This article contains information on the steps on how to become a successful business owner.
Not many people are cut for a 9 to 5 live. Some just want to be their own boss and build their own business. It is not surprising to see young people who have never worked in an organization say ‘I will start my business after graduation” or see people who have already made their grounds as workers in organizations move to be entrepreneurs. Some people as well have a 9 to 5 job and still keep a side business as a primary or secondary source of income. No matter what category you belong to, the motive is always to maximize profit. There are a thousand and one books, articles, seminars and workshops on how to become a successful business owner. You’ll find some common ideas in these countless books, articles and business seminars and workshops.
Owning a business is as common as air but sustaining it and maintaining it well is the real deal. Anyone can wake up tomorrow, think of a business, put his capital into it and calls him or herself a business owner. What differentiates the tares from the chaff is the word ” Success” Are you successful at it? What is the fate of your business in a constantly changing economic environment? Can your business stand the test of time? What is your profit margin? These and many more determine if a business owner is successful.
Procedures for starting a business.
1. Business plan.
Planning helps you get hold of the market faster. A business plan will help you gain prominence, focus and spirit. A plan does not need to be more than one page. As you write down your goals, strategies and action steps, your business becomes real.
The standard business plan includes nine parts:
- The Executive Summary
- Target Market
- Products and Services
- Marketing and Sales Plan
- Milestones and Metrics
- Company Overview
- Management Team
- Financial Plan
2. Conduct market research.
Conducting meticulous market research on your field and demographics of potential clientele is an important part of crafting a business plan.
Market research helps you understand your target customer – their needs, preferences and behaviour – as well as your industry and competitors. T
This has a significant impact on your competitive landscape and allows you to convey unique value to potential customers.
3. Know your target audience before you spend a penny.
Before you spend money, do your feasibility studies, research your market and understand your target audience and their behaviour pattern, these will help in knowing how to reach them and when to change your business approach.
4. Choose the right location for your product or services.
Setting up a meat store in a locality where over 80% of the inhabitants are vegetarians might make you close up your business in that area sooner than you can ever imagine. Having done your market research, make sure the location of your business is suitable for your target audiences. Consider the following before setting your business in a place:
- Access to parking or public transportation
- Distribution of competitors
- Local, city, and state rules and regulations
- Your choice of products:
5. Prepare for trial and error
Mistakes ate inevitable, don’t expect to have it all figured out at a go. Mistakes are there to teach us lessons we might not learn in any business school or class, so therefore, prepare your mind to embrace your errors and use the lesson to advance
Be open-minded and inventive, adjust and adapt.
6. Business Registration
If you don’t register your business name, you might be doing yourself a lot of harm. Imagine choosing a name for yourself, you start your business and people are already relating with your brand, you want to make it real and you reach out to your state’s Company Allied Commission to register your name and the business. Eureka! They told you the name has been taken by another business owner. This means you have to change your name and everything you might have created around the brand, like logo, signage etc. This might not be too good for your brand. So before you put your brand name out there, register it even when you are not ready to start, you can pay to reserve the name for a certain amount of time usually two months in many countries.
Also, never overlook the work of an attorney in your business. You will also need to get the proper business licenses and permits. Depending upon the business, there may be a city, county, or state regulations as well. This is also the time to check into insurance and to find a good accountant. These are areas you can’t afford to get wrong.
The Uncertainty of Starting A Business
Starting a business comes with its fear of the unknown. No one knows what the future holds and it’s the same with starting a business. Becoming successful in a business venture is considered such a daunting feat by society because of the risks that come with business and uncertainty nature of the economy and people. Do questions feel your heart about how to manage and sustain the business?
Here are some of the attributes of successful business owners:
1. Be Brave
Fear is one of the limiting factors in any business. Fear of starting, fear of failure and if care is not taken, someone will sit down watching time pass without doing anything. The no 1 hurdle to face is starting, if you don’t start, you cannot think of sustaining and success. The no 1 step to success in business is starting. Many people are not happy with their 9 to 5 jobs but the reason they never quit is the security that paycheck brings. Learning how to manage your fears is a skill that is a must-have to succeed in your business. The true tests of a fearless entrepreneur will be constant from making hard decisions, connecting to potential stakeholders and many uncertainties as well as failure.
