It doesn’t matter how much success you and your company have enjoyed in the past — the future is what matters, so achieving as many accolades in the world of business as you can going forward should be the only thing you are focused on. You’re not going to garner continued success, though, if you allow yourself — and your ultimately your business — to stagnate. You have to be constantly looking for ways to push forward and be a better owner.
Only when you embrace change and resolve to improve the way you do things can you truly release your company’s full potential… and only when you do that can you stand a chance of taking your business to the pinnacle of its market.
If you want to leave behind a truly remarkable legacy in the world of business, you need to set about the task of becoming a better business owner right away. Take the eleven steps laid out below, and you’ll be well on your way to achieving this goal.
Regardless of how much experience you have as a business owner, there is always more for you to learn about the art of management and about yourself as a working professional. For this reason, you should be open to the idea of going back to college and getting yourself educated.
More to the point, you should be prepared to enroll on a BBA program. Although this type of course isn’t a prerequisite for success in the world of business, it’ll be sure to teach you things about the demands of being a company owner that you won’t learn anywhere else.
There are a host of specific benefits of studying Business Administration. Once you have graduated from such a course, you will have:
- Cultivated a comprehensive understanding of what goes into creating an efficient organization
- Built foundational expertise relating to a multitude of different departments such as accounting, HR, marketing, finance, business law, IT, professional ethics, strategic planning, and economics
- Developed skills in problem-solving, critical thinking, data analysis, and reasoning
- Become empowered with regards to leading teams and enhancing team interactions
- Learned how to communicate with employees, partners, customers, and stakeholders
- Garnered a deeper understanding of the important role religion plays in the world of business
- Developed an entrepreneurial mind-set
Never lose sight of your master plan
As your business grows and develops, new opportunities will come and fresh markets will open themselves up to it. Naturally, your head will be turned from time to time and you will be tempted to try different things. It’s okay to embrace change — in fact, it’s recommended — but regardless of what changes you propose or enforce, you cannot ever lose sight of your original master plan.
The plan that you outlined for yourself when your entrepreneurial venture began will tell you everything you need to know about how well you are doing as a business owner. Importantly, it will help you pinpoint where, when, and how you have failed in the past. With all of this information at hand, you can then do whatever it is you deem necessary to ensure that you don’t struggle when you encounter the problems that you struggled with in the past again in the future.
Yes, make changes and embrace different things… but don’t lose sight of your master plan when you do.
Know your strengths
Knowing your strengths and getting to grips with just how valuable you are to your business will benefit you and your organization in so many different ways. Your strengths can be used as leverage — you can use them as a springboard to garner momentum for yourself going forward. What’s more, your strengths can fill you with confidence — once you know you’re good at a certain task, you’ll believe in your ability to optimize that task whenever you are faced with it regardless of how productive you are feeling at the time.
There are many ways to identify your strengths, some of which include:
- Ask somebody close to you to name three things that they think you are good at
- Seek feedback from others when you perform certain tasks
- Try to spot patterns and common themes in your work
- Write out a brief profile of who you think you are and what you think you’re best at
- Throw yourself into situations that test what you perceive to be your strengths
Accept and embrace your weaknesses
Admit it, there are still some things about being a business owner that you can’t seem to get to grips with. Whether it’s IT or accounting, there are just some aspects of the business world of today that you’ve never been able to get your head around. Instead of hiding away from these weaknesses of yours, recognize their existence and face them head-on. Put your pride to the side and, quite literally, show your frailties who’s boss. When you do decide to accept and embrace your weaknesses, you will stand to reap the following benefits:
- You’ll unlock new opportunities for personal and company growth
- You’ll uncover your fears
- You’ll reduce your ego
- You’ll develop empathy and compassion for others
- You’ll find it easier to accept help from others
- You’ll stop being scared of making mistakes
- You’ll show yourself to be human, which will allow you to forge deeper and more meaningful connections with others
Tell the truth
Getting yourself into the habit of being truthful will help you to become a better business owner, there’s no doubt about that. By telling the truth at every turn, you will prove to your employees, partners, and clients that you can be trusted. In turn, that will make them go that extra mile for you when you are in need of a specific service from them.
