Opening a Business? Here’s What You Need to Know
Nearly 500,000 businesses are started each month, but far fewer of these businesses make it just one year. Our business was started over 90 years ago so our family knows a few things about creating and nurturing a business. Our VP at Superior Business Solutions and my brother, Tim English, put together a list of 7 things every new business owner needs to know to help your business thrive and I thought I would share his thoughts.
- Do Something You Know. In order to helm a successful business you need to know and understand the field you’ve chosen, and you need to feel passionate about the whole thing. A business cannot succeed on just a good idea. You need to know the industry and be able to identify, hire and manage talent.
- Know Your Limits and When to Seek Help. It is almost impossible to know everything about your chosen field of business, so be able to identify when you are out of your depth (or better yet, know when you are approaching a task or decision you are unsure of how to handle). Hire knowledgeable people to handle these tasks or bring on a trusted consultant or advisor. Outsourcing aspects of your business that are not within your area of expertise is often the most efficient and the best use of resources.
- Know What Sets Your Business Apart from Your Competition. You should develop a 30 second “elevator speech” that quickly and succinctly sums up what you do and how and why your business is better than your competitors. This is a key sales tool to hook potential customers and investors. Make sure your staff is well versed in your elevator speech, and that they can easily communicate what makes your business different and better than everyone else.
- Stay True to Your Initial Plan. When you are first starting out you may be inclined to take on any clients you can, even if they are not a good fit for your business. While signing new clients is exciting and the cash flow is certainly necessary, make sure you focus on your plan and remain true to your original goals – this is what will set your business apart from the competition and ultimately, this is why customers will seek you out. Do not change your business scope to suit your early clients.
- Live Within Your Business Means. All too often a new business owner will fall victim to the idea that in order to be successful they need to act and look the part. Keep an eye on expenses and focus on delivering quality products and services instead of fancy meals and flashy cars.
- Expect the Worse. No matter how carefully and thoroughly you plan things will go wrong and there will be setbacks. A successful business rolls with the punches and finds creative and efficient solutions to such setbacks. Also bear in mind that you need to identify when enough is enough. In some instances the setbacks may be too much and no amount of creative problem solving will turn things around. Pulling out of a failed business venture sooner rather than later can prevent the situation from becoming a disaster.
- Maintain a Work-Life Balance. When you are starting a business it can easily become all consuming, and the business can take over your life. Building a successful business requires hard work and dedication, but in order to give your best you need to take care of yourself, as well. Set aside time to do the things you enjoy and recharge, so you can give it your all when it’s time to work.
Starting a new business can be one of the most challenging and exciting things you will ever do, and it can also be one of the most rewarding. Following these 7 tips will help you on your way to building a successful business, but if you need help or guidance remember that we are here to help with your print and promotional product management. Feel free to reach out to me directly by filling out our contact form HERE or contacting us at (800) 968-1416.