Achieving success in a business is not an easy job. You have to deal with a lot of challenges. One wrong move and it may take your business to bankruptcy. It would be nice if business mistakes do not cost money but they do. Always be on guard as many of these mistakes apply to most kinds of businesses, whether big or small.
Below is a collection of business tips that I gathered to help you drive your business towards profitability and some are business pitfalls and mistakes that should be avoided.
Never easily trust people. This applies both in your business partner or when it comes to granting a credit to customers. When taking a business partner, don’t throw that caution to the wind. Make sure to be always transparent. Agreements should always be in writing. Even the best of friends can become worst enemies because of a business deal that went sour. When it comes to granting credit, if your clients apply for credit, then forget them. I learned my lesson when I trusted two people as my business partners during my first business venture in an internet computer shop. They did all to win my trust and my money too. When problems cropped up, they were nowhere to be found.
Success is not a matter of luck. Luck happens when preparation meets opportunity. Prepare for it to happen. Persevere, work hard, and plan ahead. However, when success does come, be sure not to fall victim to the ‘quick rich syndrome’ where people spend all their earnings lavishly only to find out later that they lost everything that they worked for. They engage in lavish lifestyle buying expensive things and other luxury items. This happens to a lot of lotto winners. Keep your expenses to a minimum or else you will run out of cash. Live below your means. Be frugal. I always believe in a Filipino saying: “Ubos ubos biyaya, bukas ay nakatunganga”.
Be a self-motivator. You must constantly motivate yourself. Be strong when faced with a lot of challenges. Get support from your friends and relatives. Always be a positive thinker. Learn the law of attraction. However, don’t listen to doomsayers and dispensers of poor advise. They will just discourage you and in return, you will lose that drive and energy. Stick to those people who achieved success! Their success will rub off on you.
Expand your network. Be always friendly, nice, sociable, and approachable. Develop a network to help you in your business. Join organizations and business clubs. Include in your network your suppliers, customers, church associates, acquaintances and others. You never know when will you need them and what business they can give you someday. Always return their favor, if you can. As for myself, I joined yahoo groups for entrepreneurs called “entreplink”. I learned a lot from them.
Stay Focus. Maintain your focus on achieving success in your business. Never lose sight of your business objectives. Keep your dreams alive and burning! I have read a book about Paretto’s Principle of 80/20 and this can also be applied into business. That is, put most of your efforts on the 20% of things that bring 80% of income to your business. Learn to delegate tasks. Value your own time and prioritize your responsibilities.
Educate yourself. Life is a never-ending learning process. Have an open mind. Read books. Attend seminars and conventions within the field of your business. Aside from the networks that you will develop, you will also learn a lot from other people. Grab a mentor or a business coach. Successful business persons are always willing to give you a piece of advice. Success begets other successes. They are willing to pass on their success to others.
Turn disadvantages to advantages. Look for opportunities in any disadvantage. Be creative and innovative with your ideas. Always be on a foresight mode rather than a hindsight mode. Establishments with lots of pests like cockroaches and termites can be a disadvantage. Maybe you can set up your own pest control company and get these establishments as your customers.
Get Insurance. Consider getting a life and health insurance for yourself for the benefit of those you will leave behind. An early death of the owner can be a damaging factor to the business. I have seen a lot of these in my due diligence job before. In the same breadth, consider getting a health insurance. Running a business involves a lot of stress and can damage one’s health. It’s better to prepare for these incidental hospitalization expenses so as not to drain the working capital of the business.
Teach your children the business. Let them participate in it. Develop in them a sense of belonging and ownership of the business as they grow up. Some businesses close down upon early death of the owner simply because there was no one to manage it in the family. Successful businesses end up becoming huge business empires and are passed on from one generation to another. What a waste if the business you started cannot continue to provide for your heirs.
Enjoy life. In our youth, we spend our health to gain our wealth. As we get older, it’s the other way around. We spend our wealth to gain our health.
Achieve success in your business!