2. Understand Finance
How people move from rag to riches is a common tale we have all heard and that is the reality of most successful business enterprises but that doesn’t negate the reality that you need money to run a business. However, that doesn’t inevitably mean you need to have a lot of it when you’re just getting started, but what you need more of is how to manage your finance, no matter how little and how to make money aid your growth. Another discipline comes when you start marking in your business, that is not the time to buy the next luxury item or change your entire wardrobe but rather the time to invest in your business with expansion in mind. To be a successful entrepreneur you need to know how to make money work for you and make it work for you.
3. Grow As A Leader
The moment you make the decision to start a business and you eventually started, you signed for the responsibility of being a leader. A leader finds the way, studies the way and shows other the way. One tree cannot make a forest, you need people that will help achieve your aim and goals and these people have to believe in you first before they can believe in your enterprise. It boils down to you taking the lead by not just telling but doing. By being truthful with what you have to offer, by making people feel safe for putting their resources in your business, that sounds simple but the weight is in the doing. you must also know that just because you need to possess leadership qualities does not mean that everybody flourishing in business has to be the CEO, face of the company, or person “in charge”. The ability to lead a team is a necessity but it can also come down to just having the right charisma and message to get the right people to do the things that need to be done. It is your job to discover people, what they do best and where their weakness and strength lie and know who is best for a specific job or task.
4. Be Proactive With Opportunity
Opportunity is not selective. Often, you will find opportunities drop at your fingertip, knowing how to take advantage or make use of these opportunities is a skill that may make or mar your business. An opportunity they say comes but once. This requires thinking outside the box comes int play. Successful business owners don’t think about now alone but the future as well. You will need to leverage new relationships or partnership that might boost your growth. Sustainable growth of your business should be the primary reason before you consider any partnership, opportunity or offer. If it’s good for your business now, does it have an adverse negative effect in the future, what are the odds of success? It also extends what to make of what has been giving to you. Roasting and eating freely given corns might sound great, but roasting a few now and planting some for greater yields sounds greater. That is how an entrepreneur that wants to grow and succeed thinks. When next you meet a great person, you might not want to ask for a selfie but rather something that can count in the future. Your business need is your major determinant of how you relate with people that can help push your business forward. Simply put, you need to know who to shake hands with and who to embrace.
5. Build A Support Network.
You’ve made the internal commitment to your business. Now you need to cultivate a network of supporters, advisors, partners, allies and vendors. If you believe in your business, others will too.
Network locally, nationally and via social networks. Join networks such as your local chamber of commerce or other relevant business groups. Here are some networking basics:
- When attending networking events, ask others what they do and think about how you can help them. The key is to listen more than tout yourself.
- No matter what group you join, be generous, help others and make introductions without charging them.
- By becoming a generous leader, you will be the first person that comes to mind when someone you’ve helped needs your service or hears of someone else who needs your service.
6. Acquire Partners
If you want to move forward, go alone, if you want to move faster and achieve beyond your expectation, go with people that have the same goals in mind. To achieve greatness as a leader, it is of paramount importance to have a team of people who buy your mission in order to move forward. That’s where welding a great team of associates come to play. Being a wearer of many hats can be overwhelming and it limits how far a business can go as there is only one source of inspiration and energy. Matching your skills with that of others and apply them together as a team for the betterment of the company.
