3 Ways to Follow in the Footsteps of Successful Business Owners

cf31517If you have decided that 2017 is the year you’ll launch your first business, or if you want to grow your current venture significantly over the coming months, it pays to look to others who have been there before you for inspiration, motivation, and good ideas. After all, while many people dream about building a successful business empire, the numbers are much smaller when you count the individuals who are able to become (and stay) a top entrepreneur during their career.

To help you on your way, consider some of the habits and traits of long-term business men and women around the world who have done, and are doing, what you would like to. Analyze many of the most well-regarded entrepreneurs over the years, and you’ll see that they often mention the same three things which have contributed to their success. Read on for some ways that you can emulate them today.

1. Continually Learn

The first thing to remember is that successful entrepreneurs are those who continually learn and have a growth mindset, rather than fixed. If you want to build your business or create many ventures over the years, you need to be open to learning new things and constantly building up your repertoire of skills, experience, and knowledge.

There are many different ways that you might choose to learn more about business and everything related to it. For example, many people find that enrolling in online MBA programs or other similar university-based study provides them with a great overall rundown on what to do (and not do) when they’re a business owner. MBA degrees also give people the opportunity to form strong bonds with other individuals from across the country, or even the globe, who can end up being helpful listening posts, advisors, investors, clients or team members.

If such structured study isn’t for you, then at least spend time regularly reading books, reports, blogs, magazines, newsletters, and the like. From these you can build up your knowledge of your industry and current trends, and delve into subjects such as sales, marketing, customer service, human resources, and leadership.

In addition, it’s worth attending a variety of seminars, workshops, talks, courses, and other types of educational events that deal with either broad or specific business-related topics. Business clubs and associations are also a great way to learn new skills and broaden your horizons as an entrepreneur.

2. Work on Building Personal Strengths

There are lots of different personal strengths that business owners need to have if they want to last as entrepreneurs over the long term too. Passion is a key example. After all, running your own venture and having a million things to do, staff that you’re responsible for, and finances to worry about can certainly have its ups and downs.

If you have plenty of passion for your project though, this will help you to get through the tough times, even when you’re feeling exhausted, out of your depth, anxious, overwhelmed, or just really sick of having to make tough decisions.

Other personal traits that entrepreneurs need are adaptability and flexibility. As you no doubt have realized if you already run your own business, things often don’t go as planned in corporate life. Over the years you are sure to face complications, setbacks, unexpected obstacles, and other issues that you will need to find a way to work around.

This can include anything from changes to government regulations and laws, to staff members quitting, new products not being successful, and so on. To deal with this successfully and find work-arounds and new directions, you need to be adaptable and flexible.

Communication is another top skill that entrepreneurs must have in order to be successful. Having the ability to listen to others, and to clearly communicate your needs, wants, expectations, and worries, is essential. Being a good communicator in person, in writing, over the phone, or via any other method, will help you to lead and motivate your team effectively; market your wares well; persuade investors and lenders to inject cash into your business; and customers to buy from you again and again.

3. Ensure You Have a Top Team of People Around You

Lastly, when you take a look at the interviews conducted with top entrepreneurs over the years, you will notice that they typically always mention the importance of having a good team of people around them. You can’t be or do everything yourself (as much as you may like to think you can), so your business will never really be able to grow significantly until you have others to help you along the way.

This doesn’t just refer to have employees or contractors you can delegate work to either. While this is important, you also need to find yourself mentors, advisors and other people who can provide emotional support, and share their knowledge, experiences, and opinions with you.

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