The most successful business owners in the country have at least one thing in common: They’re just about all tired.
It’s not a bad thing though. It is proof that these business owners know how to work hard and push themselves to their physical and mental limits in order to achieve success.
There are more than 30 million small businesses in the U.S. today. If you want your business to be as successful as it can be, you have to be willing to be tired more often than not.
You also need to have some, if not all, of the other traits that are shared by successful business owners. They will set you apart from your competition and give your business every opportunity to stand the test of time.
Here are the 11 top traits of successful business owners.
There are so many things that go into starting a successful business. But, it all boils down to setting goals and reaching those goals.
If you are not the type of person who excels when it comes to creating goals for yourself and then doing whatever you have to do to achieve them, you will struggle to be like all of the successful business owners out there.
When you first start a business, it is important to come up with a long list of goals that you want to hit. You should also think about how long you want it to take you to hit the goals that you come up with.
Think about more than just financial goals, as well. While making and budgeting money accordingly are essential to running a successful business, so are things like:
- Offering the best products and/or services possible
- Improving customer service
- Using social media more efficiently
- Increasing website traffic
- Hiring more employees and training them
These are all examples of goals that you can have for your business. Remember, no matter what your specific goals are, the point is that you put goals into place and strive to reach them.
It does not matter if you have been a business owner for a few months, a few years, or even a few decades. You are not going to become successful and, more importantly, stay successful if you are not always hungry and ready to do more.
The world is constantly changing, which means that the amazing product or service you offer today could be obsolete by tomorrow. It also means that there are always new business owners throwing their hat into the ring and trying to steal some of your success.
Studies have shown that the majority of small business owners work more than 50 hours every week. They also work at least one weekend every month.
They put in the long hours that are necessary to run a successful business because they are hungry for more success than they already have. They do not want to see another business come along and take a piece of their pie when they are not looking.
As a business owner, you are going to have a million and one things on your plate at all times. You will be in charge of doing things like:
- Creating a business plan
- Executing a marketing plan
- Planning out production schedules
- Generating sales predictions
- Handling payroll
- Dealing with vendors, clients, and customers
- Putting together end-of-year documents
Successful business owners need to be nimble. They have to jump from one task to the next without being scatter-brained and disorganized. They also have to manage their stress levels in the process.
Those business owners who struggle to stay focused will not enjoy as much success as they should. They will often find that their business does not run very efficiently and that they are not able to get things done in any kind of timely fashion.
When you work for someone else, you do not have to worry too much about being self-disciplined. There will always be someone looking over your shoulder and preparing to discipline you.
But when you are in charge of running the show, there is no one to tell you what to do or how to do it. You can close your store a few minutes early if you want or put off doing that paperwork that needs to be done until tomorrow.
The problem is that when you start to cut corners and show a lack of self-discipline, it will hurt your business at some point. You might not miss out on any sales by closing early tonight, but you might at some point in the future. You might also put off doing paperwork for so long that it comes back to bite you in the end.
Your business is your business, and it is your job to be self-disciplined enough to keep everything in order. You cannot afford to not bring your A-game each and every day, regardless of whether or not you feel like doing it.
From the moment you walk through the front door of your business in the morning to the time you walk back out of it to go home at night, it is your job to set the tone for your business. Your employees will take cues from you and use your general approach to your business as a guide for how they should act.
If you always look like you are rundown and out of it, your employees won’t feel like they have to expend a ton of energy at work. But, if you’re passionate from the second you set foot inside your business, you’ll get a much different reaction from them.
You started your business because you believed that it was something the world needed. Do not ever lose sight of that, no matter how successful your business might become.
Bring passion and fire to your business day in and day out. You will see much better results over the long run. You’ll feel better about the performance you’re putting forward, and your employees will respond by showing passion for their work as well.
All business owners get stuck in a rut every now and then. Sales go down, the ideas for new products and services dry up, and it feels like you are standing in quicksand while everyone else around you is enjoying success.
During times like these, you need to remain confident in what you are doing and what your business brings to the table. No one is going to believe in your business if you don’t, which makes it important for you to show confidence.
You cannot fake confidence either. You need to 100 percent believe in whatever it is your business is trying to do. Keep one eye on your goals and demonstrate the confidence it takes to achieve them one by one.
7. Financially Responsible
The whole point of starting a business is often to make as much money as you can. So, if you are not the kind of person who is good when it comes to getting money and spending it wisely, running a business might not be for you.
Small businesses lose money for a number of reasons:
- They don’t have good accounting practices in place
- They have an owner who uses business funds to take care of personal expenses
- They have products and/or services that are priced too low or too high
- They enjoy a little bit of success and forget to invest money back into their own business
- They fail to get with the times and wait too long to adapt to the changing world around them
Successful business owners do not make these mistakes. They make wise decisions when spending, saving, and investing money and treat money with the respect it deserves.
It is incredible what a little taste of success can do to a business owner.
One day, they are the most humble person in the world and happy to be able to run a small business; the next, they walk around like they are the next Warren Buffett.
Whether your business blows up overnight or struggles to find its footing during its first few years, always remain as humble as you can be. Keep your feet on the ground during the good and bad times and never be above accepting constructive criticism from others.
By staying humble, you won’t feel too high or too low, even when your business experiences tremendous growth or hits a rough patch. You will be as even-keeled as they come and will be able to stay confident at all times.
Dealing with adversity is something that comes with the territory for all successful business owners. There are going to be times when a product does not sell well for whatever reason or when a service does not generate the kind of profits you expected it to.
During these times, keep this quote in mind: “Tough times don’t last, but tough people do.” Repeat it to yourself over and over again until it sticks.
There is a certain toughness that you need to have if you are going to make it as a business owner. When everything is looking bleak for your business, you need to commit to overcoming the adversity that is facing you and inspire those around you to join you.
If you allow the first bump in the road to throw your business off course, it is not going to end well for your company.
Many businesses do not turn a profit in their first year, or their second year, or even their third year.
As you might imagine, this can be frustrating for some business owners who are not able to see the big picture. They want to see more money in their business bank accounts and do not want to have to wait around forever for it to happen.
The passion that you have for your business might take a little bit of a toll on your patience levels. But generally speaking, successful business owners need to know how to be patient and not get too far ahead of themselves.
Making money may be the name of the game, but it is better to put the best business practices into place first and make money later, as opposed to trying to take shortcuts to profitability. That will only hurt your business in the end.
Bad business owners think they know everything about running their businesses and refuse to take suggestions from others. They are too stubborn to get out of their own way so that they can seek help from others.
Successful business owners operate differently. They know that they do not know everything about business and keep an open mind when communicating with others. This allows them to gain a new perspective on the way they’re running their business.
Even if you have been running it for years now, it’s a good idea for you to keep an open mind about your business.
Be More Like Successful Business Owners
Successful businesses are not as common as you might think. Studies have shown that about 50 percent of small businesses close down before they hit the five-year mark.
Some of these businesses shutter because there is not a strong enough market for their products and services, but others go out of business because their owners do not have the traits listed here.
Keep the traits of successful business owners in mind when you are running your business. When you use them to your advantage, you will reduce your company’s chances of failing.
For performance-based business consulting, contact The Business Turnaround Group.