Being truthful will also allow you to be far more realistic with regards to your goals and capabilities. Instead of exaggerating your success in a bid to endorse your business, you’ll say it how it is and, ultimately, you’ll work in a far more practical and pragmatic manner. Importantly, working in this way will stop you from making promises that you cannot keep and souring partnerships that had the potential to be profitable as a result.
Always have your pitch ready
To be a truly great business owner, you must be able to take your chances to grow as and when they come. The problem is, you never quite know when the perfect opportunity to take your business to the next level is going to fall into your lap.
To ensure that you are ready to seal that all-important deal when the opportunity arises for you to do so, you have to make sure that your sales pitch is at hand. Having your pitch ready at all times will allow you to spring into action and advertise your business whenever it is necessary for you to do so.
To create a sales pitch that is sure to garner you vast amounts of attention in the future, you should:
- Ensure that the pitch has an objective
- Focus on value proposition and what you can offer your customers
- Build the pitch around a central idea and compelling story
- Structure the presentation to make it feel professional
- Make sure that the pitch is well balanced, especially if you are using a slideshow
- Create both a long and short version of your pitch so that you are ready for any environment
- Give your pitch a personal touch
- Set and abide by a clear agenda
- Be relevant, engaging, and insightful
- Cultivate conversation and harness external interaction
- Leave time at the end of the pitch for questions and ongoing conversations
- Make sure that your pitch is scalable
Cut your spending
You’ll never reach your full potential as a business owner if you don’t cut your spending habits. Quite simply, you need to limit or control your spending, both at home and when it comes to your business expenses, as this will teach you how to consolidate the profit that you make. Once consolidated, this profit can then be invested back into your business in a bid to grow and develop it further, or it can be saved to cover any unexpected costs that arise in the future.
Be more organized
As a business owner, everything about your life both in and out of work should be organized. You should organize your schedule to make sure you are devoting enough time to the ongoing development of your business, you should keep your files (both paper documents and e-documents) organized to ensure important information and data never goes missing, and you should keep your accounts organized so that you are always able to tap into money as and when you need it without having to wait for your bank to veto your transactions.
With just a little bit of determination, organizing your life as a business owner shouldn’t prove too difficult. All you need do is devote a morning to this all-important task, and you’ll be able to enjoy months of being able to work in an orderly fashion going forward.
Don’t shy away from decision-making
To be the leader your team desperately needs, you can’t afford to shy away from decision-making. Even when things get tough and you have to come to a decision that certain people aren’t going to like, you have to face up to this task and you have to be prepared to handle the consequences that follow.
When seeking to become a better decision-maker, be sure to remember the following four points:
- Stop seeking perfection — it doesn’t exist!
- It’s important to be both collaborative and independent — seek advice, but be sure to have the final say
- Turn your brain off from time to time and let your heart do the thinking
- Resist the urge to solve everybody’s problems at once
Keep things simple
Overcomplicating things will make your life as a business owner much more difficult than it needs to be. If you continue to work in this vein over a sustained period of time, before long you’ll spread yourself too thin and, once all of your energies are zapped and you hit a brick wall, you won’t stand a chance of being able to optimize every task that lands on your desk. Once that happens, your business will begin to suffer.
Quite simply, you need to get into the habit of keeping things simple. This doesn’t mean opting for the easy way out, taking the route of the least resistance, or cutting corners — it means finding a way to focus all of your efforts on one important task at a time. Unfortunately, however, keeping things simple is not a simple or straightforward task. Have no qualms about it, this is a task that will demand a lot of hard work, effort, and patience from you. To make this surprisingly difficult task a little bit easier for yourself, you should:
- Stop marrying your plans and make yourself more open to change
- Never be afraid to admit that you’ve gone wrong
- Ignore your brain and follow your gut
- Embrace the Mum Test — basically, is what you are doing simple enough for your mum to understand?
Never stop moving forward
No matter what industry or field you operate in, you cannot afford to become comfortable in it… not for one minute. Resting on your laurels in the business climate of today will lead to stagnation sooner rather than later, simply because companies across the globe are always changing and improving. If you want to take your business to the pinnacle of its market, you have to keep up with your competition.
You are at the helm of everything your business does and you are at the forefront of everything it stands for. Everything runs through you, and you’re the one who has to make the really tough decisions with regards to your organization. To ensure that you are up to the task of being the leader your business needs, you have to strive to become a better business owner. When taking on this challenge, be sure to remember all of the advice that you’ve read above.