a point and for further advice on this one you should read The Perfect Business Plan and Why Your Need It. It’s great to visualise a business but why not go the extra mile and plan for (nearly) every eventuality to ensure that your business grows and stays strong whatever the economic climate.
- Enter into Your Venture with An Open Mind. Sometimes we develop pre-planned ideas of how everything is going to work from start to finish, right from advertising to making our millions. A reality check doesn’t go amiss so enter in with an open mind to be more successful. Be open to slow seasons and responsive in fast. Use every experience whether it be good or bad to ensure that a good lesson is learned. Life is a learning curve that’s simple
- Know what kind of entrepreneur you are. Are you a full-time, part-time, flexi-time or something completely different? Knowing can be the difference between staying sane and something else. With this knowledge comes boundaries which you can identify and put in place, without boundaries we can get far too lost in our businesses and forget that we’re only meant to be spending twelve hours a week or whatever number of hours is relevant to your business. If you’re a part-time entrepreneur then work part-time only – set boundaries and even keep a time sheet if needs be.
- We’re experts in our own experiences so become an expert. I’m an expert in what it is to be a student entrepreneur, in being a critter-person, sadly in grief too I believe, but when it comes to business I’m an expert in making cupcakes and sending them far and wide safely. I’m also an expert in cataloguing books and running a bookstore as well as a health and wellbeing based bookstore. We’re all experts in something so discover what you’re an expert in and sell it. Ensure others know about it and use it to go far and wide and help others do the same!
- Know what makes you stronger in business. Could you use help in your efforts? I started as a sole trader but grew my business into a partnership – don’t worry about feeling like you didn’t make it on your own if you have to expand your management structure. In fact you should take it as a good thing. Some statistics indicate that nine out of ten business fail within the first year. It’s not highly optimistic but instead if you find yourself expanding your management structure it usually means you’re getting more business than one person can handle so if that’s the case congratulations! Just know when your business does need more people to ensure that it runs smoothly and take someone on who will want to watch it grow with you.
Laura O’Hanlon is the author of The Amazing Nine to Five and SImple Living Sweeter Life. She is an owner of the UK-Wide Cupcake Brand Lucy’s Sweet Treats and the Sole Owner of Book Corner UK and Wellness Reads Ltd.