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11 Entrepreneurial Skills Small Business Owners Need To Master

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The word ‘small’ in ‘small business’ doesn’t necessarily entail minor tasks and responsibilities, for everyone engaging in entrepreneurship knows that it’s not the size of the business that counts but the operations that help it thrive. That is why as a small business owner, you are already tasked from the get-go to make sure that you come well-prepared for the circumstances you’re bound to face.

11 Young Entrepreneur Council members kindly shared the key skills they believe every small business owner should have and practice to safeguard their success and continuous growth in the market, all of them listed below.

1. Basic Communication Skills 

Jared Polites of LaunchTeam believes that a lot of founders and leaders slip at a basic skill – communication. As a leader, one should know the difference between effectively communicating and simply relaying a message. To enable a collaborative culture, a leader must teach his team to be proactive, honest, and open. This should also extend to warmly welcoming feedback, listening to negative sentiments, and properly responding to acquired knowledge.

2. Emotional Intelligence 

Jared Weitz of United Capital Source Inc. takes high emotional intelligence as an edge for business owners. While more technical tasks are already automated by technology, one thing robots can’t take away from the manpower is their ability to feel. Whoever you’re bound to deal with in the business, it’s a vital and powerful skill to perceive their emotions and empathize with them. This also applies inwardly as your capability to manage your feelings will do wonders in your decision-making circumstances.

3. Leadership 

Dishan Javasinha of DG Studio strongly emphasizes the value of connecting a team through a solid, greater purpose that inspires and unites all individual purpose. He claims, “The strength of a leader could be measured by how many personalities get behind and believe in the purpose the leader puts forth.”

4. Proactivity

Richard Fong of Bliss Drive turns to proactivity instead of merely reacting to circumstances right when they are already taking place. While the lesson of working under pressure is deemed crucial to every business owner’s learning process, it would do the bigger picture a huge favor when you foresee possible hardships and work on what you need to surpass those at present. Plus, a head start is almost always a great advantage.

5. Delegation 

Matt Doyle from Excel Builders encourages first-time business owners to learn the importance of delegating duties as the business starts growing. Sure, leaders are known to shoulder the majority of tasks, but any human being can only do so much. This, however, doesn’t mean that you have to give your followers every duty at hand to spare your reputation the burden by saying you’re handling the ‘thinking’ part. Great leadership stems from scrutinizing your team well enough to know who is best at which job and giving them a platform to exercise their capabilities while still providing them opportunities to try out other tasks to channel growth. Your reach then lies in constantly training and assessing their skills so they could operate the business with you and not just for you.

6. Financial Literacy 

David Chen of GTIF Capital heavily advises every small business owner to thoroughly understand financial matters. The numbers you incur are hard facts about your business’ life, where it is now and where it’s headed. Scrutinize your numbers to maximize your cash flow and determine how to invest for your future. As Chen puts it, “Your business depends on it.”

7. Digital Marketing 

Sved Balkhi of WPBeginner puts confidence in one’s expansive understanding of digital marketing. As more people rely on the Internet for products and services, Balkhi draws attention to business owners’ firm knowledge of SEO, social media campaigns, online marketing, and more to be able to effectively lead a team that, too, is well-informed in drafting the best digital marketing strategies to grow the business.

8. Customer Service 

Thomas Griffin of OptinMonster counts on great customer service that is well-versed in dealing with irate customers and responding to negative reviews. Griffin believes that there’s more cost to incur in acquiring new customers than in keeping the existing ones.

9. Sales 

Kristin Kimberly Marquet of Marquet Media, LLC sees persuasion skills as a key factor in successfully operating a business. Your sales reach doesn’t only have to cover new clients, prospective customers, potential employees, profitable investors, and existing talents, for it also has to include your capacity to sell yourself to establish your credibility to your stakeholders.

10. Thought Leadership 

Daisy Jing from Banish describes a thought leader as someone who thinks outside the box, motivates, and willingly shares controversial ideas to others. She believes that to operate well, you must know how and when to bring innovation, motivation, and collaboration to the table whenever possible.

11. Self-Awareness Of Blind Spots 

Magnus Simonarson of Consultwebs realizes that the prime skill a business owner needs to sharpen and refine doesn’t have to be taught but uprooted from within. When the business owner knows his blind spots and can bravely seek help from those he believes knows better than him, he also prevents compounding inner issues that no technology nor app can solve for him.

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Running The Family Business: How To Avoid A Sequel Fallacy

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Running a business is hard. But running a family business poses a few more challenges. Several family-run establishments crumble because they fail to see that change must be done and what kind of changes are needed. 

The next generation is so focused on getting the position they forget what it means to manage the business. They never go tangent to what they saw growing up. In their minds, what worked before will work now. So why change? Both the predecessor and the successor gloss over the facts that they are different from one another, they possess different traits from one another. They grew under different circumstances with different experiences. They also miss the idea that times are changing.

When the enterprise collapses because both parties presume that the family business sequels don’t need to understand the business environment and the position he/she is getting into, that is called a “Sequel Fallacy.” To secure a successful succession plan and avoid a Sequel Fallacy, there are some things to consider.

How To Avoid A Sequel Fallacy

A failed family business means more than just losing an establishment. Relationships are lost, and names are sullied. What needs to be understood that running it is not a one-person job. Connections and open-minds are vital when running a family business.

Understand The Change

Things change and become more complicated when more people are involved. Families are always getting bigger, which means more effort must be exerted to keep the business afloat. Efforts must also then be used to understand the differences among members. When that is done, you can have a conversation with the members to see how diversity will contribute to the future.

Consider Outside Help

You can learn from other businesses who went through a similar situation and remained unbeaten. Getting insights from them will help you to understand what to do and what not to do. Even those who do not go through what you did can give some advice as to how to handle the situation.