7. Having the Right Attitude.
Many things can bring you up but attitude will determine how far you can stay there. Having the right value as a business owner earns you respect from within and outside. Your employees find it easier to key into your goals and your stakeholders feel safe with you. It is no doubt important to separate your personal life from your business but it doesn’t mean you should live a carefree life- people are always watching. Your dispositions toward your business and life in general should be worthy of emulation. Be grateful for the little things of life and show gratitude when people do things for you even if you paid for the service. This will help you appreciate life and stay positive. Count your blessings and not your loss
8. Staying Healthy
By now, you would have heard health is wealth like a thousand times in your lifetime. Having a business to sustain is tasking, having money in your account is soothing, seeing your business grow and wanting to do more and climb higher can make your forget you matter too and before you say, Jack Robinson, you are down and you will be forced to take a rest, a rest that may be longer than usual. Your money and success aren’t going to do you any good if you’re not around to use it – so take care of yourself so you can enjoy the reward of your labour. Take a break, eat healthily and at the right time, plan and lead your life as you do your business. The fact that you are at the wheel of your business doesn’t mean you should keep driving 24/7. The fact that you are not sick doesn’t negate the importance of constant medical check-ups. Some famous people died of hypertension without even knowing. Don’t let the tasking nature of owning a business overwhelm you and shut down on living, go for vacation, go see a movie, go sightseeing. Relive memories with your real friends and family. Your family matters, they are the ones that will spread their arms wide open to receive you at all times and seasons. Enjoy life and make memories with them
9. Be Passionate About Your Product or Service
Your likelihoods of succeeding as an entrepreneur are dependent on how passionate you are about the product or service you offer. Being passionate makes you real and gives you the drive to keep forging on. It’s easier to give up on things we don’t like. Someone who doesn’t like music from a depth might give up after a failed first single while a passionate singer might have the drive to release more with the hope of gaining the desired recognition. Before you even start a business, make sure you’re offering a product line or service that you believe in and that you feel good about selling to other people.
10. Always be Ready to Sell (or Market)
The reason many people dread sales-related job is obvious and simple- we don’t want to sell! We are scared of meeting and convincing people to buy. We will rather work on a salary basis. This cannot be your song if you are going into your own business, that phobia should be burnt or buried. Even if you have sales executives working for you, you also need to sell. You are like the utility worker of the business and you should be ready to persuade customers and make people believe in you and your business
Most customers want to hear from the horse’s mouth, they want to hear the owner speak to them. They may not feel safe with the sales reps they often believe to be honey-coated mouths trying to make a fortune out of them
This doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll have to do “hard selling” in the manner of a car salesman, but you’ll have to persuade prospective customers that you and your product line are what they need to buy.
11. Apply the “80/20 Rule” to Work for You
You’ve presumably heard of the “80/20 rule” — which ordinarily means that 80% of your production will come from 20% of your activities. You can apply that rule when you have your own business.
You may have 20 different significant responsibilities in running your business. But out of the 20, there are probably just four — 20% — that will produce the greatest amount of your income. Those are the activities that must command the bulk of your time and those are the tasks you should channel more of your efforts on but this does not mean you should neglect other responsibilities.
12. They Don’t Give Up Easily.
One thing that parts winners from losers has always been – not giving up. This can be said of successful business owners and failed business owners too. Starting and running a business is no child’s play, it might mean you will work long hour especially at the start, it might mean you will cut your expenses on certain things to support your business etc. Obstacles are prone to show its face at every point in time and there will be times you will get tired and want to let go. Dear, never give up! But rather look for where and what to derive energy from and keep on keeping one. Re-strategise and think of why you started in the first place.
Learn about other businesses and how they survived trying times. Understudy a business tycoon and don’t be too egoistic to seek and receive help
13. Create Value
Value creation should be the focus of your business and everything will fall into place. People appreciate it when they get a value that is equivalent to the price they pay for a product or service. They will often tell other people about your business even without you asking and referrals are one of the success tools of business.
It is by no doubt the motive of all businesses to minimize cost and maximize profit. Every business owner wants to get more with less but that should not be derived at the detriment of your service or product quality. Consumers also want to derive much utility with less and if balance is not attained, they might look for a better offer elsewhere and this is not too good for your business. All business owner has to keep their final consumers or customers in mind to determine better ways of serving them and make their experience worthwhile. Customers are the kings of business, treating them well, offering a remarkable service, branding and not overpricing might make your business grow faster than other business owners that might take these for granted.