“In leadership, character is more important than strategy…”
Some people are born to be leaders, and others learn. Owning a business is hard work and takes a strong willed, driven individual. That’s not all, however. Being a business owner comes with the pressure to take charge and know what you’re doing, even when you don’t. Learning what you can do to improve your character and how others perceive you will mold you into the business owner you always dreamed of being.
Know Your Goals
There’s nothing worse than a business owner that starts a business with no clear-cut idea of where that business is going. You should have a plan for your business that outlines the basic goals like: target audience, types of product or services to sell, ideal business size, and so on. Who are you trying to reach? What’s the mission of your business – what’s your desired impact? Where do you want to see your business in 5 years? 10 years?
Having the blueprints for your business and how you envision its future will dictate who you hire (and how much), where you’re located, what you offer, and how driven you are about achieving success. If the business owner doesn’t know the point of the business, that business is almost guaranteed to fail.
Love to Learn, Learn to Teach
As a business owner, you must know what you’re doing – but it doesn’t stop there. To consistently better your business, you have to educate yourself almost nonstop. Learn what’s working, learn what’s not. Listen to your customers and your employees. Do your own research. How is your business doing compared to other businesses? How can you improve yourself? Learn new techniques, methods, and technology.
You must also know how to teach. You’ll have to teach customers, employees, and business partners about why your business is necessary and a good idea. You’ll need to teach your staff how to care for your customers. Knowing how to communicate and guide individuals interested in your business will help to ensure that your business sails on smooth waters.
Your business is likely going to be important to you. Part of making sure that your business keeps a professional but approachable reputation means maintaining good relationships. Get to know your staff – how they work, their personalities, their downfalls and their talents. To make sure the people who work for your business accurately represent your business’ values, you will have to get personal with them.
Make the effort to connect with your clients. Be friendly and understanding; after all, these are the people that control the rise or fall of your business. A business owner who cares about the people involved with their business is much more likely to experience success (and happiness!) than a business owner that is cold and uninvolved.
This may seem obvious, but entrepreneurs can often get so caught up in their work that they forget to take time for themselves. This means getting enough sleep, staying active, eating properly, taking breaks, and even just getting away from the business. Keeping healthy will lend a hand in keeping your mind fresh. Take the time to make some kind of self-care routine. It doesn’t have to be every day, just often enough to keep yourself in good condition!
Know When to Walk Away
The end goal is always success. However, it’s important to be prepared for the worst; sometimes it just isn’t going to work out. When the signs appear – like consistent failure to reach money goals, unhappy customers and staff, handling more losses than gains – take a step back. Acknowledge that your idea didn’t pan out. Let it go while you’re ahead. Then go back to the drawing board. Figure out what went wrong and where. How can you do better next time?
Being a business owner is stressful. Taking care of a business, its staff and customers, and yourself is a lot to take on. You don’t have to be perfect at it, but making the effort to do the most you can to provide for yourself and your business will stand out and put you ahead. Be confident, kind, and educated – nothing will stand in the way of your success!