What does it take to become a successful entrepreneur? You might ask yourself this question if you’re debating becoming a business owner.
Luckily, there’s no right or wrong answer to this question, so you can just as easily become an entrepreneur as the next person.
What do you need to be a success, though?
Let’s launch straight in now with some tips on being the most effective entrepreneur you can be.
12 Steps to Entrepreneurial Success
- Be resilient
- Online marketing and social media count
- Innovate and evolve at all times
- Find the best mentors
- Take risks but Only calculated risks
- Enhance your negotiating skills
- Always take action
- Don’t fear failure and respond positively to setbacks
- Never lose your passion for your business
- Remember: You are your major asset
- Hire the best partners
- Do more and spend less
1) Be Resilient
While there’s no fixed set of characteristics that determine your success or failure as a businessperson, if you don’t have resilience, you are doomed from the start.
You’ll need to be tenacious because every day you spend building your business will be full of challenges and setbacks, including inevitable disappointments. These challenges are a natural part of creating a business from scratch.
Whatever comes your way, don’t succumb to the start-up blues. Keep fighting and digging deep. Understand that the effort you put in while you’re building your business will all be worthwhile when you get fully established.
If you are going to be your most resilient, you must take care of yourself physically. Eating well, exercising appropriately, and getting plenty of sleep will set you up to perform at your best. With nutrition and energy levels optimized, you’ll be able to summon that extra bit of strength when you need it most.
Without resilience, pretty much anything else you try to do is on a shaky foundation. Never admit defeat, never give up, and you can become a successful entrepreneur just as easily as the next person. Steve Jobs claims you’ll “never be the same again” after you realize that everything around you was made up by people who were no smarter than you. You can start the business of your dreams and make it thrive or bring your product to market. Add talent resilience, and you’ve got a recipe for success.
2) Online Marketing and Social Media Count
Social media continues to be a highly effective way of advertising your brand or business.
From Facebook and Instagram to more business-centric platforms like LinkedIn, it’s easy to get overwhelmed with all the channels at your disposal. It doesn’t have to be that way, though. Outsourcing your social media management is one obvious solution, but what if you want to go the do-it-yourself (DIY) route and promote yourself?
One practical approach is to choose one channel and own it. Show up and post daily. Whether that channel is Facebook or Instagram should depend, to a large extent, on where your audience is.
Make full use of the Insights panel on your Facebook page. You’ll find a vast array of data you can take advantage of here. Find out when your audience is most active and schedule your posts to coincide.
Marketing your brand online is about more than just new business, although that’s vital. Online networks allow you to connect with your customers more often and on a higher level.
If you do it the right way, digital marketing is uber-powerful.
3) Innovate and Evolve At All Times
Innovation is the foundation of any successful entrepreneur.
Position your product as a novel solution to an age-old problem, and it will sell itself.
You’ll also need to be highly adaptable. As new technology unfolds, you’ll need to learn and adopt new processes. In our constantly changing society, what works well today could end up useless tomorrow.
Bear in mind that you’ll be selling a product developed for the needs of the market, not just your needs. As such, you must stay abreast of that market and evolve with it.
The business landscape has always been dynamic, and things change at such a pace today that you always need to be on your toes.
4) Find The Best Mentors
It’s never been easier to find mentors than it is today.
Mastermind groups are a great way to start learning from the best if you can’t afford to hire a one-on-one mentor. You can certainly get advice from people free of charge. But if you’re looking to push and develop yourself as an entrepreneur, there’s no substitute for engaging a paid mentor to guide you.
Regardless of their track records, your mentors will have made mistakes in the past, and they can help you avoid making the same mistakes.
A mentor will view the bigger picture of your business without getting bogged down in the details.
What’s more, if you make it a habit to learn from those who came before you, you’ll gain an enormous amount of insight into your industry.
That said, mentorship is often one of the toughest things for an entrepreneur to assimilate. If you are used to doing things your way, don’t make the mistake of feeling too proud to seek help. Don’t feel you have to go this alone.
5) Take Risks, But Only Calculated Risks
Real success as an entrepreneur is almost impossible if you’re not prepared to take risks. The first one is starting a business, of course.
But along the way, when your strategies seem to be working wonderfully, it’s easy to get trapped. When things are going well is the perfect time to formulate new ideas so you can grow your business rather than stagnating.
What separates the successful entrepreneur from the unsuccessful one is the ability to calculate all risks before jumping aboard. Do your due diligence, but never be afraid to take a chance.
It’s entirely possible to build a business taking minimal risks. But it’s almost impossible to thrive as a true entrepreneur if you’re not ready to go out on a limb from time to time.
