So many businesses fail after the first 3 years of being self employed, which makes many people afraid to step out and follow their dreams.
I myself have only been in this business just over one year. (To date – 2014.) I have listened to many experts, read books, heard talks and webinars from highly successful people in business saying what is required to be successful. Here are some simple basics that I have come up with, what I consider to be 8 main points that need to be looked at and worked on (in no particular order):
1. Strict fiscal discipline
Money - how much will it cost me? Knowing what expenses you will encounter and their cost; knowing at all times where your money is being spent. Be disciplined with it and spend it wisely.
2. Social media presence
You must have a strong visible presence in today’s world of online marketing. Times have changed - door knocking and cold calling on your prospective clients will no longer work. People are looking for knowledge and information online. Ensure you can be found easily and have something of value to offer them.
3. A defined logo/brand
People will recognise you by it eventually and it will set you apart from your competitors.
4. Excellent customer service
Know your product well. If you need to learn more, ensure you do so. Give your best so trust and a good rapport are established. Ensure they leave happy and satisfied.
5. A business plan
Ensure you have one. This is to give you an outline of what is required, which enables you to do some deep thinking on your business as you progress. Although it’s not set in stone and often some things may not be followed or required, you need something as a reference point for where you’re going with your business so you know that every step of the way you are engaged in achieving your business goals.
6. Good support
Align yourself with the right people that will support and encourage you and also challenge you when required. Ensure they are positive people. Stay away from negative comments. Maybe get a mentor or a Coach to help. Listen to talks that will motivate you and pick you up especially during any setbacks and doubts you may have. This is important for you to keep going and lasting the distance in the journey to success.
7. Know your niche
Do not avoid this point which is easy to do. Brainstorm and ensure you know what and why you are passionate about your business, what are the skills that you have to offer? Your speciality area is? Your experience is? This way your products and services can be targeted to your ideal clients and will set you apart from the competition. This will attract referrals to you which in turn means customer recognition and increased profits.
8. You must have an entrepreneurial mindset
This is vital! Get rid of any limiting beliefs which will sabotage your success. Identify what they are and get some new truths. This is hugely important. Challenges and at times self doubt will pop up to test you, so you must be able to keep getting up and moving forward. Trust yourself and be confident. Don’t let anything from your past hold you back. Keep your eyes on your vision, stay on the right path and don’t get side tracked. The need for an entrepreneurial or “success mindset” is a huge area for your success to be a reality. Hard work and discipline will be required for you to succeed. Know that first.
Now just set out and go once your main homework has been done and you know in your gut you want this. Don’t wait till everything is perfectly in place and all questions having been answered, before you begin. Start with something now and be working on and grow the rest. Nothing is ever going to be perfect or good enough and you will find you and your business will grow and evolve over time. But be working on these points always.