Before i get into tips on how to build a successful business, it is important that i define what success is and what it means for a business to be successful. Success is not complicated and I must add that it is easy. Many people think it is difficult to succeed in anything because they start off by comparing themselves with others that have made it. I personally think the true meaning of success is personal. We can only find out if you are successful by looking at the goals you set from the beginning.
Success is accomplishment of an aim or purpose. Success is not about making money like many portray which is why there are so many myths about success and how to achieve it. Many people think success is about building a business and getting a tonne of money from it. Well to me that’s just part of the success journey! If we look at being successful in this way we will then always get that idea of early retirement, which I consider really baby thought.
I think that you will only want to retire if you are doing something you don’t like. If I am doing something I like to do, then I don’t dream of retirement in the first place. I like the idea of Tim Ferris jotted in the classic “The 4-hour work week”. He said the new rich are those who think that retirement can be distributed throughout different parts of your life like taking a holiday away, then back to work and recognizing that inactivity is not the goal. It does make sense to me if we look at retirement in this way. You can get The book for yourself from Amazon here. ( The 4-hour work week)
Back to success in business; I consider this as a journey and a series of events. Success can be measured at every stage of your business rather than at the very end. Success is also personal as it has to do with what goals you set for yourself. What did you want to achieve in the first place?
The tips on building a successful business include;
Staying focused, Being inconsistent, Providing great service, Being very creative, being and staying organized, increasing your knowledge, outsourcing, cash flow Focus, building what your customers want rather than building a product so that customers find it, Aiming for bigger- don’t set small goals!
Before we go into these individual tips,
How do you tell if a business is successful?
Looking at cash flow.
We can always tell if a business is successful by first looking at the cash flow. Looking at how much money came in and what went out can be a great way to tell if a business is successful or not. This is because; a business is sustained by cash inflow. You will have to pay your workers, and meet the most immediate expenses in order to stay in business. In other words, before you can stay in business you need to maintain good cash flow.
Is your business helping people and changing Lives?
You can check if your business is helping people through different ways and one of them is measuring customer satisfaction. Businesses are about people! Without people there is no business. Therefore it is very important to check if customers are happy.
How to measure customer satisfaction
How many new customers are you getting?
This is rather very important because if you are not getting new customers, then you will soon run out of business when you get serious competition. Remember the saying “If you stop growing you die” and this is also true for business.
By assessing your own success.
It is important to take stock of your life too. Did you achieve your goal? This does not mean you compare yourself to others( this has advantages but the disadvantages can be grievous).
How easy is it to find your business? (Online or offline).
This is another determinant of how successful a business is. It’s all part of marketing because if you are successful at marketing your business, then we can say you have successfully put the product before people or your target market.
How can you improve a failing business?
I always tell people,
“If you run away from failure you will never stop running! Face your fears punch them in the snout”.
Epictetus also said;
“ It’s not what happens to you but how you react to what happens to you that matters.”
Let’s look at how we can fix a failing business.
- Identify what is going wrong. This is the first step to fixing things. If you have been collecting reviews from customers then it’s time to look through the Bad review
- Is it time to make a pivot turn or change Direction? Try adopting a new marketing strategy. Most struggling businesses have a problem with the strategy that they chose to market their businesses. Rather than getting discouraged and opting out, try testing different strategies because different businesses will survive with specific marketing strategies. You can be sure that not all will work for you, so its important to find out what works well for your business.
- Take more calculated risks! Many businesses have survived because they acted aggressively during crisis. The biggest way to face a lion is not to run away from it but run towards it.
- Become even more proactive. Fix the most obvious problems quickly. It’s not time to sit back and mourn about the losses. As you work on something, you will notice that more solutions will show up along the way.
- Get back to the drawing board. This is not the time to be alone and sorry but to get your team to re-plan and re-strategize.
- Cut costs immediately. Look at the expenditure that you can avoid and cut out for later. This will help you focus on saving your business first.
- Plan other cash flow avenues if you think you must stay in this particular business. For example, if you have been designing a digital product, if something went wrong, rather than continue struggling because the product didn’t pull off as expected, try to get aside investment that will pull this project or business you have started. In other words, don’t be tied to one stream of income.
- Communicate with creditors. Most of them will work with you through the crisis if they believe you pay later. Ignoring the situation is bad idea.
- Stay calm and always separate the business from yourself and your personal life. You will think better if you stay calm and work from this point of view.
Tips on how to build a successful business
This is one of the most challenging things to do when you start out in business. You will often get alot of shiny objects that may take you ofcourse before you know it. Like the saying goes “grass is always greener on the other side”, you may start to notice that people in other niches are doing better than you are doing. When you start out in a specific business, its always a good idea to believe in what you are doing more than anyone. Don’t share your idea, especially with people who you are sure are not going to help. They will either help or destroy what you have started.
You are also most likely going to get alot of offers that seem somewhat juicy. Again, no one ever achieved anything by being unstable. Building a successful business will mean that you make it your focus and say no to others.
Consistency is key when it comes to building a successful business. This is one of the habits of successful entrepreneurs and definitely one that will build a successful business. Consider having some routine activities like reading a book to expand your knowledge, planning your day first thing in the morning, aking up early, and so many others.
Provide great service.
Building a successful business will mean making sure your customers are happy. You always have to keep at the back of your mind that without people your business doesnt exist. If you think of your business as a solution to a problem, then you are going to be in business for such a long time. Its important that emphasis is put on providing excellent service.
Being very creative
Creativity is what will help you stand during the days of hard competition. Competition should not viewed as an enemy but as an oportunity to be more creative with your product or service.
Being and staying organized.
Being organised will help you agreat deal when it comes to running a successful business. Planning your day and having a daily routine are part of being organised. It is said that:
“Every minute you spend planning saves you 20 minutes.”
If you can save time, you will also notice that money will be saved in the long run as tasks will be completed on time, orders delivered and other related activities.
Increasing your knowledge
“Success Leaves Clues…” – Brad Thor
This is one of the reasons its important to read books as an entrepreneur. You will be able to find what others did when they were faced with similar circumstances. There is no telling the amount of knowledge you will acquire from reading books. You will also be able to silence the voice of fear when it shows up, because fear thrives in the place of lack of knowledge.
There is a time when you need to consider outsourcing in your business. You may never be able to scale abusiness by yourself. If you do, it will take you such along time. Outsourcing will help you save time by forcusing on creativity,innovation and building systems while your stuff focus on the specific areas that need expertise.
Cash flow Focus.
Without cashflow there is no business. It’s very important to keep a close look on how much comes in and how much goes out of your business. It will help you to tell if you are making progress or not. It will also show you where to put more effort.
Building what your customers want rather than building a product so that customers find it
The idea of building a product and then finding customers is an old-time tale. If you really want to build a successful business and avoid struggling, it’s agood idea to find the market and then build a product for them. It’s part of taking a calculated risk which is exactly what successful entrepreneurs do.
Aiming for bigger- don’t set small goals!
“What you see is what you get.”
Aiming higher will activate a higher energy that will spark creativity and innovation. It’s very important that you set agoal that is not only big but also one that you can identify with. If you set a goal with which you have no attachment, then its going be a truggle to even do the little things like waking up everyday.