Written by – Julie Morris firstname.lastname@example.org www.juliemorris.org
Bad news — there’s no quick, one-size-fits-all recipe for business success. That being said, the path to a successful business may be less elusive than you think. If you want to take your business to the next level, consider some of the following recommendations.
Have a Clear Vision
Simply put, businesses with a clear vision are more likely to succeed. Without a clear idea of where you want your business to go, stagnation is almost inevitable. A clear vision starts with the development of a concrete vision statement. This statement is meant to be a concise summary of your business goals, culture, and motivation. Avoid generic phrases like “we make customers a priority” and “we believe in quality service.”
Consider the vision statement created by the outdoor clothing company Patagonia: “Build the best product, cause no unnecessary harm, use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis.”
Their statement clearly identifies Patagonia’s promise to customers and what their company is striving to bring to the world. When done right, your vision statement should help limit your focus, set priorities, and help you stay productive.
Long hours, financial responsibilities, and countless daily tasks are just some of the reasons business owners are particularly susceptible to burnout. Systemic stress, anxiety, and frustration can put entrepreneurs on the burnout path. Those who experience burnout often report feeling hopeless, unmotivated, and depressed. Physically, burnout can weaken the immune system, making individuals more susceptible to colds and flues. Self-care practices such as getting enough rest, eating right, and taking time for yourself will help reduce your chances of burnout. If you are feeling run down, your business will feel it too. Because of this, it is important to make self-care one of your business priorities.
Hire the Right People
The longer you own and operate a business, the easier it becomes to assume you already have all the knowledge necessary to succeed. The “I can do it all” attitude embedded in entrepreneurs can be both good and bad. On the bright side, this ethos reflects self-confidence in one’s abilities. On the other hand, failing to delegate tasks and seek expert advice may be stifling your business and causing you stress. Instead of focusing on every aspect of the business, consider focusing on what’s important and what you’re good at. If you’re a superstar at client relations but continuously miss the mark with regard to social media marketing, it’s time for a change. Guaranteed, there is someone out there with the skills and knowledge you lack. Hiring the right people starts with hiring those who will complement your skill/knowledge set. These individuals will also bring unique, innovative ideas that can help your business reach new levels.
Move Past Failure
As an entrepreneur, you are likely familiar with both large and small-scale failure. Multiple failed attempts can greatly impact self-esteem and self-confidence. You may even begin to question whether or not you should keep your business going. Those who do not internalize failure, but rather accept it and keep going, are more likely to succeed. In the words of Virgin founder Richard Branson, “failure is an inevitable – and essential – part of entrepreneurship.” Try thinking of failures as opportunities for learning and analysis. When failure occurs simply ask yourself “Why did this fail?” and “Moving forward, what should we change?” Asking yourself these questions can be the difference between success and failure.
Sadly, there is no formula for a business success. However, by implementing the recommendations above, you have set yourself and your business on a path of innovation and growth. Best of luck of your entrepreneurial journey!