Sometimes the best packages come wrapped in a transparent film of irony. I am no expert in managing a home business. In fact, I have not yet achieved my own personal goals within my home business. However, I do know how to spot a success when I see one. This past year, I have come into contact with some very fabulous women who have become very successful working in their own homes. Since Mama didn’t raise No fool, I have learned to take note of how these lovely ladies have made their businesses a success.
In any business you have your weeks when you are on top of your game, and the weeks when you’re not. Everyone hits rough patches from time to time. Whenever I see myself headed towards professional destruction, I take a time out to regroup and reevaluate my goals. Regardless of what your business entails, there are a few things that are essential to any successful business.
Set your goals-The most important first step in any business is a clear cut business plan with a set of goals. Figure out exactly how you want to run your business, and who (if anyone) will be a part of your staff. Use your business plan or your list of goals as your ‘Business Bible’, and refer to it often.
Reevaluate your goals-Every once in a while, it is important to reevaluate your business and professional goals. Market conditions change constantly, so it is always a good idea to reevaluate things and make sure that your business is in a position to stay on top. This may mean engaging in a mentorship, taking classes, or reading up on the newest technology. Pay attention to what’s going on in your market, and make any necessary changes in order to remain a key player in the game.
Be realistic-starting and growing a business takes time, money, effort, and the utmost dedication. It also involves a realistic outlook on exactly what road lies ahead of you. Research the market, take notes, and figure out how your product or service will fit into the current market. It is always great to dream big; but be realistic about your dreams. Jumping head first into an over-saturated market and expecting to take over as an expert within a month may not happen for you. It is extremely imperative to realistically map out your goals on an appropriate timetable.
Set up your office space-You will need your own personal space where you can work efficiently. If your office is in your home, be sure to establish boundaries with your family members. Make sure that you let everyone know that your office is essential to the success of your business so that they do not intrude on your space. Depending on your product or service, it is also a good idea to make your office appealing to you. Adding a little color, some artwork, and comfy chairs will make it a more pleasant space to work, allowing you to be more productive.
Surround yourself with positive and successful people-Inspiration can come from many places; and surrounding yourself with positive people is a sure-fire way to keep your creative juices flowing. It is so easy to get complacent, and not push for new goals and objectives. Having a circle that encourages and motivates you is a great way to keep your business fresh! Joining professional and trade organizations is a great way to network with others in business who can share ideas, war stories, and references.
Don’t be so hard on yourself-Sometimes we can be our own worst critic. When staying abreast of your goals, be careful not to crack the whip too hard. No one is saying that you should sit back and be lazy, but know when to criticize yourself, and when to cut yourself some slack. Remember, your personal goals should be your personal goals; not anyone else’s. You cannot compare your success with someone else’s, so do not be discouraged when your business is not thriving as well as Suzy Q. There is a time and a season for everyone and everything.
Ask for help-No one can do everything by themselves. The reason why many businesses fail is not because of a lack of demand, or a lack of great products and services. Many businesses fail because of poor organization and lack of good management. If your business is in need of help-ASK FOR IT! As your business grows, and you find yourself expanding your scope of influence, it may require that you hire someone to help you. You can also barter services, or turn to family members for temporary and part-time help. While no one else will be able to run your business as well as you, having a source of help may be the ticket you need to take you to the next level.
What are your tips or suggestions on running a successful business? What war stories can you share with other readers?