Starting a business is a stressful endeavour that requires extraordinary time management skills. You have a hundred things on your plate and your to-do list only keeps getting longer. On one hand that’s good news since it means you have new business and work to do. On the other hand, there’s a danger of losing the sight of the bigger picture, letting your health take a back seat, and ceasing to evolve.
You will be faced with numerous things to tackle throughout the day but there are a few things you should never stop doing if you want to build a solid base for the future. As it turns out, we have some suggestions to help you out with this. So let’s dive straight in!
Keep Working on Your Communication Skills
“To speak, and to speak well, are two things. A fool may talk, but a wise man speaks.” – Ben Johnson
People who talk brilliantly impress all. It’s a fact. And it’s not possible to overstate the importance of good communication skills when you’re in business.
As important as having groundbreaking ideas bubbling around in your head is the ability to express them eloquently. In a manner that not only hooks the other person’s interest but also holds it, all the way till you have made your point.
Beyond talking well, good communication skills go further. This involves good listening skills, the ability to compose professional and effective emails, and (in person) being able to read the other person’s expression and tweak your approach accordingly. You want to win others over to your point of view, so that they give you the contract you want, and agree to the price you have quoted to them.
This is subtle salesmanship and all business people who want to be successful in their fields need to learn this art. Early entrepreneurs are often guilty of over-enthusiasm and aggressive selling. Subtlety comes with time.
As a business owner you can expect to make tons of presentations and hold a number of conference calls each month. That makes it even more important for you to learn how to conquer objections, skepticism, and turn a potential no into a yes.
Make Time for Networking
A growing client base is the lifeblood of any business. You want people to keep coming to you.
One way to achieve this is to do such a good job that you simply win your clients over. Word of mouth will then take matters further for you.
In the beginning, however, when you have just set up shop you cannot expect people to appreciate how awesome your company is and what great services you deliver, simply because you haven’t built a professional presence yet.
That is why networking is essential. However much you may dislike the idea of pitching your services to strangers, you need to do it. Don’t be satisfied with the customers you win early on. Keep networking in relevant circles and keep building a bigger client base. Networking also keeps you in the loop regarding what’s happening in your field – very important if you want to stay relevant and competitive.
Don’t Become a One-Trick Pony
What caused your business to come into existence? What have you got that the others don’t, and why should people come to you?
It had all begun with an idea, and with the passion that you had pumped into your idea to see it materialise into a proper business.
Have you got a bit stale lately? Does it look like you’re on a treadmill? Have companies with similar business ideas popped up in the past few months that you have been operational?
Others should never be able to figure you out completely, because the moment they do, you lose your advantage. That which made you unique is now known to others.
Keep evolving to retain the element of freshness. That could mean updating your website every year, or tweaking your marketing strategy to bring in more business.
Use Tech Tools for Lifestyle Balance
While you are busy chasing deadlines, also ensure that your health doesn’t take a back seat, because if it does, how will you fulfill your dreams? Since your smartphone is with you all the time, download and use apps that help you improve your productivity and manage your time well.
Sleep is usually the first casualty of ambition and success. As work starts pouring in, our personal habits worsen and we find ourselves unable to change any of it. However, apps like Habit Flow and Sleep as Android are just two of the many apps that will help you cultivate better habits and get your sleep patterns on track. There are numerous other apps that aid a business person’s performance and productivity so check this space out.
Don’t Forget to Take a Break
It is ironic that people who have no time to slow down are the ones that need to slow down the most. Don’t have the time to take a day off? Then you need to take a day off.
The whole point of a break is for people to step back and take stock of the situation they are in. If you have been caught up in a whirlwind of activity since the inception of your business, chances are a break would do wonders for you.
For optimum results, take regular breaks. We would recommend taking a day completely off at least once every two weeks, but this differs from person to person. Some people need more breaks than others. You need to find out how frequently you need quality ‘me time’.
And how does one determine that time is ripe for a break?
- The moment you feel a client is getting on your nerves, when you are otherwise very composed and diplomatic.
- The moment you feel like yelling at your spouse, when you are usually quite a loving fellow.
- The moment you feel you just want to stay in bed and not go anywhere.
- Or the moment you feel the onset of fever. This last bit is a little extreme.
- Also, do you know that breaks aid creativity? Of course, you do. We don’t need any research to tell us that now, do we?