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Success as an entrepreneur is all about character. Money, tools, and opportunities – all these will come in time. What you can prioritize now is to develop the characteristics and habits that will put you on the path to success.
Remember that most, if not all, successful entrepreneurs share a particular set of qualities that set them apart. To groom yourself into the successful person you are meant to be, below are 25 of the best tips you need to remember:
1. Do What You Love
Any person can make a living off of something they regard as “work”, but only those who choose to pursue what they love actually prosper. Keep in mind that being personally fulfilled with what you do drives motivation.
It inspires you to accomplish much more – to aim higher and reach further. Make a list of all the fields you are passionate about to give yourself some options.
2. Have a Game Plan
Read every self-help guide ever written and you’ll find at least one paragraph describing the importance of a program. Not only will it guide your next step, it will also help you track your progress and adapt. Also see to it that you create S.M.A.R.T goals (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Resource-Oriented/Relevant, and Time-Bound).
3. Set a Vision
Take note that goals and objectives may change over time. But once you set a vision for yourself and your future endeavours, all your efforts will surely pull you in a single direction. Write it down and make sure you never forget it.
4. Seek Challenges
A proven way to motivate yourself is to keep seeking challenges. By morning, make sure you already have a list of objectives you want to accomplish by the end of the day. These accomplishments can be related to anything – be it work, relationships, business, or recreation.
5. Be Serious about What You Do
Once you have a particular field of interest and some objectives in mind, the next step is to get serious. You NEED to fully commit yourself to pursuing your chosen path. Take notes, get organized, and make sure your goals always come first.
6. Take Risks
“Great things don’t come from comfort zones,” says Roy Bennett. As a person, you will never grow if you are always afraid to try new things. Besides, if you know how to learn from your mistakes, then every outcome is progress.
7. Have Faith in Your Abilities
In addition to taking risks, you can make the most out of your efforts by believing in your abilities. Take note that there is a huge difference between trying your best and being a defeatist. Have some self-confidence and don’t let doubt inhibit your efforts.
8. Focus on One Thing at a Time
Remember that there’s no such thing as multi-tasking; there’s only forgetting to prioritize. Whether you’re handling multiple businesses at once or faced with a heavy daily workload, make sure you fulfil objectives according to priority and not all at once.
9. Learn from the Experience of Others
Although experience is life’s greatest teacher, it doesn’t necessarily have to be your own. Successful entrepreneurs absorb wisdom from their peers and people they look up to – whether it’s a personal mentor or an authoritative blog. Have a list of your own sources and check back often.
10. Be Patient
If you’re seeking success, then time is probably not on your side. Nobody, not even those coming from already-successful families, can succeed overnight. Time is a resource, and you should invest some in your goals in order for them to bear fruit.
11. Have a Plan to Build Funds
No matter how brilliant your business idea is, you can never mobilize your vision without funding. Make sure you do your research and explore options such as crowd-funding and applying for a small business loan. Seek to raise funds even if you think you already have enough – you can never have too many.
12. Manage Time AND Energy
Time management is indeed necessary for success. However, it is more important to maintain your energy. Even if you have a carefully laid-out plan, the things you can accomplish are still limited if you are tired. So be sure you make time for rest and maintaining your health.
13. Always Be Wise with Money
Today, entrepreneurs have unrestricted access to tools and other resources that can “improve” a business. Although these things may make your entrepreneurship life more convenient, it can also limit the funds you can use for other investments. Try to keep things simple and choose to do grunt work instead of spending money for quicker results.
14. Build a Positive Brand
If your primary enterprise is a home-based business, then building a positive brand image can be a challenge. To make a name for yourself and win the trust of your prospects, you can leverage the power of networking.
Build your presence on sites like LinkedIn groups and other authoritative websites related to your niche. Also look for guest-posting opportunities if you run an official blog.
To make money as an entrepreneur, then you NEED to ask for the sale. There’s no other way but to be an effective self-promoter who actually believes in your own brand. To fulfil this role, you need to actively seek opportunities to give your brand exposure – from attending trade shows to sending cold emails – among other things.
16. Get to Know Your Customers
Entrepreneurs exist not just to make money, but also to satisfy their target customers. You need to offer value but understanding their needs.
A good strategy is to build customer personas complete with details such as their age, occupation, hobbies, and location. Take note that these personas can be useful in marketing activities such as content development, email marketing, and blogging.
17. Identify Competitive Advantages
Aside from getting to know your customers, you should also get to know your own company. Identify your value propositions, be it in your product, service, or your business as a whole and make sure your audience finds out about them.
18. Listen to Complaints
If there are people out there who can expose the weaknesses of your brand, they are your unhappy customers. Regardless of your industry, there will always be clients who are unhappy with your company. You just need to heed their complaints and create actions that can help you improve.
19. Ask for Suggestions
You don’t have to wait for a complaint to receive valuable input from your customers. If you want, you can launch post-sales customer surveys or conduct in-store interviews. Just remember to turn their insights into plans of action. Doing so will help build trust and loyalty in your customers.
If exceeding the expectations of your customers won’t win their trust, then nothing will. With this practice, you are on the way to building a rock-solid reputation in your niche. Just be consistent and value the perception of every single customer.
21. Be an Industry Expert
According to Tony Hsieh of Zappos – “Don’t play games you don’t understand.” As an entrepreneur, you need to understand your industry from the inside-out. Always make time to build your knowledge and stay updated with the latest news.
22. Be a Master Negotiator
Throughout your entrepreneurship, you will be required to forge and maintain relationships not only with your customers, but with other businesses as well. However, negotiation doesn’t always mean you should come out on top. It should create a mutually beneficial situation that will encourage them to deal with you again.
23. Have a Mastermind Group
A mastermind group consists of people with similar drive and interests, yet having different specializations or professions. Every member is obliged to offer their skills and insights to help solve another member’s problems.
To learn more about mastermind groups and how it can be used for your entrepreneurship, you can refer to this blog post in Lifehack.org.
24. Look for Character
When looking for potential business partners or employees, remember to prioritize character over skills. Bear in mind that everyone has the potential to acquire and master a skill, but no one can instill ideals and personal traits into someone else.
25. Learn How to Delegate
As an entrepreneur, you need to know how to recognize and leverage the skills of every person on your team. If you know how to delegate, you can get back to more important tasks where you can apply your expertise.
Regardless if you are an entrepreneur or not, the road to success is not an easy one. Remember these 25 tips to make the most out of every opportunity that comes along the way.