6) Enhance Your Negotiating Skills
The golden rule with negotiating for your business is to preserve cash at any cost. Don’t buy if you can lease and don’t lease if you can bargain. Always consider buying used rather than new. Following this primary rule will give you the best chance of preserving your cash flow.
As a small business, building and maintaining cash reserves is crucial to long-term success. Ideally, you should look to have around six months of full operating expenses on hand. With that kind of buffer in place, all you’ll need is a little resilience and patience – and the willingness to pivot and try something new – when hard times come your way. Cash in the bank makes it possible for you to continue flourishing even if your income takes a temporary hit.
So, learning to negotiate across all areas of business is paramount.
You can certainly study the negotiation process, but learning is not enough. You must apply what you learn at every opportunity you get.
As you start negotiating more confidently, you’ll find yourself buying at better prices and selling at better prices with timely payments.
7) Always Take Action
While there is no boilerplate toolkit for a successful entrepreneur, taking action is constant.
If you end up down too many rabbit holes with endless planning – considering every possible avenue of failure, obsessing about funding, and talking in circles – you won’t get enough done.
We certainly are not saying that you should operate your business casually or carelessly. But if you don’t take risks, you’ll be wildly unlikely to reap meaningful dividends.
8) Don’t Fear Failure and Respond Positively To Setbacks
In much the same way as you prime yourself to take calculated risks, you need to failure-proof yourself.
What do we mean by this? Put simply, never let the fear of failing hold you back.
Failure can have positive attributes. You can reframe any failure as an opportunity to learn: How can you avoid making the same mistake again? What could you have done differently to yield a better outcome?
Think about it this way: Most venture capitalists would sooner invest in someone who has previously tried and failed to start a company than in someone with no experience whatsoever.
While you shouldn’t fear failure nor allow it to hold you back, success is not guaranteed. Maybe things start well before unforeseen circumstances prevail to crush your momentum and bring things grinding to a halt. Perhaps you misjudged your competition, or maybe your concept just wasn’t quite right.
The reasons for failure are irrelevant, really. If your business happens to stumble, how you react is the difference between someone who takes a one-off shot and a driven entrepreneur who views failing as nothing more than a learning opportunity.
9) Never Lose Your Passion For Your Business
Research indicates that 23% of all entrepreneurs simply wanted to pursue their passion.
While loving what you do isn’t essential, it is usually one of the distinguishing characteristics between a standard-issue businessperson and a successful entrepreneur.
Unlike many skills, nobody can teach you passion. If you’re not genuinely committed to what you’re doing, you’ll be on your back foot out of the gate.
Even if you are wildly passionate about your project, be aware that won’t always be the case. Over time, it’s natural for passion to come and go. If you find yourself losing sight of why you’re on your entrepreneurial journey, take a full inventory of exactly why you started your business. Remind yourself of the reasons that made entrepreneurship the right path for you.
Remember, you’ll have to put in some long, hard hours to get any business thriving, and you must be prepared to make sacrifices along the way. Unless you’re passionate about what you’re doing, you’ll fight an uphill battle and likely run out of steam.
While you’ll need to work hard, don’t do this to the exclusion of your health.
10) Remember: You Are Your Major Asset
You should never lose sight of the fact you are your company’s most valuable asset.
When you’re putting in all the hours you need to get your business going, don’t do so at the expense of downtime, family, or your health. Strike a balance.
If you’re exercising daily, staying adequately hydrated, and eating a generally healthy diet, you’ll be in a much better place to operate at peak capacity.
Time spent away from your business need not be time wasted. On the contrary, recharge your batteries, sharpen your mental outlook, and return invigorated after your downtime.
11) Hire The Best Team
No successful entrepreneurs work in a vacuum. In everything that you do, hire the best team you can.
When you start building your team, look for character traits over skills. People can learn skills, but you’re not likely to change someone’s character.
When you have your team in place, don’t forget to delegate. You can’t do everything on your own, nor should you try to. You’ll burn out quickly if you think you need to do it all.
12) Do More and Spend Less
When you’re getting started, consider hiring freelancers and third-party contractors to save money.
As your business grows, you’ll be able to outsource more and more work. In the early stages, though, do as much as possible to minimize your outsourcing.
If you’re genuinely passionate about what you’re doing, putting in the extra effort it takes to get up and running shouldn’t hamper you. Instead, it will give your new business the best possible odds for success.
What To Do Next
If you want some extra help with entrepreneurship, get in touch with us here at Loyalty Brands.
From franchise business brokerage to business networking, we’ve got you covered.
Call us today at 888-268-0321 and get started on your journey to financial independence!