More and more people have made the decision to create their own small and micro business in order to live the lives they want.
The decision is rarely taken lightly or in haste, and those taking the plunge cite freedom, flexibility and control as their top reasons, with creativity, fulfillment and passion running a close second. Interestingly, making money comes quite low in the pecking order.
Whether you are a new business owner, an old-hand or you are thinking about starting your own business, here are seven tips to help you Master the Art of Small and Micro Business.
1. Have Confidence in Yourself
You have to believe you can succeed in your business venture because, once your business is up and running, you’ll have to deal with people on a daily basis, make decisions that are best for the business and lead policy making, plans and strategies for running the business.
And to do all this well you have to have the confidence to be the face of your business and lead the way.
Some of you will be naturally confident, while others will have to work on developing that confidence.
- You may ask: “How do I walk into a room and start talking?”
- Or: “How do I overcome shyness in large groups?”
There’s a lot of information available to help build confidence – from simple tricks like standing straight and looking people in the eyes when talking to them, to doing thorough research before meetings or practicing your pitch, and so on. A simple Google search will provide lots of sites dedicated to this subject; or you may decide to seek the support of a Mentor or a Coach.
You may not feel confident right away, but you can arm yourself with the right tricks and tools, and then over time, confidence will come and you won’t have to fake it any more.
2. Small Steps Lead to Big Things
One small step is one step on the way to something much bigger – to run a marathon, you have to take the first step across the start line!
Some people start their businesses as a side-line to a main job or to their home life – this means that the business starts organically and involves less risk than launching full-time into a business, from scratch.
Whether it’s a hobby that grows or taking existing skills into business – there’s lots of advantages to starting small and growing gently
3. Embrace New Tools
Technology changes and evolves very quickly. Staying up to date with new technology can seem low priority out of all the things you need to do for your business, because it’s not necessarily addressing immediate issue like customers or cashflow.
However, ignoring technology, putting it on the back-burner or shying away from learning how to use it is a false time economy because, in the long run, it’s technological tools that will help you to manage and run your business more efficiently.
- If you need help managing finances, there is lots of fantastic money management software to help you keep an eye on your cashflow
- If you have time management issues there is relevant software to help you with that too
- And of course, social media which will help you connect and communicate with your target audience
Ultimately, these tools will help you manage your precious time effectively
4. Learn to Outsource
You can’t do it all!
No matter how much you’d like to and how much you want to, you just can’t.
Outsourcing will allow you to spend as much time as possible doing the thing you love and free you up from the smaller, but still very important, day-to-day stuff. It will enable you to think about the bigger picture, while making sure your business stays on track.
5. Money Matters: Know Your Numbers
Having sound financial knowledge of your business is crucial. As the business owner, you need to know what’s happening with all aspects of the business finances, at all times.
Your understanding of cash flow, profit and loss, income and expenditure will lead to growth and success for your business. However, you don’t have to know how to do it all yourself – you can work with accountants, bookkeepers, financial advisors, or business development mentors as needed to guide you through.
6. Connections Count: Keep Connecting
Spending time with other small and micro business owners, socially or at networking events, is valuable in so many ways. Other entrepreneurs can share experiences and knowledge; they can introduce and refer you to potential customers; they can assist you with the development of your business skills.
Importantly, they can be a sounding board for new ideas, a source of encouragement if things go wrong and a group to help celebrate your successes.
7. LOVE What You Do
You spend far too much time working on your business to not enjoy what you do!
Your business has probably grown out of a specific interest, your previous career, or a hobby. You feel connected to it and driven to make it succeed because you want to do it.
When you love what you do, it’s much easier to feel confident about yourself and your business. You will be able to talk knowledgeably and passionately about your business, boosting your own confidence as well as those around you, including clients and customers because enthusiasm and confidence are infectious.