Open Your Mind

Although past actions lead to the establishment’s success, being open to change will significantly benefit the current business, as well. You can learn from tradition and let it guide you, but do not let it strictly dictate what you should do. There is a difference between disrespecting tradition and taking a new path to benefit the business.

Take Time To Make Succession Decisions

Most of the time, the older generation have a set person in mind to take over, usually the eldest of the children. But this brings some problems. It can put pressure on both parties. It can also ignore the potential of other family members. Create a plan that can develop over time. This will make sure that the successor is ready and deserving.

Talk About The Future

It takes time to create a good succession plan. Everyone, both the old and new generation, should openly talk about their views, procedures, and problems. Talk about what about the past should be repeated and avoided. Doing this will not only create a healthy atmosphere but will also give the next generation a guide to what to do.

The Bottom Line

Create a succession plan that acknowledges the differences between each individual. Be prepared for and open to change. Understanding these will benefit your business and make it stronger and better.

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What It Takes To Start A Business & Be A Successful Entrepreneur

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More and more Americans want to be entrepreneurs and be their own bosses. About 24 million individuals aim to achieve this goal by 2021. However, a majority of these people are not fully aware of what they are getting themselves into. It seems that budding entrepreneurs have expectations that are too high and quite unrealistic. 

A recent study revealed that people who want to be entrepreneurs think they’re going to achieve a better work-life balance when they become business owners. The assumption is that running a business is less stressful. They also expect that they’ll be earning more money and will be more stable financially. 

While such things may happen to some, it’s not going to be easy for many. If you’re planning to start a business, it’s important to be cautious because there are going to be a lot of challenges along the way. The reality could be that you’re going to need to work much harder and you may not be able to get what you want from it immediately. 

Having a business means you’re your own boss. That alone makes being an entrepreneur really enticing for many. But now that you’re not going to answer to any boss, be prepared to satisfy something bigger than your superior: your customers. Starting a business is a lot of hard work. You need to show up every day and do your best to provide the best products or services to your clientele. 

If you’re also expecting to earn more once you start your business, the reality is going to hit you quite hard. It will take a few years for a business to become stable and to really start earning well. You have to be prepared for this so manage your financial expectations while you’re building your business from scratch. Be sure that you think about your resources carefully. 

There are going to be many changes once you start a business on your own. You’re not going to be reporting to an office anymore. You’re not going to stay there for at least 8 hours working on tasks given to you by your boss. But if you think you’re going to have more time not working, you’re wrong. 

Your business is going to demand your time, energy, and commitment. You may no longer have to stay in an office for 8 hours but you’re going to think about your business at all hours. It’s true, you can work anywhere you want: at home, a cafe, or a coworking space. You can work on your business while being around your family. That’s a great advantage of being an entrepreneur. 

But also know that it may become lonely for you at times. You won’t have any officemates anymore to talk to. Nevertheless, you will have time for your friends and family. It’s just a matter of managing your time well. 

To be a successful entrepreneur, prepare for a tough couple of years. You need to survive the challenges that you’ll encounter during the early years of your business. In the long run, it’s going to pay off. Stay positive, passionate, and driven. 

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The Three Factors Unsuccessful Small Businesses Have In Common

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Starting a business is never easy and has more than meets the eye. According to statistical data, 20% of small businesses fail in their first year and 30% in their second year, 50% in their fifth year, and 70% beyond their tenth year.

The rate of failure of these small businesses is because they face a unique challenge where they need to produce a profit in a limited time without sacrificing the quality of their services or products.

Having said that, knowing the areas where these small business owners went wrong may help others execute it correctly. Here are the three most common factors unsuccessful small businesses have in common:

The Service Or Product Was Not Clear

If your service or product sends a poor message to your prospective consumers, then it is likely that your business will fall apart. Your target audience must quickly understand what your business do and has to offer.

In most cases, small businesses tend to implement scattered ideas and overgeneralize; this makes them lose their competitive edge and mass appeal.

Your product or service should send a clear, specific, and direct message. It does not only need to stand out, but you must evoke action and address a need or a problem that your target consumers must solve.

If you can accurately define your business in a sentence, then you are ready!

The Lack Of Structure

A good structure means having a stable foundation for your business to stand upon. Without proper structure, then your day-to-day operations can be a mess.

If your business lacks the technical aspects such as payroll, ordering, shipping, weekly expectations, then your business won’t reach its maximum potential. The structure is what binds your company to be time-efficient and professional. Plus, according to Jennifer Dawn, a serial entrepreneur and renowned business coach said that structure is a reflection of the owner’s maturity.

“If their daily habits are unstructured, disorganized, and they tend to make rash decisions, be lazy in sales, or drop the ball on important financial matters, the business will suffer. The character strength of the owner is vitally important to the success or failure of a business,” she explains.

The Business Owner Is Not Ready 

An ineffective leader often causes a business to fail. Some business owners are not prepared to take upon a considerable deal of responsibility and are not prepared to step up into a significant leadership position. In small businesses, the founder plays a vital role as he or she is the person in charge of running the entire show.

If a business owner is not ready to run a full-blown business, then that factor will reflect on many different levels and ways. Based on Kate Bagoy, a business coach who helps self-employed entrepreneurs says that a company demonstrates the owner’s desires and is also rooted in the lack of clarity, structure, and “founder mindset.”

“In my opinion, the #1 reason businesses fail is due to founder mindset. We always find another reason — the market wasn’t ready, we ran out of funding, we hired the wrong people — but at the end of the day, successful business owners find a way to move forward. They pivot, they learn, they grow, and they develop resilience to stay in the game until they find success.” Kate explains. Metadata: Nuts are small but healthy foods. They not only taste good but bring many benefits when eaten right. Here are some common nuts and the health benefits they carry.

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