You’ve worked hard as an entrepreneur to launch your business. Give yourself a big kudos because many don’t have the courage and determination to get to this point. However, as we discussed in “How To Become A Successful Entrepreneur,” the work has just begun. The question now is whether or not you have the practical skills to grow and develop your business into a thriving, powerful force?
What Do You Do After You Build it?
Complacency is an entrepreneur’s worst enemy. If you’re comfortable with the status quo, then you eventually become irrelevant because those you serve and the environment you serve them within is fluid.
Just as you must work on keeping your business itself fresh and relevant, you, as a business owner, must work on keeping your skills fresh and relevant. These practical skills are the tools you’ll use to guide the direction of your business and ensure it’s set up to thrive in any circumstance. Your power is in being able to apply these skills to any situation.
Practical Skills To Help Your Business Thrive
So, what are these practical skills?
1. SMARTER Goal Skills
Anyone can set up a goal; the problem is in getting the ball into the goal. New Years gives us all kinds of resolutions each year, but how many are actually checked off as finished?
One of the biggest skills you can have is knowing how to set, work toward, and sink your goals, and that takes getting SMARTER.
What is a SMARTER goal?
• Specific, sane, simple, and significant – knowing the what, who, when, why, where, how, and which to focus your efforts.
• Motivating, meaningful, and measurable – clearly identifying the results of meeting or failing to meet the goal and breaking the goal down into measurable milestones.
• Accomplishable – stretching your capabilities without breaking them.
• Results-driven, reasonable, and realistic – the effort it takes to accomplish the goal must be congruent with the benefit of the goal and your resources.
• Timed – a target date that keeps everyday tasks aligned with and prioritized against long-term-related tasks.
• Evaluated – assessing progress and holding yourself accountable for results.
• Reviewed and revised – plugging your goal into the big picture periodically to ensure it remains applicable and adjusting where and when necessary.
Most entrepreneurs are type A personalities. They’re focused on action and solutions to better what’s around them, and this can sometimes make personal development fall by the wayside.
Yet, self-improvement is a vital skill to have because what/who you are intrinsically attracts what you get.
This self-improvement is, of course, centered around caring for your physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing.
It’s also about expanding your knowledge and skills to grow into the most efficient and effective version of yourself possible.
Continue your education and learning. Don’t dismiss constructive criticism. Keep up with the ebb and flow of wearing different hats in life and how to balance each to stay productive in all facets of life.
3. Recognition Of Opportunities
Personal growth leads right into the next skill of being able to recognize and understand the opportunities available to you.
Whether it’s shifting markets, global crisis, local emergencies, or new technologies, your market isn’t a stagnant situation. So much can change so quickly, and if you don’t make the effort to know your value proposition, best avenues to offer it, and customer needs and wants, then your business will miss a lot of opportunities to thrive both now and in the future.
Go out and explore. Don’t wait for opportunity to come knocking. Go forth to discover where your business can serve in innovative ways. Become part of industry organizations and network with professional peers and mentors. Shop your clients, asking the details of serving them best.
In closing, you’ve worked very hard to create your business. But, you can’t allow today’s small successes to blind you to tomorrow’s potential for even bigger successes. Business is always a work in progress, and part of that progress is your growth and development as a business owner. Don’t ignore the need for these three practical skills to keep your businesses thriving for years to come.