According to a House of Commons research briefing paper published in December 2017 (Written by Chris Rhodes – Number 06152), there were at the time 5.7 million businesses in the UK, of which 99% of are Small to Medium Sized Enterprises (employing 0-249 people). These businesses make up the backbone of the UK’s economy.
This paper also suggested that as well as an increasing number of startups there are a large number of businesses that fail as well.
This brings about the question; what makes a business succeed? There are many variables to this question but one thing that will have an impact is the person running the show.
The MD or CEO of the organisation will have a direct impact on policy decisions or the direction that the business takes and as a result, they need to be ‘switched on’ to make this happen. A lot of people are focussed on what traits you need to have to be successful so I’m going to cover some of the more generic traits that we find in a successful entrepreneur.
A good starting point. They need to be able to lead people. Often the way a business grows is through its people. There aren’t many companies on the FTSE100 with 1 employee so growth through leadership is key.
When you start a business, you are by way of definition selling goods or services to a customer. If you understand the customer, and continue to understand them in what might be a changing economic climate, then you should be able to encourage business growth.
A USP is a unique selling point. This is something about you or your business that makes you different from everyone else. Understanding your USP allows you to focus both yours and others attention on it and build your business by promoting it.
When marketing or advertising, your ROI is key. ROI or ‘Return on Investment’ helps you to understand at what point you have covered the cost of a specific campaign. It’s the breakeven point for the campaign and the point at which you start making a profit.
You might not always make a sale with your first communication or attempt, but providing you have the consent to contact the client you can follow up with other key information, products or services. Having this ability and combining this with other key traits is likely to make you successful. This also follows in with the principle of being proactive and not reactive.
If you run a product orientated company and run out of stock, then you have to reinvest in more stock. If you run a service led company then which area would your reinvestment fall under? People, software, networking or more marketing, etc. Successful entrepreneurs reinvest to grow their company.
Bill Gates once said that you don’t have to know everything. Just surround yourself with people who do. Having people around you that understand the product, market, or customer’s requirements is bound to be better than someone who has limited knowledge. When you employ someone, ensure that they get the right training and understand your company philosophy as well as the product/service they will be promoting. This will work wonders for your brand.
Anyone who lacks the passion in their product or brand is unlikely to succeed. Successful businesses leaders all tend to display a passion for what they do and give it everything whilst never sacrificing their professional integrity. This passion often manifests itself in hard work to ensure the corporate objectives of the business are being met.
Whether engaging in marketing, advertising or PR, communication is key to a successful outcome. Communication isn’t just about a message you put out or something you say. Communication is a two-way street and depends on your ability to listen as well. This should allow you to manage expectations better.
The corporate or business world is often competitive. As such this is a common trait for a successful business people. A business owner will need to rise to meet the challenges of any industry whether it be a niche market, local competition or a ‘free for all’. As well as being competitive, regular analysis is key to staying on top.
10 traits of successful business people may be an article you see a lot of variations of, but it’s what you draw from the article that counts. Identify whether you share these traits with other business leaders and understand what you need to do to maximise potential.
We set up The Business Ninja to create a hub where people from different backgrounds and businesses could share their ideas and expertise.
Hopefully, there are some articles on the site that you find useful, and will help you flourish in your area of business.
Of course, if you have some words of wisdom you want to share, please get in touch and we can add you to our growing list of contributors.