The Qualities of Successful Entrepreneurs
The Big Q: Do you have what it takes to get through hard times?
Below are the some of the personal traits that help entrepreneurs thrive in their own businesses, as follows:
Regardless of your definition of success, there are a great number of common characteristics that are shared by successful business people.
Even if you do not have all of these characteristics, do not worry. Most can be learned with practice and by developing a winning attitude, especially if you set goals and apply yourself, through strategic planning, to reach those goals in incremental and measurable stages.
Like any activity you pursue, there are certain things that are required to be successful in a chosen activity.
- To legally operate a vehicle on public roadways, one must have a driver’s license
- To excel in sports, one must train and practice
- To retire comfortably, one must become an informed investor and actively invest for retirement.
If your goal is success in business, then the formula is the same. There are certain things that must be fully developed, implemented and managed for a business to succeed.
There are many business “musts” but this article contains that experts believe to be some of the more important things that are required to start, operate and grow a profitable home business, as follows:
1. Do what you enjoy. If you do not enjoy what you are doing, chances are you will not succeed.
2. Take what you do seriously. You cannot expect to be effective and successful in business unless you truly believe in your business and in the value added goods and services that you sell.
3. Plan everything. Planning every aspect is a must. A business plan also serves as a A to Zed guide for your goals and how you will achieve them, written on paper. If you can write it you can do it
4. Manage money wisely. There are 2 aspects to wise money management. A) The money you receive from clients in exchange for your goods and services you provide (income) and B) The money you spend on inventory, supplies, wages and other items required to keep your business operating. (expenses)
5. Always ask for the sale. A business entrepreneur must always remember that marketing, advertising, or promotional activities are worthless, regardless of how clever, expensive, or perfectly target if you do not actively ask people to buy what you are selling.
6. Remember it’s all about the customer. Your business is not about the products or services that you sell. It is about the customer, you must know who your customers are up and down.
7. Become a shameless self-promoter. People have to knows who you are, what you sell and why they should be buying. Self-promotion is one of the most beneficial, yet most underutilized, marketing tools that the majority of business owners have at their immediate disposal.
8. Project a positive business image. Make a positive and memorable impression on people with whom you intend to do business. Key elements are imagination, creativity and attention to the smallest detail when creating and maintaining a professional image for your business.
9. Get to know your customers. The Key competitive edge the entrepreneur has over the larger competitors is the he can offer personalized attention and services.
10. Level the playing field with technology. Learn how to take advantage of the high tech world of the Internet network. The best technology is that which helps you best, a terrific web presence is Key.
11. Build a really good business team. No one person can build a successful business alone. It takes a Team that is as committed as you to the business and its success. And the most important team members will be your customers or clients.
12. Become known as an expert. When you have a problem that needs to be solved, you get an expert in the field to help solve your problem So, your becoming known as an expert is another style of prospecting for new business. Instead of finding new and qualified people to sell to, these people seek you out for your expertise.
13. Create a competitive advantage. Ask the Q, what one aspect or combination of aspects is going to separate your business from your competition? Is it better service, a longer warranty, better selection, longer hours, more flexible payment options, lowest price, personalized service, better customer service, better return and exchange policies or a combination of several of these? Make yourself better.
14. Invest in yourself. There are often ways to do things better, in less time, with less effort. In short, top entrepreneurs never stop investing in the most powerful, effective and best business and marketing tool at their immediate disposal; themselves.
15. Always be accessible. You must make it as easy as you can for people to do business with you, regardless of the business you operate. So, be able to provide customers with what they want, when they want it.
16. Build a solid reputation. A good reputation is the most tangible and marketable assets. Consistency in what you offer is a Key factor. If you cannot come through with the same level of service and products for clients on a regular basis, they have no reason to trust you . . . and without trust, you will not have a good reputation.
17. Sell your benefits. Selling the benefits associated with owning and using the products and services you carry is what sales professionals worldwide focus on to create buying excitement and to sell, sell more, and sell more frequently to their customers. Every time and every medium used to communicate with your target audience must always be selling the benefits associated with owning your product or using your service.
18. Get involved. Always go out of your way to get involved in the community that supports your business. People like to do business with people they know, like and respect, and with people who do things to help them as members of the community.
19. Garner attention. Small-business owners cannot waste time, money and energy on promotional activities aimed at building awareness solely through long-term, repeated exposure. So, every promotional activity you engage in, must put money back in your pocket so that you can continue to garner more attention and grow your business.
20. Master the Art of Negotiations. The ability to negotiate effectively is unquestionably a skill that every home business owner must make every effort to master. In business, negotiation skills are used daily. Remember that mastering the Art of Negotiation means that your skills are so finely tuned that you can always orchestrate a Win-Win situation. Win-Win arrangements mean that everyone involved feels they have won, which is really the basis for building long-term and profitable business relationships.
21. Design Your work space for success. Carefully plan and design your home office work space to ensure maximum personal performance and productivity.
22. Get and stay organized. The Key to staying organized is not about which type of file you have or whether you keep a stack of papers on your desk, but it is about managing the business. It is about having systems in place to do things. Incorporating family and personal activities into your work calendar is also critical so that you work and plan from a single calendar.
23. Take time off. The temptation to work around the clock is very real for many entrepreneurs. All work and no play can make one burn out fast and grumpy is not what people want.
24. Limit the number of hats you wear. Most business owners try to do as much as possible and tackle as many tasks as possible in their business. The ability to multitask is a common trait shared by successful entrepreneurs. Most highly successful entrepreneurs say that from the time they started out, they knew what they were good at and what tasks to delegate to others.
25. Follow-up constantly. Constant contact, follow-up, and follow-through with customers, prospects, and business alliances should be the mantra of every small business owner, new or established. Follow-up is especially important with your existing customer base, as the real work begins after the sale. It is easy to sell a product or a service, but it takes work to retain customers and keep them coming back.
By James Stephenson
Paul Ebeling, Editor