10 Essential Habits of Successful Small Business Owners

If you are someone who does not want to walk on the well-trodden path of a nine to five job and dream of making it big in the business world, you need to cultivate the following habits in yourself to ensure success.

1. Dream Big And Stay Confident

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“If you are working on something exciting that you really care about, you don't have to be pushed. The vision pulls you.” – Steve Jobs

The world is full of visionaries and dreamers who had earned success even if their businesses were small. You need to believe in your dreams and believe in yourself that you have what it takes to turn them into reality.

2. Keep Your Eyes Open For Opportunities And Grab Them Once You Spot One

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“The ladder of success is best-climbed by stepping on the rungs of opportunity.”- Ayn Rand

For your business to thrive successfully, you need to think what no one had thought of (or executed) before. The clichéd advice “Think Outside the Box” works wonders if you are planning to set up your own business.

3. Do Not Be Scared Of Failure. Be a Risk Taker.

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“The biggest risk is not taking any risk.” Mark Zuckerberg

Quitting a comfortable, stable, consistently paying job for something unknown is a risk not many people would have the guts to take. If you are not part of that crowd, you are on the right path to success. For all entrepreneurs, each minor setback seems like a major hit. Here is where you have to show resilience. Learn from your mistakes, rectify them and get back in the game- better and stronger.

4. Be an Executor

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“The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.”-Walt Disney

Many people who have big dreams roam the world but lack the enthusiasm, zeal, patience or hard work that is required to bring those dreams to fruition. Things that are only ideas in your head needs to be pushed out of your mind into reality. You need to have the drive to get it done. You need to sell what you are offering, know the market, have buyers for your product/ service and get it to them.

5. Ask For Help

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“If you have not the experience, ask. There is no shame in asking, but do not pretend you know when you don’t.”- Mother Teresa

It is a big, bad, dog-eat-dog world out there and you need all the help you can get. Have someone from the industry who has experience mentor you. Good advice at the right time can set you on the right path.

Have business partners who complement your skills and have the same passion as you for your dreams.

6. Plan Meticulously

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“Failing to plan is planning to fail.”- Allen Lakein

Now you know what you want to do, find out every detail to execute the same. The 6 P strategy helps in this step. “"Proper Prior Planning Prevents Poor Performance." Find out your market, who your competitors are, who your suppliers would be, how much investment would be required, how much manpower you need, what would ensure that your business runs in profit and all such nitty gritty details.

It is important to have good control of your finances.

7.Take Small Steps.

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It is easy to get caught up in the adrenaline rush, aim big and go for it at one go. Whereas it is extremely crucial to set your aim high, it is also important that instead of one big step, you prioritize and plan to achieve your goal in small, incremental steps.

This has 2 advantages:

  • Starting small would need small investments. As and when the business grows, you can aim higher.
  • Putting all your eggs in one basket may cause havoc to you in the case of a failure. Starting small ensures that if you fail, you have enough to start again with a better strategy.

8. Build Strong Teams

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“Treat employees like they make a difference and they will.”- Jim Goodnight

You need to know exactly what skills are required in your employees and need to hire them accordingly. A strong team of good employees will be the backbone of your business. Look for smart workers along with hard workers.

You also should keep in mind the happiness of your employee. Gifts and Rewards for high performers is one of the various ways to inspire. A satisfied and happy employee becomes an asset to the company whereas a disgruntled, unsatisfied or poor-performing employee becomes a liability. Know when to get rid of your liabilities and do so without regret.

9. Know When To Delegate.

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“You can do anything, but not everything.”- David Allen

As your business grows, you will find yourself multi-tasking as you run out of time to do all the things that need to be done. It is understandable that this being your baby, you do not want anybody to mess up anything and as you are your most trusted person, you end up doing nearly everything. You need to let go of this feeling. If you keep multitasking you are unable to focus on the important issues. Prioritize and work on stuff that is critical for your company. Be involved in all the major decisions and for all other routine operations, delegate.

10. Be Goal-Oriented

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“One should not pursue goals that are easily achieved. One must develop an instinct for what one can just barely achieve through one’s greatest efforts.”- Albert Einstein

When you have planned well, have a great team behind you, your business is doing well and you are happy and sated to see your dream come to life, do NOT take a breather. It is too easy to get caught up in regular, routine and lose focus of your ultimate goal. Ensure that you and your team always keep in mind what the big picture is. Keep measuring your performance to ensure that you are on the right track.

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