There are important traits that if an entrepreneur has and strives to acquire, will make him more successful in his business. These can be grouped into three categories;
- Personal traits
- Technical traits
- Business Management traits
Being open minded. Listen to Others
Trying new things whether it be a marketing strategy, a new business system, a piece of software or a new product/ service, can be good for the growth of the business. The entrepreneur should create a working atmosphere that nurtures and appreciates new ideas. If the staff feel as though their ideas are listened to, considered and possibly even implemented, the more likely the entrepreneur is to have some great ideas being generated!
Learning from mistakes
The entrepreneur should make a concerted effort to learn from his mistakes. He should assess why his ideas didn’t work or why he lost a particular customer etc. Once he has made the mistake and is aware of the reason behind the failure, he should use it to his advantage and try a different strategy or modify the initial idea.
The entrepreneur should understand that great businesses take time to establish. He should persevere even if it appears that he is not making headways. He should persevere till he starts breaking even at least. This perseverance also translates into other aspects of business as well, whether it is a new marketing idea or a potential client or business lead.
Other personal attributes that will go towards making a good entrepreneur include;
•• Being disciplined
•• Being a risk taker
•• Being persistent
•• Being a visionary
This entails addressing the name of people in all business correspondences, keeping a business mindset when meeting with clients or talking to them over the phone. Clients don’t need to hear the intricate details of the entrepreneur’s personal life. Being professional also means checking emails for spelling errors, following-up on enquiries, being punctual when meeting with clients, responding to telephone calls promptly, sending out quotes on a timely basis. But far the most important factor about being professional is being consistently professional.
Create systems and adapt them as necessary
As the company grows, it may become more difficult to manage and keep track of things. A useful way to deal with this problem is to create systems within the business for any specific task that requires multiple steps or procedures. This will help to create a smooth workflow and allow the entrepreneur to keep track of things a little easier. A web designer, for example, might create a checklist for new websites.
Other qualities that are important under this category include;
•• Being a team player
•• Network building
•• Possessing good communication skills
Business Management traits:
There is nothing more frustrating than when businesses advertise in community flyers or on signboards and then never answer their phone calls (or return them) and don’t bother to respond to emails. Clients should be able to at least contact the business via email and a land line number. The entrepreneur should return calls as soon as possible. If he will not be in the office, to check email for most of the day, he should set an auto-responder that lets people know when
he will be checking his email and possibly include his cell phone number as well.
Get an Email address, Email Signature and Website
There is simply no excuse not to have an email address! The entrepreneur can get free email addresses from gmail, Webmail and Yahoo. Although an email address that reflects his business domain name looks a lot more professional, any email address will do if you he is just starting out. If he doesn’t t have an email address it can seriously affect the way that people perceive him as a business person, some people just won’t take him seriously.
Planning and Research
The entrepreneur should do a thorough ground work before embarking on his venture. He should ensure he has done sufficient research and that this becomes a continuous process. Poorly planned businesses collapse before starting and lack of proper research kills the growth of the firm. Frequent consultations with other businessmen also help in generating ideas.
Protecting the Business
The entrepreneur should insure his equipment and computers as well as anything else that could be detrimental to his business if it were stolen, destroyed or lost. He should keep his warrantee slips on any new office purchases and make sure he does data back-ups regularly – to an external hard drive or a remote server. He should get trademarks and copyrights to protect any business ideas or concepts that are uniquely his.
Marketing the business wisely
Although many businesses rely on word of mouth advertising, it is still a good idea to merge this with an actual marketing plan. If the entrepreneur’s budget allows, he should consult a professional marketing firm or start off with the basics and try to get his business as much exposure as possible through various platforms such as; a website, e-newsletter, business cards, a company brochure, vehicle branding and possibly an advert in an industry magazine